Bishop Paprocki of Springfield has barred pro-abortion Illinois legislators from receiving the Holy Eucharist in his diocese.
“Those who have been excommunicated or interdicted after the imposition or declaration of the penalty and others obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to holy communion.” – Code of Canon Law § 915
On Monday, both the Illinois House of Representatives and Senate passed the Reproductive Health Act which declares abortion a “fundamental right” and removes regulations on abortion clinics and clinicians, including rescinding a ban on partial-birth abortion.
In the wake of the state passing one of the country’s most pro-abortion bills, Bishop Paprocki of the Diocese of Springfield issued a decree on Sunday barring Communion to two specific Catholic lawmakers that voted for the bill, and instructed others not to approach for the Eucharist.
“In accord with canon 915 of the Code of Canon Law … Illinois Senate President John Cullerton and Speaker of the House Michael J. Madigan, who facilitated the passage of the Act Concerning Abortion of 2017 (House Bill 40) as well as the Reproductive Health Act of 2019 (Senate Bill 25), are not to be admitted to Holy Communion in the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois because they have obstinately persisted in promoting the abominable crime and very grave sin of abortion as evidenced by the influence they exerted in their leadership roles and their repeated votes and obdurate public support for abortion rights over an extended period of time.”
Bishop Paprocki directed them to not attempt to receive: “until they have celebrated the sacrament of reconciliation and displayed a public conversion of life.”
“These persons may be readmitted to Holy Communion only after they have truly repented these grave sins and furthermore have made suitable reparation for damages and scandal, or at least have seriously promised to do so, as determined in my judgment or in the judgment of their diocesan bishop in consultation with me or my successor.”
In a statement, Bishop Paprocki anticipated whataboutism in that others will point out the scandal within the Church:
“The same justifiable anger we feel toward the abuse of innocent children, however, should prompt an outcry of resistance against legalizing the murder of innocent children. The failings of the Church do not change the objective reality that the murder of a defenseless baby is an utterly evil act.”
Not a first for Paprocki, last February he prohibited Senator Dick Durbin from receiving the Eucharist for a pro-abortion vote.