It’s not just Nancy Pelosi’s home diocese.
The San Francisco Democrat’s outspoken advocacy for the “right” of women to obtain an abortion has already gotten her barred from receiving Communion in the Archdiocese of San Francisco by Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone.
But three other bishops have also barred her from the sacrament in their dioceses as well, and bishops around the country are publicly supporting Cordileone’s action.
According to the Washington Post, the bishops of the Diocese of Santa Rosa, the Diocese of Arlington, Virginia, and the Diocese of Tyler, Texas, have all declared that the House speaker cannot receive Communion in their jurisdictions.
The Diocese of Santa Clara borders on the Archdiocese of San Francisco.
Santa Clara Bishop Robert Vasa made the decision to bar Pelosi from Communion on the same day Cordileone made his announcement public, the Post reported.
In a statement, according to Post, Vasa said the San Francisco archbishop’s decision applies to Pelosi as a member of his archdiocese, regardless of what church she might be attending.
According to the Catholic News Agency, Pelosi occasionally attends Mass at St. Helena Catholic Church in St. Helena, California, which is in the Santa Rosa Diocese.
“I have visited with the pastor at St Helena and informed him that if the Archbishop prohibited someone from receiving Holy Communion, then that restriction followed the person and that the pastor was not free to ignore it,” Vasa said in a statement, according to CNA
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Not all bishops agree that Cordileone’s decision applies outside his archdiocese.
Cardinal Wilton Gregory, who leads the archdiocese, does not support barring Catholic politicians from receiving Communion over abortion, the Register reported.
According to statements compiled by the Catholic News Agency, only 13 of the bishops in of the 194 dioceses and archdioceses in the United States have publicly supported Cordileone’s position — and that includes the three who have officially banned Pelosi from receiving Communion.
While opposition to abortion is a matter of dogma for the church, bishops in the United States have authority to make individual decisions on how Catholic politicians within their jurisdictions should be handled. (Contrary to what Whoopi Goldberg and “The View” might believe.)
As the National Catholic Register reported, many prelates believe that individual conversations with politicians about the matter is the way to make the church’s position clear and, potentially, affect change in the law.
Fifty years after the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade ruling that legalized abortion nationwide, however, and with the Supreme Court potentially on the verge of overturning the Roe decision, many question that approach.
“I don’t see any fruits of that,” Bishop Thomas Paprocki of the Diocese of Springfield, Illinois, told the National Catholic Register.
Paprocki was one of the prelates who issued a public statement supporting Cordileone’s decision.
“Certainly, we should dialogue, and that’s where we start,” he told the Register. “But you reach a point where you have to say, ‘Well, dialogue does not seem to be working.’”