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By The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

U.S. Bishops Affirm Church Teaching on Dignity of Human Life

October 4, 2022 | Marking 100 days since the Supreme Court of the United States’ decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which overturned Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities, called for “radical solidarity” with pregnant women, and reiterated Catholic teaching on life in response to recent public comments from people in public life who distort the Catholic Church’s teaching.

“The Catholic Church recognizes that all people, born and unborn, have been created in the image and likeness of God, and therefore have inherent dignity, and the right to life. When a woman is carrying a child, both mother and child are valued and should be protected, and the life of one should not be set against the life of another. The goal is always to save life, never to intentionally destroy life. The Church seeks the protection of all unborn children, this includes the innocent child conceived in rape or incest.

“Mothers should also be protected and supported, and we all have a responsibility to stand with mothers in need and provide the material and emotional support necessary to allow mothers, children, and families to live in dignity. In the post-Roe world, we must act in radical solidarity with the pregnant woman and her child, as we work and pray for the day when abortion is unthinkable.

“Whereas the Church always seeks the protection of all unborn children, it is licit to support legislation that falls short of this goal, if it advances protections and limits harm. Evangelium Vitae, Sec. 73: ‘This does not in fact represent an illicit cooperation with an unjust law, but rather a legitimate and proper attempt to limit its evil aspects.’

“The USCCB supports legislation that seeks to limit the harm of abortion, including some legislation that includes exceptions. We will continue to pray and work for the day when all human life is welcomed in love and protected by law.”