Belgium: Pro-Life Teacher Punished

Source: FSSPX News

Stéphane Mercier.

The Belgian episcopate ruled in favor of the Catholic University of Louvain (UCL) that just relieved a teacher of his charges for his unfortunate defense of the Church’s position on the life of unborn children. The controversy is growing in Belgium.

In one of his classes, Stéphane Mercier, a visiting lecturer in philosophy, called abortion “the murder of an innocent person” and “a more immoral act than rape”. The Catholic University of Louvain decided in the beginning of April to fire him.

On March 28, the Belgian bishops published a half-heartedstatement that came nowhere near appeasing the controversy: in their first paragraph the bishops considered Stéphane Mercier’s suspension, claiming that for their part they “trust the internal procedure being conducted by the UCL. The bishops hope that the discussion that has just arisen will contribute to a serene discussion on abortion in society”. The bishops then recalled that they of course “are against abortion out of respect for life”, but added that they understand “that some women make the decision to abort when they have undergone painful, difficult, and even desperate situations,” and made a sophistic distinction between “the person and the act”.

The rather short letter from the Belgian episcopate failed to mention that abortion is a grave crime in the Church, and that someone who commits it does not go unpunished: an “ipso facto” excommunication is prescribed by Canon Law, of which the bishop is the primary custodian in his diocese.

When Stéphane Mercier was asked if he had received any support from the Belgian Catholic Church, the professor answered: “From the hierarchy, no… I received support from several individual members of the clergy, in particular very strong support from many seminarians (…). But from the hierarchy, no. Maybe it is still too early…”


Source: Radio Vatican/ Ré – 4/25/17