America's second Catholic president and his faith are at the forefront of a much-anticipated meeting with U.S. Catholic bishops this week.
President Joe Biden has alarmed some church leaders over his support of abortion, same-sex marriage, and LGBTQ rights.
Now, there is an ongoing debate as to whether or not Biden and other left-leaning politicians should be banned from receiving Communion on the basis of their liberal views.
The Vatican recently warned against denying the president Communion over his stance on abortion.
But American bishops are still planning to debate the issue during the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishop's (USCCB) three-day June General Assembly, The Hill reports.
The meeting will take place from Wednesday to Friday with the leading Catholic bishops to decide whether to ask the Committee on Doctrine to write a document on the subject of Communion, a central element of worship within the Roman Catholic faith.
The document would then be up for debate and voted on during the group's next meeting in November.
"There really is a tension between bishops and that tension has always existed in the USCCB, it's always been there. It's just a question of what is predominant," said Margaret Susan Thompson, a professor at the Maxwell School Syracuse University.
Catholic politicians who represent pro-abortion rights include Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA.) and U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry.
The Catholic bishops group in the U.S. is led by conservative José Gomez, the archbishop of Los Angeles, California.
During Biden's inauguration, Gomez issued a statement congratulating the president, while condemning his stance on abortion.
Cardinal Luis Ladaria, a Vatican official, wrote a letter in May, noting that debate over politicians' views on abortion and Communion could become a "source of discord."
Pro-life advocates also plan to rally this week in support of barring Biden from receiving the sacrament.
"I think this is an important issue for Christians, especially Catholic Christians across the country because the church teaching is extremely clear and have said this is a non-negotiable issue with the church. This is something that every Christian, every Catholic, should understand that supporting abortion is incapable with faithful practice of Christianity," said Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America.
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