Tag Archives: politics

Argentine Senate rejects voluntary abortion law

Argentines rally in Buenos Aires in favour of life (AFP or licensors)

BUENOS AIRES – In a victory for pro-life advocates in Argentina, the country’s Senate rejected a bill on 9 Aug 2018 to legalise voluntary abortion into the 14th week of pregnancy.

Hours of heated debate and impassioned pleas ended with a 38 to 31 vote against the measure. The bill had narrowly passed the lower house in July.

Senators from Argentina’s northern regions led the charge against legalising voluntary abortion, while representatives from the Buenos Aires region and those in the south pushed to pass it.

Ahead of the Senate vote, President Mauricio Macri said he was personally against abortion, but added that the debate itself was “a win for democracy.”

Current Argentine law only permits abortions if the mother’s life is at risk, or in cases of rape.

Pro-life advocates from the country’s Catholic Church likely helped swing the vote in favour of life.

On the day of the vote, Cardinal Mario Aurelio Poli celebrated Mass to pray for the vote’s positive outcome. The Archbishop of Buenos Aires appealed to Senators not to interrupt “the honorable and praiseworthy tradition of legislating for the common good and for a culture of life, protecting the weakest and most defenseless, who are waiting to participate in history.”

At the same time, Cardinal Poli called on Catholics to find space in their communities to allow pregnant women in difficulty “to share their fears and to feel the embrace and tenderness of women who had the joy of giving birth to a child, despite all difficulties.”

Following Thursday’s vote against voluntary abortion, the Catholic Church in Argentina seeks to remain a place of welcome for mothers facing difficult, unforeseen, or unwanted pregnancies.

Local priests in the poorest parts of the Buenos Aires region have created a network of “Houses of the Maternal Embrace.”  These centres provide food, medical assistance, psychological counseling, and legal advice to pregnant mothers in difficulty.

One pro-life activist, Victoria Osuna, told Reuters the Senate’s vote against abortion “showed that Argentina is still a country that represents family values.” –Devin Watkins, Vatican News 

Catholic Church does not sanction Fr Bruno’s entry into partisan politics

Yasun

KOTA KINABALU –  The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Kota Kinabalu said on 30 Apr 2018 that the action of a member of her clergy, Father Bruno Andau Yasun, to contest as a candidate for the Ranau parliamentary constituency in the general elections, is on his own volition and without the consent or sanction of the Church.

Archbishop John Wong Soo Kau, head of the archdiocese, said that in March last year, Fr Bruno expressed his wish to leave the priesthood. He was granted a one-year sabatical leave.

He said the leave was given with the hope that he would renew his priestly spirit and return to serve the church.

“When priests take their vows of office during their sacerdotal ordination, they state their resolve to faithfully and religiously exercise their ministry to preach the Gospel and to explain the Catholic faith to the flock under their care.

“They further consecrate their whole life permanently to God for the salvation of his people,” he added.

Archbishop Wong said it is clear now that Fr Bruno Andau Yasun has chosen a different path by entering into partisan politics and standing as a candidate in the election for public office.

“All I wish to say is that he is doing so on his own volition and not with the consent or blessing of our Church,” he said in a statement released by the Social Communications Commission of the archdiocese.

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