The history of Catholic teaching on abortion isn’t as clear cut as you think
Its position has hardly been “unchangeable” throughout the past two millennia.
Even though 56 percent of U.S. Catholics believe that abortion should be legal in most or all cases, it’s a commonly held belief that being “pro-choice” is incompatible with being Catholic. That’s not surprising, given the Catholic Church’s stance on abortion seems pretty clear cut: abortion is a murder. The Catechism of the Catholic Church even says, “Since the first century, the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable.”
That’s not exactly true, though.
The “Pro-Life” Movement is Built on Christian Supremacy, and its Rhetoric is Increasingly Dangerous
Apr 11 2019 | Reproaction
By: Shireen Shakouri
As I celebrated Persian New Year with family and friends recently, my heart was torn between elation for the start of spring and an exciting year ahead, and sorrow for those facing fear and loss after the massacre against the Muslim community in Christchurch, New Zealand.
The Christchurch terrorist began his hateful manifesto explaining his atrocities with, “It’s the birthrates, it’s the birthrates, it’s the birthrates.” Jelani Cobb recently noted in The New Yorker that many of the other terrorists who inspired this attack have also been highly concerned with the idea of controlling reproduction to prevent white Christians being ‘replaced’ by other groups – the bitter irony being that these terrorists largely are descendants of missionaries and colonizers who replaced the populations of the lands they now inhabit,  oftentimes through reproductive control.
We want our leaders to speak with moral clarity on abortion
By Jon O’Brien, opinion contributor
Feb 5, 2019
When President Trump was elected, many women realized that something that seemed a far prospect could become reality — that Roe V. Wade could be overturned. In the face of this threat, we have also seen something inspiring. State legislators across the country — from Oregon to Illinois to New York — have passed a wave of progressive laws to protect access to abortion and safeguard a woman’s autonomy to make her own moral choices over deeply consequential, deeply complex decisions around when and whether to continue a pregnancy.
FEATURE: Letters to Pope Francis
(three letters at the link, from the International Campaign for Women’s Right to Safe Abortion, Católicas por el Derecho a Decidir, and Catholics for Choice.)
TO: His Holiness, Pope Francis
00120 Vatican City
c/o Vatican Press Office
14 November 2018
Dear Pope Francis,
We are writing to express our disappointment at two recent pronouncements you made related to abortion, which seemed to contradict statements you had made earlier in your Papacy.
After you became Pope, you made two important statements in relation to women and abortion. First, you said that the Church should stop its obsession with the subject of abortion, and spend more time on its primary roles. We found that very hopeful because we think abortion is a public health and human rights issue, not a religious one, and we hoped your statement was an expression of understanding of the reality of women’s lives. We knew that you would not reverse the formal position the Church has taken since the mid-19th century, but we read your statement as a possibility that you might ever so slowly take the Church in a different direction.
Presidential Candidates Need to Heed Abortion Debate
September 24, 2018
Margaret Wurth, Senior Researcher, Children's Rights Division
Activists around the world will mark the Global Day of Action for Access to Safe and Legal Abortion on September 28. Like several other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, Brazil is in the midst of a vigorous public debate around abortion following a recent Supreme Court hearing on the issue. Brazil’s criminal code still severely restricts access to legal abortion. But the fact that the issue is being discussed openly, including in the presidential campaign, and that women are coming forward to share their stories of ending a pregnancy, is already a significant step forward.
Under the criminal code in Brazil, abortion is illegal except in cases of rape, when necessary to save a woman’s life, or when the fetus suffers from anencephaly – a fatal congenital brain disorder. Activists have fought for years to ease the country’s abortion restrictions, citing evidence that criminal penalties do nothing to reduce abortion, but instead lead women to risk their health and lives to terminate pregnancies clandestinely.
The arc of moral progress may be long, but Argentina’s women will prevail
By Jon O'Brien, opinion contributor
Last week’s vote in Argentina’s Senate — which struck down the chance to legalize abortion — was a disappointment for millions of Argentinians and reproductive rights advocates around the world.
But it was also an outcome that is not easily explained away. As we saw in Chile, my native Ireland and Argentina, many Catholic majority countries are opening up about their faith, the ethics of choice and what it means to trust women like never before. Argentina’s unprecedented debate has emboldened a movement for women’s equality and dignity in the country, and the hemisphere, that is unstoppable.
How ‘conscientious objectors’ threaten women’s newly-won abortion rights in Latin America
From Uruguay to Chile, medical staff are refusing to provide abortion services even after their legalisation.
18 July 2018
Women’s rights to legal abortion have increased in Latin America – but so have campaigns and policies for medical staff to be able to ‘conscientiously object’ and refuse to participate in these procedures.
“We didn’t see it coming,” said feminist activist Lilián Abracinskas in Uruguay, a secular country where abortion, same-sex marriage and the marijuana market were each legalised in the last decade.
Argentina congress takes historic step towards legalising abortion
Lower house votes 129-123 to allow abortion in first 14 weeks
If senate approves bill President Macri has said he will sign it
Uki Goñi in Buenos Aires
Thu 14 Jun 2018
The lower house of Argentina’s congress has narrowly approved a bill that would legalise abortion in the first 14 weeks of pregnancy, in a historic victory for the country’s growing women’s movement.
Tens of thousands of women – many wearing the green headscarfs which have become a symbol of the movement – braved a freezing winter night to stand vigil outside the congress building in Buenos Aires during the marathon 20-hour debate.
Catholics have evolved in their thinking about abortion
Irish Catholics stand by women, and trust them to be moral agents of their own lives
Jan 15, 2018
Ireland is undertaking a historic debate on abortion and the Eighth Amendment. A prominent voice in this debate will be the Catholic hierarchy. Just last week the Catholic Primate Archbishop Eamon Martin argued that even in instances of rape the Catholic position would be to deny a woman her right to end the pregnancy. He also called for the voices of Catholics to be heard.
On that I agree with him – Catholics must be respected, and their views on the Eighth Amendment should be heard. Where we disagree is on what Catholics might have to say.
Catholic bishops' agenda hurts families
June 20, 2017
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) is kicking off its annual Fortnight for Freedom in Baltimore tomorrow in a celebratory mood. Every year, the bishops present this event as an effort to defend religious liberty. But we’ve seen over five years its real intent: to galvanize the Catholic hierarchy around an agenda to discriminate against and impose their beliefs on Catholics and non-Catholics alike. And their persistence has paid off, despite very little support or attention from everyday Catholics.
Why? Because they found a benefactor unlike any other. President Trump has rewarded the bishops handily for their loyalty during the elections...
Continued at source: Baltimore Sun: http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/opinion/oped/bs-ed-op-0621-bishops-fortnight-20170619-story.html