A Statement from the Archdiocese of Washington on the Recent Denial of Holy Communion

Fr. William Byrne of the Archdiocese of washington has written an official response of the Archdiocese to questions raised in the recent case of a local priest who denided Communion to a congregant at a funeral. Read Fr. Byrne’s article here:

Official response of the Archdiocese

8 Replies to “A Statement from the Archdiocese of Washington on the Recent Denial of Holy Communion”

  1. It seems clear that the media-hungry woman was “trying to use the Eucharist to make a political statement” and that it was appropriate to deny her Communion. The priest did his best in a pastoral way to advise the woman not to attempt to receive. .

    Jeanne Miller

  2. The statement does not explain why the priest left the alter during the eulogy, and why the priest did not follow the casket to the cemetery.

    1. I’ve read that Fr. Guarnizo left the altar and did not go to the cemetery because he was not feeling well.

  3. I am disturbed that Bishop Knestout issued an apology to Barbara Johnson. I am even more disturbed that Bishop Knestout said that Fr. Guarnizo lacked pastoral sensitivity. From what I’ve read, it sounds like Fr. Guarnizo did the right thing. Ms. Johnson told him that she was in a homosexual relationship with a woman before the funeral. I’ve read that Ms. Johnson ended up receiving Communion from the Eucharistic minister after she was denied by Fr. Guarnizo, and I later read that she isn’t even Catholic at all but a Buddhist! Why would someone go to the media saying that they were denied Communion, even though they received Communion anyway? And why would a Buddhist even care about not receiving Communion in a Catholic church? It increasingly seems as if this is some kind of manufactured controversy, likely an effort to once again make the Church look bigoted and homophobic. I think Bishop Knestout owes Fr. Guarnizo an apology.

      1. Msgr. Pope: The ADW should present the “facts” then because the overwhelming sentiment today after Mass at “Coffee & Donuts” was one of sympathy for Fr. Guarnizo and frustration with the ADW for not backing him up. Please tell us why we should feel otherwise.

        1. Some things should not be disclosed. As for you, avoid gossip and avoid getting your facts from hearsay and the Washpo. On any other day you would ridicule the Post, but because they serve your bishop-bashing agenda you relish the post and all the hearsay. Please accept the fact that this case is far more complicated than you know and give your bishop the respect and the benefit of the doubt he deserves. He is not an elected official for you to excoriate and hold accountable, he is an anointed leader and you should treat his as you would your father. One does not trash their own father publicly. If there are things that need to be discussed or clarified, if respectful discussion needs to be had, then do them properly and through channels.

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