San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone urged pro-abortion Catholic politicians like President Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to “please stop the killing” of unborn babies in abortions.
Cordileone has been attracting national attention after he published a pastoral letter earlier this month emphasizing the importance of protecting unborn babies from abortion and explaining why Catholic politicians who persist in supporting abortion should be denied Communion.
The letter comes in the midst of an intense debate among U.S. Catholics about whether pro-abortion politicians like Biden and Pelosi should be allowed to receive Communion if they persist in their abortion advocacy.
In an interview Monday with Current News, the archbishop refuted criticism about his letter being political, saying his desire is not for pro-abortion politicians to be replaced with pro-life politicians, he wants pro-abortion politicians to become pro-life.
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“Please stop the killing. This is killing innocent human life,” Cordileone urged pro-abortion leaders, Crux reports. “You have a very prominent position in society. You can influence societal attitudes and practices. You’re in a position to do something to stop the killing.”
He said he hopes they will recognize that the killing of unborn babies is evil and repent.
“Please have a change of heart and come back to the fullest of your Catholic faith,” the archbishop continued. “We await you with open arms to welcome you back.”
Responding to criticism from Bishop Robert McElroy of San Diego about “politicizing” the Eucharist, Cordileone said his letter has nothing to do with politics.
“This is not a political motive for me. I intentionally waited until after the election to release [the letter] so it would not be misinterpreted as a political move,” he said. “One could also say that those who are against applying the church’s discipline are doing so for political reasons.”
Cordileone said many Catholics today do not seem to understand what it means to receive Communion.
“Many Catholics have a more protestant notion that it’s more like table fellowship, but it means Christ’s sacrifice was made present to us. We unite our sacrifice with Christ,” he said. “So, receiving Communion is that by which we profess that we believe what the church believes and we’re living our life accordingly.”
In the pastoral letter, Cordileone wrote that denying Communion may be “the only recourse a pastor has left” if pro-abortion politicians refuse to listen to reason and obstinately persist in their sin.
“I tremble that if I do not forthrightly challenge Catholics under my pastoral care who advocate for abortion, both they and I will have to answer to God for innocent blood,” Cordileone wrote.
Though some bishops have criticized Cordileone’s letter, others have praised him, including Bishop Robert F. Vasa of Santa Rosa and Archbishop Joseph Naumann, chair of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities.
Naumann said Catholic politicians who advocate for abortions are “creating scandal by encouraging others to do evil.”
In June, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops plans to vote on a document from their Committee on Doctrine “with the aim of clarifying the church’s stance” on pro-abortion politicians and Communion, the Associated Press reports.
Joe Biden professes to be a devout Catholic and frequently attends Mass. However, he openly defies church teachings about the sanctity of human life and family. After just 100 days in office, he already surpassed President Barack Obama as the most pro-abortion president in U.S. history by ending safety regulations that protect mothers and unborn babies from abortion and forcing taxpayers to fund the billion-dollar abortion industry.