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Is Killing a Child Inside the Womb the Same as Outside?


Dear Fr. Joe, does the official Catholic doctrine on abortion explicitly state or imply that the killing of a child inside the womb is the same as killing a child outside the womb? (My personal belief is that it is the same as I can see no other logical conclusion). I posed this question to the USCCB but they have not answered. In two letters to the Pope I stated that allowing Catholic politicians impunity when they promote abortion is being complicit. Well, he did not send a reply to that one.


I suspect that neither the USCCB nor the Holy Father regularly respond to inquiries from individuals.  Given Saint Pope John Paul II’s words on the Gospel of Life and that of the universal catechism, it is safe to say that there is equivalence between the destruction of a child inside or outside the womb.  The catechism states: [2270] “Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception. From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person – among which is the inviolable right of every innocent being to life.”

One Response

  1. Hello Father Joe. I am not sure my first response went through, if it did forgive the try at a repeat.

    Thank you for your response. You are the only member of the clergy to do so. I have tried several times to contact the USCCB, via their website and twitter. I also contacted a retiring Archbishop, who kindly did send a copy of one of his letters on abortion but did not directly answer my question. I also contacted the EWTN and several “Catholic” conservative newsletter. Additionally I sent emails to Ross Douthat and Hugh Hewitt. NONE of these answered me.

    I am campaigning to have a Bishop or Cardinal answer my question directly and in print, admittedly I am I suppose a thorn-in-the-side. We so often see abortion addressed with a soft language such as “reproductive rights” instead of saying the child will be executed. Apparently the language in the Catechism is not strong enough to deter Catholic politicians from supporting abortion. So I present my “stronger language” in hope that “the killing of a child inside the womb is the same as killing a child outside the womb” will be addressed as Catholic doctrine by Catholic Bishops.

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