Ecclesiastical Contraception

September 15, 2008 ( – Recently Cardinal Jean-Claude Turcotte of Montreal made headlines with his decision to return his own Order of Canada as an act of protest against the decision to induct abortionist Henry Morgentaler into the Order.While many pro-life advocates have welcomed the Cardinal’s decision and congratulated him for his public stance which has grabbed headlines throughout the country, a recent newspaper article has suggested that the Cardinal’s attitude towards Canada’s “father of abortion” and abortion itself may be more ambivalent than his recent actions indicate.According to an article appearing in Le Journal de Montreal, Cardinal Turcotte says he refuses the “pro-life” label. (Source)

The Cardinal Archbishop of Montreal told the newspaper that, while he “respects life” he understands that in cases of rape and incest some women feel “up against the wall” – a comment that appears to indicate some tolerance for abortion in such “hard cases.”

The Archbishop also said that the 1988 Canadian Supreme Court decision in the Morgentaler case, which introduced abortion on demand into Canada, had some positive aspects to it.

“[Morgentaler] saved the lives of women by helping them avoid being butchered by charlatans,” said the Cardinal.

A document put out by the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in 1987, entitled Donum Vitae, explains, “The moment a positive law deprives a category of human beings of the protection which civil legislation ought to accord them, the state is denying the equality of all before the law…As a consequence of the respect and protection which must be ensured for the unborn child from the moment of conception, the law must provide appropriate penal sanctions for every deliberate violation of the child’s rights.”

Nevertheless, in the article Cardinal Turcotte repeatedly expressed his disapproval of the state of abortion in Canada. The Morgentaler decision “banalized abortion,” said Cardinal Turcotte. “Our society should reflect on the value of human life.”

“The fetus cannot scream. It has no voice.”

If you want to know why the scourge of abortion still exists in Canada, it is because of the false philosophies of proportionalism and consequentialism which the Cardinal appears to be espousing.  In his encyclical, Veritatis Splendor, John Paul the Great condemned such philosophies as contrary to the Catholic faith.

Each conceived human being has an inalienable right to life that NO CIRCUMSTANCE, however tragic, can ever take away.

Given the state of the Church in this country, the Cardinal’s disturbing comments above, and the reticence of the Canadian bishops to withdraw the Winnipeg Statement, we must honestly ask ourselves whether a large segment of the hierarchy has not already departed from the Church’s teaching on many significant points of doctrine.

And contrary to what the Cardinal said above, the fetus does indeed scream. 

We just don’t hear it.

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