Possible abortion referendum won’t influence Pope’s visit

Possible abortion referendum won’t influence Pope’s visit

The Church is “concerned” about a potential referendum on abortion in Ireland, but it will not influence the nature of the Pope’s planned visit next year.

With a referendum on the issue becoming more likely Cardinal Kevin Farrell said that it is Pope Francis’ intention to come, and if it is not Pope Francis it will be his successor.

However he made it clear that his visit would be in relation to the World Meeting of Families.

“I’m sure that Pope Francis is coming for what he said he was going to come for which is the World Meeting of Families to promote marriage and to promote family life,” he said.

“Whether or not there’s something else going on in the country, that’s important in the life of the world, in the life of the community and society in general.

No effect

“Yes there would be a concern about that, but it’s not a concern that will have an effect – Pope Francis will say and will uphold the teaching of the Church,” he added.

However he said that he was not concerned about the referendum coinciding with the Pope’s visit.

Leo Varadkar, the newly-elected leader of Fine Gael, has said previously that he would be in favour of a referendum on the issue, which would make it highly likely that it will be put to the people of Ireland – possibly as early as next year.