Just out of curiousity I wonder why the Church does not speak of murder generally rather than abortion specifically.
Because general murder is not being touted as a “right.” It’s explicitly listed as a felony in any civilized country’s criminal codes, and is subject to the death penalty in many jurisdictions. In other words, “everybody” knows murder is evil, and no reasonable person or government contests that.
Abortion is different because it’s an evil that’s being called good, or a right. It’s an evil targeted against the most vulnerable of citizens, in a place that should be the safest in all the world. In so-called “advanced” countries like Canada, there are no laws restricting abortion at all. That’s why the Church speaks against it, because society and governments don’t, and babies are dying every day.
You will not hear the Church as noisy on abortion in, say, the Philippines, because abortion is illegal there. You will hear the Church once some idiot lawmaker tries to introduce a law legalizing it.
As porthos said, the reason you don’t hear about murder so much is because the viewpoint that murder is wrong is relatively uncontroversial compared to abortion, which is treated as a civil right in most of the western world. Laws exist in every country outlawing murder, but not for abortion, so the Church must speak up against its legalization where it is already illegal, and for laws restricting/prohibiting abortion in countries where it is legal.
Yeah, pretty much everyone agrees that conventional murder is wrong. Why would the Church need to belabor that point?
But, many people (even Christians) view abortion as a basic human right, and this needs to be addressed.
Because murder is something highly visible and condemned by the entire world since it is readily in our selfish self-interest & safety to do so, therefore there is far less urgency to speak about its evil.
Abortion is invisible, targets the most vulnerable members of our society, and provides in a materialistic sense a great level of convenience because an unwanted child can be terminated before they have a voice or are able to be seen by the human eye, heard, or touched. For these reasons, it is legal in some places in order to serve a utilitarian function for the comfort and ease of the mother and/or father. Enormous sums of human life are lost and those affected by it have their consciences numbed, and the universal vocation to love & sacrifice is set aside in place of a hollow hedonism.
Murder is easily recognized as wrong whereas abortion isn’t.
There are about 1/3 of a million abortions anually in the U.S. And this doesn’t include all the birth control pills which are abortion tablets. Whereas murders are not near that number.
If I’d have to guess, I’d say the Church is directing attention where it is needed more. The murder of adults and born children is a transgression already recognized for the heinous act that it is and punished accordingly.
By comparison the murder of unborn children (abortion) is either completely legal in most countries. The rest either allow child-murder some extreme instances (“rape, incest, and birth defect” being the three main exceptions) or refuse to prosecute all those involved with it (even on this forum many Catholics disliked the idea of women going to prison for premeditatedly murdering their own children).
Murder (excluding abortion) is a very small number compared to those lives killed (murdered) by abortion so I would want to see more emphasis on abortion in a relentless way.
I was surprised to see this as a thread, as it originally posted it as a reply to the excommunicable offenses thread. It must have been deemed off topic.
That’s the context I was asking this question is…why there is special mention of abortion as excommunicable and not “murder” generally speaking.
The Church *does * speak of murder generally.
The Church also -due to the terrible reality of our times- speak a great deal about abortion specifically.
Also about Euthanasia which is a growing problem.
Because of nature of the sin as well as the serious problem in current society not seeing the seriousness of this matter.
All sin is also progressive, the further a nation gets from Gods laws, the deeper in sin they will find themselves. God also warned of the times when good will be viewed as evil and evil as good, so who knows, the more abortion, SSM and other sin is tolerated and accepted, eventually other more serious sin will be tolerated too, maybe even murder.
And really if a nation thinks abortion is OK, its probably not long before regular murder will be seen as ok too. I think it would be impossible for man to stop this sort of thing from happening, I mean you cant give in to some level of sin and then expect to recognize and prevent more serious sin, its progressive, its always going to get worse.
Excommunication is more of a way to say “Hey, this is something serious you’ve done.” than punishment from what I’ve read. As abortion isn’t always seen so seriously, that’s why it’s excommunicable even though murder is not. Goes back to how abortion has civil authorities clouding moral clarity on it.
I am Pro-Life, but the concept of abortion is obviously a heated debate. We probably all have friends who are pro choice and believe that their is no evil in abortion. Unfortunately they are wrong, but we do not view them as murderers engaging in a genocide against unborn children. We would probably be disgusted with someone who agreed with a mass murderer, but we are often not disgusted with those who are pro choice, or at least not to the point where we refuse to interact with them. That is why the church needs to talk about the two in separate categories.
Because other forms of murder are universally recognised as such.
Abortion is the murder of an innocent child by those most responsible for preserving and protecting that child.
K thanks everyone. Question answered.