Pro-abortion politicians should repent for promoting the destruction of human life, Irish Catholic Bishop Kevin Doran said Tuesday.
Ireland officially legalized abortion Jan. 1, a dark new era for the once strongly pro-life nation. New Year’s Day was a day of mourning for pro-life advocates, but also one of determination as they vowed to continue working to protect unborn babies.
Doran, who has been a strong voice for life in the abortion debate in Ireland, addressed the issue again Tuesday during his New Year’s Day homily at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Sligo, according to The Tablet.
The bishop said he felt “a genuine sadness” toward Catholic politicians who abandoned their faith’s teachings and voted to legalize the killing of the unborn.
Here’s more from the report:
Inviting them to repent and “turn back to the Gospel of Life” for their promotion of “the taking of innocent human life”, the bishop warned political representatives that they had “chosen a position which is clearly out of communion with the Church”. He added, “There is no point in pretending otherwise.” …
“This denial of the fundamental right to life will, whatever people say, unquestionably undermine the common good of our society. It will undermine the inner peace of mothers, fathers, grandparents, doctors and nurses and all who are directly touched by it.”
Criticising the amount of political energy that went into achieving this “fundamentally destructive target”, he said this was energy that could have been used to do other things that would give life and hope to Irish society including those “stuck” in direct provision centre, families without a home of their own and the many sick people waiting on trollies for essential medical care, as well as the poor and the elderly.
Doran also praised pro-life leaders and politicians who worked hard to save unborn babies’ lives.
After Ireland voted to repeal its pro-life Eighth Amendment in May, Doran also called on Irish Catholics to attend confession.
“What I would say to a Catholic who voted yes is this: if you voted yes knowing and intending that abortion would be the outcome, then you should consider coming to confession, where you would be received with the same compassion that is shown to any other penitent,” he said at the time.
The new pro-abortion law, which passed parliament in mid-December, allows abortions for any reason up to 12 weeks of pregnancy and up to six months in a wide variety of circumstances. It also will force taxpayers to pay for abortions and force Catholic hospitals to provide them. The bill also strictly limits conscience protections for medical professionals, and hundreds of doctors and nurses fear being forced to help abort unborn babies or lose their jobs.
Pro-abortion politicians pushed hospitals to begin abortions Jan. 1. But leading medical professionals have said the start-date for abortions could put women’s lives at risk, and many hospitals have said they are not ready. They pointed to a lack of ultrasound machines, clinical guidelines and trained staff as reasons for delay, but pro-abortion political leaders have refused to back down.
Just how many unborn babies may be killed in Ireland annually is uncertain, but about 3,000 Irish women travel to England or Wales every year for abortions, according to government statistics.