TDs and ministers in the west and midlands will face calls from the pulpit today not to legislate for the X case in a clear sign from the Catholic Church that it intends to ramp up pressure on the Government over abortion.
As tensions heighten within the two government parties over how
to establish the risk of suicide, politicians in Galway, Roscommon,
Sligo and Westmeath will be told at Masses today that abortion is not a
solution to suicidal tendencies.
A statement from the Elphin Diocesan Pastoral Council, which advises Bishop Christopher Jones
on pastoral issues, will tell legislators that the passing of laws on
the X case is not necessary and would effectively mean legislating for
abortion in Ireland.
"Legislating for the X case actually means
legislating for abortion and is not necessary to ensure women in Ireland
receive all the life-saving 'treatment' they need during pregnancy. As
for a mother with suicidal tendencies, she should receive all the
compassion, love, medical and psychiatric care and support possible
before during and after the birth of her child. Experts accept that
abortion is not a 'treatment' for such suicidal tendencies and that it
may even make such painful situations worse," the pre-Lenten message
In a direct call to government TDs and ministers, the
message to be read out in Catholic churches throughout the diocese of
Elphin also states that the council "urges all Catholics in the Diocese
of Elphin and all men and women of goodwill to continue to uphold and
defend the inherent right to life of the unborn baby. We respectfully
call on all public representatives to oppose the Government's proposal
to legislate for the X case".
The pastoral message adds: "We
implore all to pray to God that He will enlighten, strengthen and
inspire those who have the power to stop the introduction of this
proposed legislation to do so."