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Archbishop denies House Speaker Pelosi communion over abortion stance

Archbishop denies House Speaker Pelosi communion over abortion stance
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has supported a law legalizing abortion after the Supreme Court indicated it plans to overturn the landmark Roe vs. Wade ruling. Photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI | License Photo

May 20 (UPI) -- The head of the Archdiocese of San Francisco told House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Friday that she may no longer receive communion over her stance on abortion.

Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone informed Pelosi, who represents the congressional district that includes San Francisco, of his decision by letter. He said he warned her on April 7 to either stop supporting abortion rights or stop publicly talking about her Catholic faith or else he'd withhold communion.

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"As you have not publicly repudiated your position on abortion and continue to refer to your Catholic faith in justifying your position and to receive Holy Communion, that time has now come," Cordileone wrote.

"Therefore, in light of my responsibility as the archbishop of San Francisco to be 'concerned for all the Christian faithful entrusted to [my] care,' by means of this communication I am hereby notifying you that you are not to present yourself for Holy Communion and, should you do so, you are not to be admitted to Holy Communion, until such time as you publicly repudiate your advocacy for the legitimacy of abortion and confess and receive absolution of this grave sin in the sacrament of penance."

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Pelosi, a Democrat, joined with Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer earlier this month calling for Congress to pass legislation codifying Roe vs. Wade into law. The landmark Supreme Court ruling legalized abortion in the United States in 1973.

A leaked draft high court opinion earlier this month, though, indicated the justices are considering overturning Roe vs. Wade.

The Senate voted against codifying legal abortion on May 11, legislation that likely would've passed the Democratic-controlled House.

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Vice President Kamala Harris speaks about reproductive rights as she virtually meets with abortion providers in the South Auditorium on Thursday. Photo by Oliver Contreras/UPI | License Photo

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