Paper Example on Abortion and Religious Freedom

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  7
Wordcount:  1893 Words
Date:  2023-05-29

A Matter of the Heart: On the 30th Anniversary of Roe vs Wade. (2002). Retrieved from

The statement of A Matter of the Heart got made by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops where the 30th anniversary of the Roe vs Wade was made. Roe argued that post-viability abortions should be allowed to preserve the mother's health. At the same time, Wade opposed his argument since he believed that the health of the woman having the abortion was not only restricted to the physical health but also included the emotional, familial, psychological, and her age. The ruling favored the pro-choice advocates. The decision brought about a lot of commotion between the proposers and opposed abortion. According to the statement, the Catholic Church was still in full support of the protection of life from the moment of conception. The pro-life movement had shown a significant increase in their members and vitality. The statement insisted that even though abortion was legal in all stages of pregnancy in America, it remained to be a violation of human rights and cruelty for the human family. Some limitations that had got placed in the ruling of Roe vs Doe got erased in the verdict of Doe vs Bolton. The youth showed a great support to the pro-life cause. They sympathized with the many lives that had got lost as a result of abortion. Legal abortion had promised to reduce poverty and abuse, but the suffering that got experienced from abortion beat the essence of legalizing abortion. Many women and men face psychological torture after endorsing abortions. Some women end up destroying their reproductive organs, rendering them sterile. On a positive note for the pro-lifers, the statement shows the achievements that got acquired in restricting abortion over time. For instance, the technological advancements of ultrasounds that have made it possible for people to appreciate the child before birth. Towards the end, the statement echoes the words of Pope John Paul II on the importance of defending the right to life and insists that Roe vs Wade should get reversed.

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Dombrowski, D. A., & Deltete, R. J. (2000). A brief, liberal, Catholic defence of abortion. Retrieved from

Dombrowski & Delete (2000) provide Catholic protection of abortion in their book. The book begins by addressing the opinions of two popular saints in the Catholic Church, St. Augustine, and St. Thomas Aquinas. The book shows how the teachings of the two saints reflected on their opinions on abortion. St. Thomas, to begin with, believed that the fetus growing in a woman's womb in the early stages of pregnancy could not be referred to as a human body because it could not be animated by a human soul. St. Augustine also supported the same opinion as St. Thomas that the fetus was not a person yet. In the book, abortion gets perceived from two points of view; the ontological position and the perversity position. The ontological is where a human being gets viewed as such from the moment that conception takes place. Removing the human being at any stage of pregnancy would be considered an abortion in the ontological point of view. St. Thomas and Augustine could be perceived to support abortion in the ontological point of view as they did not consider the existence of a human being in the early stages of pregnancy. The other aspect of view is the perversity view where the very act of abortion in any stage of pregnancy goes against the real purpose of sex. The true meaning of sex, in this case, is reproduction and not for any other purpose. St. Augustine made it clear that he was against abortion on perversity grounds, and he considered abortion a sign of 'cruel lust' (the title of the first chapter). The book brings about a controversial point of view of sex when the perversity grounds gets considered, that, when married people have sex for any other reason but procreation, they are sinning and they should feel guilty. In other chapters, the boom addresses defensible sexual ethic and the relationship between Catholicism and liberalism.

Evangelium Vitae (25 March 1995): John Paul II. (n.d.). Retrieved from

The Evangelium Vitae is a document that was written by Pope John Paul II to talk about the value and inviolability of human life. In the document, Pope John Paul II discusses the incomparable worth of a human being. He insists that all the aspects of life achieve their full significance when they are in communion with the Father (God). The document continues by exploring the threats to human life and human dignity that face people. Some of the threats to human life that the document addresses include murder, abortion, euthanasia, genocide and suicide. In contrast, the threats to human dignity include slavery, deportation, prostitution, human trafficking and poor working conditions. The author severely condemns the acts of fratricide that Cain committed to Abel in the book of Genesis. The act of murder, according to the author, results in serious consequences from one generation to another. In the matter of abortion, the author acknowledges that huge amounts of money got invested in facilitating abortion. Such investments include pharmaceutical products that assist expectant women in carrying out abortions without necessitating medical assistance. A solution to preventing unwanted pregnancies is the use of contraceptives which can reduce the abortion cases. However, the Catholic Church also opposes the use of contraceptives. The author of the document states categorically that the contraceptives may be successful in reducing abortions but would also promote negative values like a 'contraceptive mentality' which strengthens the temptation of the marital act. The document goes ahead to address other threats to life like artificial reproduction and the commandments that the act of abortion goes contradicts. Finally, but importantly the author introduces the Virgin Mary as an individual who accepted life and also shows what Mary's (mother of Jesus) motherhood means for the Church and recommendations on how life should be respected

Hitchcock, J. (2016). Introduction. In Abortion, Religious Freedom, and Catholic Politics. Routledge. Retrieved from

Hitchcock (2016) covers three contentious topics in his book; abortion, religious freedom, and catholic politics. The author acknowledges that the Catholic Church has taken its stands on issues over the years, some political and others, moral. Some of the moral issues that the Catholic Church has taken a stand against include the use of contraceptives, divorce, and homosexuality. In the opinion of the Catholic Church, the use of contraceptives discourages the creation of life through reproduction as God had intended in the Bible. Also, homosexuality is a grave sin that also goes against the natural setting of the Scripture where man is supposed to be paired with a woman and not people of the same sex together. Some issues cut across the spheres of both politics and morality, for instance, abortion. The author attempts to show the impact the ruling of Roe vs Wade had on the pro-life and pro-choice advocates. The ruling of Roe vs Wade split the American Catholics on matters abortion. The catholic faithful took political sides in an attempt to either support or reject the ruling on abortion. Liberal Catholic democrats supported the legalization of abortion while the Catholics who were against abortion ended up supporting the Republicans. The author talks about the 2016 presidential campaign and how the political landscape was changed. On matters of religious freedom, the book also discusses other issues like the Affordable Care Act and the rights of the LGBT community. The Catholic Church holds an assertive stand with moral backing on why some of the current human acts cannot get tolerated as they go against religious doctrines. The religious stands made by the Catholic Church tend to arouse opposition for some laws and government policies set in the country, which in turn brings about divisions in the Catholic Church.

Miller, P. (2015). Good Catholics: the battle over abortion in the Catholic Church. Berkeley: University of California Press. Retrieved From:

In the book, Good Catholics, Miller (2015) relates to the battle of abortion that has existed in the Catholic Church. The book brings forth individuals in the Catholic Church who have been in the frontlines of rejecting the legitimacy of pro-choice on moral grounds. Pro-choice campaigners support the legitimization of abortion, which gets believed to go against the basic human right to life. The struggle of the Catholic Church throughout its hierarchy gets explained. The pro-life supporters attempt to bring the catholic doctrine of sexuality into law. According to the Catholic Church, the primary purpose of sex is for reproduction and any action that gets executed to prevent the purpose from being fulfilled is wrong and should not be adopted. The book gives an account of the history of the protests that occurred regarding abortion and the influence the Catholic Church made. Miller recognizes the existence of grassroots organizations in the Catholics such as Catholics for a Free Choice, which offered alternatives to the Catholic faithful who love the Church but are not ready to support its stand on abortion. The book also shows other groups of people who gave alternative interpretations of the Scripture to promote their pro-choice stand. The book also endeavors to respond to many thought-provoking questions that distinguish the Church from the state, including the considerations that should be taken by a public policy concerning religious doctrines. The book goes ahead to capture other contentious issues that the Catholic Church is opposed to such as the use of contraceptives. The Church argues that the use of contraceptives acts against the purpose of sex between men and women because the contraceptives prevent conception. Despite the author's perspective on being pro-choice, the research that she presents on abortion and the Catholic Church is unbiased, well detailed, and informative.

Medoff, M. (2003). The Determinants and Impact of State Abortion Restrictions. The American Journal of Economics and Sociology, 61(2), 481-490. Retrieved from

Abortion restrictions are the limitations placed on matters of abortion in the states. The restrictions are set up by the government through the policies that get passed. The determinants of the abortion policies lie heavily on the advocacy groups and the political forces that are involved in making decisions. Medoff (2003) carries out a study to determine the specific factors that influence the state abortion restrictions and how the impact of the restrictions on the number of abortions in the states. The number of members in the advocacy groups is one of the in...

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