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But Bishop denies saying he won't give communion to GMA
« on: March 30, 2008, 04:13:35 AM »
Archbishop Oscar Cruz of Lingayen-Dagupan denied yesterday saying that he would not grant holy communion to President Arroyo and her family.

Cruz, a staunch critic of the Arroyo administration, clarified that he only told a news conference in Mandaluyong City last Wednesday that he would not give communion to a known sinner but did not specifically refer to Mrs. Arroyo.

“No, I didn’t say no communion for GMA (Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo). Frankly I don’t know anymore which occasion I said that because it was a long press conference with the media group. I would not do that. That is quite offensive to say that I won’t give holy communion to the President and her family. I think that’s too rude for me to say,” Cruz told reporters.

But Cruz, former president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), said he could not blame reporters who covered the press conference for misinterpreting several statements he made.

“Thinking it over, when my words were put together by those who were there, I would not blame them. We were talking about the government, corruption and communal action so I understand and I cannot blame the media for linking what I said about the President and the First Family,” he said.

Television and radio reports on Wednesday quoted Cruz as saying during the press conference: “I would not give communion to somebody receiving communion in public whom I know is a public sinner. I am sorry. I could be wrong and may God forgive me but I cannot do it.”

Cruz said he only stated a long-standing teaching of the Church, which says communion should not be awarded to a known public sinner.

“To give public sinners holy communion would create scandal among the people because it would seem to erase the distinction between rightful living and sinful existence. It was not a personal opinion, Christ had a very strong injunction on this principle,” Cruz stressed.

Asked if he considers the President a public sinner, the archbishop replied: “It will be hard for me to think about her as a saint. To say that she is a public sinner may be a strong statement, but for me that would be more comfortable than to say that she is a saintly and holy person. This is my thinking. I’m sorry if I will hurt anybody.”

The bishop said media might have drawn conclusions from these two statements because “consequently the person concerned is a very bad example of Christian living.”

Cruz said other bishops and priests will do the same.

He said it would be scandalous to grant communion to a known sinner.

He explained that before granting public sinners absolution and communion, they should first confess their sins and return what they stole.

But this was immediately challenged by his fellow prelate, Bishop Juan de Dios Pueblos of Butuan, who cited God’s mercy on sinners.

“As what Jesus Christ taught us, hate the sin but love the sinners,” Pueblos said in an interview over the Catholic Church-owned Radyo Veritas.

“I am just praying for Christians, especially servant leaders, to be compassionate and welcoming to sinners as Jesus Christ was,” Pueblos said.

Cruz is one of the few bishops who have openly criticized Mrs. Arroyo’s government. Many times, he called for the resignation of the President over alleged massive corruption and scandal hounding her administration.

Pueblos, however, earlier described Cruz as a “dangerous influence” on the leadership of the CBCP.

Meanwhile, Mrs. Arroyo’s election lawyer Romulo Macalintal assailed Cruz, saying that it was not accurate to say that the giving of communion is based on the personal conviction of the priest.

“Because there is the presumption that the one receiving communion has undergone confession and did penance and could receive communion following the process of reconciliation with God,” Macalintal said in a statement.

He said whatever the views of the priest or the lay minister, it is their duty to give communion and not to judge the Catholic faithful asking for it. He said sinners would be answerable to God.

Deputy Presidential Spokesman Anthony Golez said he found it hard to believe that Cruz would make such remarks.

“First of all, with due respect to the bishop, who is he to know the sins of everybody?” Golez said. “The role of the priests and the bishops is to save the faithful, not to separate them from the Church and that was taught to us for those who were educated in Catholic schools.

“Everybody needs salvation and the reason Christ came to this world is to grant us salvation.”

He said Cruz’s statements “hurt a lot.” Golez said it would hurt Catholics if priests deny the faithful salvation.

Golez said a lot of the Catholics are turned off if they see a priest or a leader of the Catholic Church meddle in politics.

He expressed hope that Cruz’s statements would not lead to Catholics losing respect for church leaders. – With Paolo Romero



(STAR) By Edu Punay

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grazie7y

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Re: But Bishop denies saying he won't give communion to GMA
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2008, 04:28:27 AM »
You think it's only politicians who flip flop. He shouldn't have had gone into this business of speaking to the media to talk about politics.  Anyhow, I don't think he said something new that could change what he earlier said.  If I read his statement, nobody is worthy of communion.  You see, when I accept the holy host, I have this feeling that God absolved my sins.  It's grace.  No Catholic should be denied of that because we all are sinners.
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Lorenzo

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Re: But Bishop denies saying he won't give communion to GMA
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2008, 10:07:52 AM »
Well said, 'te. Well said.
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orChids

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Re: But Bishop denies saying he won't give communion to GMA
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2008, 12:50:18 PM »

Right Grazie san.

grazie7y

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Re: But Bishop denies saying he won't give communion to GMA
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2008, 12:53:00 PM »
OT:  Aya san, super kilig ko sa imong avatar!  where do you get all these cutie avatars oi!


orChids

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Re: But Bishop denies saying he won't give communion to GMA
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2008, 12:57:14 PM »
Hahahaha I just downloaded that here. Tusluka Ni   ;D

grazie7y

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Re: But Bishop denies saying he won't give communion to GMA
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2008, 01:00:54 PM »
nalingaw ko'g tan aw sa mga cute na avatars!  salamat, aya san! :-*

orChids

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Re: But Bishop denies saying he won't give communion to GMA
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2008, 01:01:53 PM »
You're welcome, :-*



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