Bishops urge no votes for candidates who supports abortion

The Bishop of Elphin says he finds it difficult to see how any Catholic could “in good conscience” vote for an election candidate or party whose policy is to legalise abortion.

Bishops urge no votes for candidates who supports abortion

Bishop Kevin Doran and Archbishop Michael Neary are the latest to issue pre-election statements based around the right to life of the unborn child.

On Sunday, the Bishop of Cork and Ross John Buckley, in relation to the term “fatal foetal abnormality”, said there was no medical evidence “whatsoever” where a doctor could predict, with certainty, the lifespan of babies before they are born.

Yesterday, Bishop Kevin Doran said some babies who are seriously ill only live for a very short time while others live significantly longer.

“For a Christian, however, there is no such thing as a life without value,” he said.

“For as long as they live, children with life-limiting conditions are entitled to be loved and cared for like any other child and their parents are entitled to the support of proper peri-natal hospice services.”

He said some political parties and individual candidates had made no secret of the fact they favour the widespread availability of abortion while others have begun to talk about assisted suicide.

“We need to convince our politicians of the importance of supporting and promoting a culture of life that recognises the unique value of every human person, and we need to actively support those who do,” he said.

“Meanwhile, I find it very difficult to see how any Catholic could, in good conscience, vote for a candidate or a political party whose policy it is to legalise abortion.”

For his part, Archbishop Michael Neary said that if life was not respected and protected, “the very basis of our society is weakened”.

“The Eighth Amendment guarantees the right to life of the unborn and the equal right to life of the mother,” he said.

“Regrettably, some of those standing for election have declared their intention to work to remove this protection from our Constitution and laws.

“This simplistic approach to the most significant of issues is not only an outright attack on the unborn, but an affront to the charter of human rights enshrined in Ireland’s basic law.”

He said if an unborn child has a life-limiting condition, it would be “inhumane to withdraw the protection of the Constitution to their right to life”.

The archbishop said being pro-life in contemporary Ireland means, more and more, being counter-culture, being radical.

“However we cannot ignore the consequences of abortion for the unborn, for the voiceless,” he said.

“At this time we have a crucial responsibility to our future generations. Permitting abortion in difficult cases is like pulling a loose thread in a garment. There may be no definitive point at which the unraveling can be stopped.”

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