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Show the Mothers Compassion and Excommunicate the Politicians
Catholic Light ^ | October 11, 2003 | Pete Vere, JCL

Posted on 10/14/2003 7:23:51 PM PDT by Theosis

To put it bluntly, I have a few reservations about canon 1398. “A person who actually procures an abortion incurs a latae sententiae excommunication,” the canon states. Please do not mistake my reservations as support for abortion. In no way do I condone this intrinsically evil act, which the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches “is gravely contrary to the moral law” as well as an “abominable crime” (2271).

Yet my experience in ministry has taught me that most women who abort their child act under some sort of emotional, mental and/or psychological duress. Despite what many feminists claim, I seldom come across an abortion that is freely chosen – that is, chosen without coercion from some outside individual or organization. Sometimes this pressure comes from a boyfriend who refuses any responsibility for the pregnancy. Other times, parents seek a quick fix for their teenaged daughters. “Get rid of it or get out of the house!” is, sadly, the execution decree of all-too-many grandchildren. But even more reprehensible, in my opinion, is the coercion a distraught pregnant mother finds among the very women’s organizations that claim to uphold her freedom of choice. As my friend Mark Shea often reminds me, abortion is the principal sacrament of initiation into the culture of death. Therefore, a woman often discovers when dealing with feminist pregnancy crisis centers that her choices do not include bringing the child within her womb to full term.

Thus abortion is a traumatic choice often made under duress. As the reality of the choice to end the life of one’s child sets in, the woman is left in need of the Church’s help and compassion. For once her child is dead, the woman will find neither help nor compassion from the abortion industry. Yet alone and ashamed, the perception of canonical censures only further drives these women away from the Church in many instances. This compounds the problem.

These women know abortion is wrong. They feel it in their soul every time they see a mother with a stroller pass by on the sidewalk. Their heart cries out with every advertisement for diapers that flashes across the television screen. What these women need is Christ’s healing touch in the confessional, as well as sustained pastoral support from pro-life organizations like Project Rachel. This is the approach Christ took with Mary Magdalen’s adultery: He did not excuse the sin, but He did not turn away the sinner. He invited her to repentance and forgiveness.

Nevertheless, I feel no such compassion toward those who profit – whether financially or politically – from abortion. As a canonist, I firmly believe in the use of canonical censures to combat this intrinsic evil. Yet these canonical censures should be aimed where they are most deserved. Thus in reflecting upon the carnage wrought by the culture of death over the past thirty years, the Church must strengthen and enforce canonical censures against the so-called "Catholic" politicians, doctors, pregnancy counselors, nurses and lawyers who continue to support and protect an industry dedicated to the willful butchering of children in the womb.

(Excerpt) Read more at catholiclight.stblogs.org ...


TOPICS: Activism; Apologetics; Catholic; Current Events; General Discusssion; History; Ministry/Outreach; Moral Issues; Religion & Culture; Religion & Politics; Theology
KEYWORDS: abortion; canonlaw; choice; communion; excommunication; holycommunion; life; politics; prochoice; prolife

1 posted on 10/14/2003 7:23:52 PM PDT by Theosis
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To: Polycarp; Maximilian; sandyeggo; NYer; Sursum Corda; ultima ratio
PING!
2 posted on 10/14/2003 7:25:21 PM PDT by Theosis
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3 posted on 10/14/2003 7:27:35 PM PDT by Support Free Republic (Your support keeps Free Republic going strong!)
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To: Theosis
Was that "Catholic Lite?"

"Yet alone and ashamed, the perception of canonical censures only further drives these women away from the Church in many instances. This compounds the problem...He invited her to repentance and forgiveness."

So, the Church is not supposed to censure an act that requires repentance and forgiveness?

Telling someone they've done wrong is not the same thing as casting them into the outer darkness forever.
4 posted on 10/14/2003 7:56:56 PM PDT by dsc
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To: dsc
I suggest you read the entire piece. As Vere notes, the women know that abortion is wrong. Removing the censure is not the same thing as saying abortion is not a grave sin, a position of the Church that Vere supports. On the other hand, censures and penalties should be directed where they will be most effective. In this case, excommunicating the politicians and doctors who make abortion possible would do much more good than excommunicating the women who procure them.
5 posted on 10/14/2003 8:44:34 PM PDT by Theosis
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To: Theosis
"I suggest you read the entire piece."

I suggest you try being a little less condescending. I did read the entire piece.

"Removing the censure is not the same thing as saying abortion is not a grave sin"

Yes it is. There is a moral duty to censure grave sin. If the Church isn't censuring a thing, then it can't be taken seriously as a grave sin.

"In this case, excommunicating the politicians and doctors who make abortion possible would do much more good"

It's not an either/or dichotomy. The relative amount of good to be accomplished by the one action as opposed to the other is not an argument that either should be abandoned.

There's no reason that everyone associated with baby-killing shouldn't be excommunicated. That a mother doesn't have even enough faith to refrain from killing her own baby is hardly an argument for defining murder down.
6 posted on 10/14/2003 11:29:33 PM PDT by dsc
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To: Theosis
I seldom come across an abortion that is freely chosen – that is, chosen without coercion from some outside individual or organization. Sometimes this pressure comes from a boyfriend who refuses any responsibility for the pregnancy. Other times, parents seek a quick fix for their teenaged daughters. “Get rid of it or get out of the house!”

I am a member of a fairly small (around 100 in regular attendance) Baptist church. I have a teenage class that I teach and another gentleman and I work with our youth on several levels. Our congregation is composed primarily of previously “unchurched” people that we have gone our and shared the Gospel of Christ with. This poses some interesting problems. Many who have accepted Christ as their Savior are still learning as we study his word, how God wishes for us to lead conduct our lives.
About half of our group (the teenagers) at any given time are not members but are guests of one of our members. In the last 12 or so years I have had 7 occasions where a young lady in our class has gotten pregnant. Every one of those were young people who’s parents did not attend and all but 2 were not members of our church. Three of them had never attended until getting pregnant. These three came then because one of their friends was attending regularly and invited them. I expressed that to illustrate that my experience is somewhat limited.

I have found the same external pressures as the writer expressed pressuring these young people to kill their child. We lost two of these children, the other five chose to give birth with one keeping her child herself and marrying the father. (They are now both active members and have accepted Christ as their Savior). Adoption was the option chosen for the other three.
One of the children killed was a child of a member of our church. This created quite a problem because this behavior can not be tolerated. First I went to speak to her about this. She was very unrepentant and actually quite arrogant. I then went with two witnesses with the same results. We brought it before our church body and withdrew fellowship from her (similar I suppose to excommunication). She is no longer a member and therefor does not enjoy the benefits and protections of being a member of the Bride of Christ. At the same time we do not throw out the “baby with the bath water” so to speak. The purpose of removing church membership is not simply to get rid of her. It is to hopefully get her attention. We continue to try and work with her, presenting God’s word in hopes of her repentance at which time we would welcome her back into our fellowship. Sadly, up to this time, she has not chosen to listen to God’s Holy Spirit.
The other young lady who had her child killed is having quite a difficult time with her decision. She is not a member (this only happened about 6 months ago), but is attending again. It was very difficult to convince her that we would not degrade her and that she would be welcome to return and study Gods word with us. She is VERY clear that we do not condone her behavior but that we do love her.
7 posted on 10/15/2003 8:13:49 AM PDT by GrandEagle
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To: Theosis
BTTT for reading later!
8 posted on 10/15/2003 9:32:34 AM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: dsc
Before returning to active Catholicism, Pete Vere and his girlfriend obtained an abortion to correct (or rather destroy) the result of one of their errors in judgement, their unborn child.

This arguement of sympathy for the criminal is made partially from his own experience as an excommunicate, and needs to be read in that light.

The excommunication of those who procure abortions has been on the law books of the Church for 2000 years.

Abortion is ex cathedra defined as a grave sin in "Evangelium Vitae". "Catholic" politicians who support the availability of abortions are heretics. They should be condemned by name forthwith as heretics and tossed from the Church. We don't need them. They need us.
9 posted on 10/15/2003 12:14:07 PM PDT by Hermann the Cherusker
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Comment #10 Removed by Moderator

To: Theosis
This article is horrible in so many ways. First of all, it reduces the status of women to a sub-human level where they are not responsible for their moral choices. Or at least to the level of a minor child before the age of reason.

A woman who kills her own child is committing the most heinous of crimes. It is not just murder, but murder of the most innocent person, the most defenseless person, and the person she has most personal responsibility to protect and defend even at the cost of her life. This is a violation not just of an innocent life, but of every standard of civilized behavior.

If she is an adult person past the age of reason, then she is morally responsible for the choice to commit such an egregious crime. In a normal civilization, she should also be legally responsible for that choice. No resort to an argument regarding coercion can ever justify her decision to kill her child. It merely undermines her personhood.

The Blessed Virgin Mary found herself in the same situation. She made her moral choice. It was a deliberate choice made with full intent. She said "Fiat mihi secundum verbum tuum." It was this deliberate full moral choice which initiated the process of our salvation.

Eve also made a full moral choice. Will we start offering psychological justifications for her, "The devil made me do it." Sorry, God didn't buy that argument, did He?

Excuses about "duress" do not equal "help and compassion." Far from it. True "help and compassion" would be to enlighten the mind of the woman to appreciate the gravity of her crime. Only then could she hope to repent her sin adequately, make some amount of reparation, and have some hope for forgiveness and salvation. To lie about the gravity of the crime, to paper over the nature of the act, to give a false impression of the status of her soul, all of these would represent dereliction of duty of the first magnitude.

Regarding the abortionists, of course they are evil. But if my wife contracted a hit man to murder me, who is more culpable, my wife or the hit man? Both are culpable for the crime, but my wife has greater culpability because she had the motive and the intent, she had the responsibility to love and honor her spouse, and she initiated the crime.

Likewise with abortion, the abortionist can commit no crime until a woman walks into his office and asks him to kill her baby. It is her child, she has responsibility to protect that child, the abortionist does not. She initiates the crime, the abortionist cooperates with her for a profit.
11 posted on 10/15/2003 2:12:00 PM PDT by Maximilian
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To: Theosis
These women know abortion is wrong.

There is no evidence for this statement. But there is a mountain of evidence for the opposite proposition. According to some statistics, a third of all women have procured an abortion. We know that there have been around 45 million abortions since Roe v. Wade.

So where are the millions of women mourning their evil choices? Where are the millions of acts of reparation, of mortification? If it were true that these women know that abortion is wrong, then the churches would be filled with those who had procured abortions, making acts of reparation. Even in pagan Japan, there are Buddhist temples where women go to make an offering to the unborn child they killed. I'm not aware of such places here in the US or in Europe.

How are these women ever to come to know the nature of their act if they are never told? Instead they are told that they are "victims." This is the kind of lie that can only come from the devil. To call a person a "victim" when they have committed a horrendous crime is a way to insure that they never escape from the chains that bind them to a life of sin leading to eternal perdition.

12 posted on 10/15/2003 2:23:20 PM PDT by Maximilian
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To: Hermann the Cherusker
Before returning to active Catholicism, Pete Vere and his girlfriend obtained an abortion to correct (or rather destroy) the result of one of their errors in judgement, their unborn child.

Doesn't this remind you an awful lot of the article posted a few days ago that was written by Amy Welborn and bemoaned the fact that her second husband, the ex-priest, was not canonically allowed to pursue his "ministry"? BTW, would this abortion have occurred during Vere's satanic phase?

13 posted on 10/15/2003 3:58:29 PM PDT by Maximilian
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To: Hermann the Cherusker
Before returning to active Catholicism, Pete Vere and his girlfriend obtained an abortion to correct (or rather destroy) the result of one of their errors in judgement, their unborn child.

Proof, please?
14 posted on 10/15/2003 4:51:55 PM PDT by Theosis
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To: Maximilian
Maximilian. I have known Vere personally for quite some time. He is quite open about his past. This is something he never mentioned to my knowledge, therefore, I would be very interested in seeing Hermann's proof.
15 posted on 10/15/2003 4:54:23 PM PDT by Theosis
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To: Theosis
I have known Vere personally for quite some time. He is quite open about his past. This is something he never mentioned to my knowledge, therefore, I would be very interested in seeing Hermann's proof.

You are correct, and I apologize if I have been guilty of rash judgment.

As you say, Vere has been very open about his past, and his present, in which his leisure-time activities consist of horror novels, drinking games and WWF. It was for that reason that I assumed this was something that he had been open about in the past. But if Vere has never said he participated in an abortion, then I apologize for believing this information without sufficient evidence.

16 posted on 10/15/2003 4:59:01 PM PDT by Maximilian
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To: Maximilian
As you say, Vere has been very open about his past, and his present, in which his leisure-time activities consist of horror novels, drinking games and WWF.

This is incorrect. Vere notoriously hates WWF because of the so-called "adult direction" (sex and ultra-violence) it has taken in recent years. He is a an old school purist. This is why, when he was professional wrestling reporter in Scanton, he refused to cover WWF or any hard core promotion -- even when they offered him the opportunity to meet some of the top talent in the industry. As for the drinking games, this has for the most part subsided since college. However, all the young trads were like that.
17 posted on 10/15/2003 5:11:57 PM PDT by Theosis
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To: sandyeggo
"It seems it comes back to whether or not the woman is indeed repentant."

Yes, the Church must rebuke the obdurate, but embrace the repentant. The parable of the Prodigal Son is my favorite.
18 posted on 10/15/2003 6:06:28 PM PDT by dsc
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To: Maximilian
BTW, would this abortion have occurred during Vere's satanic phase?

Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding! We've got a winner!

19 posted on 10/15/2003 6:44:05 PM PDT by Hermann the Cherusker
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To: Theosis
Pete has told it to a number of people in various forums. Why not write him and ask him about it?

Its not something he is particularly proud of, but, after all, we are all sinners, and deo gratias, he came to his senses and returned to God.
20 posted on 10/15/2003 7:11:50 PM PDT by Hermann the Cherusker
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To: Hermann the Cherusker
Whether it's true or not it's still gossip.
21 posted on 11/23/2003 10:11:30 PM PST by nickcarraway (www.terrisfight.org)
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