SAN FRANCISCO, California: In a letter released this week, the archbishop of San Francisco, Salvatore Cordileone, said U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi can no longer take communion because she supports abortion rights, while publicly invoking her Catholic faith.
In an open letter addressed to Pelosi and in another directed towards followers, Cordileone said "Pelosi's position on abortion has become only more extreme over the years, especially in the last few months."
The decision comes after a draft Supreme Court opinion, which indicated the top court would strike down the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide, which was leaked to the media earlier this month.
Pelosi had not responded to Cordileone's requests to meet in the months since she pledged to codify abortion protections in federal law, after lawmakers in conservative states implemented almost total bans on abortions at state levels, Cordileone added.
He further said he sent Pelosi a private letter in April, warning her that unless she publicly repudiated her support for abortion rights or stopped referring to her Catholic faith in public, he would bar her from communion.
Citing Pelosi's statement to the Seattle Times expressing her Catholic faith and support for abortion rights, Cordileone said, "They say to me, 'Nancy Pelosi thinks she knows more about having babies than the Pope.' Yes I do."
In his letter to followers, Cordileone wrote, "My action here is purely pastoral, not political. Speaker Pelosi remains our sister in Christ. Her advocacy for the care of the poor and vulnerable elicits my admiration."