MercoPress, en Español

Montevideo, September 18th 2018 - 19:37 UTC

Pope calls on Brazilian Catholic bishops to oppose legalization of abortion

Friday, October 29th 2010 - 03:44 UTC
Full article 4 comments
Benedict XVI message comes hours before Brazilians vote to decide on the successor of President Lula da Silva Benedict XVI message comes hours before Brazilians vote to decide on the successor of President Lula da Silva

Bishops must guide their faithful to use their vote to oppose efforts to legalize abortion and euthanasia, Pope Benedict XVI told bishops from Brazil.

“Dear brother bishops, to defend life we must not fear hostility or unpopularity, and we must refuse any compromise or ambiguity which might conform us to the world's way of thinking” the pope said on Thursday during a meeting with bishops from northeast Brazil.

The bishops were making their “ad limina” visits to report on the status of their dioceses.

Pope Benedict did not mention the fact that Brazilians were to vote next Sunday in a presidential run-off, but said he wanted to discuss with the bishops their obligation to give their faithful the information and moral guidance they need to ensure their political decisions contribute to the true good of humanity.

Both of Brazil's presidential candidates, Dilma Rousseff and Jose Serra, have said they oppose lifting restrictions on abortion, but Brazil's anti-abortion laws still have been a recurrent theme in the campaign.

Pope Benedict told the Brazilian bishops that while direct involvement in politics is the responsibility of the laity, “when the fundamental rights of the person or the salvation of souls requires it, pastors have a serious duty to make moral judgments even in political matters.”

Certain actions and political policies, such as abortion and euthanasia, are “intrinsically evil and incompatible with human dignity” and cannot be justified for any reason, the pope said.

While some may claim they support abortion or euthanasia to defend the weak and the poor, “who is more helpless than an unborn child or a patient in a vegetative or terminal state?” he said.

“When political positions openly or covertly include plans to decriminalize abortion and euthanasia, the democratic ideal -- which is truly democratic only when it acknowledges and safeguards the dignity of every human person -- is betrayed at its foundations” Pope Benedict told the bishops.

Bishops and priests have an obligation to help Catholic laity live in a way that that is faithful to the Gospel in every aspect of their lives, including their political choices, he said. “This also means that in certain cases, pastors should remind all citizens of their right and duty to use their vote to promote the common good” the pope said.

Categories: Politics, Brazil, International.

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules
  • Cadfael

    With the world facing overpopulation, this is really clever!
    What a dicked

    Oct 29th, 2010 - 07:05 am 0
  • Valeria

    Just 3 days before the presidential election, Ratzinger (that is his name), met with 15 brazilian catholic bishops in the Vatican, to add a personal touch to what has been already a massive intervention of the catholic church into the national election campaign in Brazil: A tsunami of political propaganda was unleashed by priests in churches, by bishops on TV, by the catholic propaganda departments in the press. The catholic church has an ongoing war against the social programs of the current current government - similar to currents in the USA that condemn all social programs for the needy. The catholic church claims that the social programs “create dependence” (school lunches and $ 80 a month food stamps) of the poorest 7% of Brazil's population (typical income less then $ 150 a month - with prices now even higher then in USA). Ratzinger's intervention has created a massive revulsion among the educated, secular elements in Brazil. An editorial in CARTA CAPITAL (Brasilia) drew 331 readers' commentaries...

    Oct 30th, 2010 - 08:47 am 0
  • Duglas

    I wish that idiot would get a job. Maybe as the head of the Boy Scouts

    Oct 31st, 2010 - 03:28 pm 0
Read all comments

Commenting for this story is now closed.
If you have a Facebook account, become a fan and comment on our Facebook Page!