Pastoral Thought



            We have in Delaware a critical decision to make about human life. Our legislature several months ago passed legislation allowing abortion on an open-ended basis, potentially right up to birth. Yet, because it makes “viability” the criterion for forbidding abortion, the way it is interpreted will be crucial. If interpreted liberally it exceeds even the limit currently permissible under the 1972 decision of the US Supreme Court. It bears no resemblance to our state’s law before 1972.

            This law was hurried through our legislature last spring because pro-choice advocates feared the Supreme Court would reverse the Roe v Wade decision of 1972, and return abortion law to the states. What they pushed through could allow more, not fewer abortions if Roe v Wade is reversed.

            I urge you to view online the action alert of our diocese regarding two pending bills in Delaware Legislature, HB 52 and HB 53, which would allow pregnant women to view their unborn child via ultrasound. You will find them at or under “The Women’s Ultrasound Right to Know Act—Citizens Petition of Support”. The first hearing for these bills was scheduled for March 6 at Legislative Hall.

            We believe that abortion, the direct taking of an innocent human life, is an evil, to be limited where it cannot be eliminated. I think many “pro-choice” persons would agree that it is an evil, not a “good”.

            We need to press our political representatives and our courts on this basis, to draw the line strictly about “viability” at 20 weeks.

            If our state or our country accepts abortion as a “good”, we will have ceased to be a moral nation, as we were when slavery and racism were considered “good.” We will be a nation in love with death.

Father John Hynes