Washington (CNN) - Rhode Island's top Roman Catholic leader has asked state congressman Patrick Kennedy to stop taking communion over his support for abortion rights, the diocese said Sunday.
In a statement issued Sunday, Providence Bishop Thomas Tobin said he told Kennedy in February 2007 that it would be "inappropriate" for him to continue receiving the fundamental Catholic sacrament, "and I now ask respectfully that you refrain from doing so."
Kennedy is the son of the late Massachusetts Sen. Edward Kennedy and scion of the most prominent Catholic family in modern U.S. politics.
The Roman Catholic church strongly opposes abortion, which has been legal across the United States since 1973. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops lobbied for tight restrictions on federal funding of abortion in the health-care bill the House of Representatives passed earlier this month.
Updated: 2:01 p.m.
If the catholic church actually refused communion to all the catholics who disagree with the church's stance, their churches would be empty on Sundays.
The bishop is the one playing politics, not Rep. Kennedy.
Wasn't he arrested for DUI 1.5 years ago? Didn't he lie to the police and say he was going to a vote to try to avoid arrest? He is a spoiled rich kid who has never had to work or live check to check. His terrible position on abortion is only the tip of this pathetic congressperson's iceberg. He needs to be voted out of office. He needs to get counseling and help for his problems.