The Big B Files’ response to Nancy Pelosi’s attack on the Catholic Church for its Defense of Life is the Subject of this Big B File.
On November 22nd, Former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi attacked the Catholic Church and Catholics like myself, specifically its teaching on Abortion along with its support of the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act of 2011, when she said the following to the Washington Post:
In retrospect, does she think that assessment went too far? Not at all, she said: “They would” let women die on the floor, she said. “They would! Again, whatever their intention is, this is the effect.’’
Catholic health-care providers in particular have long said they’d have to go out of business without the conscience protections that Pelosi says amount to letting hospitals “say to a woman, ‘I’m sorry you could die’ if you don’t get an abortion.” Those who dispute that characterization “may not like the language,’’ she said, “but the truth is what I said. I’m a devout Catholic and I honor my faith and love it. . . but they have this conscience thing’’ that she insists put women at physical risk, although Catholic providers strongly disagree.
On one occasion, she said, laughing, one of her critics on the topic of abortion, speaking on the House floor, said, “Nancy Pelosi thinks she knows more about having babies than the pope. They think like this. And of course I do — I think the pope would agree — and I know more than you, too, mister.’’
– Former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi in Washington Post Article “‘Princess Nancy’ Pelosi calls Cain ‘clueless’; vows to do more for child care”
First of all, she is disingenuous when she says she is a devout Catholic. If she was a devout Catholic, she would not only know what the church teaching is in regards to Abortion and other issues of life, but adhere to it as well. For those who don’t know what the church teaching is on the issue of abortion, the Catechism of the Catholic Church is as follows:
Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception. From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person—among which is the inviolable right of every innocent being to life.72
Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you.73
My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately wrought in the depths of the earth.74
Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law:
You shall not kill the embryo by abortion and shall not cause the newborn to perish.75
God, the Lord of life, has entrusted to men the noble mission of safeguarding life, and men must carry it out in a manner worthy of themselves. Life must be protected with the utmost care from the moment of conception: abortion and infanticide are abominable crimes.76
Formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave offense. The Church attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life. “A person who procures a completed abortion incurs excommunication latae sententiae,”77 “by the very commission of the offense,”78 and subject to the conditions provided by Canon Law.79 The Church does not thereby intend to restrict the scope of mercy. Rather, she makes clear the gravity of the crime committed, the irreparable harm done to the innocent who is put to death, as well as to the parents and the whole of society.
The inalienable right to life of every innocent human individual is a constitutive element of a civil society and its legislation:
“The inalienable rights of the person must be recognized and respected by civil society and the political authority. These human rights depend neither on single individuals nor on parents; nor do they represent a concession made by society and the state; they belong to human nature and are inherent in the person by virtue of the creative act from which the person took his origin. Among such fundamental rights one should mention in this regard every human being’s right to life and physical integrity from the moment of conception until death.”80
“The moment a positive law deprives a category of human beings of the protection which civil legislation ought to accord them, the state is denying the equality of all before the law. When the state does not place its power at the service of the rights of each citizen, and in particular of the more vulnerable, the very foundations of a state based on law are undermined. . . . As a consequence of the respect and protection which must be ensured for the unborn child from the moment of conception, the law must provide appropriate penal sanctions for every deliberate violation of the child’s rights.”81
Since it must be treated from conception as a person, the embryo must be defended in its integrity, cared for, and healed, as far as possible, like any other human being.
Prenatal diagnosis is morally licit, “if it respects the life and integrity of the embryo and the human fetus and is directed toward its safeguarding or healing as an individual. . . . It is gravely opposed to the moral law when this is done with the thought of possibly inducing an abortion, depending upon the results: a diagnosis must not be the equivalent of a death sentence.”82
“One must hold as licit procedures carried out on the human embryo which respect the life and integrity of the embryo and do not involve disproportionate risks for it, but are directed toward its healing, the improvement of its condition of health, or its individual survival.”83
“It is immoral to produce human embryos intended for exploitation as disposable biological material.”84
“Certain attempts to influence chromosomic or genetic inheritance are not therapeutic but are aimed at producing human beings selected according to sex or other predetermined qualities. Such manipulations are contrary to the personal dignity of the human being and his integrity and identity”85 which are unique and unrepeatable.
Nancy Pelosi and others like her are what the Big B Files refers to as CHINOs (Catholics In Name Only). CHINOs claim to be devout Catholics, but outright reject church teaching especially on the moral teaching of the church. By taking the positions she has on the issue of abortion and other issues of life, Nancy Pelosi has effectively excommunicated herself from the Catholic Church, in accordance to the Code of Canon Law of the Catholic Church number 1398 which says ”A person who procures a completed abortion incurs a latae sententiae excommunication (automatic excommunication).” Furthermore, Nancy Pelosi cannot receive Holy Communion (The Body and Blood of Christ himself) in accordance to the following Code of Canon Laws of the Catholic Church . . .
Can. 915 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.
Can. 916 A person who is conscious of grave sin is not to celebrate Mass or receive the body of the Lord without previous sacramental confession unless there is a grave reason and there is no opportunity to confess; in this case the person is to remember the obligation to make an act of perfect contrition which includes the resolution of confessing as soon as possible.
If she were really a devout Roman Catholic, Nancy Pelosi would not only renounce her support and advocacy of Abortion and other positions she has taken against the Church’s teachings on the life issues along with ending the attacks she has done to the Church on the life issues, but fully embrace and promote the Church teachings when it comes to the issues of life . . . including Abortion. When she attacked the Church on its teaching on Abortion along with its support of the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act of 2011, she was also attacking and offending Roman Catholics like myself at the same time. You might want also read the Illinois Statute – HEALTH CARE RIGHT OF CONSCIENCE ACT as well.
And that is the Big B Files. Click on the comments link below and let me know what you think . . . . I’m Bryan Hewing.