|A month of harsh words between Rep. Patrick Kennedy and a strident critic, Roman Catholic Bishop Thomas Tobin, escalated Sunday when the bishop acknowledged asking Kennedy not to receive Holy Communion because of the Democratic lawmaker's support for abortion rights.|
Two weeks ago, after a planned meeting between the two fell through, Kennedy said he wanted to stop discussing his faith in public. But then he told The Providence Journal in a story published Sunday that Tobin instructed him not to receive Communion. He also claimed the bishop had told diocesan priests not to give him Communion. Kennedy and his spokespeople did not return repeated requests from the AP seeking comment.
Tobin said he wrote to Kennedy in February 2007 asking him not to receive Communion, but never formally banned Kennedy from receiving Communion or instructed any priest not to give it to him.
Kennedy said this month that he receives Communion, but he did not say whether his priest is in the Diocese of Providence. Tobin only has authority over priests in Rhode Island.
The bishop said he would probably not personally give Kennedy Communion and might have "a little conversation" with any priest who regularly gave Kennedy the sacrament.
Sunday, November 22, 2009
RI bishop asked Patrick Kennedy to avoid Communion
Good for him. Nice to know there are some members that actually have a spine and not turn into the buffet religionists.