Pill allowed as an abortifacient?


Yesterday you mentioned that the Church allows the use of the Pill for medical purposes other than birth control. Isn’t it true that the patient should abstain from marital relations while taking the Pill? I understand that the Pill can cause an unintended abortion of a fertilized egg before it has a chance to implant. Therefore, abstinence is the only way to be safe. I just wanted to clarify that point from yesterday. Am I mistaken?



This is a very important matter that is widely misunderstood:

The Church considers a miscarriage to be a physical evil. Since abortion DELIBERATELY causes a miscarriage, it is therefore also a MORAL evil. The Church sees an UNintended miscarriage as only a physical evil since it is not deliberately caused by the couple.

The use of the pill for medical reasons may cause an UNintended miscarriage. Women often have unintended miscarriages—sometimes without even knowing it. It is only miscarriages that are INTENDED that the Church considers immoral. The Church never allows the pill to be used as an abortifacient. But it does allow the use of the pill for medical reasons with the possiblity of producing an unintended miscarriage—without obliging the couple to abstain from sexual relations during that time.

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

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