Jesus didn’t say anything about racism, sexism, wars of aggression, global warming, capital punishment, or even slavery. This is the needed comeback to remarks made on May 24th by Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough, remarks made just before introducing his guest, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, fresh from being told by Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone she may no longer receive Holy Communion.

Scarborough started his speech by indicating that opponents of Roe v. Wade claim that the abortion issue has distorted American politics. “They’re right,” he said, but “they’re the ones mostly responsible by dragging abortion up into the altar of the Church….”

Scarborough went on to point out that Jesus, however, did teach His disciples something in Matthew 25. We “would be welcomed into the Kingdom of Heaven if we gave water to the thirsty, fed the hungry, clothed the poor, and brought hope to the hopeless; that we are to lead with forgiveness and love.” Scarborough closed his introduction and his defense of Pelosi asking, “How does a religious leader bar from Communion a congregant who spent her life supporting politics that focuses really on those truly disadvantaged?…”

Scarborough’s sermon ends with a commentary on the Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 25. Without citing the text specifically, this is the famous parable of the sheep and the goats where Jesus teaches: “Whatsoever you did to the least of my brothers, you did unto me.” This parable is referenced to demonstrate that all the Church should be concerned about is whether the followers of Christ are giving water to the thirsty, feeding the hungry, clothing the poor, and so forth.

Pelosi made her appearance dressed in soft pink, looking much younger than her 82 years, and sporting a Ukrainian flag pin and bracelet. Scarborough immediately acknowledged that Nancy’s faith means so much to her. She wasted no time launching into criticism of those members of Congress she has spoken to over many years who not only oppose “terminating a pregnancy”—but also “are against contraception, family planning, in-vitro fertilization….”

Pelosi then wrapped herself in the mantle of the Gospel of Matthew. She stated that the parable of Chapter 25 was “the agenda of the Church and is rejected by many who side with them on terminating a pregnancy.” She means that many who oppose “terminating a pregnancy” reject Christ’s teachings in the parable of the sheep and the goats, unlike herself. She is fond of explaining her ability to respect the views of others, an ability rooted in her upbringing, coming from “a large, pro-life, American Catholic family….”

Pelosi launched into a criticism of Archbishop Cordileone—that he “is vehemently against LGBTQ rights”; that “in fact he led the way in some of the initiatives, the initiatives on the ballot in California.” Undoubtedly, Pelosi is referring to Cordileone’s support for California’s Proposition 8, a failed 2008 ballot initiative, eventually ruled unconstitutional, that attempted to ban “gay marriage” and dared to define matrimony as a bond between one man and one woman. Pelosi thinks Catholic bishops should support same-sex “marriage” contrary to the teaching of Jesus and the Church which they have a God-given responsibility to proclaim and defend.

Getting back to abortion, Pelosi states that the reversal of “privacy and precedent is very dangerous and not consistent with the Gospel of Matthew….”

Let’s look at the parable upon which Pelosi believes she stands. It is a parable unique to Matthew’s Gospel. Jesus, seated on His royal throne, now judges the nations as He separates the human population into sheep on His right side and goats on His left. To those on His right, Jesus exclaims that they will inherit the Kingdom of Heaven: “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, I was ill and you comforted me, in prison and you came to visit me.”

Then the just ask Jesus when did they ever do such things for Him. The Lord explains, “I assure you, as often as you did it for one of my least brothers, you did it for me.” The goats on His left, who neglected acts of charity to the least of Jesus’ brothers, are banished from Christ’s sight and condemned to eternal punishment….

A few years ago, I edited a booklet of abortion victim photography. Each photo is accompanied by a meditation from various pro-life leaders and others not well-known in the movement. The booklet was entitled I Was a StrangerMeditations on the Innocent Unborn—Lost to Abortion, published by St. Benedict Press/Tan Books. When a woman is pregnant, she and the baby’s father are, in a sense, called to honor and embrace a “stranger.” Yes, they know this unborn child is their son or daughter, but they really do not know who this person is—or will become.

In any case, this is certainly true for those working in the pro-life movement to defend the unborn, as they do not know the unborn children for whom they advocate! The unborn child may say in a true sense, “I was a stranger, and you welcomed me.” Moreover, as Cordileone himself pointed out, the unborn are the least among us—and the least among Jesus’ brothers—thus, Jesus can say to us: “Whatever you did to the least of my unborn brothers—and sisters—you did to me.” When Pelosi, and those like her, reject the unborn, expose them by the thousands each day to the violent rejection that is legalized abortion, casting them out of the human family—it is Jesus whom they reject….

The above comes from a May 30 posting by Monica Migliorino Miller in Crisis magazine.