During his weekly general audience at the Vatican on Wednesday, Pope Francis compared abortion to hiring a “hitman to solve a problem.”
“How can an act that suppresses innocent and defenseless budding human life be therapeutic, civil or simply human?” the pontiff said, as CNN and others reported.
The pope also asked if it was right “to do away with a human life to solve a problem,” adding, “Is it right to hire a hitman to solve a problem? One cannot do this. It is not right to do away with a human being, albeit small, to solve a problem.”
Abortion is against the teachings of the Catholic Church.
This past June, the pontiff compared someone’s having an abortion to the Nazis’ killing of millions to create a “pure race.”
“I have heard that it’s fashionable, or at least usual, that when, in the first months of pregnancy, they do studies to see if the child is healthy or has something, the first offer is: ‘Let’s send it away,'” Francis reportedly said in remarks to Italy’s Family Association in Rome.
“I say this with pain. In the last century, the whole world was scandalized about what the Nazis did to purify the race. Today we do the same, but now with white gloves.”
The pope’s earlier comments came just days after the lower house in Argentina, the pope’s birthplace, approved a bill to legalize elective abortion, as CNN noted. The Senate ultimately rejected the bill.
Ireland, another nation made up of mainly Catholics, formally repealed a constitutional amendment that banned abortion in the country after a referendum vote in favor of changing the law.
Abortion, of course, remains a hot cultural issue in the U.S. — many progressives protested Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court because they fear he would work to overturn Roe v. Wade, the landmark case that legalized abortion across the country.
Kavanaugh was confirmed to the Supreme Court last Saturday.
The pope, meanwhile, is enduring several scandals that have rocked the Catholic Church worldwide.
Former Vatican Ambassador to the United States (from 2011 to 2016) and Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò published an open letter on a pair of Catholic websites — National Catholic Register and LifeSiteNews — in August, claiming the pope knew of allegations made against the former archbishop of Washington (2001 to 2006), Theodore McCarrick. The ex-cardinal was reportedly sexually active with seminarians and had been punished by Pope Benedict XVI.
Archbishop Viganò claimed Pope Francis was aware of this situation, ignored it, and reinstated Cardinal McCarrick as a high-ranking member of the U.S. Catholic Church.
See more on the pope’s views on abortion in the video, below.