Speaking Friday at the Vatican’s annual “State of World” address, Pope Francis vilified abortion, stating that the practice was “horrific.” Going specifically further into his dark train of thought, he proclaimed the horror of realizing the very idea of children not seeing the light of day because they were victims of abortion. The Pontiff has been under pressure from conservative Catholics to make a statement of what they perceive as the “evil of abortion.”
It is well-known that the new Pope regards the unwanted presence of abortion and homosexuals, two hot topics, as an obsession of the present day Catholic Church. However, he has not previously been willing to make such succinct statements such as he made on Monday. Yet in his “State of the World” speech, he went further to express his sentiments about modern society, calling it a “throwaway culture” and an environment which has overtaken many parts of the world.
When Pope Francis vilifies abortion, his remarks are decidedly aimed at protecting unwanted pregnancies. He denounces the practice of hygienic and available abortions as horrific, saying that, “Unfortunately what is being thrown away is not only food and dispensable objects, but often human being themselves, who are discarded as unnecessary.”
The Catholic Church has provided women who have had abortions with counseling and forgiveness processes through their successful “Project Rachel,” founded in 1984. The post-abortion healing ministry is currently in place in 140 dioceses in the United States. Called spiritual healing, the program is lead by clergy specifically trained for the field and spiritual directors as well as therapists.
The pontiff has once stated that the “moral problem with abortion is of a pre-religious nature because the genetic code of the person is present at the moment of conception. There is already a human being.” Pope Francis was elected to the position in March of 2013 after Pope Benedict XVI stepped down, a first in Vatican history. He was also the first South American to be voted into the position of the head of the Catholic Church. Traditionally no pope has endorsed abortion in any way whatsoever, and it is not expected in the future that a Catholic Pope would lead the church in a new direction.
Making a clear message about his stance, supporting the conservative Catholic contingencies, the pope vilified abortion. In addition to this last public speech Pope Francis also spoke of the practice of enslaving children, making them serve as soldiers, as a crime against humanity. The evils of the world, in the state of the world, were under attack by the head of the Catholic Church, wearing a skull-cap and dressed in white.
Earlier on Sunday Pope Francis baptized thirty-two infants in the Sistine Chapel, one whom was born of parents who had merely been married in a civil ceremony. The pope honored their request for the baptism of their child after more staunch members of the Vatican pointed out that the parents had not been married in a church.
By Persephone Abbott