House Speaker Nancy Pelosi appears to have defied her archbishop’s order not to receive Holy Communion in light of her pro-abortion stances and advocacy.
The California Democrat attended mass on Sunday at Holy Trinity in Georgetown where she received Holy Communion, Politico Playbook reported. Pool reports show that President Joe Biden often attends evening masses at the parish as well.
It is not immediately clear which priest at Holy Trinity gave Pelosi communion.
None of the Jesuit priests on staff at Holy Trinity, described as “a parish of the powerful,” responded to requests for comment from The Daily Wire.
The parish website advertises a June 15 “Pride Mass,” and highlights a video of a gay man, who says he is married to a man, though the Catholic Church teaches that marriage should only be between a man and a woman and that “under no circumstances” will the church approve homosexual acts.
The church’s pastor, the Reverend C. Kevin Gillespie, has previously said that he would give communion to Biden, the most pro-abortion president in United States history often described by his staff and the liberal media as a “devout Catholic.”
“Everyone is welcome,” Gillespie said of Biden in an interview with America Magazine, a liberal Catholic outlet. “He’s a man of faith, and I would give Communion to him like any other Catholic coming up for the Eucharist.”
“It’s really an encounter with God,” Gillespie separately told The Atlantic, saying that receiving communion is a “sacred and intimate moment” for pro-abortion Biden, a “gift that enhances his faith, and it energizes his witness.”
“We most certainly encourage him to improve his intimacy with God through the Eucharist,” Gillespie told the publication.
The Holy Trinity pastor, who formerly served as president of Saint Joseph’s University, associate provost of the Chicago-based Loyola University, and as an assistant professor in the Department of Pastoral Care and Counseling at Loyola University of Maryland, did not respond to requests for comment.
His openness to giving communion to the pro-abortion president is apparently backed by the archbishop of Washington, Wilton Gregory, who said in November 2020 that he would also give communion to Biden.
“There will be moments when I will be able to speak to him about faith, about the works that he is trying to accomplish that we can be supportive of, but also areas where we’re not going to agree,” Gregory said. “But I’m going to always try to do it in a respectful way.”
In September 2021, however, the archbishop offered a rare rebuke of Biden’s denial that life begins at conception, telling the president that “the Catholic Church teaches, and has taught, that human life begins at conception, so the president is not demonstrating Catholic teaching.”
“Our church has not changed its position on the immorality of abortion,” Gregory added. “I don’t see how we could because we believe that every human life is sacred.”
To receive Holy Communion, which Catholics believe is the body of Jesus Christ, one must be in a state of grace, which means that an individual has recently gone to the sacrament of confession and confessed all serious or mortal sins, and one must have fasted for at least an hour.
The Catholic News Agency cites the Catechism of the Catholic Church in reporting that a mortal sin “destroys charity in the heart of man by a grave violation of God’s law; it turns man away from God.” Examples of mortal sins are murder, adultery, pornography, theft, and missing mass on Sunday.
The Catholic Church teaches that abortion is “a crime against human life,” “constitutes a grave offense” and that a person who obtains an abortion is automatically excommunicated from the Catholic Church.
Additionally, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has emphasized that Catholics in politics “have an obligation in conscience to work toward correcting morally defective laws, lest they be guilty of cooperating in evil and in sinning against the common good.”
Pelosi herself has not responded to many requests for comment from The Daily Wire. Discussing whether Catholic priests have ever given her any “difficulties” about receiving communion, Pelosi described herself in 2018 as a “regular communicant.”
“I think some of it is regional,” she said in a 2018 interview. “It depends on the bishop in a certain region. Fortunately, for me it has not — Communion has not been withheld and I’m a regular communicant so that would be a severe blow to me if that were the case.”
But on Friday, San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone informed Pelosi that she is not to receive holy communion at mass over her repeated support for abortion.
“In light of my responsibility as the Archbishop of San Francisco … I am hereby notifying you that you are not to present yourself for Holy Communion and, should you do so, you are not to be admitted to Holy Communion, until such time as you publicly repudiate your advocacy for the legitimacy of abortion and confess and receive absolution of this grave sin in the sacrament of Penance,” Cordileone said in a Friday letter to Pelosi.
Cordileone also told Pelosi that he is ready to continue their conversations at any time, and that he will be praying and fasting for her change of heart.