Vatican City, Mar 31, 2018 / 08:00 am
Pope Paul VI's love for life, highlighted in his encyclical Humanae Vitae, is at the center of the miracles that paved the way to his beatification and canonization, both of which involved unborn children.
Because of these miracles, "Paul VI might be invoked as the protector of the rising life," Fr. Antonio Marrazzo, the postulator of his cause of canonization, told CNA.
As noted, both of Pope Paul VI's approved miracles were performed for unborn children. In neither of the two cases was the mother ever in mortal danger. In both cases, it was not a first pregnancy. In both cases, the pregnancy could have ended with an abortion, a miscarriage, or a significant deformity for the child. In both cases, the possibility of a therapeutic abortion was suggested. Both the baby were born and are still in good health.
All of these circumstances seem designed as reminders Bl. Paul VI is the pope of the Humanae Vitae.
Humanae Vitae 14 reads: "Therefore we base our words on the first principles of a human and Christian doctrine of marriage when we are obliged once more to declare that the direct interruption of the generative process already begun and, above all, all direct abortion, even for therapeutic reasons, are to be absolutely excluded as lawful means of regulating the number of children."
An abortion was, in fact, suggested to Mrs. Vanna Pironato, wife of Alberto Tagliaferri, in 2014, while she was pregnant with her second baby.
A note from the postulator of the late pope's canonization explained that "on Sep. 23, 2014, Mrs. Vanna Pironato, during her 13th week of gestation of her second pregnancy, was hospitalized because of a threat of abortion, due to the premature break of the amniochorial membranes, which caused the consequent leak of amniotic fluid."
Doctors informed Pironato that she could miscarry, though she didn't, and she was discharged from the hospital Sep. 29. Her pregnancy continued, despite a continual loss of blood and amniotic fluid.
Doctors suggested that Pironata undergo an abortion, but she and her husband refused to do so. A friend reminded her that Pope Paul VI was going to be beatified shortly thereafter, on Oct. 14, and that he had worked a miracle for an unborn child.
She, along with her husband and their son went to a shrine that the Paul VI used to visit, St. Mary of the Graces in Brescia, on Oct. 29, 2014.
From that day forward, Pironato prayed daily for Bl. Paul VI's intercession, throughout a very difficult pregnancy.