Dear Editor, Given the current debate about the site for the new National Maternity Hospital, it is important to ask the question that, while our country needs more hospital beds, do we really need more abortion facilities?
The number of abortions increased dramatically to 6,666 in 2019. In 98% of those cases, no threat to the life or health of the mother or baby was notified.
Many Irish citizens are ashamed of the changes that have taken root in our health services over the past three years. The grim reality behind our abortion regime is coming to light in medical publications and senior Irish doctors are now being trained internationally to carry out late-term abortions, using horrific methods, despite assertions prior to the referendum that late-term abortions would be illegal.
For many years prior to 2018 our National Maternity Hospital provided excellent, world class care, for mothers and babies, using the ‘two-patient’ approach. This approach recognised the reality and intrinsic rights of the baby in the womb.
If the site at St Vincent’s were simply handed over to the State, without the constraints of such an ethic; it is likely to be soon associated with horrific abortion practices. The right to life of the next generation of Irish citizens is far more important than the politically motivated demand for even more abortion clinics.
Strandhill Road, Sligo
Defenceless human being in the womb left without rights
Dear Editor, As the country rightly recoiled in horror last week, with the media coverage of the court case in relation to tragic baby Christopher Joseph Kiely, we would do well to remember the other 6,666 babies aborted here in the first year following the legalisation of abortion in Ireland in 2018.
Meanwhile, ‘Yes’ campaigners, ‘Yes’ politicians and ‘Yes’ voters must feel vindicated, now that the European Parliament voted and declared, in the same week, that abortion access is ‘a human right’, that is, for all except the defenceless human being in the womb.
Church should have challenged State ‘more rigorously’
Dear Editor, Can I congratulate Larry Donnelly on his excellent article [IC 24/06/2021] underlining the stupidity of some of the rules we have had to endure as churchgoers during the pandemic.
The willingness of Church authorities to agree with and enforce these regulations is very disappointing. Surely the policing of these regulations should be left to the State, and the courts allowed to adjudicate if necessary. We have also recently been given a letter from the archbishop outlining the dire state of the diocesan finances – a direct result of the Mass regulations. Is the Church looking for compensation from the State for implementing these policies? – not to my knowledge. It is depending on the diminishing band of Church attendees to solve the crisis. The net result of this acquiescent policy will to my mind be a permanent drop in Church attendance. Surely attendance at Mass is important enough to warrant the Church challenging the State more rigorously.
Moving confession online
Dear Editor, Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, many of us now attend holy Mass online. Might I suggest that other ceremonies should also be online. In particular, the Sacrament of Penance. Visiting our Church recently, I wondered when the confession boxes were last used.
Blackrock, Co. Dublin.
Catholics must push for ethical medications
Dear Editor, In 2005 the Pontifical Academy for Life provided justification for the Covid-19 vaccines in use in the present circumstances but told Catholics to demand ethical alternatives.
Unfortunately the use of foetal cell lines in medicine is so pervasive that if Catholicism were to reject drugs tested with any foetal cell line, it would reject many aspects of modern medicine.
Individual Catholics aware of such inhumanity and its incongruity with the commandments feel, as Stacy Trasancos puts it, powerless other than to “accept the vaccines without accepting them… pointing a finger while getting a jab… benefiting from abortion while opposing it”. Conscience soothing is not enough.
Catholicism should not relinquish the ability granted it to influence ethical decisions on how to deploy humankind’s current power over nature. But is there a sense that Catholics at all levels including the Vatican are passive about unethical medical drug creation practices? This despite a CDF clarifying note in December 2020. There is no general Catholic objection demanding ethical alternative vaccines. There is no effective Catholic reminder that ethical alternatives are possible.
One such is The John Paul II Medical Research Institute, Iowa. It works at developing ethically derived human cell lines to bio-manufacture vaccines replacing the HEK293 and PER.C6 cells. It has the required technical resources and expertise. It relies on financial support from individuals and organisations. Its budget for 2021 is $750,000, (150,000 contributions of $5!). Whereas the developed world has become practically non-reliant on Catholic hospitals, ministry in humanitarian ethical medicine awareness is the new imperative. Catholicism doesn’t have to submit to or join a culture guided by untutored movements of will. But which synod will provide the leadership?
Cappamore, Co. Limerick
‘Disappointed’ with decision to fly Pride flag
Dear Editor, When my wife, daughter and I started to attend Sunday mass in the Redemptorist Church in Limerick, we had the pleasure of listening to many a homily by Fr Adrian Egan. He was, and I imagine still is, a wonderful speaker, with or without notes. However, in all those homilies I don’t ever remember him mentioning rainbow flags or the LGBT community. I feel Fr Egan has fallen into the modern propensity of picking a popular cause and aligning himself with it.
I imagine Fr Egan’s fellow priests all over Ireland have causes they would like to espouse but they obey the rules and do it the way the church decrees. I’m extremely disappointed by Fr Egan’s ‘in your face’ action.
Finally, when we attended the Redemptorist Church there was a banner over the front entrance which exclaimed “This is God’s house, your home. All are welcome here”. All are welcome in the church, and they don’t need their particular flag flying on the building to know that. It’s condescending, populist and elitist.
Medieval Quarter, Limerick
Making a womb a tomb
Dear Editor, It bemuses me to see the protesters and their slogans re: the new hospital [the new National Maternity Hospital] and its ethics. Perhaps a more apt slogan would be ‘Don’t make the womb the unborn’s tomb’.