“If the world hates you, realize that it hated me first.
If you belonged to the world, the world would love its own; but because you do not belong to the world, and I have chosen you out of the world, the world hates you.
Remember the word I spoke to you, ‘No slave is greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours.
And they will do all these things to you on account of my name, because they do not know the one who sent me.
If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin; but as it is they have no excuse for their sin.
Whoever hates me also hates my Father.
There’s an old saying that you don’t hear much anymore “Your best friend should tell you.” It refers to when you might have bad breath or are in the process of doing something really destructive. Most people will say nothing and you might ignore your family, that’s when a best friend, a person who really loves you steps up and tells you what you need to know.
Fr. Robert Morey is acting like Joe Biden’s best friend.
The job of a priest is tough, it’s one of the toughest jobs in the world, you are really on 24/7, you forgo many of the pleasures of life, you have to serve those around you ,obey those above you, spend time constantly in prayer and while doing all those thing fight all the temptations and efforts of the other side attempting to draw you to sin that every human being has to deal with knowing that if you fall you can take a lot of folks, particularly those weak in the faith with you.
But boiled down to the most basic task a priest is a doctor for a human soul and like a medical doctor there are time he has to deliver a message that people don’t want to hear. As the Lord said to Ezekiel (Emphasis mine)
Thus the word of the LORD came to me: Son of man, I have appointed you a watchman for the house of Israel. When you hear a word from my mouth, you shall warn them for me.
If I say to the wicked man, You shall surely die; and you do not warn him or speak out to dissuade him from his wicked conduct so that he may live: that wicked man shall die for his sin, but I will hold you responsible for his death.
If, on the other hand, you have warned the wicked man, yet he has not turned away from his evil nor from his wicked conduct, then he shall die for his sin, but you shall save your life.
If a virtuous man turns away from virtue and does wrong when I place a stumbling block before him, he shall die. He shall die for his sin, and his virtuous deeds shall not be remembered; but I will hold you responsible for his death if you did not warn him.
When, on the other hand, you have warned a virtuous man not to sin, and he has in fact not sinned, he shall surely live because of the warning, and you shall save your own life.
Thus if a priest fails to warn a member of the flock about to commit mortal sin or consistently commuting mortal sin publicly he is failing his flock.
And that brings us to Joe Biden and Fr. Morey
In holy scripture St. Paul explicitly states the price of receiving the Eucharist in an unworthy fashion (emphasis mine)
For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus, on the night he was handed over, took bread, and, after he had given thanks, broke it and said, “This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me. “For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes.
Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily will have to answer for the body and blood of the Lord.
A person should examine himself, and so eat the bread and drink the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body, eats and drinks judgment on himself.
St Paul’s 1st Letter to the Corinthians Cor 11 23-29
(That last sentence btw is why non-Catholic can’t receive as they think the Eucharist is “symbolic” rather than the actual body & blood of Christ). So we are dealing with Mortal Sin, and not just mortal sin but PUBLIC mortal sin and Church law is rather explicit on the subject:
He told LifeSiteNews.com, “I don’t understand the continual debate that goes on about it. There’s not a question that a Catholic who publicly, and after admonition, supports pro-abortion legislation is not to receive Holy Communion and is not to be given Holy Communion.”
via Fr. Z
“The Church’s law is very clear,” said Archbishop Burke, who was appointed last year by Pope Benedict XVI as the head of the Church’s highest court, the Apostolic Signatura. “The person who persists publicly in grave sin is to be denied Holy Communion, and it [Canon Law] doesn’t say that the bishop shall decide this. It’s an absolute.”
So when Joe Biden presents himself for holy communion when proudly persisting in a state of mortal sin, what is the duty of a priest? Well Christ answered that in the final question that was put to him:
One of the scribes, when he came forward and heard them disputing and saw how well he had answered them, asked him, “Which is the first of all the commandments?”
Jesus replied, “The first is this: ‘Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’
The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
The scribe said to him, “Well said, teacher. You are right in saying, ‘He is One and there is no other than he.’ And ‘to love him with all your heart, with all your understanding, with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself’ is worth more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”
And when Jesus saw that (he) answered with understanding, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And no one dared to ask him any more questions.
Fr. Morey by his actions obeyed both commandments.
Admonishing the sinner is a spiritual work of mercy and to do any less would be like a doctor refusing to tell a patient in his care that his actions put his life in danger. Thus he showed love of neighbor by not giving Joe Biden Holy Communion in a public state of mortal sin and thus not letting him bring condemnation on himself, at least for that moment.
Furthermore Fr. Morey showed love of God by remembering the Lord’s words to Ezekiel and saved himself by being the watchman and obeying the laws of the church when it would have been a whole lot easier to do otherwise. He is going to get a lot of grief and notoriety over this. The national press will go after him, some in his parish will go after him and there will be those in the church who do so as well. Yet he was more interested in the love of God than the love of man.
But DaTechGuy you ask how can he assume that Mr. Biden was in a state of mortal sin? Doesn’t he have to give him the benefit of the doubt? Now it’s true, many of us including me, struggle with sin, even mortal sin and sacramental confession is available for those who do. Shouldn’t a priest allow for that? Fr. Z has a great post on the subject using the example of a couple in a 2nd marriage who stay together for the kids and agree to live as brother and sister:
Now I will track back to what I asked about Communion at the top.
What is it that they want?
Communion with its holy effects? Or do they want to be seen receiving Communion?
Do they want the Eucharist or the “white thing” that symbolizes affirmation?
If they really get the Eucharist, with the full implications of receiving as Paul describes in 1 Cor 11:27 (“Therefore whosoever shall eat this bread, or drink the chalice of the Lord unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and of the blood of the Lord.”), and if they really get the Four Last Things, then … would they really want to put at risk their eternal salvation by sacrilegious reception?
If they have been working with a sound priest who helps them to understand what mortal sin is and what matrimony is according to the Church’s teachings – BECAUSE THAT’S HIS JOB! – would they really want to receive Communion in their irregular state?
Or course there may be times when they fail in their determination to live in continence and they have sexual relations. What then?
Simple. They go to confession and start over with a firm purpose of amendment.
That’s what we all do when we sin in any way. We go to confession with a firm purpose of amendment and start over with God’s help.
In some Amoris scenario, they might have to live in a near occasion of sin, but for the sake of care of children, etc., they have to bear their Cross.
However, there is a rock solid principle that cannot be set aside:
No firm purpose of amendment, no Communion.
My solution, given the aforementioned conditions are met: occasional Holy Communion in private, outside of public Mass, away from observing eyes.
Now it’s certainly possible, though highly improbable, that Joe Biden had just before mass, confessed his sins before the mass and the expressed a firm purpose to amend his life and stop publicly advancing mortal sin as a virtue. Furthermore given the poor job of catechists that the church has done since the 60’s it’s even possible, or in my mind even probable that one or more Bishop(s) has told old Joe (and Pelosi & Cuomo etc/al) over the years that what’s he’s doing is OK and the Biden and others like him really believes they can push and promote mortal sin and still receive communion with no danger to his soul
But Fr. Morey’s job is to shepherd the souls in his care and by presenting himself for communion old Joe by definition became one of those souls Fr. Morey didn’t look for an improbable out for himself. Instead for the sake of his own soul and the sake of all the souls in his care, including at that time Joe Biden caring more about his soul than about any blowback he might get he did his job.
In other words: love wins!