PITTSBURGH – Democrat John Kerry (search) attended Mother's Day Mass on Sunday and took communion although some Roman Catholic (search) leaders say he should not receive it because his abortion-rights stance violates church teachings.
Kerry and his wife, Teresa, took communion from Father Robert G. Duch at St. Scholastica Catholic Church (search) in suburban Pittsburgh, where the presidential candidate often worships when staying here.
"The homily was perfect," Kerry told Duch as he left the church.
Some Catholic leaders have said they would withhold communion from Kerry because he supports abortion rights. The church itself opposes abortion.
Kerry declined to answer questions about his taking of communion.
He mingled with parishioners after the hourlong service and greeted 8-year-old Emma Prescott, who received her first communion. "I remember my first communion still," Kerry told her. "It's so special."
The candidate and his wife planned to spend Sunday at her 90-acre estate in suburban Pittsburgh. He declined to say what he got her as a Mother's Day (search) present, but said he would call his 92-year-old maternal aunt.
"We're going to be laid back. We're just relaxing," Kerry said.
The church service was Kerry's only public event of the day, and he cuddled babies and greeted friendly backers, including Charles Ross, of nearby Fox Chapel.
"My granddad was Truman's press secretary," Ross told him. "You've got three votes in our family."
Kerry was headed to Erie on Monday to begin a weeklong focus on health care issues.