Abortion of babies conceived with violence


#1

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately. A friend of mine was raped a few months back (shes 25), and this act of brutality resulted in a pregnancy. She chose, without coercion, to get an abortion, and although I know that it is generally considered acceptable to abort when the conception was a result of a rape, I was left feeling very sad for this girl and for her child that never will be.

Why is rape considered an acceptable reason to get an abortion? I am pro-life because I care about babies- I believe in giving life and not taking it. I also believe that we , as women, have a sacred duty towards our children, born and unborn, and that procuring an abortion in ANY circumstances except life or death for the mother is the saddest of sins.

Babies conceived with violence are just as deserving, just as special, and just as sacred as any other child on this earth. It seems that our beliefs regarding abortion are more geared towards punishing of the woman who had sex outside of marriage.

“You made your bed- now lie in it. You chose to have sex and now it is your responsibility to carry this baby you CHOSE to conceive.”

But what makes a baby conceived of rape any less worthy, any less deserving of life?

Why does the church condone (or at least…accept) the abortion of a child conceived by rape? I will submit to the idea of abortion when the woman’s life is in danger- because you cannot weigh the value of one life against another, but I’m a little bit confused as to why we as Catholics condone the termination of a life because it was conceived with violence.

Since when did abortion become an issue of punishment for sexual behavior?

*In my mind, allowing a woman to have an abortion because she has been raped gives me the impression that the church is telling women that a baby is a “punishment” for having premarital sex, and that if you did not willingly engage in sex then you do not deserve the “penalty”.
*

Someone please enlighten me or correct me or educate me! I’m struggling to understand. :shrug:


#2

in no way shape or form has the Catholic Church ever, nor will she ever, condone direct abortion for any reason. As you so correctly point out nothing but nothing gives any human being the right to deliberately take an innocent life. Where on earth did you get this idea? Where on earth did you get the idea that the Church considers pregnancy a punishment for sexual sin? That also is not a Church teaching.


#3

The Church does not say it is okay to have an abortion if the child was conceived through violence (rape). The Church has always been and will always be against abortion.


#4

What in the world are you talking about?

The Catholic Church rejects ALL abortion as a grave moral evil. The Church teaches that abortion is always wrong. There is never one single circumstance in which abortion is a moral option.

The Church teaches abortion is always wrong. If a woman’s life is in danger, both she and her unborn child are to be considered as patients. The doctor is to treat both lives, to try to save them both. Abortion is not allowable in this situation.

We do not. Where did you get this idea?

I’m not sure what you are talking about?

I think you are very confused. The Church teaches no such thing.


#5

Perhaps I misspoke, or rather, mistyped?

My question, really, is why do so many CATHOLICS believe this? Is it simply that I have been hanging out with the wrong Catholics? From my own experience, I’ve yet to meet anyone, particularly within my own generation, who abhors abortion regardless of the circumstances of the pregnancy.

Most people say something like " well, if the mother is in physical danger or if she was raped then it is OK."

Of course I don’t believe that the Church itself is out to “punish” anyone by forcing them to carry to term… nor do I believe that the Church condones abortion under any circumstances. I

I have noticed however that socially, even amongst Catholics, abortion seems to be considered a “legitimate” reason for abortion.

My question then, is why? It still gives me that icky feeling inside, that sad feeling.

I guess its less about the Church and more about my fellow Catholics. If it’s any help, I’ve grown up in a very Italian/Irish/German catholic part of New York City, as well as Sicily.


#6

And adding to what others wrote, the Church isn’t the one who made the rules of biology… that sexual activity may very well lead to pregnancy. Cause = effect.

That’s like saying that breaking your neck is a punishment for jumping off a roof. No. Just cause and effect.

Someone who cares about a little kid will tell him that jumping off a roof is risky behavior and not to do it.

Likewise, the Church holds the creation of life in such high esteem, in that through sexual activity we become co-Creators with God in making new life, that such activity should ONLY take place in an environment where if conception occurs, the child will be welcomed into a loving family that can care for it.

Those who choose to ignore this and play with creation outside of the boundaries of the family are the ones who are treating sex, each other, and a possible new baby with little respect.

As for abortion of a child conceived in rape, the abortionist victimizes the woman a second time, though she may not realize it at the time. To do so makes her a party to killing an innocent person. The innocent child receives the penalty the man who committed the crime deserved.

Someone out there would love to raise that child and give it love. Instead, God’s ability to bring joy out of suffering and bring good from evil is thwarted.


#7

I don’t know any Catholics who believe this.

Perhaps.

Perhaps you are being called to witness to the pro-life teaching of the Church among your peers.

Well the, start to educate yourself on Church teaching and charitably challenge people who make these types of statements. Confront them with the Truth.

Because people are influenced by the culture, and the culture is thoroughly corrupt and self-seeking.


#8

I agree too many “Catholics” have lost their way and see nothing wrong with killing another human being. It is very sad and they truly need our prayers. But I do believe that the winds are turning and I have seen many many of our youth who abhor abortion and are not afraid to speak up about it. They too need our prayers and support.


#9

Your friends don’t know the teaching of their faith very well. Perhaps they haven’t attended Mass regularly and heard the teachings, or more likely, their priests and teachers have been too silent on the truth.

Listen to the voice of consience deep within your self. The New York metropolis is not the beacon for goodness and truth in the world. Just sayin…

:wink:

And as for saving the life of the mother over a child… imagine the uproar if the FDNY announced that from here on now in any apartment fire, the firemen were only going to save the lives of the mother in the apartment and not try to save the children. And given any choice between a mother and a child, they would save the mother.

Can you imagine the uproar? Why would anyone hold doctors to a lesser standard?

The true conflicts between the mother and baby’s health nowadays is few and far between given the advances in medical technology.


#10

Those who choose to ignore this and play with creation outside of the boundaries of the family are the ones who are treating sex, each other, and a possible new baby with little respect.

As for abortion of a child conceived in rape, the abortionist victimizes the woman a second time, though she may not realize it at the time. To do so makes her a party to killing an innocent person. The innocent child receives the penalty the man who committed the crime deserved.

That’s exactly what I believe! Though I must admit I have found almost no one in real life who shares this view… when I express it, even my fellow Catholics will tell me :

“Don’t be so black and white Amanda, it’s not HER fault she got pregnant. Why should she be morally obligated to carry a rapists baby?”

This could very well be an issue of my listening to closely to what others say, and not enough to the simple truth of what God and our Church say.

(sorry if my question offended… you guys are ALL offering the clarification I was hoping for…it all sounded so crazy to me!)


#11

I’ve never understood why the children concieved in rape deserve life less than other children.

Why don’t people understand that it’s a human life?! I don’t get it! Are they lying to themselves?

I just don’t get it, and I’m a pretty bright guy!


#12

Why should she be morally obligated to carry a rapist’s baby?

For the obvious reason that wanted or unwanted, it is half her baby too.

She is its mother.

She has been given a child, though not one she sought out.

The capacity of a woman to love her own child while despising its father has been proven to many of us in our own personal lives. If any child’s life should be dependent on how its parents felt about each other, how many people would be in danger?

Really. Think about it.

No matter who the father is, SHE is the baby’s mother. She can deny that for the rest of her life. But doesn’t killing that child turn a 9-month pregnancy “punishment” into a lifelong emotional scar?

Abortion is always a permanent solution to a temporary problem.


#13

For the obvious reason that wanted or unwanted, it is half her baby too.

She is its mother.

She has been given a child, though not one she sought out.

The capacity of a woman to love her own child while despising its father has been proven to many of us in our own personal lives. If any child’s life should be dependent on how its parents felt about each other, how many people would be in danger?

Beautifully and perfectly stated. Why can’t I think of great answers like this when I’m given the opportunity??? Oi!


#14

I would ask someone in that position, “What, if at this very moment, you knew that the infant would look just like you? Or one of your parents? Or a beloved sibling?”

Maybe the child would have a chance at life…

The reality of the personhood and family ties of that ill-conceived infant is often lost in the rhetoric (which also ignores the fact that pregnancy as a result of rape is pretty darn rare. Only 3 to 4 percent according to statistics.)


#15

It’s pretty well understood, the Catholic church is against abortion for any reason. I would hope those that are pregnant via a rape or incest would consider, if they can find no way to raise the child, they give birth and put the child up for adoption.

Some pregnant women, find themselves in the life and death situation and their life is in danger if they give birth, no matter how pre-mature. The doctor may recommend an abortion to save the mother’s life. They work with odds as to what if? There are some grey areas and difficult decisions some have to make and accept. I think the church will understand the extremes despite the no way Jose on the surface. A survey says, 86.9% of private insurance companies support/cover abortive procedures. In other words, it’s paid for in most cases and a very personal decision a lot of woman have to live with if they abort. And for those under 18, their family, parents or guardian faces the same dilemma.


#16

Well, it’s a matter of opening the door, once an exception is made, another and another will follow. The fact remains, we are not God of life and death, the child did not choose how they would be conceived, which is really the point here. If she chooses to leave it up to adoption, at least the child can live and she is no longer responsible for it. It’s 9 months of her life, not a life sentence, it’s death is a life sentence…


#17

Catechism of the Catholic Church (ISBN: 1-57455-110-8). This is the United States English language version of much of the faith and morals of the Roman Catholic Church. The message is worldwide universal even if it comes in it’s different languages as distributed worldwide. The United States version on abortion falls under paragraphs 2270 to 2275. It amazes me in my own diocese of Venice, FL on how many Roman Catholics do not know this book exists or just flat out ignore what is written. And yes many Catholics beleive on this abortion after rape and blatantly voting for pro-choice politicians in government. They are in ‘latae sententiae’ under Canon Law excommunicated and are forbidden to receive Holy Communion until they repent and turn away from this sin.The Catholic Church in all various rites have condemned abortion from the beginning and still do today. Also go to the Vatican website which can also lead you to the Catechism and Canon Law if you Can’t obtain the book in your region. But your local bishop should be addressed of this problem in your area and take action on this matter.


#18

The “conventional wisdom” says that we should allow abortion in cases of rape or incest out of compassion for the woman. However, there was a study done of 192 women who became pregnant as a result of rape or incest. 89% of those who aborted the pregnancy stated that they regretted their decision. Over 90% stated they would discourage other pregnant sexual assault victims from opting for abortion. Only 7% believed that abortion would “usually” be beneficial in cases of sexual assault. Conversely, among the sexual assault victims who carried to term, in retrospect, they all believed they made the right decision in giving birth. None regretted not having an abortion. This information is available in Victims and Victors, by David Reardon (et.al.).

You should be aware of the possible impact this abortion will have on your friend. Be there to listen. Learn about other victims and try to put her in touch with those who will be able to help her. It would not be unusual for her to recover from the assault before she recovers from the abortion. Let her know that you are there to help her heal and grieve.


#19

Human life is human life. If one were to argue that a child of rape is deserving of abortion, then that would be creating a two tiered system of life: One for those deemed by man as ‘worthy’ and those deemed ‘unworthy.’

Of course it is tragic whenever a woman is raped. However, we should ignore popular culture that teaches a child is a punishment (we see this on television and in the movies). Catholics who advise others that abortion is acceptable do so at a grave risk (I think of today’s Gospel reading).

Similarly, it behooves us to be particularly charitable to those in this situation. And we as Catholics do have many groups for this purpose.

I think part of the problem is this myth foisted upon people that no one ever would go without aborting the child of rape. This is simply not true, neither historically nor today.


#20

I completely agree. My friends and I debate about abortion all the time and most of the debate centers on cases of rape. They feel that having the baby would put the woman through more trauma, but I think the knowledge that she killed her own child would prove even more traumatic. Abortion should be about the child, not the woman.


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