The Pope has picked San Diego Bishop Robert McElroy to become the newest cardinal, beating out the Archbishop of San Francisco who recently banned House Speaker Pelosi from receiving communion.
Bishop McElroy, who will rise to the rank of Cardinal on August 27th in Rome, has often taken public stances against the more conservative members of the Church. He even was one of only a few Bishops to publicly reject the communion ban on Nancy Pelosi, writing, “It will bring tremendously destructive consequences. The Eucharist is being weaponized and deployed as a tool in political warfare. This must not happen.”
The raising of McElroy means that Pope Francis passed over the higher ranking archbishop of San Francisco, Salvatore Cordileone, for one of the top roles available to Catholic priests. The slight notably comes in the middle of an ongoing and very public feud between Cordileone and Pelosi over Pelosi’s push to defend and expand abortion access in the US.
Cordileone said Nancy Pelosi’s views had become so extreme that he wrote an official letter banning the practicing Catholic congresswoman from receiving communion in the district she represents.
In his letter, Cordileone said, “Should you not publicly repudiate your advocacy for abortion ‘rights’ or else refrain from referring to your Catholic faith in public and receiving Holy Communion, I would have no choice but to make a declaration, in keeping with canon 915, that you are not to be admitted to Holy Communion.”
Canon 915 that the archbishop of San Francisco was referring to states: “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.”
Since the letter, 4 other diocese have joined in banning Speaker Pelosi from receiving communion in their areas unless she renounces her stance on abortion. The Vatican, however, has shown no interest in joining the movement and the election of McElroy to Cardinal goes to prove that.
Pope Francis has never hidden his more liberal leaning viewpoints. At one point in 2015 he even loosened the rules on forgiveness for Catholic women to have abortions, creating a “mercy window.” Normally the Church considers abortion a mortal sin.
Nancy Pelosi’s ban from communion has certainly dealt a blow to her personally, but it seems like the Vatican is beginning to push back. Do you think the ban will stick or will the Bishops pushing it be replaced?