Diocese opposes X case legislation

Mon, Feb 11, 2013, 00:00

A Catholic diocese has urged all public representatives to oppose the Government’s proposal to legislate for abortion on the basis of the X case.

The Elphin diocesan pastoral council called on Catholics to defend the “inherent right to life of the unborn”.

“We implore all to pray to God for enlightenment, courage and inspiration for those who have the power to stop the introduction of this proposed legislation to do so,” the council said in a statement yesterday.

“In particular we ask the people of our diocese . . . to observe the Fridays of Lent 2013 as special days of prayer and fasting for the intention of supporting expectant mothers and for the protection of the unborn.”

The council consists of laity, religious and clergy, and advises the Bishop of Elphin, Christopher Jones, on pastoral matters. The diocese includes portions of counties Roscommon, Sligo, Westmeath and Galway.

‘Intentional killing’

The council said legislating for the X case – in which the Supreme Court ruled that abortion was legal where the life of the mother was at risk – was not necessary to ensure women received any life-saving treatment they might need during pregnancy.

“Abortion is the direct and intentional killing of an unborn baby. This is morally unacceptable and can never be justified under any circumstances,” it said.

“Abortion is totally different to medical intervention where there is a real and substantial threat to the life of a mother . . . [which] may indirectly and unintentionally lead to the death of the child in the womb.”