May 31st 2010
By MarieAlena Castle
[I sent the following to the Strib. Of course it won’t be printed.]
Reports of the excommunication of Sister Margaret McBride for allowing an abortion to save a woman’s life need to be understood in the context of Catholic theology.
Excommunication essentially consigns a person to hell and is the Church’s harshest punishment. Abortion earns this for one reason only — it prevents the fetus from being baptized and therefore closes it off forever from the ultimate heavenly bliss of seeing God face to face. (Infanticide is actually only a mortal sin, easily forgiven in confession, because infants can be baptized.) Since heaven is a goal to be sought above all others, no humanitarian concerns take precedence over attaining it.
This theology explains why the Catholic Church can be so lax about priestly sex abuse of children yet so determined to outlaw abortion. The problem is that our church-instigated anti-abortion laws have no place in a secular legal system. They are entirely unnecessary, yet there they are, oblivious to the theology on which they are based and serving only to validate a particular religious belief. They are inherently an unconstitutional and extremely harmful establishment of religion.
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