.- Cardinal Odilo Scherer of Sao Paulo, Brazil spoke out last week in defense of human life, stressing that abortion must not be legalized in the country.
In an Oct. 13 article, the cardinal recalled that the Church in Brazil will soon celebrate Pro-Life Week in order to warn Brazilians of the threats to human life, especially abortion.
Abortion has become a leading issue in Brazil as the country prepares for its Oct. 31 presidential runoff elections. Workers' Party candidate Dilma Rousseff has stated her support for legalizing the procedure.
The cardinal explained in his article that “There are also those who claim this is a human right.” However, he asked, is “taking the lives of innocent and defenseless human beings a human right?”
Responding to the argument that a woman has a right to do what she wants with her body, Cardinal Scherer said, “The baby a woman carries in her womb is not part of her body, but it is another body, different from hers.”
“Women received their nature from God: the beauty and gratifying mission of conceiving and welcoming human life, of making it live in the world, of supporting and protecting this fragile and beautiful life,” he continued.
The legal protection against abortion is not a punishment, but rather the protection of the right to life, the cardinal added. “How do we protect the unborn and ensure the first of all human rights if abortion is legalized?” he asked.
Cardinal Scherer called on the government to promote measures that allow pregnant women and their children to live in dignity and safety.