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Archbishop of San Francisco Salvatore Cordileone, who announced on Friday that he would abstain House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to receive Holy Communion because of his stance on abortion, said the timing of his announcement had “nothing to do” with the Supreme Court’s leaked opinion overruling abortion precedent Roe v. Wade.
“With everything going on right now – with Dobbs versus Jackson and the leaked opinion [suggesting] that Roe could be overthrown – why make this decision now? Gloria Purvis asked Cordileone in an interview for America, the US Jesuit magazine.
“The leaked decision and the Dobbs case really have nothing to do with when it took place,” the Archbishop replied on Friday.
He noted that Pelosi had spoken to him “a few times” over the years, but he lamented, “more recently his advocacy to codify the Roe decision into federal law – it’s getting more and more extreme and more and more aggressive”.
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“I tried to talk to him about it,” Cordileone added in the US interview. “I’ve debated it in my own conscience for many years, actually. So it’s not something that just happened recently. I’ve discerned that.”
The archbishop insisted he was following the advice of Pope Benedict XVI – who sent a letter to bishops about it in 2004 when he was still Cardinal Ratzinger in charge of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith .
“He gave us advice on how to approach this, especially with politicians, Catholic politicians, and especially on the two issues of abortion and euthanasia,” Cordileone said. “He said that we have to meet, have a dialogue, try to move them forward on the path of conversion. And if after several attempts it comes to the point where it is clear [that] it won’t happen, so the bishop or the pastor, [Ratzinger] said, is to declare that the person is not to be admitted to Holy Communion.”
The Archbishop defended his decision to make the decision public saying, “If she is not to be admitted to Holy Communion, our Priests and Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, all who are ministers of Communion should know. “
He also described Pelosi’s outspoken support for abortion as a “scandal”.
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“Scandal is an action that would lead others into error or sin,” Cordileone said. “So the outrage here is that someone who strongly advocates something as bad as abortion and communion confuses people. And they may start to think it’s okay for a Catholic to believe that.”
The Archbishop said he could not judge Pelosi’s conscience.
“I think her faith is really important to her. It’s really important to her to be Catholic, and she feels devotion in her heart,” he admitted. “Which puzzles me as to why she would be so forceful on this issue as a politician.”
“It’s very tricky as a politician; there are so many issues to balance and try to come to some sort of consensus and compromise and all that,” Cordileone noted. “But promoting it that aggressively is not what a devout Catholic does.”
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The editorial board of the San Francisco Examiner urged Pope Francis will abolish Cordileone for that. The editorial board lambasted the archbishop for ‘punishing’ Pelosi, instead of ‘right-wing politicians’ who ‘[vote] against health care or financing the poor.”
“Cordileone’s primary loyalty is not to Christ, but to the cabal of far-right American bishops led by Raymond Leo Burke, a Catholic prelate who has waged an ongoing campaign to undermine the authority of Pope Francis,” they wrote, before demanding that the pope remove San Francisco’s “radical conservative”.
the Catechism of the Catholic Church is unambiguous on the issue of abortion, both to procure one and to aid its practice: “From the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of any procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchanged.
“Direct abortion, that is, abortion willed either as an end or as a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law,” the catechism says, calling abortion and infanticide “crimes abominable”.
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It also states, “Formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave fault. The Church attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life.”
Democrats have backed abortion wholeheartedly following Justice Alito’s draft opinion leaked in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization – the project that overthrew Roe. Although Chief Justice John Roberts has confirmed that the draft is authentic, it dates back to February and does not represent the current or definitive opinion of the Court.
activists Roman Catholic churches targeted for Mother’s Day events.
The vandals too targeted a church in Boulder, Colorado, earlier this month, spray-paint “ban our bodies” and “my body my choice” on the building.
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Protesters also picketed Pelosi’s homedespite his 100% rating with pro-choice activist group NARAL Pro-Choice America.