WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Tuesday pushed back against the conservative Catholic Archbishop of San Francisco’s decision to deny her communion because of his support for abortion rights, saying she respects the fact that people have opposing points of view, but not when they impose them on others.
The California Democrat says she comes from a large family with many members who oppose abortion. “I respect people’s opinions on this. But I don’t respect the fact that we impose it on others. Pelosi added, “Our Archbishop has been vehemently opposed to LGBTQ rights. In fact, he paved the way for a ballot initiative in California.
Pelosi made his comments on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” In a letter last week to Pelosi, Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone said he would refuse her communion after vowing to codify into law the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision establishing a constitutional right to abortion. This bill passed the House but died last week in the Senate.
Pelosi said women and families need to know it’s not just about abortion. “These same people are against contraception, family planning, in vitro fertilization. It’s a cover and they use abortion as a mouthpiece for it.
Cordileone said he told Pelosi she should either repudiate her support for abortion rights or stop speaking publicly about her Catholic faith. In a separate letter to church members, he said he repeatedly asked to meet with Pelosi but either his office either didn’t respond or told him she was busy.
“After many attempts to speak to her to help her understand the grave harm she is doing, the outrage she is causing and the danger she is risking to her own soul, I have determined that the time has come when I must make a public statement that she should not be admitted to Holy Communion,” Cordileone wrote.
Over the past year, Cordileone has been one of the most vocal U.S. bishops who have advocated denying Communion to President Joe Biden and other politicians who support abortion rights.
However, each bishop has authority in his own diocese on this matter, and the Archbishop of Washington, Cardinal Wilton Gregory, has asserted that Biden is welcome to receive the sacrament there.
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