OCEANIA/AUSTRALIA - Thousands of faithful march for life, against the law on abortion

Melbourne (Agenzia Fides) – Thousands of Catholics, Christians of other denominations, and members of social movements and associations marched through the streets of Melbourne yesterday, participating in the “Day of Intercession for Life” called for by the Diocese, in order to say “no” to the new law on abortion, which will be debated on tomorrow, October 7, in the Parliament in the state of Victoria (southern Australia). The bill in question would allow for abortions to take place in the first 24 weeks of pregnancy. Christians of many denominations lived a solemn moment of prayer inside St. Patrick’s Cathedral, led by Archbishop Denis Hart of Melbourne, who told them: “We are all brothers and sisters because we value the great gift of life…we testify to the unique value of each human without distinction from conception to natural death.” The faithful gathered prayed especially for all mothers, for all unborn children, victims of human manipulation, and for all children yet to be born, highlighting that the Christian community is willing to place all its resources and energies at the service and support of women with difficulties, whether they be psychological or economic, in carrying their child to term. The Archbishop also pointed out that the reform of the system could not in any way lead Catholic hospitals to perform abortions, which Christian doctrine considers murder. Those present affirmed that such a law would be “morally repugnant.” The law, the Church observes, should in every way possible provide a possibility of “conscientious objection” for doctors who do not wish to practice abortion. Following the celebration in the Cathedral, the faithful marched through the streets, where they were joined by many other people who, beyond their religious beliefs, share the same ideal of absolute respect for human life. (PA) (Agenzia Fides 6/10/2008)

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