Pope Francis lamented how frequently unborn babies with disabilities are aborted, comparing their slaughter to “white glove” Nazi eugenics.
He made the remarks Saturday to an Italian family association meeting, The Boston Pilot reports. The pope abandoned his written speech and spoke spontaneously about what was on his heart, telling the group his written remarks “seemed a bit cold,” according to the Italian media.
Addressing the growing use of prenatal testing, Pope Francis said abortion often is proposed as the first option if tests detect a problem with the unborn baby.
“The first proposal in such a case is, ‘Do we get rid of it?’” the pope said. “The murder of children. To have an easy life, they get rid of an innocent.”
The Belfast Telegraph reports as a boy, Pope Francis said one of his teachers told him about how children with disabilities sometimes were killed by being “thrown from the mountain,” a thought that horrified him.
“Today we do the same thing,” he said. “Last century, the whole world was scandalized by what the Nazis did to purify the race. Today, we do the same thing but with white gloves.
“It’s an atrocity but we do the same thing” by legalizing abortion, he continued.
Here’s more from The Boston Pilot:
The pope, the paper reported, said it is “painful” to think that society would accept the killing of children simply because they are sick or disabled, but this is the current mentality. …
“Children are the greatest gift,” he said, even when they are sick. Children, he said, must be “received as they come, as God sends them.”
Pope Francis is expected to speak more about abortion at the World Meeting of Families later this summer in Ireland. In May, the country voted to strip away all rights for unborn babies by repealing its Eighth Amendment.
Irish leaders now are debating how expansively they will legalize abortion. Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, the prime minister, recently said Catholic hospitals will be forced to do abortions, and pro-life medical professionals will be forced to refer women for them.