Saturday, August 30, 2008
There is no confusion.
In the Chuch there is no confusion, and never has been, about the sanctity of life.
The Church from the first century has condemned procured abortion.
This is in distinction from theological debates about ensoulment, which never affected the Church's teaching on the sanctity of human life from the womb.
As we hear from Archbishop Wuerl:
"We respect the right of elected officials such as Speaker Pelosi to address matters of public policy that are before them, but the interpretation of Catholic faith has rightfully been entrusted to the Catholic bishops. Given this responsibility to teach, it is important to make this correction for the record.
"The Catechism of the Catholic Church is clear: the current teaching of the Catholic Church on human life and abortion is the same teaching as it was 2,000 years ago. The Catechism reads:
“ 'Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception…Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law.' (Catechism, 2270-2271)
"The Catechism goes on to quote the Didache, a treatise that dates to the first century: ’You shall not kill the embryo by abortion and shall not cause the newborn to perish.’
"From the beginning, the Catholic Church has respected the dignity of all human life from the moment of conception to natural death."
In the same way, though today the Church does not know exactly when the soul leaves the body, the Church insists that human remains be treated with dignity and respect, whether cremated or not.
Unfortunately it is all too clear that the only confusion is on the part of those, like Mrs. Pelosi, who fail to make the proper distinction between conjecture on when the soul enters the body of a child in the womb and the sanctity of every human life from conception regardless, and entirely distinct from, our human inability to determine when ensoulment takes place.
(Photo: Image of six week unborn child whose life is sacred, because created in God's image and likeness, regardless of whether or not one can prove the child has yet been given a soul by the Creator.)