Friday, 15 April 2011

Today's must-read pro-life news-stories, Friday 15 April

Abortion
Euthanasia
Sexual ethics
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Thursday, 14 April 2011

This morning's must-read pro-life news-stories, Thursday 14 April

Abortion
Embroyology
Euthanasia
General
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Wednesday, 13 April 2011

People should be wary about David Quinn's writings on pro-life/pro-family issues

David Quinn, the prominent Irish Catholic commentator, has written an article for The Irish Independent on homosexual issues. The article is mainly an argument against gay marriage, but it starts:
"When homosexual acts were decriminalised in 1993, I supported the move and said so publicly. Right from that point, which is basically when I began writing a column, I also supported partnership rights for same-sex couples. I still support decriminalisation and partnership rights."
The article goes on to try to distinguish gay marriage from civil partnerships, and adds:
"In Britain, the last Labour government introduced civil partnerships but not marriage."
However, I'd be very surprised if the very well-informed Mr Quinn didn't know that civil partnerships in English law:
And, as Mr Quinn himself has written elsewhere (The Irish Catholic), Ireland's civil partnerships law:
"is deeply flawed in that it creates a new type of legal relationship for gay and lesbians couples that is almost equivalent to marriage."
So I am unclear as to why Mr Quinn, in his Irish Independent article, now implies that there is a crucial difference of great moral significance between homosexual civil partnerships and homosexual marriage, and leaving throughout the article impressions that he favours the former.

Mr Quinn focuses rightly on the nature of (heterosexual) marriage as an institution ordered towards the procreation and education of the couple's natural children, and argues how homosexual marriage is contrary to that good. So why does Mr Quinn omit to make (at least in his Irish Independent article) the same argument against civil partnerships, which in Britain, Ireland and other places are exclusive to homosexuals? (It should be noted that in the UK, homosexual adoption was legalised before, and separately from, civil partnerships.)  

I would also be very surprised if Mr Quinn did not know that any and all forms of legal recognition or privileges for homosexual couples have been condemned squarely by the highest doctrinal authority in the Catholic Church. In 2003, the late Pope John Paul II approved a document by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, entitled "Considerations regarding proposals to give legal recognition to unions between homosexual persons", signed by the current Holy Father and published on the feast-day of the Ugandan martyrs, who died rather than submit to sodomy. Here are some relevant extracts from that document, marked "CDF" and with my emphases in bold, followed by my comments:
CDF: "In those situations where homosexual unions have been legally recognized or have been given the legal status and rights belonging to marriage, clear and emphatic opposition is a duty." (no.5)
By the use of the word "or", the CDF made clear that the Catholic Church condemns civil partnerships between homosexuals per se and not only "[i]n those situations where homosexual unions...have been given the legal status and rights belonging to marriage." Mr Quinn's article fails to manifest that "clear and emphatic opposition".

In his Irish Independent article, Mr Quinn refers to "partnership rights". Also, in his earlier Irish Catholic article, he claimed:
"Very few people object to same-sex couples being given just and appropriate rights such as hospital visitation rights, and maintenance and property settlement rights."
However, the CDF's document teaches that:
"Nor is the argument valid according to which legal recognition of homosexual unions is necessary to avoid situations in which cohabiting homosexual persons, simply because they live together, might be deprived of real recognition of their rights as persons and citizens. In reality, they can always make use of the provisions of law – like all citizens from the standpoint of their private autonomy – to protect their rights in matters of common interest. It would be gravely unjust to sacrifice the common good and just laws on the family in order to protect personal goods that can and must be guaranteed in ways that do not harm the body of society." (no.9)
The CDF document also teaches that:
"The homosexual inclination is...'objectively disordered' and homosexual practices are 'sins gravely contrary to chastity'." (no.4)
Yet there is no mention in Mr Quinn's article to homosexuality as a disorder nor to the wrongness of homosexual acts. Such an omission is a failure to fulfil the requirement of the next paragraph of the CDF's document, which reads:
"Moral conscience requires that, in every occasion, Christians give witness to the whole moral truth, [for example] stating clearly the immoral nature of [homosexual] unions..." (no.5)
The final paragraph of the CDF's document says:
"Legal recognition of homosexual unions or placing them on the same level as marriage would mean...the approval of deviant behaviour..." (no.11)
Again, by the use of the word "or", the CDF made clear that the Catholic Church condemns civil partnerships between homosexuals per se and not only where such unions are "plac[ed] on the same level as marriage." One of the bases of this condemnation is "the approval of deviant behaviour", about which Mr Quinn's article is silent.

Mr Quinn has high-profile roles in the Catholic world and therefore his thinking can have considerable influence upon the faithful, including Catholic eduationalists.The stakes are simply too high for people to be exposed to ambiguous messages on sexual ethics. Readers may like to contact Mr Quinn via his Iona Institute to make their concerns known to him.

And why is the Catholic Church's teaching on homosexuality (and sexual ethics generally) important specifically for the pro-life movement? The late Pope John Paul II, the great pro-life champion, taught in no. 97 of his 1995 encyclical Evangelium Vitae that it is an illusion to think that we can build a true culture of human life if we do not offer adolescents and young adults an authentic education in sexuality, and in love, and the whole of life according to their true meaning and in their close interconnection.

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This morning's must-read pro-life news-stories, Wednesday 13 April

Actor Martin Sheen
Abortion
Embryology
Euthanasia
Sexual ethics
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Tuesday, 12 April 2011

This evening's must-read pro-life news-stories, Tuesday 12 April

Bob Geldof
Abortion
Embryology
Sexual ethics
General
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This morning's must-read pro-life news-stories, Tuesday 12 April

Simon Fitzmaurice and his sons
Abortion
Euthanasia
Sexual ethics
General
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Monday, 11 April 2011

This morning's must-read pro-life news-stories, Monday 11 April

Michele Bachmann, US pro-lifer
Abortion
Embryology
Euthanasia
Population
Sexual ethics
General
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Sun shines on Felicity's baptism as new pro-life generation gathers

Yesterday, I had the honour and pleasure of attending the baptism of Felicity Carroll, the daughter of Madeleine and Conor Carroll - pictured right, with the sun shining on the happy occasion.

I first met Madeleine and Conor when I joined them carol singing a couple of Decembers ago at Bond Street tube station in London - raising money for the wonderful Good Counsel Network, for which  Conor works as chief fund-raiser.

Good Counsel Network is a life-affirming women’s organisation which offers a free pregnancy test, free advice, medical information, practical help and moral support to women seeking abortion.

Felicity's baptism took place in the family's parish church, the Sacred Heart Catholic church in Flitwick, Bedfordshire. The picture above was taken during the first part of the ceremony which took place outside the church. It gives a small glimpse of the many young people who gathered for the ceremony - friends, family and supporters of Good Counsel Network - a new generation of the pro-life movement in Britain.

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Sunday, 10 April 2011

Psychiatrists' abortion draft report is biased

The Royal College of Psychiatrists' draft report, issued last week, concludes that there is no causal link between abortion and mental health problems. As I told the media earlier today, this conclusion flies in the face of well-established studies which do show such a causal link. There is an increasing number of women all over the world testifying to how abortion has damaged them psychologically. These women will be very upset at the disservice done to them by the college's false conclusion. It should also be noted that there are no studies which show that abortion has even one psychological or physical benefit.

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