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Abp. Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco, Calif.National Shrine / YouTube

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UPDATE: On May 25, Arlington Bishop Michael Burbidge announced that he would not only support Archbishop Cordileone’s decision, but enforce it in his own diocese as well. Following this, Archbishop Alexander Sample from Portland, released a video describing Cordileon’s action as “an act of pastoral love and care for Speaker Pelosi, and for all those entrusted to his pastoral care who might have been led astray by her public support of the evil of abortion”

Some days prior, May 23, Providence Bishop Thomas Tobin expressed his own support for Cordileone, calling the archbishop’s decision “a thoughtful, well-reasoned and compassionate letter that accurately reflects the teaching and the law of the Church.”

(LifeSiteNews) – A growing number of bishops across the country have publicly shared their support for San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone’s decision on Thursday that he has barred Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi from receiving Holy Communion.

Archbishop Cordileone made his decision public on Friday after multiple attempts to try to get Speaker Pelosi, a Catholic, to stop supporting abortion.

The Catholic Church teaches that Catholics who have committed a mortal sin but have not confessed it in the Sacrament of Confession are not to present himself or herself for Holy Communion.

Canon 915 of the Church’s Code of Canon Law instructs that: “Those who have been excommunicated or interdicted after the imposition or declaration of the penalty and others obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to holy communion.”

Following Cordileone’s statement, a small number of bishops were quick to give their public support. “I support @ArchCardileone in the heroic and compassionate stance he took today in the protection and defense of human life,” Bishop Michael Barber stated.

Bishop Robert Vasa in the Diocese of Santa Rosa reportedly spoke to the pastor of a church in the California diocese where Pelosi is known to attend and informed the priest to respect Abp. Cordileone’s instructions.

Denver Archbishop Samuel Aquila called the decision “courageous, compassionate, and necessary.”

“Church teaching is clear that people endanger their souls if they are separated from God because of grave sin and then receive the most Holy Eucharist in an unworthy manner,” Archbishop Aquila wrote.

Notably Archbishop Joseph Naumann, the chair of the USCCB’s committee on pro-life activities, praised Cordileone’s “patient and persevering efforts to enlighten Speaker Pelosi about the moral gravity of her extreme efforts to promote, to advocate and to initiate legislation to enshrine legalized abortion into federal law.”

I applaud Archbishop Cordileone’s patient and persevering efforts to enlighten Speaker Pelosi about the moral gravity of her extreme efforts to promote, to advocate and to initiate legislation to enshrine legalized abortion into federal law. I fully support the both pastoral and courageous actions that Archbishop Cordileone has now taken in an effort to awaken Speaker Pelosi’s conscience and at the same time to protect Catholics in the Archdiocese of San Francisco and throughout the country from being confused by Speaker Pelosi’s radical support for abortion, while claiming to be a faithful Catholic. I pray that Speaker Pelosi will have a change of heart.

Other bishops in support include Bishop Joseph Strickland of the Diocese of Tyler, Bishop Donald Hying in the Diocese of Madison and Bishop Thomas Paprocki in the Diocese of Springfield.

“Thank you, Thank you, Thank you Archbishop Cordileone for loving Nancy Pelosi in the Truth of Jesus Christ!” Bp. Strickland wrote on Twitter. “Now may every bishop follow the lead of the Archbishop Cordileone & make it clear that elected leaders who vehemently speak against the sanctity of life must be strongly corrected & if Catholic admonished to live their faith.”

Bishop Hying released a statement through the diocesan newspaper, the Catholic Herald. He called it a “prudent decision” to deny Pelosi Holy Communion and urged prayers for her conversion.

“This is not a decision that was made rashly, but rather one made after almost ten years of patient dialogue and repeated attempts at reconciliation with the congresswoman and the consistently held teachings of the Catholic Church,” Bp. Hying stated. “Please join me in prayer for Speaker Pelosi, that she may embrace the sacred truth and dignity of the human person, formed in the womb, in the image of God.”

Bishop James Conley of the Diocese of Lincoln shared similar sentiments. “We fervently pray for a conversion of heart for Speaker Pelosi and for all those who advocate for the destruction of human life in the womb. Let us pray that all people recognize the dignity of every human soul: man, woman and child, born and unborn.”

Bishop Dave Ricken expressed his hope for Pelosi’s conversion:

Speaker Pelosi’s aggressive promotion of abortion and blatant public disregard for Church teaching has consequences. In many ways, she has made this choice herself through her words and actions. Despite repeated pastoral outreach by the Archbishop, his clear teaching on the dignity of each human life, and specific letters and requests to meet personally with Speaker Pelosi, she has chosen not to respond. Let us continue to pray for Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s conversion and a greater respect for life in our country.

Bishops Thomas Daly of Spokane, Michael Olson of Fort Worth, and Liam Cary of Baker also backed Abp. Cordileone’s decision along with Oklahoma City Archbishop Paul Coakley.

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