.- Parishes throughout Ecuador are distributing a letter from the executive committee of the Bishops Conference of Ecuador, which warns that science has not negated the abortifacient nature of the so-called morning-after pill. In their letter, the bishops write that, based on serious medical and scientific data, the Church âholds that life begins at the moment the ovum is fertilized: that is when the life a new human being begins. There is no room for discrimination in the respect for life, for it is not the case that some lives deserve respect while others deserve none.â
The bishops also state that, âScientific medical research must prove that the âmorning-after pillâ does not prevent implantation of the fertilized egg in the uterus, that is, it needs to prove that it does not take a human life. Scientific research has not provided such evidence, and it could be that it never will.â
âExisting medical and biological data in large measure have come from research that is biased in favor of contraception in all its forms. Nevertheless, laboratories that manufacture the pill report that one of its effects could be the preventing of implantation of a fertilized egg in the uterus, thus resulting in the destruction of a human life,â the bishops said.
âThere exists sufficient evidence,â the bishops went on, âto affirmâwith the data available todayâthat the pill does have abortifacient effects. This being so, we would be facing a reality that must be called by its name, beyond pseudo-scientific subtleties and the manipulation of words: it is simply called an abortion. Those who refer to it as âavoiding an unwanted pregnancyâ should clearly admit that in reality we are talking about interrupting a pregnancy that has already begun.â
In this sense, the bishops warned, âThere is no lack of individuals who, enveloped in a false sense of modernity, proclaim abortion to be a right of women to make decisions about their own bodies. This couldnât be further from the truth, since the exercise of oneâs freedom has an insurmountable limit: the right to life of others. The newly conceived being is no longer âher bodyâ; it is a new life, different from that of the woman that conceived it; and nobody can dispose of that new life.â
âThis is not a primarily religious issue. It is an issue that, while it belongs to the religious and moral order as well, belongs to the basic and natural order of justice,â the bishops warned.