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Pope Francis meets with U.S. Home speaker Nancy Pelosi on the Vatican

(RNS) — Pope Francis welcomed U.S. Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi to the Vatican on Saturday (Oct. 9), as she arrived in Rome for a gathering of legislative leaders of G20 international locations and conferences forward of the U.N. Local weather Change Summit in Scotland later this month.

“It was a religious, private and official honor to have an viewers with His Holiness Pope Francis this morning,” the speaker stated in a statement.

Francis’ non-public assembly with the speaker, a Catholic and a defender of abortion rights, got here as American Catholic bishops contemplate learn how to press the church’s instructing towards abortion whereas the nation’s second Catholic president, Joe Biden, heads an avowedly pro-choice Democratic administration.

However Francis has cautioned the American bishops to not transfer too shortly, and has repeatedly signaled that he doesn’t need the Eucharist to grow to be a political weapon. Flying house from his papal go to to central Europe on Sept. 15, he noted that he has by no means denied the Eucharist to anybody and that bishops danger turning into embroiled in “political issues” after they don’t act “like shepherds.”

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The controversy, which dominated the bishops’ nationwide assembly in June, was spurred partly by criticism of pro-choice Catholic leaders by Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco, who  has advocated denying Communion to pro-choice elected officers primarily based in his archdiocese — which would come with Pelosi.

On Sept. 29, after a invoice aimed toward overcoming a Texas regulation severely limiting abortion passed the House, Cordileone requested Catholics to wish for a “conversion of coronary heart” for Pelosi and different Democratic representatives.

The speaker, in her assertion on the assembly, emphasised the pontiff’s assist for measures to fight local weather change. “His Holiness’s encyclical Laudato Si’ is a robust problem to the worldwide neighborhood to behave decisively on the local weather disaster with particular consideration to probably the most weak communities.”

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She went on to reward “the immense ethical readability and urgency that His Holiness continues to deliver to the local weather disaster.”

Francis had introduced earlier this 12 months that he meant to take part within the upcoming COP26 convention, however the Vatican announced Friday with out rationalization that the 84-year-old pope, who’s recovering from intestinal surgical procedure, that he wouldn’t attend.

Pelosi additionally met with the Vatican’s Dicastery for Selling Integral Human Improvement, a division  created by Francis 5 years in the past to supervise the church’s efforts on points similar to migrants, prisoners and different marginalized individuals, the unemployed, in addition to victims of armed battle, pure disasters, slavery and torture.

The conferences got here as President Joe Biden introduced his intention to appoint former lawmaker and anti-abortion Democrat Joseph Donnelly to function his Vatican ambassador.

It has been reported that President Biden will meet with Francis on Oct. 29.

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