Joe Biden said Pope Francis called him a “good Catholic” when asked if they discussed abortion during their meeting Friday at the Vatican.
Many Catholics were urging the pope to correct Biden on his radical pro-abortion actions when they met. However, ahead of the meeting, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said the two would discuss human rights issues, but abortion would not be one of them.
Biden, a pro-abortion Democrat who professes to be Catholic, and Pope Francis had an unusually long one-on-one meeting together, their first since Biden became president, according to Reuters. However, little is known about what they discussed.
Afterward, a reporter asked Biden at photo op with Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi about his meeting with the pope, ABC News reports.
“Did the issue of abortion come up at all?” the journalist asked.
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“No, it didn’t,” Biden replied, according to the report. “… we just talked about the fact that he was happy I was a good Catholic and keep receiving Communion.”
When another journalist asked Biden if he and Pope Francis discussed the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Biden replied that it was a “private conversation,” according to EWTN host Catherine Hadro.
In November, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops is expected to consider a teaching document on Communion that could send a message to pro-abortion Catholics like Biden about repenting of their sin before participating in the sacrament.
Many bishops expressed concerns that Biden’s claims about being a devout Catholic coupled with his radical abortion advocacy are misleading Catholics and creating scandal for the faith. They have said the church must do something to make it clear that Catholics cannot support the grave moral evil of abortion and must repent before participating in Communion.
Several U.S. bishops urged Pope Francis to speak to the American president about the evils of his abortion advocacy. They noted how the pope repeatedly has condemned the killing of unborn babies in abortions as “murder” and compared it to “hiring a hitman.”
“Dear Pope Francis, you have boldly stated that abortion is ‘murder.’ Please challenge President Biden on this critical issue. His persistent support of abortion is an embarrassment for the Church and a scandal to the world,” Bishop Thomas Tobin, of Providence, Rhode Island, wrote on Twitter before the meeting.
Earlier this week, U.S. Cardinal Raymond Burke also called out pro-abortion politicians who profess to be Catholic for creating “grave scandal” by making it seem as though Catholics can support the killing of unborn babies in abortions. Burke did not mention Biden by name.
“They have, in fact, contributed in a significant way to the consolidation of a culture of death in the United States, in which procured abortion is simply a fact of daily life,” Burke said.
Though Biden professes to be Catholic, he has been pushing the most radical pro-abortion policies of any president in history, including allowing mail-order abortions and forcing taxpayers to fund abortions. His administration also is fighting to overturn a pro-life Texas law that has saved thousands of unborn babies from abortion in the past two months alone.
After the pope’s meeting with Biden, Tyler, Texas Bishop Joseph Strickland, a strong pro-life voice, urged Catholics to pray for everyone who participates in the Eucharist without repenting of their sins.
“I implore all to offer prayers of repentance, reparation & atonement for all the blasphemies against Jesus Christ especially the reception of His Body & Blood with no thought of confessing mortal sin,” Strickland wrote on Twitter. “This desecration of His sacred Body & Blood is an abomination. We must repent!”