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Dublin: 13 °C Thursday 23 October, 2014

Cardinal says Taoiseach’s abortion comment ‘makes no sense’

Kenny’s statement that he’s ‘not a Catholic Taoiseach’ has been criticised by American Cardinal Raymond L. Burke.

Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke
Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke
Image: Riccardo De Luca/AP/Press Association Images

Updated 9.45pm

ENDA KENNY’s DESCRIPTION of himself as ‘a Taoiseach who happens to be a Catholic and not a Catholic Taoiseach‘ doesn’t hold up to logical scrutiny, US Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke has said.

Cardinal Burke – who is head of the Vatican Supreme Court – said in an interview with this week’s Irish Catholic that the Taoiseach’s statement ‘does not make any sense’.

“Abortion is a matter of natural moral law which is written on every human heart.  One cannot, as a Catholic politician, excuse oneself from the question of abortion by claiming that one should not bring one’s Catholicism into the political realm,” the Cardinal said. He added:

Of course, the Church does teach that abortion is evil, but the evil of abortion can also be known by human reason. The natural law is to do good and avoid evil and the first precept is to safeguard and promote human life. The distinction made in the statement you mention therefore does not make any sense.

Cardinal Burke said that if natural law was not upheld, people would enter a “culture of death”.

Enda Kenny made the comments ahead of the introduction to the Dáil this week of the Protection of Life during Pregnancy Bill. It followed criticism of the planned legislation from the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference, which said the Bill would permit “the deliberate and intentional killing of an unborn child”.

Meanwhile, pro-life groups say they will plaster 6,000 posters and billboards around the country to highlight what they describe as “the horrific reality of the abortion proposal currently before the Dáil”. A nationwide leaflet drop is also being undertaken.

Youth Defence spokesperson Clare Molloy said the information campaign aimed to “radically increase public awareness” of what is contained in the Bill.

Read: Bishop urges people to pray for TDs in advance of abortion vote

Read: Fine Gael TD says he won’t support abortion bill, and neither will nine others

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