Polish Bishops Speak Out Against Pro-Abortion Party


WARSAW, Sep 24, 01 (CWNews.com/LSN.ca) - Poland's Catholic bishops undertook an unprecedented pro-life intervention into the country's politics, when just one week before the general election this past Sunday, the bishops had a letter read in every parish urging Catholics-- some 93 percent of Poles-- not to support the country's "ex-Communist" social democrats because of their support for abortion.

Despite the request, the Democratic Left Alliance (SLD) and its small party ally, the Labor Union, were believed to have won an outright majority in the parliament. Samples of returns predicted the left-wing parties would win 219 of 460 seats in the main parliamentary body, the Sejm. Final results were expected to be released on Wednesday.

Without naming the party directly, the bishops had warned the faithful against voting for a "party that has an ideological continuity with the Communist party that has announced ... the intention of re-enacting a law authorizing for social reasons the killing of an unborn baby." The letter said, "A Catholic society cannot support a political group that has stated directly its intent to introduce laws taking aim against the basic right to life.... We must protect values like the sanctity of human life, Christian education for the young generation, and family life. Parties which take a completely secular approach to these values and which propose liberal solutions are not able to guarantee this."

SLD leader Leszek Miller, widely speculated to become Poland's next Prime Minister, did not dare to repudiate the bishops' message directly saying only, "I believe in the wisdom of the Polish electorate." The SLD has indicated that they would repeal a 1997 law, passed by the current AWS-Solidarity government, which restricted abortions to cases of rape or incest, where the unborn child is deformed, or where the mother's life is in danger.

CWN - Catholic World News
24. september 2001