Thursday, October 15, 2009

Sr. Teresa Forcades told by Vatican to toe the line

From her May 2009 TV3 interview (see earlier post for video) to an official rebuke and order to proclaim her loyalty this month, Sr. Teresa has quickly joined the ranks of fine Catholic theologians who have had their wrists slapped by the Vatican. And while she clarifies her position, she doesn't back down.

InfoCatólica
10/12/2009

Cardinal Franc Rodé CM, prefect for the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, has sent a letter to the abbess of the Benedictine monastery of Sant Benet de Montserrat, in which he asks that Sr. Teresa Forcades be required to publicly express her commitment to the doctrinal principles of the Church. Forcades last June granted an interview on TV3 in which she argued for the mother's "right to decide" on abortion and favored the distribution of the morning-after pill. The nun has responded in an article in Foc Nou ("Un aclariment sobre l’avortament", October 2009), asserting that she respects the Magisterium of the Church but has the right to express opinions contrary to it. Furthermore, she reaffirms her position on abortion.

A Clarification on Abortion

by Teresa Forcades
(English translation by Rebel Girl, as reviewed and approved by Sr. Teresa)
Foc Nou
October 2009

On May 16, 2009 the program 'Singulars' on TV3 aired an interview on various topics, during which the journalist asked me my opinion as a theologian and physician on the morning-after pill and on abortion.

Reacting to the answers I gave to those two questions, some people criticized me publicly, calling into question my loyalty to the Church and its legitimate teaching. People of goodwill who take very seriously both the issue of freedom of expression and thought in the Church and the issue of abortion have expressed also publicly their perplexity about these criticisms. My abbess received a letter from Cardinal Rodé, prefect for the Congregation for the Consecrated Life, demanding that I express publicly my commitment to the doctrinal principles of the Church, something I am ready to do immediately while clarifying more precisely than one can do in a television interview my position regarding this issue.

The Roman Catholic Church, unlike other Christian Churches, has a magisterial function, the head of which is the Pope, who is responsible for ensuring the authenticity of the interpretations and applications of the Gospel message. The magisterial role is to be respected by all baptized Roman Catholics, and in particular by all Roman Catholic theologians, but this respect does not exclude the public demonstration of reasonable hypotheses that could advance the Church's teachings according to God's will. Throughout the history of the Roman Catholic Magisterium, the importance of this theology 'from below' has been expressed on various occasions, most notably regarding the Marian dogmas.

No Roman Catholic -- whether a theologian or not -- should be afraid to publicly express reasonable doubt about a point of doctrine, with the trust and freedom that belongs to the children of God, as one who feels and knows that he or she is among family, without fear of being denounced or discredited. To express one's doubt in a prudent and reasonable manner is a sign of loyalty and trust. It is also a sign of humility and it is taking seriously one's own membership in the Church and the co-responsibility that it entails.

Now I will set out my doubt regarding the topic of the morning-after pill and abortion.

My doubt does not question the principle of defense of life as a gift from God. I totally agree with that principle: the sanctity of life as a gift from God must be respected from conception until natural death (Benedict XVI). My question is whether it can be right according to Roman Catholic morality to violate the mother's right to self-determination in order to save the life of the child.

The right to self-determination is a fundamental right that protects human dignity and prohibits absolutely and under any circumstances that a person be used as an object, as a means to achieve good, even when that good is saving the life of another person or even all of humanity. The right to self-determination so-conceived is as substantial and absolute as the right to life; in fact, the right to self-determination is the right to spiritual life -- it is what allows us to recognize human life as something more than biological life. Nobody, neither the State nor the Church, has the right to violate it under any circumstances. Nor does anyone, not the State or the Church or the mother, have the right to violate the right to life of the fetus. Under no circumstances. The right to abortion does not exist. What exists is a collision, a conflict of two fundamental rights: the right to self-determination of the mother on the one hand and the right to life of the child on the other.

Three clarifications about what I just said:

1. In relation to self-determination: According to Christian theological anthropology the right to self-determination does not mean that we as humans are in a neutral position between good and evil, nor does it imply that what is good can be identified with what is decided without external coercion; for Christians, Good is ultimately identified with God Himself and His loving will for each person; the right to self-determination is nothing more and nothing less than the condition of possibility for answering Yes to God without that Yes being empty; human freedom can not be identified with the right to self-determination because we are free only to the extent that we say Yes to God and to His plan of love for us and for all Creation. Points 8 and 9 of the Declaration on Procured Abortion of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (1974) affirm the right to so-conceived self-determination and they particularly emphasize that human beings can not be treated as a means to achieve a good, however lofty that good might be.

2. Regarding the validity of raising the issue of abortion as a conflict of rights: This is the approach of Professor Johannes Reiter, a moral theologian who specializes in bioethics and is a member of the international theological commission to which he was appointed by John Paul II in 2004 and reappointed by Benedict XVI in 2009 (cf. Reiter J, Keller R, ed.: Herausforderungen Schwangerschaftsabbruch. Freiburg 1992, pp. 74-75); after raising the issue of abortion as a conflict of rights, Professor Reiter concludes that the right to life always has precedence over the right to self-determination.

3. In what sense can the precedence of the right to life over the right to self-determination be considered problematic? This precedence can not be considered problematic in the sense of what is the will of God (God wants us to use our freedom for the sake of life), but only in the sense of whether it is a precedence that might be imposed from the outside.

To illustrate the conflict between the right to life and the right to self-determination we can take as an example the case of kidney transplants. There are hundreds of thousands of people around the world (just over 75,000 in the U.S. alone, more than 3,000 of whom die each year) whose lives could be saved by a kidney transplant. Why not pass a law requiring people whose kidneys are compatible to donate them to those patients to save their lives? The state could pass such a law and the Roman Catholic Church could excommunicate potential donors who refuse to undergo the surgical removal of the kidney, as well as all the people who provide support to them in the name of an alleged right to self-determination or self-possession of one’s own body which would collide with the right to life of an innocent patient. Please note that today the removal of the kidney from the donor can be done by laparoscopy thus leaving a scar that is much smaller than an episiotomy scar, and bear in mind that it is proven that living with one kidney does not shorten the life expectancy of the donor. If God has given them a compatible kidney that they do not need and that can directly save an innocent life, on what principle can Roman Catholic moral teaching consider legitimate their refusal to save an innocent life? If there is a moral principle that legitimizes this refusal, why not apply this principle in the case of pregnant women, especially if the mother's life is in danger or if the pregnancy was the result of rape?

My conscience brings me to raise this question with confidence and in all honesty.

My faith brings me to express my allegiance to the current Magisterium.

29 comments:

  1. Sorry Teresa,
    But a person's right to live TRUMPS another person's right to 'self-determination'. Anyway, the determination was made during the conjugal act.
    -Kerry

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  2. I concur with Kerry, also in your “kidney” analogy the kidney still lives in another person. In real life the aborted baby always dies! Wake up my sister!!!!

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  3. The birth mortality rate has been high throughout history. Whether it is the conscious decision of the mother not to allow the fetus to continue or simply the laws of nature, if these very laws of nature have the "right" not to allow the fetus to continue, then why not the mother also (and especially in the case of rape or the child say having one of its limbs cut off in order to survive as a street beggar in India)? If I had the possibility of choosing whether or not I could abort as a fetus in order to avoid say a terrible genetic sickness or any other life of hell, I'd be quite willing to be aborted as many times as necessary in order to enter a life under far more favourable circumstances. I can understand clearly what Teresa Forcades is saying. And we should also be grateful that she is trying to warn as many people as possible about the pharmaceutical mafia who can't wait to start pumping their POISON into new born babies once they DO eventually come into such a world. Regards from Sambhava.

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  4. Sambhava, you do realize that you have adopted the same eugenicist's mentality of the nazis. They, too, wanted to be gods and decide whose life was worth living and whose wasn't.

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  5. Hi Anon, As I said in my letter on the other Teresa Forcades site under the name Denny Bowyer (New Voices in the Church...), I'm neither for nor against abortions, and I'm also aware that abortions can lead to other health complications in those who decide have them. In the other letter I explained in more detail why I feel I do NOT have the right to "be God" by condemning any female who chooses to have an abortion. Personally, I can see no comparison at all between abortions and the brutality and sadism of the nazi experiments on human beings. And as for the issue of eugenics, when I see the complete and utter physical degeneration of the human race as a result of what people have been putting into their bodies (and minds), I can clearly understand that I'd be branded with a "eugenicist's mentality" if I pointed this out to any of them. Ignorant parents are destroying both the physical and mental health of their children all over this planet, but strangely enough these people are never accused of being an Adolf Hitler or eugenicists. If I was a young girl who was raped by a degenerate moron I'd perform the abortion on myself (if I could) without hesitation. However, I'm not suggesting that anyone else should do the same.

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  6. sambhava,

    you stated, "If I had the possibility of choosing whether or not I could abort as a fetus in order to avoid say a terrible genetic sickness or any other life of hell, I'd be quite willing to be aborted as many times as necessary in order to enter a life under far more favourable circumstances. I can understand clearly what Teresa Forcades is saying."
    what you say here is judging whether certain people should be born because of life difficulties...you, or anyone else, are not to decide whose life is worth living because of "disablities." When it's left to the imperfect human race to decide whose life is worth living and whose isn't, Where and who draws the line???
    You fail to recognize that through suffering can come perfection with the gracr of God.

    http://www.lifewithoutlimbs.org/

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  7. Hi Anon, it also has to be remembered that what we are discussing here IS hypothetical -ie - whether we SHOULD or SHOULD NOT condone abortions. Meanwhile in "reality" abortions are both happening and not happening anywhere in existence. THAT'S the reality, not whether abortions are right or wrong. Of course, if we wish to go deeper into the subject the word "karma" also has to be taken into consideration. Yes, if I had the chance to abort in order to avoid being born to the wrong parents (ie. ignoramuses who wouldn't hesitate to have me vaccinated with zionist poison) then I most certainly would, in just the same way that I'd take care not to allow myself to enter into any dangerous situation at any time during my life. If my potential mother decided to abort me rather than allowing me to be born say into a nazi concentration camp , then in another life I'm sure I'd thank her for her decision. Obviously if karma is a reality inasmuch as we all have to experience the same suffering we may have caused others, then having an abortion is not an attempt at trying to avoid such suffering, because as I mentioned earlier, no matter what our personal views are on this subject, abortions ARE either happening or not happening out there in reality anyway quite regardless. In other words, no one can "escape" the law of karma or help someone else escape it by having an abortion or even by being able to choose to abort oneself (and I'm assuming intuitively here that karma IS a reality).

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  8. sambhava,

    We are not discussing wether or not abortions happen but rather who gets to decide who should and shouldn't live because one thinks they can judge another's quality of life because of a so-called disability.

    belief in karma is a cop-out

    we all have the free will to decide to do good or evil. It's all black or white.

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  9. Sister, two things: One, as a physician you should be against abortion because of the medical and psychological harm it does to the mother, and because of the Hippocratic Oath.
    Two, the case of the kidney transplants that your propose is not relevant, because the person in need of A kidney is not precisely in need of and dependent at present upon MY or any particular kidney at this moment, whereas the child is presently and totally dependent on the mother. Moreover, the person in need has no moral claim on anyone's kidney, whereas the child, by an already established relationship, has a moral claim on the mother. - Mary Parks, TExas

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  10. Anon,
    That's why it has to remain a personal issue and not for the likes of you or I to cast any judgement pertaining to good or evil regarding other people's decisions. If a very close friend of mine was in excruciating pain owing to a terminal illness and I had the possibility to end the suffering sooner, who could really decide whether it would be "ethical" of me to do so? I could only ever decide at the time and take the consequences of what I felt was the right thing to do under the circumstances (in spite of any man made laws stating otherwise). Furthermore, any person's decision regarding either abortions or euthanasia is surely also relative to the level of spiritual awareness the person possesses. What we may consider injust and unethical in this world may not be in the least to anyone possessing a higher level of consciousness. Many people become very emotionally upset over say a great number of victims dying in some catastrophe, while others realize it to be only "statistics" and that there can be no suffering at all "outside of ourselves" in existence.

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  11. SO IF YOU SAW A HELPLESSLY ILL PERSON ASKING FOR YOUR HELP WOULD YOU LET THEM DIE INSTEAD OF HELPING THEM BECAUSE YOU DETERMINED THERE LIFE WOULD BE MISERABLE EVEN IF YOU DID WHAT YOU COULD TO MAKE IT MORE BEARABLE? WHAT ABOUT THE GOOD SAMARITN OR HOW WOULD YOU LOVE JESUS BACK WHEN HE SAID "WHAT SO EVER YOU DO THO THE LEAST OF MY NUMBER , THAT YOU DO UNTO ME"? WHAT AN OPPORTUNITY YOU'D MISS IN LOVING JESU IN YOUR NEIGHBOR....WHAT WOULD YOU HAVE DON IF YOU SAW HIM ON THE ROAD TO THE CROSS...WOULD YOU NOT BOTHER TO WIPE HIS FACE AT LEAST OR OFFER HIM COMFORT IN ANYWAY...WHY BOTHER HE'S NOT GOING TO MAKE IT ...HIS LIFE IS ENDED WHY HELP...BECAUSE DEAR ONE EVERY PERSON'S LIFE IS SPECIAL TO HIM, HE WOULD RETURN AND SUFFER IT ALLL AGAIN JUST FOR "YOU" ALONE EVEN. EACH LIFE IS HIS AND PRECIOUS TO HIM...IT IS NOT OUR CHOICE TO DETERMINE IF SOMEONES'S WORTH THE BOTHER TO LOVE...IT IS OUR DUTY IF LOVE GOD TO TAKE CARE OF THE TRUELY NEEDY THAT WE CAN COMFORT AT LEAST TO THE BEST OF OUR ABILITY...AFTER THAT GOD DECIDES WHEN LIFE SHOULD END OR BE. ASK ALL THE ABORTED BABIES IF THEY WISHED THEY LIVED...DO NOT THE ANGELS ENVY US BECAUSE WE CAN PRACTICE FAITH AND TRUST IN GOD, THEREFORE PLEASING HIM. THE BABIES CERTAINLY WOULD HAVE LOVED TO HAVE HAD THAT OPPORTUNITY OR CHOICE AT LEAST. WHAT'S 70 OR 80 YEARS OF A PLEASURABLE LIFE OR SUFFERING LIFE WHEN COMPARED TO ETERNITY IN HEAVEN OR HELL. OUR RESPONSE IS TO LOVE OTHERS NOT END THERE LIFE, NO MATTER HOW DISABLED THEY MAY BE...DON'T WE ALL COME INTO THE WORLD DIABLED (TO MAKE IT ON OUR OWN, WE NEED MOTHERS...AND WHEN WE LEAVE GET OLD DON'T WE BECOME DISABLED AGAIN ...WE ALL NEED CARE AT SOME POINT ...WHAT WE NEED IS NOT HELATH OF BODY SO MUCH AS HEALTH OF SOUL...EACH BABIE HAS A SOUL THAT GOES ON. YOU NEVER KOW IF YOUR LIFE WILL BE LESS PRODUCTIVE IN THE WORLD'S EYES BUT IN GOD'S EYES IT IS YO THAT HE LOVES BECAUSE HE DOESN'T NEED YOUR SERVICE...HE CAN DO IT ALL HIMSELF...WHAT HE NEEDS FROM YOU IS A HEART THAT CHOOSES TO LOVE HIM AND NEIGHBOR. FIRST AND SECOND COMMANDMENTS...AND THE SECOND IS EQUALLY IMPORTANT IN GOD'S EYES...WHATSOEVER YOU DO TO THESE YOU DO TO [ME]. WOE TO ANYONE WHO HURTS ONE OF [MY] LITTLE ONES! THE LIGHT OF TRUTH BE TO YOU, A WEAK SERVANT, ROSE

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  12. Hi Anon,
    Well, I would like to keep religion out of this issue, but as it does appear that you are preaching Christianity here, I'm sure that if the Christian God IS full of love, compassion and forgiveness then He'd surely show understanding towards any young girl who decided to terminate her pregnancy as a result of having been raped by a maniac. And if this IS the case, then it also means that He'd show equal love, compassion and forgiveness towards even those who lie in wait with toxic vaccines ready to destroy the health or even end the life of any child once it HAS been born into this world. Ahhhh.... This obviously means that unless I cultivate these same Godly qualities in myself, I'd actually be expecting or even WANTING to see revenge on the perpetrators of such evil... The truth has to be that there is only LOVE, and everything else is illusion (or as the Tibetans say, "that which cannot be differentiated between illusion and non illusion" - or in other words, MAYA). Namaste.

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  13. If we make abortion illeal, we should also make fornifications and adultery illegal...THE ROOT OF THE PROBLEM OF ABORTION IS SEXUAL IMMORALITY!!! SEX OUTSIDE MARIAGE...IT'S KIND OF SILLY TO FIGHT ABORTION WITOUT FIGHTING THE ROOTS OF ABORTIONS...WHICH IS THE IMMORALITY THAT IS NOW PREVAILING IN OUR PERVERTED CULTURE...SO WHY DOES THE VATICAN AND MEMBERS OF THE CLERGY ATTACK THE ROOTS OF THE PROBLEM...OH LET ME THINK!!! THEY FIRST HAVE TO DEAL WITH THE SEXUAL IMMORALITY PREVAILING AMONG THEM!!! I CALLED THAT HYPOCRISY!!!

    I am not saying that abortion is good, but how many women and men are having sex all the times, how many babies that are unwanted??? why not teach these people to quit having sex like animals or may be worst than animals!!! Then we will resolve the abortion problem!!!

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  14. Hi Anon,
    Unfortunately the reply I sent earlier failed to appear. I'm just wondering what you would have done had you been in the place of Sophie as in "Sophie's Choice".... She was given the choice by a nazi officer on her arrival at a concentration camp to save only ONE of her two children while the other would be led away to die. Sometimes life isn't quite so clear cut as we'd like to imagine. Namaste.

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  15. The devil seems to have everyone deceived blurring what is right from what is wrong. He's even managed to deceive people into believing he doesn't exist... that it's a fetus not a baby... that there is a choice... Yes there is always a choice between choosing good and choosing evil. Doing God's will and doing your will.

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  16. Dr. Focades is clearly making a point about the rights of a woman to her own person. While other issues collide, Sister is insisting that in that collision of rights no woman's -- no human being can be deprived of that right to one's own person and to one's legitimate self-determination.

    To make a plain, a woman is not chattle. A woman is not a cow. A woman is a human being and that principle of self-determination must be first affirmed before the competing claims can be made in favour of the life of the child. Sister raises questions about the Morning After Pill that are not unlike those raised by the Orthodox for whom the implantation of the blastocyst into the uterus is the point at which the new life's rights commence.

    Instead of hurling stones at Dr. Focades, engage her in the free exchange of ideas of the children of God which at the end of the day must be resolved by the Magisterial teaching of the Church.

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  17. Abortion is anti-feminist because it lets men off the hook from taking responsibility for the life they created. No one benefits more from abortion than men. They save 18 years worth of child support, while millions of women suffer post-abortion trauma, fertility problems, drug/alcohol problems, and high rates of suicidality. Abortion is evil first of all because it takes a human life (the baby's). But it is also anti-woman because it hurts women. Many of us just didn't realize it until it was too late. If abortion is so pro-woman and benign, why is it that the media and feminist groups refuse to allow post-abortion women to particpate in the discussion? They don't want the truth to get out there to warn young women from making the biggest mistake of their lives. I pray that Sister Teresa will realize this if she truly is Catholic and truly cares about women.

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    Replies
    1. This is utter bs. You're clearly misinformed. As a feminist (and a victim of rape as well) I can say that you have no clue about a woman's experience regarding abortion. Shut up.

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    2. Maria, it doesn't matter what one experienced regarding abortion. All that matters is that the person who has an abortion experiences deep shame, sorrow and contrition for the offense to God, the willingness to kill a baby and the refusal to accept God's gift. You should not tell people to shut up. It isn't Christian. But if someone were to tell a person that abortion is a mortal sin that will, if you do not confess it with true contrition, take them to an eternal hell, they would be doing that unfortunate person a good Christian act.

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  18. A woman has a right to self-determination. But she, like any other person, does not have the right to end the life of another human being, even if that life is still inside her. A fetus is a human being in the earliest stage of development of life.

    A woman and a man can both exercise their rights to engage in an act that has the grave and sacred consequence of creating life only if they are willing to accept the moral responsibilities. It is because, hand in hand with this right is moral duty and responsibility. They are morally obligated to make sure that every human being they create, is protected and nurtured in its most fragile stage, in the best way they can. After the baby is born, they can transfer this responsibility to others who are willing to accept it.

    What kind of society will we create if we exempt women and men from the moral responsibilities of protecting and nurturing the life of the children they produced?

    What kind of society will we create if we give people the right to deal with their problems in the most extreme manner...ending the lives of those who interfere or conflict with their own personal agendas?

    Aborting a fetus is the most extreme way of abandoning one's moral duties. It is an act contrary to life itself.

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  19. Sr. Teresa is forgetting that people chose to marry and part of that promise is openness to children. Extended breastfeeding, which Pope John Paul II extolls and pharacutical companies don't, truly naturally spaces children. That is, if a child is breastfed exclusively for the first 6 months (as is best), it will 2 years on average before the nursing mother ovulates.
    Finally, you can't use the rape argument for a universal rule. The instances to "save the life of the mother" do not hold out medically--time and time again we've seen them as false choices--either/ors, not and/boths.
    Additionally, the child can live outside the womb earlier and earlier. In fact, we have taken children concieved in peitri dishes and implanted them.
    Finally, people can always choose, even if abortion is illegal, but we don't have a "right" to sin or abandon God's law.

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  20. I'm going to jump in here and make a few points to answer some of the claims in the last few anonymous posts.

    1. It is possible to be a feminist and be pro-life. I have many friends who are and in fact, in the US, there is a group called Feminists for Life that embraces that position.

    2. Breastfeeding is NOT a 100% reliable method of birth control and child spacing. From Dr. Robert Zurawin, associate professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Baylor College of Medicine in response to precisely that question: "You're less fertile, but not infertile, while breastfeeding. Although you may not menstruate for months after giving birth, your body usually releases its first postpartum egg before you get your first period. So you won't know you've ovulated until two weeks later — when you menstruate. If you know you don't want to get pregnant while nursing, begin using birth control as soon as you start having sex again..." (http://www.babycenter.com/404_can-i-conceive-while-nursing_7093.bc).

    Also, unfortunately many women are unable to breastfeed whether for physical reasons or because they have to work at jobs where there is no accommodation for nursing mothers and thus have to wean their baby early or only breatsfeed part-time which offers less protection against ovulation.

    3. As to the claim that there is no case where the mother's health is really in danger, that is not true. I personally know a woman who was forced to terminate her pregnancy because of uncontrolled -- and uncontrollable -- hypertension. Her doctors basically told her that unless she had an abortion, she would risk having a stroke and dying. She reluctantly consented to the abortion.

    Another case would be the recent controversial one involving the 9-year old girl in Brazil, pregnant with twins as a result of being raped by her stepfather. I don't think you need an MD to concur with the girl's doctors that a 9-year old body is not designed to safely carry a multiple pregnancy to term.

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  21. It took millennia for society to realize the horror of 'men having a right to exercise extreme power over women in his household'. How many centuries will it take for many to realize the horror of 'women having a right to exercise extreme power over a child in her body?

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  22. Do you know what I hear in all of this hogwash about "self-determination?" INTELLECTUALIZATION and JUSTIFICATION. What is the root at this attempt to justify abortion? Where is the root of the guilt that manifests as intellectualization, sister?

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  23. Rebel Girl and all,
    It is possible to monitor return of fertility even while breastfeeding using NFP methods like creighton model fertility care.

    Most women CAN breastfeed. In only EXTREME cases would it be impossible for a mother to breastfeed- even while working. There is so much mis-information out there and it's important to be educated by organizations like LLL international prior to baby's arrival to make breastfeeding relationship successful.

    The "morning after pill" and abortion are actually promoting more cases of child sexual abuse by covering up these cases instead of exposing them.

    Many doctors are bullying women into telling them their baby or they themselves will die if they do not have an abortion. Even though in some of these cases the doctor is right, many are not.

    http://www.saintgianna.org/

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  24. Hi Anon,
    If abortion is "EVIL first of all", then what about the literally countless cases of miscarriages, child/mother birth mortality rates, serious birth defects, immediate removal of the baby owing to mentally unstable parents and so on? Just because all these happen to be "accidents" should they not be classified as evil too ? "Evil" always lies in the MOTIVES behind what we do in this life, and in most cases regarding abortions there are no such evil motives intended. The fact that babies are not always welcomed with the same pleasure as those who plan them is neither more nor less unfortunate than any of the "accidents" above. Also, it's no thanks to "Rockerfeller social engineering" that many women thesedays pursue a career and simply have no time for children anymore. And even among those who do, they more often than not still have no idea of the real dangers awaiting children ONCE they've entered into this world. Where shall we start..? The "sodium fluoride" in their drinking water? The highly toxic mercury put into their teeth? The Satanic symbols being used in the programmes they watch on TV? The radiation from their mobile and cordless phones? Nicotine addicted parents? I'd say that all THESE things are far more "evil" than any decision to have an abortion.

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  25. Where to begin?

    First, I guess by thanking you for mentioning LLL -- to those who don't know the acronym that would be La Leche League which does a marvellous job of supporting and educating about breastfeeding.

    But arguing that the morning after pill and abortion "are actually promoting more cases of child sexual abuse"? For that to hold up you would have to prove that the incidence of child sex abuse is higher, for example, in countries where abortion is legal and given the fact that abortion is illegal in most of the countries that are notorious for child sex trafficking (eg Thailand where it is legal only in cases of maternal health, rape and incest), I don't think this is going to hold up.

    You raise Saint Gianna whom the Church considers to be heroic because she carried pregnancies to term at great risk to her health and ultimately died from her choice. I think Sr. Teresa would point out that Saint Gianna was a physician who made an informed choice about the alternatives presented to her and was willing to face the consequences of her choice. But I believe she would say that the point is that Saint Gianna made the choice herself from her place of personal freedom. She was not forced to choose to carry her final pregnancy to term. And she should not be used to guilt trip women who make different choices under similar circumstances.

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  26. my brother taught in cambodia/thailand. Abortion and abortion pills are very accessible.

    http://www.jillstanek.com/archives/2006/08/new_stanek_colu_7.html

    Most people do need to make decisions from a state of personal freedom. Problem is...very few are truly free. St. Gianna was free and we can be too!

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  27. If self-determination is a right for women, shouldn't all human beings of the present and the future... the unborn babies of the present... have a right to self-determination as well? But the most innocent, fragile and dependent human beings would first have to survive being in the womb. They need love, protection, and a chance to develop into their full potential. May heaven protect them from mothers and doctors who wish them harm by way of abortion.

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