Pelosi's bishop calls for ex-communication of pols now pushing for abortion
Is the Catholic Church finally showing some leadership?
Sure looks like it, with this Washington Post op-ed by San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone:
Prominent politicians lost no time in reacting hyperbolically to the Supreme Court’s decision refusing to enjoin Texas’s new law banning abortions after the detection of a fetal heartbeat. President Biden announced a “whole-of-government effort” to find ways to overcome the Texas measure. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) denounced the Supreme Court’s refusal as a “cowardly, dark-of-night decision to uphold a flagrantly unconstitutional assault on women’s rights and health,” and promised new legal action: “This ban necessitates codifying Roe v. Wade” in federal law.
As a faith leader in the Catholic community, I find it especially disturbing that so many of the politicians on the wrong side of the preeminent human rights issue of our time are self-professed Catholics. This is a perennial challenge for bishops in the United States: This summer, we provoked an uproar by discussing whether public officials who support abortion should receive the sacrament of the Eucharist. We were accused of inappropriately injecting religion into politics, of butting in where we didn’t belong.
I see matters differently. When considering what duties Catholic bishops have with respect to prominent laymen in public life who openly oppose church teachings on abortion, I look to this country’s last great human rights movement — still within my living memory — for inspiration on how we should respond.
The example of New Orleans Archbishop Joseph Rummel, who courageously confronted the evils of racism, is one that I especially admire. Rummel did not “stay in his lane.” Unlike several other bishops throughout this country’s history, he did not prioritize keeping parishioners and the public happy above advancing racial justice.
He goes into how Rummel cracked the whip on racists within the Catholic Church who were all in for segregated parishes and pews, a shocking thing, really, given that it radically goes against not just Church teaching but Church history. More about that later.
Cordileone points out that ex-communication is hardly a non-factor in keeping the Catholic flock intact -- Rummel, for one, wasn't scared of it:
Many White Catholics were furious at this disruption of the long-entrenched segregationist status quo. They staged protests and boycotts. Rummel patiently sent letters urging a conversion of heart, but he was also willing to threaten opponents of desegregation with excommunication.
On April 16, 1962, he followed through, excommunicating a former judge, a well-known writer and a segregationist community organizer. Two of the three later repented and died Catholics in good standing.
That ought to get wokester-focused, race-obsessed leftist politicians' attention. The bishop in New Orleans wouldn't put up with a grave evil of racism in his parishes, and Cordileone is now signaling the same intent.
I think he had to, given that creatures such as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi as well as Joe Biden have been so loud and extreme about their abortion advocacy. They aren't just quietly enabling abortion and saying they're "personally opposed" anymore, as Democrats have attempted to weasel out with in the past, they're now addicted to money and powerful abortion lobbies, and thus, speak the party line of groups such as Planned Parenthood now.
It's time someone put a stop to that runaway train which is only getting worse, and one archbishop has now stepped forward. Too bad it's not all of them. But this op-ed may just open the door.
What do I think will happen next?
Well, the op-ed will have some striking power when the bishops meet again in November and hash it out some more. Cordileone's chief opponent among his fellow bishops, San Diego's leftist Bishop Robert McElroy, has been pretty quiet since this op-ed came out and yes, I did a thorough search. He's been vocal in his advocacy of not "politicizing" the Eucharist, whatever that means, as if human life itself were a policy difference instead of an immutable fact.
The other thing I think will happen is that Cordileone will be attacked, not merely opposed with words. Democrats, leftists, and the vast abortion money lobby will wheel out their highly politicized slime machines and start smearing and "investigating" looking for something to pin on him. They play dirty, so get ready for something ugly from them, get ready for something untrue. The Church faithful should get even more ready to dismiss their tricks.
Why has Cordileone done this? It seems he's in tune with actual Catholic teaching as the defenders of abortion politicians are not.
Here's a curious fact about the pair and I think it's significant: McElroy is a native of San Francisco and all its leftist culture. Cordileone is a native of San Diego and all its Reagan-country culture. They seem to have been flipped into the opposite geographies. Los Angeles archbishop José H.Gomez hails from northern Mexico and San Antonio, Texas, and he's on the same page as Cordileone on the critical importance of life, too. I think all of this might actually mean something.
It goes back to Church history:
As most of us are shocked to learn that there were Catholics who supported racism in the pews in New Orleans, we note that it's not just so obviously contrary to Church teachings, but it's at odds with Church history.
Several centuries ago, when the New World was discovered and colonized by Europeans, the Church was adamant that Native Americans were people with souls and actually had to lay that out. A lot of Catholic colonists and soldiers didn't believe it and had to be told.
According to Wikipedia, the Church came out with this:
Sublimis Deus (English: The sublime God; erroneously cited as Sublimus Dei and occasionally as Sic Dilexit) is a bull promulgated by Pope Paul III on June 2, 1537, which forbids the enslavement of the indigenous peoples of the Americas (called Indians of the West and the South) and all other people. It goes on to state that the Indians are fully rational human beings who have rights to freedom and private property, even if they are heathen. Another related document is the ecclesiastical letter Pastorale officium, issued May 29, 1537, and usually seen as a companion document to Sublimis Deus.
...and the pope in his language got real tough:
In Sublimis Deus, Paul III unequivocally declares the indigenous peoples of the Americas to be rational beings with souls, denouncing any idea to the contrary as directly inspired by the "enemy of the human race" (Satan). He goes on to condemn [the Indians'] reduction to slavery in the strongest terms, declaring it null and void for any people known as well as any that could be discovered in the future, entitles their right to liberty and property, and concludes with a call for their evangelization.
Sound like the same logic of Rummel in New Orleans? Sound like Cordileone on human life? It does. And the latter two on the matter of such miscreants are so comparatively ... gentle.
The 16th century Spaniards were terrified of ex-communication, and so, while in episodes they and the Spanish leaders ignored the bull or stopped it, the teaching ultimately prevailed. It's significant didn't oppose those teachings with brazen words actually justifying killing Indians as the claiming-to-be-Catholic abortion politicians do in the states. Eventually, for them, the word from the Church sank in, which is one reason why many Catholic countries in the New World still have large indigenous populations.
That papal bull also opened the door to 18th-century saints like Father Junipero Serra who made it his lifework to try to save the Indians from Spanish soldiers through his establishment of missions. Since Native Americans had souls, the Church teaching held that they were to be saved, and since the predatory Spaniards didn't always get that much, Serra would also teach the Indians useful skills so the Spaniards couldn't ignore theology. That was what the missions were about. What he was up against was Spanish soldiers who would have been otherwise perfectly comfortable slaughtering them and enslaving them as non-human. Serra saw a lot of that going on around Mexico and wanted it to stop.
Since Serra's flagship mission was in San Diego, it's interesting that Cordileone is a San Diego native. I think there's a connection. Cordileone cites the well-known experience of racism in the Deep South as a means of getting the Catholic pro-abortion politicians' attention, but behind that is his own city's backstory. Opposing Church teachings on life, whether of Indians, black people's right to live humanly, or now abortion, is something that opponents can't weasel out of. With Serra backing Cordileone, the law is laid down.
Image: Steubenville Conferences (cropped), via Wikipedia // CC BY-SA 3.0
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