Catholic Bishops Elect New Pro-Life Chair Who Denied Nancy Pelosi Communion

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Nov 16, 2022   |   4:05PM   |   Washington, DC

The nation’s Catholic bishops have elected a new chairman of their pro-life committee who supported denying Nancy Pelosi communion because she is a radical abortion activist.

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops elected Bishop Michael Burbidge of Arlington, Virginia as the new chairman of the U.S. bishops’ pro-life committee. According to a CNA report, they chose Burbidge over Bishop W. Shawn McKnight of Jefferson City, Missouri, by a vote of 174-63.

Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore was previously chair of the Committee on Pro-Life Activities and the nation’s bishops elected him yesterday as their new vice president.

Earlier this year, San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone notified Pelosi that she may not receive communion unless she repents of her radical pro-abortion actions. After the notification, she defied his decision and received communion at a Catholic church in Washington. Immediately, Bishop Robert Vasa, who heads the diocese where Pelosi has her vacation home, also denied her communion.

“After numerous attempts to speak with her to help her understand the grave evil she is perpetrating, the scandal she is causing, and the danger to her own soul she is risking, I have determined that the point has come in which I must make a public declaration that she is not to be admitted to Holy Communion unless and until she publicly repudiate her support for abortion ‘rights’ and confess and receive absolution for her cooperation in this evil in the sacrament of Penance,” the archbishop said at the time.

Click here to sign up for pro-life news alerts from

Shortly after the decision, Bishop Burbidge said Pelosi can’t receive communion in the Diocese of Arlington, Virginia because she’s radically pro-abortion.

Burbidge extended the communion ban that Pelosi’s home bishop in San Franciso put in place — saying it now applies to her if and when she visits any Catholic church on the Virginia side of the nation’s capital.

Burbidge said he respects the decision San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone made to deny communion to Pelosi because of her radical abortion advocacy and because she refused to meet with him to discuss her pro-abortion record and to rent of her support for killing unborn babies.

“He is her bishop and as that bishop the direction and guidance he provides is not limited to just a geographical area,” Burbidge said on his diocese’s “The Walk Humbly Podcast.”

He explained that the decision was “pastoral, not political” and said the communion denial was not a punishment but a way of encouraging someone to repent and get right with God.

“I can’t say it enough, (these) decisions are made for the good of individuals to guard the faithful from scandal, which is caused when Catholics in public office take positions at odds with Church teaching,” the bishop said. “That confuses people and a bishop has to guard against that.”

“All people, including those who are not public individuals, have to approach the sacraments truly in communion with the Church and Our Lord,” Burbidge said.

Bishop Joseph Strickland of Texas also banned Nancy Pelosi from receiving communion “until she repents and stops advocating the murder of children.”

Menawhile, the new USCCB chair has also gone after Joe Biden’s abortion advocacy.

In October, Burbidge denounced Biden’s stated intention to sign a bill for abortions up to birth, saying, “The role of Congress is to pass laws that serve the common good — and yet this priority of the president only brings about pain and death.”