By Father Kevin M Cusick
Joe Biden is not a practicing Catholic. And practicing Catholics cannot vote for Biden for President in good conscience.
A Philadelphia basement blogger, among others, has pronounced negatively, as usual, on a recent tweet by Bishop Tobin calling Biden’s Catholicity into question after he announced his fellow Planned Parenthood ally Kamala Harris as the pick for VP.
Bishop Tobin tweeted, “Biden-Harris. First time in a while that the Democratic ticket hasn’t had a Catholic on it. Sad.”
The blogger subtweeted Bishop Tobin’s remark with this rejoinder:
“While the sentiment expressed by Providence bishop – one of the few US prelates who’s disclosed his party registration – is popular with conservatives, a hierarch has no authority to judge the status of a member of the faithful outside his jurisdiction.”
Wrong again, basement blogger.
Yes, Bishop Tobin could have avoided the obvious difficulty of making it sound like he’s calling Biden’s baptismal status into question. Those without a contrarian agenda, however, are willing to fill in the blanks and give Bishop Tobin credit for his point, which is that being Catholic does not entail merely being baptized and confirmed. It also doesn’t mean going through the motions of receiving Communion.
No, being Catholic means in fact abstaining from Communion if one is in need of making public reparation for public scandal against the faith and morals of the Church. This in addition to, of course, sacramental Confession.
Bring Catholic means full assent with the intellect and will to all the truths the Church teaches in matters of faith and morals. This Biden very publicly and with great frequency has not done for many years.
Whether or not a baptized Catholic has been absolved through sacramental Confession we cannot know unless the individual concerned chooses to speak about it. It is not of this matter of the internal forum that Tobin speaks.
Biden’s long-term advocacy of abortion on demand, his connivance in a number of evil choices as vice president during the Obama presidency, and his officiating over a same-sex “wedding” at the vice presidential residence are just some of the reasons that Biden is not a Catholic in the most fundamental sense.
Calling oneself Catholic is not the same as being Catholic. In politics, however, mercurial superficiality is the stock in trade.
Take Kamala Harris for example, who supported women making sexual misconduct claims against Biden until she was offered an opportunity to gain power as potential vice president. Now those charges don’t seem to be an issue at all.
Bishop Tobin has a duty to speak out in matters that affect his people and their moral choices. A national election involves his people as well as those of every other bishop.
It is well known that a majority of US bishops are Democrats.Hence the blogger referred to above, who panders to the bishops, expresses obvious supercilious disgust when comes to “conservatives”. If the blogger is liberal or progressive, also in betrayal of the Catholic Faith, it would not surprise.
Many Catholics were traditionally Democrats from the days of Kennedy. But many, however, did not leave the party when the party left them.
Catholics who have let Church teaching guide them in matters of the sanctity of life and the unchanging nature of marriage between one man and one woman, realized they could no longer affiliate with the Democratic party because the party left them with no other choice.
This is not to say that the Republican party gets a pass. No: what it means is that some Catholics have made the decision to now register as Independent, if they affiliate at all.
The Catholic blogosphere is overrun with Democrat shills who play clever games like confusing the apples of abortion with the oranges of capital punishment. False prophets and wolves in sheep’s clothing exploit the poor general state of catechesis to spread lies.
So many Catholics today fall for evil peddled by wolves in sheep’s clothing, false prophets, simply because they are unable or unwilling to make distinctions.
There is a distinction in Catholic teaching between abortion and capital punishment. It’s based on truth. Truth doesn’t change, therefore no human person is able to simply gloss over that distinction without departing from the fullness of truth and, at the same time, taking a step further away from fullness of life in Jesus Christ.
We can agree that society’s right to self defense is not inadmissible while insisting that imprisonment be used in worst cases rather than capital punishment. This while teaching that “legally” killing an innocent unborn child is, unlike capital punishment, always an abominable crime and mortal sin.
Such confusion between these different moral cases is cleverly weaponized by political operatives to garner votes for evil men.
So-called “progressive” and “enlightened” views leave certain bloggers and their fellow travelers feeling superior to the rest of men. What they in fact do is merely ape the opinions and agenda of the enemies of the Church and of Christ. Who’s not Catholic now?
Interesting how a certain segment of the Catholic commentariat is ever allergic to firm and muscular Catholic teaching, particularly in matters of faith and morals.
It is Bishop Tobin’s God-given job, and that of every bishop, to guide their Catholic people in making morally upright choices. Tobin is one of the few bishops who takes his job seriously enough to do it while risking social opprobrium.
Long gone are the days when popularity was assumed a part of the episcopal job description. A national election involves the people in every diocese of the country. Bishop Tobin and every bishop are therefore called upon to make judgments and offer guidance for the upcoming election when it involves avoiding evil and cooperation in scandal against the Faith. This does not jeopardize the Church’s tax-exempt status as many are quick to claim.
You can make a point about Biden being Catholic: yes, he was baptized, and no doubt received first Communion and Confirmation. Bishop Tobin knows that as do most. Biden has made clear he was raised Catholic.
But that’s not the point. Being baptized and Confirmed is only part of being Catholic. The rest involves responding to grace and living in a state of grace
It appears as though Biden receives Communion often publicly. That does not make him, or anyone else, in and of itself a practicing Catholic. Receiving Communion when not in a state of grace, that is, in a state of mortal sin, cannot save a soul. Doing such is sinning further. Add to that the scandal and it only makes matters worse.
The point is that Biden is not a Catholic in good standing. No bishop can make him one. And no bishop can deny the truth that Biden has committed public scandal against the faith and morals of the Church. Only by publicly renouncing his public acts and words of scandal can Biden truly return to the Catholic fold.
We all pray for the day.
Thank you for reading and praised be Jesus Christ, now and forever.
Let’s continue the conversation on Parler, the new free speech social network, where you’ll find me as @FatherKevinMCusick.