If House Speaker Nancy Pelosi plans on attending her local Catholic church or any other anytime soon, she won’t be able to take Holy Communion.
That’s the word from the Rev. Salvatore Cordileone, the Catholic archbishop of San Francisco.
It all stems from the fact that the 82-year-old California Democrat, a longtime practicing Catholic, has voiced her support for abortion rights and has spoken recently about her concerns that the Supreme Court may overturn the federal protections confirmed in Roe v. Wade, instead allowing states to decide abortion and other reproductive care.
In a letter sent Friday to members of his archdiocese, Cordileone took a firm stand in response, which he also tweeted:
“‘After numerous attempts to speak with her 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 the point has come in which I must make a public declaration that she is not to be admitted to Holy Communion unless and until she publicly repudiate her support for abortion ‘rights’ and confess and receive absolution for her cooperation in this evil in the sacrament of Penance.’ ”
Pelosi’s office didn’t immediately respond to a request from MarketWatch for comment.
On social media, response to Cordileone’s edict has been mixed. Some have affirmed the archbishop’s views, with one commenter saying, “You rock, Archbishop Cordileone!”
But others have said that women and politicians should be free to make their own choices without fear of reprisal from the Catholic Church.
The issue is complicated by the fact that Pope Francis himself said he has “never refused the eucharist to anyone.” (The eucharist is another term used to refer to holy communion.) The issue arose last year, particularly with questions as to whether President Joe Biden, another who’s Catholic and in favor of abortion rights, should be allowed to take communion.
In a recent poll, a majority of Americans, at 54%, said the Supreme Court should uphold Roe v. Wade. The poll also found that 55% of Catholics supported keeping the landmark 1973 abortion-rights decision as is.