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Dublin: 25°C Thursday 11 August 2022

Archbishop Eamon Martin: 'Abortion ends the human life of an unborn girl or boy'

Martin wants followers to convince others to fight a repeal of the Eighth Amendment.

Primate of Ireland, Archbishop Eamon martin.
Primate of Ireland, Archbishop Eamon martin.
Image: Laura Hutton/

ARCHBISHOP EAMON MARTIN has called on Catholic followers to “speak the truth about life” and urge friends and family to reject a repeal of the Eighth Amendment.

In a pastoral message to begin the new year, Martin makes direct reference to the report of the Oireachtas committee on the issue. He says it proposes “a very liberal abortion regime”.

Last month, the committee recommended the repeal of the Eighth Amendment which effectively bans abortion in all but very limited circumstances.

It also recommended that abortion be available without restriction up to 12 weeks of pregnancy following consultations between a woman and her doctor.

In his message, Martin says that the amendment is a “declaration of equality and respect for human life” and should be retained.

“It is falsely claimed that wide access to abortion will mark Ireland out as a “modern” country, placing the needs of women ‘at the centre’,” Martin says in the missive.

Abortion ends the human life of an unborn girl or boy. It deceives women – and men – by creating a culture where the decision to end the life of an unborn child is portrayed as simply a matter of individual “choice”.

Martin goes on to say that Ireland should be trying to “guarantee genuine care” for pregnant mothers and that the ambition should be to make Ireland,

the most welcoming country in the world for a woman and her baby in the womb.

In addressing the likely referendum on the issue, Martin encourages followers to “be missionaries for the cause of life” and tells them to argue on behalf of the Eighth Amendment despite what he says are “strong pressures to remain silent”.

“Speak to your families, your children and grandchildren, friends and colleagues about cherishing the precious gift of life at all times from conception to natural death,” Martin says.

Speak the truth about life, and speak it with love.  Despite the strong pressures to remain silent, do not be afraid to witness to the equality of all life in private conversations and public discussions in the coming months.

Martin also encouraged followers to contact politicians.

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“As citizens committed to the Common Good, you have a democratic right to make your views known, respectfully, to our public representatives,” he said.

Speaking on RTÉ’s This Week programme, Martin said it is important for politicians “to be grounded in what people are thinking”.

After the committee’s report is considered by government, legislation is likely to go before the Dáil later this month which would pave the way for a referendum in the summer.

Read: Read the emails sent to Leo in his first month as Taoiseach >

Read: ‘Once the debate starts. Once the referendum campaign kicks off, it’s open season’ >

About the author:

Rónán Duffy

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