Pope Francis is appealing to “a moral law written into human nature itself” to assert the sacredness of every human life, including that of the unborn. A “fight against exclusion,” the Pope said in his address before the United Nations General Assembly Friday, demands “absolute respect for life in all its stages and dimensions.”
Building a common home of all men and women must rise on “the foundations of a right understanding of universal fraternity and respect for the sacredness of every human life,” Pope Francis said, which includes “the unborn.”
The Pope’s words were addressed to a host of world leaders, including UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, who has been criticized by pro-life activists for promoting the so-called “right” to abortion across the globe, and for his complaints of the lack of “safe abortion” in many conflict situations in the world.
This “respect for the sacredness of every human life,” of every man and every woman, means defending “those considered disposable,” he said.
In his words, the Pope also condemned “the marketing of human organs and tissues,” just as the House Judiciary Committee is investigating abortion giant Planned Parenthood, after a series of undercover videos revealed that the organization was involved in the harvesting and sale of the body parts and organs of aborted fetuses.
The papal address to the United Nations follows on the heels of a speech given by the Pope before a joint session of the U.S. Congress on Thursday, in which Francis pointed to the Golden Rule, saying it was a “yardstick” that “reminds us of our responsibility to protect and defend human life at every stage of its development.”
The Pope went on to assert that “every life is sacred” and that “every human person is endowed with an inalienable dignity.”
Pope Francis has been a vocal critic of the abortion industry, which he has compared to the Italian Mafia. He has also denounced the lie “that supporting abortion somehow helps women,” calling it a “false compassion.”
“By the light of both faith and right reason,” the Pope said, “human life is always sacred and always of ‘quality.’ There is no human life more sacred than another: all human life is sacred! Just as there is no human life qualitatively more significant than another.”
During the last year, the Pope has hammered home a pro-life message in address after address, calling abortion a “scourge” on society and insisting that “a just society recognizes the primacy of the right to life from conception to natural death.”
Follow Thomas D. Williams on Twitter @tdwilliamsrome