Pope Francis compares abortion to the Nazis' 'purity' obsession
Speaking off-the-cuff at a meeting, Pope Francis on Saturday likened abortions to the Nazi obsession with "pure race," and said children should be accepted as they are since they are God's gift. The reverend figure added real families are those based on marriages between men and women. Incidentally, both statements stand contrary to the Pope's earlier stands on the issues.
Pope Francis said it has become fashionable to learn about the child's health through prenatal tests. "And to have an easy life, one does away with an innocent" if they have a deformity, he said. "The world was scandalized by what the Nazis did to ensure the purity of the race. Today we do the same thing, but with white gloves," he said.
This comes two years after the Vatican's 'year of mercy,' when the Pope gave priests the power to forgive women who had undergone abortions. Even back then, the Pope maintained abortion was a grave sin, but defended his decision saying he was aware of the pressure that led women to take the step. He had referred to abortion as an 'existential and moral ordeal'.
Pope Francis today repeated his predecessors' anti-abortion stand. Going a step forward, he spoke about a "throw-away culture" and lamented about women who are forced to enter prostitution. "How many of you pray for these women who are thrown away, for these women who are used, for these girls who have to sell their own dignity to have a job?" asked the Pope.
Pope Francis also spoke on homosexuality today. "It hurts to say it—one speaks of 'diversified' families: different types of family...but the human family as the image of God, man and woman, is only one," he said, taking a stand against families comprising homosexual couples.
In May this year, Juan Carlos Cruz, a survivor of sexual abuse, spent three days with the Pope and discussed his sexuality. Later, Cruz said the Pope told him, "God made you like this (gay). God loves you like this." The Vatican, however, didn't release a statement confirming or denying this conversation. Notably, multiple reports suggested the Pope forbade gays from studying priesthood.
A few weeks ago, Ireland voted in favor of abortion (with a landslide margin), a practice which was till recently criminal in the country. Many conservatives criticized the Pope for his silence on the Irish referendum and hinted it showed the Catholic Church's decline as a political force in the country. But he's likely to talk about this during his August trip to Ireland.