Vatican Issues a Handbook Denouncing Same-Sex Marriage and Abortion

The Vatican recently released a handbook on the teachings of the Catholic Church that denounces abortion and same-sex marriage. According to the Washington Post, the 525-page book, entitled “Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church,” took six years to complete and draws from Pope John Paul II’s and earlier pontiffs’ teachings.

The book calls abortion a “horrendous crime” representing “a dangerous threat to a just and democratic social existence,” reports the Associated Press. During the release of the book, a reporter asked the Vatican if Catholics could vote for a candidate who supported abortion rights. The Vatican responded that the “Holy See never gets involved in electoral or political matters directly.” However, some US bishops have been telling voters that a Catholic who voted for an abortion rights politician would be “cooperating in evil,” according to the Washington Post. In the latest issue of Conscience magazine, Frances Kissling, president of Catholics for a Free Choice, said that this ploy by some bishops just makes them “increasingly irrelevant to the moral struggle of ordinary Catholic people É And it will not prevent a single abortion.”

In August, the Vatican issued a letter assaulting the feminist movement, stating that feminism is motivated by a desire to “obscure” the “natural” differences between men and women, and thus creating what they see as the most ruinous result, helping to create a movement towards acceptance of gay marriage.


Washington Post 10/26/04; Associated Press 10/25/04; Feminist Daily News 8/2/04; Vatican Information Service 10/25/04; Conscience Autumn 2004

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