Archbishop Eamon Martin, the future primate of Ireland, said that Irish Catholic politicians and Parliament members who voted for a controversial law that allows abortion under certain circumstances will not be excommunicated or denied Communion. Photo courtesy Irish Bishops' Conference

Archbishop Eamon Martin, the future primate of Ireland, said that Irish Catholic politicians and Parliament members who voted for a controversial law that allows abortion under certain circumstances will not be excommunicated or denied Communion. Photo courtesy Irish Bishops’ Conference


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CANTERBURY, England (RNS) Irish Catholic politicians and Parliament members who voted for a controversial law that allows abortion under certain circumstances will not be excommunicated or denied Communion, the future primate of Ireland, Archbishop Eamon Martin, said.

Speaking on a Radio Ulster program, Martin said he had never refused Communion to anyone.  But he reiterated the Roman Catholic Church’s official position that it is not possible to be a person of faith and, at the same time, actively promote abortion.

He told the BBC that every individual who voted in favor of the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act (which passed overwhelmingly in the Irish Parliament on July 12), should question whether they had actively promoted the killing of the unborn.

The new law allows doctors to perform the pregnancy termination procedure under certain conditions, such as if the mother’s life is at risk.

It has caused controversy in once strongly Catholic Ireland and created its first ministerial casualty after the junior European minister, Lucinda Creighton, was expelled from Prime Minister Enda Kenny’s Irish Fine Gael party.

Kenny is regarded as a devout Catholic who is being talked about as a front-runner for the presidency of the European Union when the position becomes vacant in December 2014.

This week Irish newspapers carried stories expressing surprise and delight that the archbishop will not excommunicate Kenny and his parliamentary supporters.

On July 10, the BBC website quoted Martin saying that Irish politicians who vote knowingly for abortion are acting “in co-operation with evil.”

It further quoted him saying: “Whatever happens in this vote, the direct and intentional killing of any person is always gravely immoral.”

More than 4,000 Irish women traveled to British hospitals over the last 12 months to have abortions. About 124 were under 18 years of age. The new law does not include exceptions for women who have been raped, meaning that the traffic across the Irish Sea to hospitals in England, Wales and Scotland will continue for some time.

YS/AMB END GRUNDY

3 Comments

  1. Dr Rosemary Eileen McHugh

    Archbishop Eamon Martin of Northern Ireland “told the BBC that every individual who voted in favor of the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act (which passed overwhelmingly in the Irish Parliament on July 12), should question whether they had actively promoted the killing of the unborn. The new law allows doctors to perform the pregnancy termination procedure under certain conditions, such as if the mother’s life is at risk.
    It further quoted him saying: ‘Whatever happens in this vote, the direct and intentional killing of any person is always gravely immoral.’”

    The new law in Ireland is to protect the life of the mother in a pregnancy that is putting the life of the mother at grave risk. If the mother dies, the fetus will die as well, so it is imperative that the mother be protected from death as much as possible. Sometimes in protecting the pregnant mother, the fetus might die in the process.

    • As much as we like to argue a good reason for the intentional murder of a little baby. There has never ever been a case recorded of a mother killing herself due to being pregnant. Yet it has been proven that abortion not only causes long term phychiatric illness in many of these cases it has led to there direct suicide or indirect death with alcohol and substance abuse.. So lets make it clear here we are not helping women we are aiding and abetting an already disturbed person into even more mental destruction..

  2. carolyn o'meara

    If a mothers life is at risk interventions have always taken place in Irish hospitals even if this resulted in the unintentional deathbof the unborn. What thisvbill is allowing is the direct and intentional destriction.of the unborn childsclifebon the basis that the mother says she is suicidal despite best medical practice. Also against all research. It is appaling and a sneaky way of introducing abortion.into our land

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