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Abp. Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco, CaliforniaPatristicNectarFilms/YouTube

(LifeSiteNews) — Following the passage of California’s pro-abortion ballot initiative to enshrine a “right” to abortion in the state’s constitution, Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco addressed the next steps for advancing the pro-life mission. 

During an interview with Catholic News Agency (CNA), Cordileone spoke to the post-Roe environment and offered practical advice for pro-lifers to continue fighting against abortion. 

“The most urgent crisis today is the attack on life in the womb, and the lack of support for women who are in need to be able to make a choice for life,” the archbishop said. “It [abortion] was originally something that people said was a necessary evil, then it became a choice. And then it became health care. Now they’re calling it reproductive freedom, which can mean all kinds of things. And now it’s a celebrated good.” 

Cordileone told CNA that “we have to keep doing what we have been doing” in the pro-life mission, even in the aftermath of discouraging pro-abortion legislation being enacted across the country. He emphasized the need to “continue holding up what is real compassion for a woman” dealing with a crisis pregnancy, mentioning the U.S. bishops’ “Walking with Moms in Need” initiative as a key way to encourage women to choose life.

“The answer is not violence. The answer is not killing. The answer is love and support,” he said. “If she’s given information about what’s going on inside of her, if she’s given information about what her options are, and is given love and support and we walk with her, she will opt for life.” 

The archbishop added that when expectant mothers are provided with the truth about the life growing inside them and the alternatives to abortion, “95% opt for life.”

Crisis pregnancy centers, which have been under attack in the weeks before and after the Dobbs decision, are focused on this informative and charitable approach. Cordileone shared that he is concerned about the violence towards these clinics, which are “all about love and support, and even beyond the birth of the child, making sure she and her baby are okay.” 

“We need better communication about it…especially with the false narratives that are being perpetrated about these clinics,” he said. “And I think the best thing is for women to tell their stories and let it get out there because it’s the personal story that touches hearts.” 

Cordileone also addressed the question of how to encourage women who believe abortion is the only option if they are to achieve other personal successes in life, saying that “they need to be walked with as well.” He said that “we need to emphasize adoption a lot more,” noting the lack of support from universities for students who are pregnant and giving birth. 

The archbishop has repeatedly spoken out against abortion in any circumstance and publicly called for accountability among clerics and political leaders.

Most notably, Cordileone was the first prelate to refuse Holy Communion to the self-described Catholic, yet unapologetically pro-abortion, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, telling her she needs to “repudiate” her “advocacy for the legitimacy of abortion and confess and receive absolution of this grave sin in the sacrament of Penance.” 

Cordileone’s recent insight comes weeks after California’s Constitutional Right to Reproductive Freedom amendment passed in the midterm elections. The bill, also called Proposition 1, codified the “right” to abortion on demand and up until birth. As reported by LifeSiteNews, conservative legal and judicial reviews have flagged the possibility that the vague legislation could lead to the allowance of child mutilation through so-called “gender affirming care,” as well as infringe upon the religious freedom of Christian medical professionals. 

But California was not the only state to pass pro-abortion ballot initiatives during the 2022 midterms. On November 8, Vermont became the first state in the nation to enshrine a “right” to abortion in its constitution. In Montana, voters rejected a ballot measure which would have ensured basic medical care for newborns who survive failed abortions. 

Similarly, Kentucky voters did not support a proposal to explain that the state’s constitution does not ensure abortion access. Michigan, which previously held pro-life legislation, also passed an amendment allowing abortion up to birth, as well as granting minors access to so-called “gender affirming care” without parental knowledge or consent.


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