3 reasons why Archbishop Cordileone is right on pro-abortion politicians and Holy Communion
May 10, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — The debate about whether Catholic bishops should allow obstinately pro-abortion politicians, like President Joe Biden, to receive Holy Communion, has recently been resurrected. This is no small matter since faithful Catholics sincerely believe that the Holy Eucharist is, in fact, the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ.
The debate has taken on new life because President Biden professes to be a faithful Catholic, yet he is publicly and unapologetically pro-abortion. This week, major news outlets have brought to light the divergent views on the subject of two prominent California bishops: Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco and Bishop Robert McElroy of San Diego. For the three reasons discussed below, Archbishop Cordileone is clearly correct in stating that pro-abortion politicians should not receive Holy Communion, and Bishop McElroy is clearly wrong in holding the contrary view.
First, out of concern for the souls of the dissident politicians themselves, they should not be permitted to receive Holy Communion. Saint Paul is quite clear on this subject in 1 Corinthians 11:27-29, when he writes: “Therefore whosoever shall eat this bread, or drink the chalice of the Lord unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and of the blood of the Lord. But let a man prove himself: and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of the chalice. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh judgment to himself, not discerning the body of the Lord.”
Therefore, according to Holy Scripture, what may ostensibly be seen as an act of compassion by allowing a reprobate like Joe Biden to receive Holy Communion, is actually an act leading to his condemnation. Moreover, his sacrilegious reception of the Holy Eucharist causes grave scandal to those who are truly faithful and, according to St. Paul, is a great offense against our Lord who is defiled in the process.
Second, Bishop McElroy is going against what Pope Francis, who appointed him Bishop of San Diego, said on this very subject when, as Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, he was serving as the ordinary of the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires, Argentina: “We hope that legislators [and] heads of government … will defend and protect [the dignity of human life] from the abominable crimes of abortion and euthanasia; that is their responsibility … We must adhere to ‘eucharistic coherence,’ that is, be conscious that they cannot receive Holy Communion and at the same time act with deeds or words against the commandments, particularly when abortion, euthanasia, and other grave crimes against life and family are encouraged. This responsibility weighs particularly over legislators, heads of governments, and health professionals.” As the article further states, Francis later reaffirmed this policy, after he became Pope, which should put the matter to rest.
Third, the serious sin of abortion is by no means on par with other sins, as it violates the Fifth Commandment: “Thou Shall Not Kill.” It also represents the murder of the innocents which, according to Genesis 4:10, cries out to heaven for vengeance. Since abortion was legalized in the United States in 1973, over 60 million innocent babies have been slaughtered in their mothers' wombs.
Therefore, it is difficult to understand the rationale of Bishop McElroy comparing this sin to the sin of “racism.” In his statement, Bishop McElroy asks: “Why hasn’t racism been included in the call for eucharistic sanctions against political leaders? ... As to whether racism is a sin that threatens human life, anyone with doubts should talk with the families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Trayvon Martin.”
It is ironic that Bishop McElroy would compare racism to abortion when it is abortion that is the leading cause of death in the African American community, tantamount even to genocide: "Abortion is not just a woman’s issue. It’s a human rights issue. Abortion is the number one killer of black lives in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, abortion kills more black people than HIV, homicide, diabetes, accident, cancer, and heart disease … combined. In 2016, black women had 38% of all abortions in the U.S., despite African-Americans comprising only 13.4% of the total population.” Of course, this should come as no surprise, since thinning out the population of certain minorities is exactly what the founder of Planned Parenthood, Margaret Sanger, intended.
As the cited article in the National Catholic Register points out, even the New York Planned Parenthood organization removed Margaret Sanger's name from its center, citing her “racist legacy.” The article further states: “The Planned Parenthood founder praised Nazi eugenic efforts and expressed contempt for ‘those elements at large in the population whose children are a menace to the national health and well-being.’”
Yet, Planned Parenthood goes on to systematically fulfill Sanger's mission to eradicate the undesirable elements in society. And it does so with the full support of pro-abortion politicians like President Biden. Therefore, as to the debate over giving Holy Communion to pro-abortion politicians, Archbishop Cordileone is clearly on the side of the angels. Bishop McElroy, on the other hand, has unfortunately chosen to lend his support to those who are still helping to carry out the racist and genocidal work of Margaret Sanger.
Charles LiMandri is Special Counsel for the Thomas More Society, which specializes in pro-life and religious liberty cases. He is double-board certified in Pre-Trial Practice and Trial Advocacy by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. He is admitted to practice law in California, New York, Washington, D.C., and before the United States Supreme Court. In Februrary 2021, his firm, LiMandri & Jonna, successfully petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn the State of California’s unconstitutional COVID-19 restrictions which were keeping churches closed in California.