Position of the Permanent Council of the Polish Bishops’ Conference on the legal protection of human life

Photo from Priest for life

Position of the Permanent Council of the Polish Bishops’ Conference
on the legal protection of human life

The Declaration Dignitas infinita on Human Dignity is a document of the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith approved by the Holy Father Francis, addressing key issues of human life. In view of the growing pressure in the public space and the actions of the government to change the legal protection of human life towards the legalization of the killing of children in their mothers’ wombs, we want to recall the unequivocal and unchanging position of the Church on this issue.

«The Church consistently reminds us that “the dignity of every human being has an intrinsic character and is valid from the moment of conception until natural death. It is precisely the affirmation of such dignity that is the inalienable prerequisite for the protection of a personal and social existence, and also the necessary condition for fraternity and social friendship to be realized among all the peoples of the earth.” On account of the intangible value of human life, the Church’s magisterium has always spoken out against abortion. In this regard, Pope St. John Paul II writes: “Among all the crimes which can be committed against life, procured abortion has characteristics making it particularly serious and deplorable. […] But today, in many people’s consciences, the perception of its gravity has become progressively obscured. The acceptance of abortion in the popular mind, in behavior, and even in law itself is a telling sign of an extremely dangerous crisis of the moral sense, which is becoming more and more incapable of distinguishing between good and evil, even when the fundamental right to life is at stake. Given such a grave situation, we need now more than ever to have the courage to look the truth in the eye and to call things by their proper name, without yielding to convenient compromises or to the temptation of self-deception. […] Especially in the case of abortion, there is a widespread use of ambiguous terminology, such as ‘interruption of pregnancy,’ which tends to hide abortion’s true nature and to attenuate its seriousness in public opinion. Perhaps this linguistic phenomenon is itself a symptom of an uneasiness of conscience. But no word has the power to change the reality of things: procured abortion is the deliberate and direct killing, by whatever means it is carried out, of a human being in the initial phase of his or her existence, extending from conception to birth.” Unborn children are, thus, “the most defenseless and innocent among us. Nowadays, efforts are made to deny them their human dignity and to do with them whatever one pleases, taking their lives and passing laws preventing anyone from standing in the way of this.” It must, therefore, be stated with all force and clarity, even in our time, that “this defense of unborn life is closely linked to the defense of each and every other human right”».

In our prayers, let us also remember those children who have never been able to see the sunshine.

Signed by the Members of the Permanent Council
of the Polish Bishops’ Conference

Jasna Góra, May 2, 2024

Testament of Dom Christian de Chergé

Anima Christi (Saint Ignatius of Loyola)