Bishop Paul Richard Gallagher, Secretary for Relations with States - the equivalent of the Minister of Foreign Affairs – publicized the Holy See’s position on the adoption of the Matic report by MEPs, on the sidelines of a visit to the Portugal, July 7, 2021.
“Obviously, it is not difficult to imagine what the position of the Holy See is on this. We are against the idea that abortion could be a human right,” said the number three man in the secretariate of state, interviewed by Radio Renascença.
On June 24, the European Parliament approved - by 378 votes “for,” 255 “against,” and 42 abstentions - the Matic report on “reproductive health and rights within the Union, within the framework of women's health ”(Cf. FSSPX.News on July 2, 2021:“ The European Parliament Adopts the Matic Report on Abortion.”)
A text which attempts to enshrine abortion as a "right" for all citizens of the countries of the European Union (EU) and which, as a corollary, denies health personnel the right to conscientious objection in this domain.
Worse, new demands on the modalities of sex education are now being made.
Asked about the threat to conscientious objection, Bishop Gallagher said: “We are very disappointed that conscience clauses, wherever they exist, in whatever circumstances, whatever law, are eliminated. And we know that it’s a growing tendency in many parts of the world. So, we are disappointed by that decision as well.”
It is not enough to be “disappointed” in such a situation. As the representative of the Holy See, it is necessary to present a determined opposition to such an attack on conscience, and especially Catholic conscience, enlightened by faith, which refuses to participate in any way in such a heinous crime.
The high prelates have accustomed us too much to this spineless and vague response. Their words must comfort those who may soon be subjected to intolerable pressures: to accept or to resign; to comfort and support them in the difficult struggle ahead.
The Secretary for Relations with States also tried to clear the ground for the complex relations maintained by Pope Francis and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban: treatments of the ongoing European migration crisis differ, depending on whether one is standing on the banks of the Tiber or those of the Danube.
Thus, when a journalist mentions the lightning-quick passage of Peter's successor through Hungary, wondering whether it should be seen as a sign of disapproval of the local executive, Bishop Gallagher replies: “No, it’s not any judgment on a government or authorities in Hungary. The pope was very clear right from the beginning that he was going to Budapest exclusively to celebrate the concluding Mass of the International Eucharistic Congress.”
A welcome response, because at a time when a spurious right to abortion seeks to take hold in Europe, it would be unwise for the Holy See to denigrate a state that opposes the ideological drift of the EU.