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Statement on Meet the Press Comments by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi

Bishop David A. Zubik

On Sunday, August 24, on “Meet the Press,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi stepped out of her political role and completely misrepresented the teaching of the Catholic Church in regard to abortion. She said that Church teaching condemning procured abortion is somehow new and therefore unsettled. She could not have been more wrong.

Jesus proclaimed the sacredness of human life throughout his teaching and ministry. In a Roman world where abortion was commonplace, the Church proclaimed its intrinsic moral evil. The Didache, perhaps the earliest known Christian manual of moral teaching dating from the first century, rejected abortion. Early Church councils considered it one of the most serious crimes.

That teaching has remained constant and unaltered for two millennia.

As the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith re-stated in 1974, “The first right of the human person is his life. … It does not belong to society, nor does it belong to public authority in any form to recognize this right for some and not others. … From the time the ovum is fertilized, a life is begun which is neither that of the father nor of the mother; it is rather the life of a new human being.”

The teaching of the Church on abortion is settled. And as old as the Gospels.
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