NASHVILLE, Tennessee – Father Frank Pavone of Priests for Life spoke with The Tennessee Star about what the landscape is going to look like in a post-Roe world and addressed the denial of communion to Speaker Nancy Pelosi because of her pro-abortion views and actions in government.
“We’re going to have to work with lawmakers, first of all, in those states that have either trigger laws or pre-existing pro-life laws that have been blocked by the courts – do whatever is necessary quickly to get those laws activated,” he said. “In some cases it’ll take some legislative action, not to the same extent as starting from scratch, but the steps that need to be taken,” Father Pavone said.
The priest stressed the need for pro-life individuals to have relationships with their lawmakers.
“People need to, not only for their state lawmakers but for their members of Congress, communicate very clearly that we want action quickly. In other words, there’s no reason to dilly-dally or be afraid. Get these laws activated and into effect,” he said.
Pavone made the point that there will be enforcement battles over pro-life legislation that is enacted.
“Secondly, there will be of course, enforcement battles. Abortion is such a political hot potato. We have seen even with laws that are enacted now under Roe, where the court has allowed a certain measure of regulation, the problem is enforcement – especially if those involved in enforcing it are either afraid of the abortion lobby or are maybe part of it themselves. That shouldn’t interfere with them doing their job, but it does when it comes to this, especially,” he said.
We’ll have to keep an eye on enforcement and really insist on enforcement,” he added. Pavone believes that Freedom of Information Act requests will be a part of that strategy.
He additionally broke down how he sees the status of the individual states on abortion.
“You’ve got two other categories of states. One is where the environment is right for more protective pro-life legislation but it is not there yet. We’ve got to get to work right away. I say to people now, prepare now by getting to know your state legislators if you don’t already. You’ll want to work with them to pass good laws,” he said.
“By the way, it’s a 20-20-10 breakdown where you’ve got 10 in the middle situation and then another 20 or so where there’s already a strong pro-abortion environment and some of them have an extreme set of pro-abortion laws like New York and New Jersey,” Pavone said.
“What I say to people in these places, I said this to people in California recently: listen, these things can change. Now they can change more than ever because of what the court is doing, taking away this roadblock. I said, do not think of this like a forever situation, just like pro-life states don’t consider this done forever,” he continued.
Father Pavone made sure to mention the state court battles that are happening and will continue to happen post-Roe.
“Another thing to bring up is that there will be battles and there are battles now in the states in the courts regarding the constitutions of the states. Some of these pro-abortion states are trying to either find in their constitutions or put a right to abortion in their constitutions,” he said.
“I think when the Dobbs case comes out it’ll provide very strong arguments that the state courts and the citizens can use when they deal with their state constitutions. Even though, obviously, it’s a different constitution and a different document, a lot of the same principles are going to apply,” said Pavone.
Previously reported, Speaker Pelosi was instructed not to present herself for Holy Communion by Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone until she renounces her pro-abortion advocacy.
Father Pavone is very familiar with Cordileone and the issue.
“I’ve known Archbishop Cordileone for 25 years. He and I served in Rome together when we worked over there. I knew that when I first heard he was named a bishop that he was going to be good on these things. He took his time to carefully assess the situation and do private outreach that is customary and appropriate in these cases,” he said.
“He realizes this. What he’s doing is a pastoral service, not only to the diocese that he’s been appointed to shepherd, but really to the whole and the whole church. There’s such a vacuum of leadership. What he’s doing is not in any way a punishment. It’s not in any way a weaponization of the Eucharist like some priests and even bishops like to say. No, this is actually very biblical,” he continued.
“I don’t hear many people bringing this point up, but I always bring it up. In the scriptures, Jesus gives the basis for this. He says when you’re bringing your gift to the altar and you realize that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there. Go be reconciled first and then come and offer your gift,” the priest explained.
“So we talk about receiving Communion. But when we go to mass, we are primarily offering a sacrifice first and then we’re receiving the fruit of that sacrifice,” he said.
“Pelosi and anybody who fails to protect these babies, they’re not reconciled to them. Jesus said you have something against your neighbor. Well, your neighbor has something very big against you if you won’t even recognize them as your neighbor or protect their lives. There’s got to be a reconciliation here,” Father Pavone said.
“The other biblical principle here is that love of God demands love of neighbor. How can I love the God I do not see without loving the neighbor I do see. Of course, our neighbor includes the unborn child,” Pavone emphasized.
“Sometimes these arguments within the Catholic community are so legalistic. We’re talking about Canon Law, concepts that people have no idea how to measure or how to argue. Let’s take a more biblical, broad-based view here that would therefore apply not just to the Catholic politicians, but anyone who claims the name of Christ,” he explained.
“You know, we have this problem across the denominational spectrum. I don’t like it when all the sudden this becomes just a Catholic problem. It kind of feeds into the narrative of the other side, which is opposition to abortion is just a Catholic thing. Well, it’s not. Our brothers and sisters across the body of Christ are eager to protect these babies and to protect the integrity of the gospel,” said Pavone.
“You say you believe it, then don’t try to have it both ways. Believe it 100 percent and live it out 100 percent,” the priest concluded.
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Aaron Gulbransen is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected]. Follow Aaron on GETTR, Twitter, Truth Social, and Parler.
Photo “Father Frank Pavone” by American Life League. CC BY-NC 2.0.