Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Biden vs the Catholic Church---The Saga Continues

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Yesterday I noted that President Biden has become the focus of great concern to his Catholic Church because he claims to be a devout Catholic while advancing abortion and denying one of his church's most fundamental beliefs in the sanctity of life.

He apparently does not see the contradiction---or is ignoring it--- but his church does see it and it has become a major issue.

The US Bishops have voted to continue drafting a document for the church that provides guidelines for the reception of communion.

Now, at least one member of Congress is calling for retribution by rebuking the tax-exempt status of the Catholic Church.

Could this actually happen? Could it become a new norm? 

A form of it is already happening.

Be informed, not misled.

Rep. Jared Huffman, D-California, is now lashing out at the bishops, suggesting that "if they are going to weaponize religion by rebuking Democrats who support women's reproductive choice, then a rebuke of their tax-exempt status may be in order." 

I mentioned yesterday that an overwhelming majority of the bishops (168) voted to continue drafting a document addressing the matter of prop-abortion Catholics such as President Biden, Nancy Pelosi, and others, who publicly display their Catholic identity, but refuse to adhere to Catholic teaching. Only 55 bishops opposed moving forward on the document.

Now Jared and others are taking Biden's refusal to actually practice his Catholicism to a new level.

Threatening to use the government to de-certify the tax-exempt status of a church with which you disagree, happens daily in China, but not here. At least until now.

Biden vs his Church.

About 60 House Democrats wrote a letter saying they "solemnly urge" the Church "to not move forward and deny the most holy of all sacraments, the source and the summit of the whole work of the gospel over one issue."

They are apparently asking their church to claim to be pro-life, but in reality and practice deny that claim---as Biden and others do with their Catholic identity.

How does this work? "I am a devout Catholic, but I do not believe what the Catholic Church teaches."

It doesn't. It's called hypocrisy. Sometimes it's called heresy.

The letter continues: 

"We recognize that no party is perfectly in accord with all aspects of Church doctrine. This fact speaks to the secular nature of American democracy, not the devotion of our democratically elected leaders. Yet we believe we can speak to the fundamental issues that unite us as Catholics and lend our voices to changing the political debate---a debate that often fails to reflect and encompass the depth and complexity of these issues."

It adds:

"We believe the separation of church and state allows for our faith to inform our public duties and best serve our constituents. The Sacrament of Holy Communion is central to the life of practicing Catholics, and the weaponization of the Eucharist to Democrat lawmakers for their support of a woman's safe and legal access to abortion is contradictory."

The debate over whether pro-abortion Catholic politicians should receive communion has intensified following the election of President Joe Biden, a pro-abortion Catholic who attends mass regularly.

While Biden was campaigning for president ahead of the 2020 presidential election, a priest in South Carina refused to serve Biden communion due to his abortion advocacy.

The bishops and the Catholics who support withholding communion from pro-abortion Catholic politicians point to the Church's Code of Canon Law that states that those who are "obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to Holy Communion."

About the threat to revoke the tax-exempt status of the Catholic Church.

I doubt that anyone thinks the IRS would actually do that---especially to the Catholic Church.

However, a recent rejection by the IRS of a Christian nonprofit request has certainly raised some concern, because of the reason given for the denial.

The organization called "Christians Engaged"  said its stated purpose is "to awaken, motivate, educate, and empower ordinary believers in Jesus Christ."

Their three-fold emphasis is: "Pray for our nation and elected officials regularly. Vote in every election to impact our culture. Engage our hearts in some form of political education or activism for the furtherance of our nation."

The IRS rejection said this: 

"Specifically, you educate Christians on what the Bible says in areas where they can be instrumental including the areas of sanctity of life, the definition of marriage, biblical justice, freedom of speech, defense, and borders and immigration, US and Israel relations. The Bible teachings are typically affiliated with the [Republican Party] and candidates. This disqualifies you from exemption under IRC Section 501(c) (3)."

This ruling is being appealed by First Liberty Institute.

There is a couple of ironies in this.

First, we have to wonder what would prompt Rep. Jared Huffman to throw out that threat to revoke the Catholic Church's non-profit status on social media if it were not something already on his mind. Is this part of a discussion among our elected officials on the left in the Democrat Party?

A few days ago Biden was asked if he was concerned about the actions his church might take regarding his participation in communion. His response---"No, not at all."

Dr. Michael Brown touched on the other irony in his column yesterday.

He noted that the words of the ruling from the IRS were that "biblical teaching is associated with the Republican Party." 

"In large measure," he says, "the IRS got it right about that." The ruling itself, he agrees, was terribly wrong.

He makes a strong, solid case for why the IRS got it wrong.


This episode will go on because it pits a president against his church. The president and his cohorts are demanding the church change, or at least ignore a fundamental tenet of faith---the sanctity of life.

President Biden reflects a view that is too common in American Christianity today---one that holds that Christianity and all religions are subjective and relative.

The culture is demanding the Christian Church, in general, put aside those beliefs that are in conflict with the cultural norm of the moment.

The Democrats are pushing hard to get the Equality Act passed into law because it guts religious liberties in favor of LGBTQ extremism.

The "progressives" are demanding the church be subjected to the requirements of the culture. Exactly what Biden, Pelosi, Huffman, and others are demanding in the case of Biden and abortion.

The Christian church in Germany found itself in similar circumstances a generation ago. Hitler's Nazi worldview pressed the church to structure their belief system, to a great extent, to accommodate the Nazi worldview and sync up with the culture and the style of the Third Reich.

I've interviewed Christian adults who were teenagers during Hitler's rise. I've seen them weep as they tell their story of trying to be elastic in their beliefs so as to accommodate the culture, joining his "Christian youth Movement" to fit in. To belong.

Chinese authorities are, as we speak, now demanding that the Bible must be revised to align more with Confucianist and Communist thought. Christian pastors are required to include both worldviews in their biblical sermons today in China---some are complying, some are not.

Could this become a template for lawmakers in America who want to press the church into conformity with the contemporary culture?

Paul's words need to be shouted from the housetop. In such an age he wrote: "Be not conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind."

Be Informed. Be Discerning. Be Vigilant. Be Prayerful.