A senior theologian has said you cannot consider yourself a Catholic and be open to abortion.
Dr John Murray of the Iona Institute made the comments after the head of the Catholic Church, Cardinal Sean Brady, said the church plans to lobby TDs and ministers on abortion in the coming months.
He said the church has a valuable role to play in the debate on the issue and it would be undemocratic to exclude its opinion.
Dr Murray said: "If somebody in the church is publicly promoting abortion, then that person will be disciplined by the church.
"There is room for some debate but there comes a stage when a disagreement is so serious and substantial that one is simply rejecting the church."