In a rare public rebuke of a top politician, the archbishop of Washington said Monday that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was incorrect when she recently said the moment of conception has long been a matter of controversy within the Catholic Church.
In a release issued Monday night, Washington Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl said Pelosi’s comments on “Meet the Press” on Sunday “were incorrect.”
Wuerl noted that Pelosi responded to a question on when life begins by mentioning she was Catholic.
The release quoted Pelosi as saying the church has not been able to come with a definition of when life begins.
“After Mr. Tom Brokaw, the interviewer, pointed out that the Catholic Church feels strongly that life begins at conception, she replied, ‘I understand. And this is, like, maybe 50 years or something like that. So again, over the history of the church, this is an issue of controversy,’ ” the release said.
Wuerl strongly disagrees.
He said, “We respect the right of elected officials such as Speaker Pelosi to address matters of public policy that are before them, but the interpretation of Catholic faith has rightfully been entrusted to the Catholic bishops. Given this responsibility to teach, it is important to make this correction for the record.”