A Catholic nun who is scheduled to pray at the Democratic National Convention refused to agree to help end legalized abortion in an interview with a leading Catholic publication Wednesday.
Sister Simone Campbell’s decision to give an invocation at the DNC has drawn wide-spread criticism because of the party’s support for abortion on demand in direct contradiction to Catholic Church teachings.
In the interview with Catholic News Agency, Campbell refused to take a stand on the vital issue, claiming, “It is above my pay grade.”
Campbell is the executive director of the Network Lobby for Catholic Social Justice and a member of the Sisters of Social Service Catholic religious community. CNA also discovered that several groups that make major donations to pro-abortion groups also donate to Network Lobby.
When the Catholic news outlet asked Campbell about her organization’s stance on abortion, she said they focus on other issues.
“[Abortion] is not our issue. That is not it. It is above my pay grade,” she said, later adding, “We don’t focus on reproductive rights, we focus on trying to ensure life for everyone. As Pope Francis says ‘equally sacred is the care for the born.’”
However, the pope also has emphasized that protecting unborn babies from abortion also are extremely important, and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has been encouraging voters to make protections for unborn babies a “preeminent priority” at the voting booth in November.
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Here’s more from the interview:
While she agreed that the dignity of life is inviolable from conception, she added “I’m so tired. How long have we fought over Roe v. Wade?”
“Our economic agenda is to ensure that everyone can flourish, that all life can flourish, and that we can care for our earth,” she said. “Our niche is economic justice.”
Campbell rejected any suggestion her approach might undermine efforts to secure legal protections for the unborn.
“We work for the Pregnant Women Support Act, funding for prenatal care, women’s infants and children funding, making sure pregnant women get the care that they need,” she said. She said there is crossover in ensuring health care for pregnant women, adequate nutrition, and adequate housing capacity “to carry the fetus to term.”
Campbell acknowledged that her organization’s mission tends to align more with the Democratic Party, but she said they lobby lawmakers in both major political parties.
CNA researched the major donors to Campbell’s organization, Network Lobby, and found that several also donate to major pro-abortion groups. These include the Ford Foundation (former Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards serves on its board), the Bauman Foundation and the Sixteen Thirty Fund, a dark money group.
Campbell also spoke at the Democratic National Conventions in 2012 and 2016, according to CNA. In 2016, she praised abortion activist Ilyse Hogue of NARAL who celebrated her abortion on the convention stage.
“From my perspective, I don’t think it’s a good policy to outlaw abortion,” Campbell told Democracy Now at the time. She said society should “focus on economic development for women and economic opportunity. That’s what really makes the change.”
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and the DNC are trying to appeal to Catholic voters, but their stances on abortion and religious freedom are turning many away.
Biden supports abortion on demand and wants to force taxpayers to fund it. His running mate is even more radical; Kamala Harris recently opposed a bill to protect newborns from infanticide and prosecuted an undercover journalist who exposed Planned Parenthood’s aborted baby body parts trade.
Though Biden claims to be a devout Catholic, both he and the Democratic Party call abortions “health care.” In April, he went so far as to call the aborting of unborn babies an “essential medical service” during the coronavirus pandemic. In truth, almost all abortions are elective, and they destroy the lives of unique, living human beings in their mothers’ wombs.
Religious voters also are concerned about Biden’s and Harris’s record on religious freedom. Recently, Biden promised to end Trump’s religious freedom rule for nuns and other religious individuals who oppose an Obamacare mandate that requires them to fund contraception that may cause abortions. Harris also recently came under fire for discriminating against a judicial nominee simply because he is a member of a Catholic fraternal organization.