Pope Francis said Wednesday that abortion is “murder” and those who carry it out are “killing”
In a plane interview aboard the Papal plane, the Pontiff described the killing of the preborn child as “murder,” even if it takes place soon after conception.
The Pope appeared to criticise some U.S. Catholic bishops for dealing with U.S. President Joe Biden’s pro-abortion position in a political rather than pastoral way.
In his comments, Pope Francis reiterated his unequivocal pro-life position, having compared abortion ‘doctors’ to ‘hitmen’ in 2019.
Pope Francis was returning from Slovakia when he was asked for his opinion about the debate within the U.S. Bishops Conference, regarding whether President Joe Biden, who is a baptised Catholic, should be denied communion because of his vocal and hard-line support for abortion.
“I never denied communion to anyone. But I never knew that I had in front of me anyone such as you described, that is true,” he said, without elaborating further.
Last June, a conference of U.S. Catholic bishops voted to draft a statement on receiving communion that may admonish Catholic politicians, including Biden, who has repeatedly voiced his support for abortion without restrictions.
“Communion is not a prize for the perfect … communion is a gift, the presence of Jesus and his church,” the Pope said.
“Abortion: it’s more than a problem, it’s murder, whoever has an abortion kills, no half words,” the 84-year-old Pontiff said.
The head of the Catholic Church also pointed to the science surrounding the human development of unborn children, stating:
“Take any book on embryology for medical students. At the third week after conception, often even before the mother is aware (of being pregnant), all the organs are already (starting to develop). It is a human life. Period. And this human life has to be respected. It is very clear.
“Scientifically, it is a human life,” he said.
“Is it right to take it out to solve a problem?” he asked. “That is why the Church is so hard on this issue, because if it accepts this it would be like accepting daily murder.”
Pope Francis’s unambiguous comments come as the Biden administration fights back against pro-life gains in the U.S. state of Texas.
On Tuesday, Biden’s pro-abortion-rights administration formally asked a federal judge to block the ‘Heartbeat Law’ from going into effect in Texas. As reported by Gript <https://gript.ie/an-amazing-day-texas-becomes-first-state-in-us-to-ban-most-abortions/> , the new pro-life law seeks to ban almost all abortions in the state under a novel legal design that opponents say is intended to thwart court challenges.
The Republican-backed law bans abortions being performed once cardiac activity has been detected in the embryo; a heartbeat can normally be detected as early as 6 weeks’ gestation.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church states that a Catholic who procures an abortion automatically excommunicates themselves from the Church and must be absolved from the sin before they can re-enter the Church.
Heated debate continues to rage in the U.S. Church on what policy should apply to Catholic politicians who support and promote abortion.
Responding to the issue, Pope Francis said he believed bishops should deal with the problem in a pastoral rather than political way.
“A pastor knows what to do at any moment but if he leaves the pastoral process of the Church he immediately becomes a politician,” Pope Francis said.
He also closely linked abortion to Europe’s demographic decline, stating:
“A Head of State told me that the demographic decline began because in those years there was such a strong law on abortion that six million abortions were performed and this left a drop in births in the society of that country.”
His sharp comments come as former Irish President Mary McAleese doubled down on her criticism of Pope Francis at the weekend. At a British church reform movement called ‘The Root and Branch Synod,’ McAleese criticised his leadership of the Catholic Church, blasting him as an “ultra conservative” leader who is blessed with enemies who make him appear more liberal than he is.
McAleese stated she did not see Francis as a great liberal reformer.
Meanwhile, at the Pope’s recent meeting with pro-life Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, Francis congratulated the Hungarian nation on its pro-family policies. The meeting reportedly lasted for 40 minutes, during which the Pope praised the country for promoting marriage and family.
“[In Hungary] in the sense of demographics…you can see that there are so many young people, so many children. In Slovakia too, there are so many young couples.”
The Pope stressed the need for jobs at home so that young couples and families did not have to go abroad to seek employment.