Pope Francis has given permission to all priests, including those in the SSPX, to pardon those who have performed abortions or had abortions upon the stipulation that these people confess their sins to the priest. Naturally the media is all up in a frenzy over this. Even FOX News is under the delusion that the Church has never been forgiving of those in the past who had abortions or performed them.
I can give three names of people who were involved in abortions in one way or another, all of them who were former pro-choicers who converted to the Catholic faith. These people witness to the sin of abortion and the splendor of the Catholic faith.
Jane Roe – This is the same woman whose case was heard by the Supreme Court in 1973 which resulted in the Roe v. Wade ruling. The case’s majority opinion claimed a woman’s constitutional right to privacy protects her to have an abortion. Because of this, both from immorality and illegality, this ruling as been the de facto law of the land since then. Jane originally claimed she was impregnated after being raped but later confessed that she lied about being raped. She sought an abortion but was denied one due to Texas’ anti-abortion laws. She later converted to the Catholic faith in 1995 and is now an active member of the Church and pro-life activist; she even appeared before Congress in 1998, pleading to ban abortion.
Abby Johnson – She was once a Planned Parenthood clinic director. She quit her job after reportedly seeing an abortion via ultrasound. Like Roe, Johnson converted to the Catholic faith from Anglicanism in 2011. She is now the chief research strategist for Live Action, a pro-life activist group. She has also worked with Coalition for Life and 40 Days for Life. She is also the senior policy advisor of Americans United for Life.
Bernard Nathanson – He co-founded the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws in 1969; this group also rates politicians on their abortion policies. He worked with Betty Friedan in their pro-choice activism which later helped to influence the Roe v. Wade ruling. Growing up Jewish, Nathanson described himself as an Atheist Jew for over ten years after he became pro-life which was when he first saw an ultrasound video of an abortion. In 1996 he converted to the Catholic faith with the guidance of Fr. John McCloskey but was baptized into the Church by John Cardinal O’Connor.
These three and many others saw the evils of abortion, repented and joined not just any church but the Catholic Church. They saw the inadequate teaching against abortion in the Anglican Communion, the Jewish community and in religious skepticism, and so they converted to the Church because they saw this Church adequately teaches against abortion and has consistently opposed it for almost 2,000 years. Not only that, but they found Christ in the Church, knowing the power of His Sacraments, the beauty of the Mass and liturgies, and necessity for obedience to Christ’s priests and bishops. In leaving abortion behind they found a lot more than just a pro-life movement regarding abortion but found new life in Jesus Christ, His Church and the Sacraments. That’s definitely a huge gain! We must pray for those who’ve had abortions, those who perform abortions and those who support abortion, that they may repent. I know I haven’t prayed enough especially for those who perform abortions and telling from two of the three examples above their conversion is far from impossible. Hopefully they will repent of their involvement in abortion and find truth in the Catholic Church.