Tuesday 1 March 2011

Pope Benedict is calling everyone to hear the voice of conscience on abortion

On Saturday Pope Benedict addressed the annual meeting of the Pontifical Academy for Life in Rome. Fr John Fleming, a corresponding member of the academy and SPUC's bioethical consultant, participated in the meeting. Fr Fleming is currently in the UK addressing meetings of clergy on pro-life issues.

Pope Benedict told the academy:
"Through moral conscience God speaks to each of us, inviting us to defend human life at all times..."
In recent years SPUC has increasingly focused upon the importance of conscientious objection to abortion and the duty of pro-lifers to defend the right to conscientious objection. SPUC helped secure a major victory on conscientious objection in a debate at the Council of Europe in October.

The Holy Father also said that the question of post-abortion syndrome reveals:
"the irrepressible voice of moral conscience"
later adding that:
"[I]t is important ... to ensure that the necessary help is not lacking for women who, having unfortunately already chosen the path of abortion, are now experiencing all its moral and existential consequences. There are initiatives, at a diocesan level or by individual volunteer organisations, which offer psychological and spiritual support for a full recovery. The solidarity of the Christian community must not abandon this kind of shared responsibility".
SPUC has always placed high importance on outreach to post-abortive women, through the foundation of its sister organisation ARCH (Abortion Recovery Care and Helpline), formerly BVA (British Victims of Abortion).

The Pope went on address the role of doctors:
"Doctors must not fail in their serious duty to ensure that women's consciences are not tricked into believing that abortion will resolve family, economic and social difficulties, or the health problems of their child ... [D]octors are called to show particular fortitude in continuing to affirm that abortion resolves nothing; rather it kills the child, destroys the woman and blinds the conscience of the child's father, often devastating family life."
SPUC has launched an outreach to doctors through its "Abortion - your right to know" leaflet campaign, through which doctors are given the full facts about abortion to share with their pregnant patients. You can listen to a debate about this featuring Paul Tully of SPUC on BBC Radio 4's PM programme yesterday (the abortion debate starts 43 mins into the programme).

SPUC is answering Pope Benedict's call to be fully and pro-actively pro-life, serving all those affected by abortion in society and society as a whole. Please help SPUC continue to answer Pope Benedict's call by joining, donating and/or leaving a legacy to SPUC

Comments on this blog? Email them to johnsmeaton@spuc.org.uk
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