The head of the Roman Catholic Church in the Netherlands has challenged Pope Francis to clarify whether Protestants can receive communion.
Cardinal Willem Eijk’s concerns are based on Francis’ refusal to be specific, on whether non-Catholic partners of Catholics are allowed to take the Eucharist .
In an open letter on May 7, the Cardinal said Francis’ response to a delegation of German bishops was for a broader consensus on guidelines.
Cardinal Eijk said failure to give them proper directives – based on clear the doctrine and practice of the church – points to a drift toward apostasy.
He said Protestants don’t share faith in the priesthood and the Eucharist, so they shouldn’t share in the communion bread.
The Cardinal said failing to provide clarity creates greater confusion – and that endangers the unity of the Church.