On Monday of this week, a man identifying himself as Ken called my radio talk show claiming Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski was denied communion by a Catholic priest because of her support for abortion.
The caller said the Anchorage Archdiocese was so upset with the priest over it, they transferred him from Anchorage to the small town of Soldotna, on the Kenai Peninsula.
After the show on Monday, I contacted the Anchorage Archdiocese, Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church in Soldotna, and Lisa Murkowski’s office in Washington D.C. to ask them if what Ken said was true. All of them refused to answer any of my questions saying only no comment.
I spent enough years as a journalist to know something was up. The church and Murkowski could have made this whole story go away instantly if they simply denied the senator was ever refused communion.
The next day, Wednesday, I posted on my Facebook page a clip of the caller Ken and his claim Murkowski was refused communion during mass in Alaska.
That’s when the flood gates opened. It turns out the incident in question not only happened, but it was common knowledge among many Anchorage Catholics.
Here’s what I know based on information from reliable sources who asked to remain anonymous:
Sometime in December of 2019, Murkowski was attending Mass at Our Lady of the Snows in Girdwood.
Fr. Robert Whitney, based out of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church in Anchorage, was saying Mass as a visiting priest.
Murkowski approached Fr. Whitney during Mass with her hands out ready to receive communion but was denied the wafer. Fr. Whitney instead said a blessing over the senator. Murkowski did not make a scene and went back to her seat.
Anchorage-Juneau Archbishop Andrew Bellisario, known for his Leftist beliefs, was so upset with Whitney, he transferred him out of the much larger St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish in Anchorage to the much smaller Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church in Soldotna.
Full story at mustreadalaska.com.
How unbelievably fortunate for the people of Soldotna. God is good, all the time.
(And thank you, Father Whitney. You will be blessed in Heaven. God bless and keep you always.)F
She does not support abortion. She is not a pro-life as I am but she has a 14% rating from Naral which means she is anti-abortion. He must have refused her for some other reason. Or he was misinformed or misled.
Apparently, Murkowski refuses to return phone calls, and state her position on issues to anyone. She has been repeatedly asked to state her views on abortion, but refuses to give a clear answer. As a Catholic, she should work as a lawmaker to protect the rights of the helpless unborn Child, made by God, in the Mother’s womb.
I looked a little further, and found that Sen. Murkowski publicly supports keeping the 1973 Roe vs. Wade SCOTUS decision, and is against defunding Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood gave her a lifetime score of 65%.
To be Catholic and Pro-Life, does not mean you “sway with the wind,” sometimes supporting abortion and sometimes not– and 100% supporting Roe vs. Wade and Planned Parenthood! Wrong! Sen. Murkowski voted against late- term abortions. Good– but not good enough! She must vote firmly against ALL abortions! And protect the delicate lives of helpless unborn babies in their mothers’ wombs!
The germane question is whether Murkowski’s public record constitutes persisting in obstinate manifest grave sin such that a visiting priest who knows nothing else about her may refuse her Communion under Canon 915. It appears that her voting record is mixed. She’s not a Pelosi or a Biden. It’s not so clear. The visiting priest probably erred in his judgment to withhold Communion from her.
I am sure this Alaskan diocesan priest knew. To be a practicing Catholic in good standing with the Church, you absolutely cannot publicly support Planned Parenthood and Roe vs. Wade! Even if you vote against something like late term abortion, as Murkowski did. The priest had it right. Many people might say they support abortion in the first trimester, or wherever they draOur Church clerics have been terribly lazy and lax on faith and morals since the Council!
“Anon.” — myself– wrote the above post of March 17, at 5:47pm.
Anonymous, pro-life groups give Ms. Murkowski an “F” rating.
She does support abortion and is not pro-life.
Here’s a link to her votes in the US Senate.
Some pro-abortion feminists were unhappy with her since she did support the infants born alive protection act (for infants who survive abortion attempts) and voted to confirm Justice Amy Coney Barrett. So, she does oppose infanticide and believe that a Catholic and Constitutionalist is qualified to serve on the Supreme Court.
She voted to prevent minors from crossing state lines for an abortion to get around the parental notification laws in another state.
She co-sponsored the bill to prevent partial birth abortions.
She voted to not allow US funds to be used by UN Population Fund to be used for coerced abortion and involuntary sterilization.
Voted to allow parent notification of minors getting abortions out of state.
Voted for criminal penalties for harm of fetus during a crime.
Voted to prohibit human cloning.
Voted for the legal protection of babies born alive after an attempted abortion.
Voted to allow people who want to adopt to be allowed to take money for it from IRAs.
She has a mixed record.
She is personally opposed to the practice of abortion.
She is not 100% pro life.
My personal opinion is that Lisa Murkowski, since she is not in total communion with the Church, should not present herself for communion. If she asked me, I would advise her to not go to Communion until she was in true communion with the Church.
At the very least, it is good to know where this prince of the Church stands on abortion. He stands a hero among the culture of death crowd, for which he ought to be ashamed, but for which he is likely the toast of the town, even if only in Girdwood (coincidentally where my brother lives). Fr. Whitney, bless you for your courage — it’s rare nowadays.
If this is true, the Vaticsn should discipline this guilty bishop. He should have been the one to sternly correct this pro-abortion, “bad Catholic” senator, and warn her to publicly change to pro-life and repent, or she would be excommunicated.
Wow! How’s that for being put out into the cold?!
I wonder if there’s more to the story. But, since the diocese, the parish and the Senator’s office won’t comment, what does that indicate?
Big Abortion loves this Senator. Jessica Cler, Alaska State Director for Planned Parenthood ,gushes, “Planned Parenthood is thankful to Senator Lisa Murkowski for standing with the thousands of people in our state depending on her to protect our health, rights and freedoms.”
Pray for Fr. Whitney. May God bless him and use him wherever he is sent. And, pray for Ms. Murkowski’s repentance.
This concerns an event that happened over a year ago, in December 2019. Why is this news now? Also, the priest in question was a visiting priest at the parish where Senator Murkowski presented herself for Communion. As a visiting priest, he probably mishandled the situation by denying her Communion. He was not in a position to know whether the pastor and Senator Murkowski had discussed her views about abortion. Based on the information available, I think the priest was probably in the wrong and the Archbishop was right to discipline the priest, although transferring him to a parish in the boonies might have been an overreaction when a simple phone call explaining what would have been the right thing to do in that situation would have been better.
Kevin, “why is this news now?” Did you read the story? On March 10, Dan Fagan wrote, “On Monday of this week, a man identifying himself as Ken called my radio talk show claiming Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski was denied communion by a Catholic priest because of her support for abortion.” This came to light only now.
We don’t know if the bishop called the priest or spoke with him in person. That said, many bishops do not like direct communication. Many, like many politicians, refuse to answer simple, direct questions. I hope there was a candid, honest conversation between the bishop and his priest, but I wouldn’t bet on it.
This whole story has holes in it.
Nobody has confirmed it. There seems to be corroboration that she was denied communion but we don’t know why. People are assuming it is because she voted to fund Planned Parenthood. She is not pro-choice, she is not pro-abortion.
Nobody knows why the priest was moved.
People are speculating about this.
Then, why doesn’t the archdiocese issue a statement clarifying the matter?
You’re right. There are “holes” in the story because those who know what happened won’t say what happened.
Those who called the talk show host or responded to his FaceBook post are trying to fill in the “holes.”
Are we afraid of the truth?
One of the most effective ways to spread rumors (which is, of course, a bad thing) in any organization is for the leaders to remain silent in the face of much speculation or even allegations.
And, look at her voting record in the US Senate. The Senator is pro-abortion, which is why Big Abortion, specifically Planned Parenthood, cheers her.
Who’s business is it?
The senator, the priest, the bishops, the pastor of the church where it happened.
It is no body else’s business.
Anonymous, this Senator is a public figure who publicly promotes and funds abortion. If Ms. Murkowski was a private citizen, no one would know her position on killing unborn babies. She would approach for Holy Communion and there would be no issue with the Church (at least the Church militant, the Church triumphant and the Church suffering might take issue).
No one forced Ms. Murkowski to run for public office or to further abortion publicly when in office.
Are you on the Senator’s staff or pro-abortion yourself?
When Kim Kardashian or Donald Trump or Meghan, Duchess of Sussex or Ms. Murkowski step into the spotlight and hold interviews, it’s not like they’re avoiding publicity. They’re seeking it. They’ve made their lives public matters.
I am not on the senators staff nor am I pro-abortion or pro-choice.
I think this will be the case that sinks the bishops creating a policy as in this article:
Do you give her communion when she votes against late-term abortion but not give her communion when she votes to fund PP?
Anonymous…It is our business when life is destroyed and they have no voice, no one to speak for them when a politician supports and funds, more from the fit less from the unfit, Planned Parenthood and votes to keep child killing legal. We are our brothers/sisters keeper aren’t we? It is not punitive but pastoral because it could save her soul. I’ll mention here what happened to former Governor of NY, Hugh Carey, who was excommunicated and denied Holy Communion who later repented and was received back in the Church. It saved his soul.
Kevin T.– I am sure this priest knew the Murkowski case well— as he is an Alaskan diocesan priest! To be a practicing Catholic in good standing with the Church, you absolutely cannot publicly support Planned Parenthood and Roe vs. Wade! Even if you vote against something like late term abortion, as Murkowski did. The priest had it right. Many people, including Catholic lawmakers, might publicly say they support abortion in the first trimester, or wherever they draw the line– and state the need to keep Roe vs. Wade, and fund Planned Parenthood. Our Church states clearly: No Baby Murders (Abortion)!! Catholic clerics have been terribly lazy and lax with regard to faith and morals since the Council!
Here is where it gets murky. She is against abortion except in cases of rape, incest and life of mother. She supports Roe v. Wade because it is established law. If the court had decided otherwise, she would support that. Planned Parenthood, as cringey as it is, does a lot more than abortions and birth control. It is the only gyn service available to many women. Her job is to represent the people of Alaska. Abortion is not one of her big issues.
Prolife people like me do not agree with her. But the bishops have to decide “is it manifest grave sin?” “Is it any sin at all?”
Who notified the Archdiocese of the incident?
The folks in Soldotna are thrilled with this priest! I know, because I have family there. What a blessing!
And by the way, Soldotna, on the Kenai Peninsula is considered one of the most beautiful places in Alaska. Far better than Anchorage. It is the place Alaskans go for vacation, especially to fish for kings and sockeye salmon! And again, they love this priest!
We need more Americans like this Priest.
May God Bless him, President Trump, and the United States of America.
These catholic politicians should not approached the Priest for Communion knowing that they have not confessed their sins to a Priest. They could approach and receive a blessing from the Priest.