Monday, March 30, 2009

Catholic church kicks out a raped 9-year old, but not the rapist

Vatican defends Brazil excommunication


March 8, 2009, 6:40 am


A senior Vatican cleric has defended the excommunication of the
mother and doctors of a nine-year-old girl who had an abortion in
Brazil after being raped.

Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, head of the Catholic church's
Congregation for Bishops, told the daily La Stampa on Saturday that the
twins the girl had been carrying had a right to live.

"It is a sad case but the real problem is that the twins conceived
were two innocent persons, who had the right to live and could not be
eliminated," he said.

Re, who also heads the Pontifical Commission for Latin America,
added: "Life must always be protected, the attack on the Brazilian
church is unjustified."

The row was triggered by the termination on Wednesday of twin
foetuses carried by a nine-year-old allegedly raped by her stepfather
in the Brazilian state of Pernambuco.

The regional archbishop, Jose Cardoso Sobrinho, pronounced
excommunication for the mother for authorising the operation and
doctors who carried it out for fear that the slim girl would not
survive carrying the foetuses to term.

"God's law is above any human law. So when a human law ... is
contrary to God's law, this human law has no value," Cardoso had said.

He also said the accused stepfather would not be expelled from the
church. Although the man allegedly committed "a heinous crime ... the
abortion - the elimination of an innocent life - was more serious".

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