Many U.S. Catholic Bishops Back Cordelione's Decision to Bar Pelosi From Communion

By Janey Olohan | May 26, 2022 | 11:46am EDT
(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

(CNS News) -- After San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone publicly announced that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) must not receive communion because of her decades-long advocacy of abortion, many Catholic bishops agreed and defended Cordileone in statements and on Twitter, explaining that such discipline is necessary to help save Pelosi’s and prevent scandal.  

In a letter released on May 19, Archbishop Cordileone, who oversees the diocese where Pelosi lives, said, “A Catholic legislator who supports procured abortion, after knowing the teaching of the Church, commits a manifestly grave sin.”

“After numerous attempts to speak with Speaker Pelosi to help her understand the grave evil she is perpetrating, the scandal she is causing, and the danger to her own soul she is risking, I have determined that she is not to be admitted to Holy Communion,” he wrote.

Cordileone further said that Pelosi may not receive Holy Communion, “until such time as you publicly repudiate your advocacy for the legitimacy of abortion.”  

On May 20, Bishop Joseph  Strickland of Tyler, Texas tweeted May 20, “Thank you, thank you, thank you Archbishop Cordileone for loving Nancy Pelosi in the Truth of Christ!”

Archbishop Paul Coakley of Oklahoma City also tweeted, “I applaud the courage of Archbishop Cordileone and his leadership in taking this difficult step. Let us continue to pray for Abp. Cordileone, priests of the Archdiocese of San Francisco, Speaker Pelosi, for the protection of the unborn, and for the conversion of hearts and minds.”

Bishop James Conley of Lincoln, Nebraska tweeted, “I support Archbishop Cordileone in his courageous pastoral outreach to a member of his flock. His actions are made as a shepherd with the heart of Christ.”

Archbishop Aquila of Denver also spoke out in support of Cordileone. “I support and commend my brother bishop, Archbishop Cordileone, for making this courageous, compassionate, and necessary decision,” he tweeted on May 20. 

Bishop Thomas Paprocki, head of the Diocese of Springfield, Ill., said, “I fully support and earnestly commend Archbishop Cordileone’s action in regard to Speaker Pelosi. All politicians who promote abortion should not receive holy Communion until they have repented, repaired scandal, and been reconciled to Christ and the Church.”

Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, head of the Diocese of Kansas City, Kansas, said in a statement,  

“I applaud Archbishop Cordileone’s patient and persevering efforts to enlighten Speaker Pelosi about the moral gravity of her extreme efforts...I fully support the both pastoral and courageous actions that Archbishop Cordileone has now taken in an effort to awaken Speaker Pelosi’s conscience and at the same time to protect Catholics in the Archdiocese of San Francisco and throughout the country from being confused by Speaker Pelosi’s radical support for abortion, while claiming to be a faithful Catholic. I pray that Speaker Pelosi will have a change of heart.”

Bishop Thomas Daly of the Diocese of Spokane,Wash.,  stated, “After many attempts to engage speaker Nancy Pelosi in a conversation about her support for abortion, Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone has announced that speaker Pelosi is to refrain from receiving holy communion until she answers the call to repentance.”

Bishop David Ricken of the Diocese of Green Bay also expressed support for Cordileone tweeting, “I wish to express my strong support for Archbishop Cordileone’s decision stating he has publicly declared that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi not be admitted to Holy Communion.”

On MSNBC's Morning Joe on May 24, Pelosi said, “I come from a largely pro-life, Italian-American Catholic family, so I respect people’s views about that, but I don’t respect foisting it onto others.” 

Pelosi apparently has ignored Archbishop Cordileon's directive. She reportedly went to Mass on Sunday, May 22, at Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Georgetown and did receive communion. 

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