EWTN Catholic Q&A
Medically needed abortions
Question from Yanet on 01-15-2013:

Hi Judie, I have a question to ask you. I know how the Church feels about etopic pregnancies. And I also read that if the mothers life is in danger she can have an induction or c cestion.

What if she is only about 10 weeks along ( a baby at this gestation cannot live outside her womb ) can she opt to have an induction to save her life? Isn't that the same as having an abortion? Please help me with this.

Thank you

Answer by Judie Brown on 01-18-2013:

Dear Yanet

The Church does not condone any abortion for any reason. The teaching is clear: the doctor must do everything possible to save BOTH mother and child. As Pope Pius XII put it:

Every human being, even the child in the womb, has the right to life directly from God and not from his parents, not from any society or human authority. Therefore, there is no man, no human authority, no science, no “indication” at all—whether it be medical, eugenic, social, economic, or moral—that may offer or give a valid judicial title for a direct deliberate disposal of an innocent human life, that is, a disposal which aims at its destruction, whether as an end in itself or as a means to achieve the end, perhaps in no way at all illicit. Thus, for example, to save the life of the mother is a very noble act; but the direct killing of the child as a means to such an end is illicit.

Judie Brown