In the News - 2010

The Guardian (United Kingdom) Playing Catholic politics with US healthcare

  Even though the Catholic hierarchy can take years to issue a reprimand against priests found to be guilty of sexual abuse, Sister Margaret McBride, a member of the ethics board at St Joseph’s hospital in Phoenix, Arizona was reassigned and excommunicated in November 2009 after authorising an abortion in order to save the life […]

Becky Garrison

Agence France Presse Hospital católico en EEUU sancionado por la Iglesia tras aborto terapéutico

  Un prestigioso hospital de Phoenix, en Arizona (suroeste de Estados Unidos), tuvo que retirar el martes su estatuto católico por decisión de las autoridades religiosas, luego de que procediera en noviembre de 2009 a un aborto terapéutico para salvar la vida de la madre. El Hospital St. Joseph no podrá volver a identificarse como […]

THE TELEGRAPH Ireland condemned for anti-abortion law

  Ireland will be forced to change its anti-abortion laws after the European Court of Human Rights ruled that the restrictions had endangered the life of a woman because doctors feared prison if they gave her an abortion on medical grounds. The Strasbourg judges condemned Roman Catholic Ireland for having laws that made it effectively […]

Bruno Waterfield

BELFAST TELEGRAPH Pro-choice campaigners hail ruling

  The ruling by European judges that the abortion ban violated the rights of a woman who feared a cancer relapse during an unplanned pregnancy has been hailed as a “landmark” by pro-choice campaigners. The European Court of Human Rights ruled that the Government failed to give domestic courts clear direction on when abortion is […]

Press Association Irish abortion ban violates women’s rights – Euro court

  Ireland has been ordered to reform complex abortion laws after European judges ruled that a ban violated the rights of a woman who feared a cancer relapse during an unplanned pregnancy. The woman was being treated for a rare form of the disease and was forced to travel to the UK in 2005 for […]

Ed Carty

INTERFAITH VOICES The Pope’s Stance on Condoms: Two Sides Weigh In

  On the Interfaith Voices radio show, Jon O’Brien, president of Catholics for Choice, discusses Pope Benedict XVI’s recent comments regarding condom usage with Mary Shivanandan, professor of theology at Catholic University in Washington, DC. Listen to the show at the Interfaith Voices website.

Maureen Fiedler

The Telegraph (United Kingdom) Pope: condom use not limited to male prostitutes

  The Pope’s landmark acknowledgement that the use of condoms is sometimes morally justifiable to stop Aids is valid not only for gay male prostitutes, but also for heterosexuals, according to the Vatican. The clarification, the latest step in what is already seen as a significant shift in the Catholic Church policy, came at a […]

PEOPLE'S WORLD Pope’s condom statement offers Rorschach theology

  Pope Benedict XVI set off a firestorm this week when the Vatican released excerpts from a new book in which the pontiff obliquely says that HIV prevention might be a reason for condoms. “There may be a basis in the case of some individuals, as perhaps when a male prostitute uses a condom, where […]

Theresa Albano

The Nation On Condoms, Hope From the Pope

  Is the pope Catholic? The whole world broke out the champagne the weekend before Thanksgiving when the news came that Pope Benedict XVI had approved the use of condoms in certain circumstances to prevent the transmission of HIV. In Light of the World, a new collection of interviews with the German journalist Peter Seewald, […]

Katha Pollitt

Pope must be clear on condoms

  Only last year, Pope Benedict XVI reiterated the teaching of the Catholic Church on the use of condoms. He opposed it, even in the interest of combating AIDS in Africa. Contrary to the general scientific view, he said it worsened the problem. Now he appears to have reversed his opinion. In a long interview […]


BELFAST TELEGRAPH (UNITED KINGD0M) Confusion reigns following Pope’s ‘U-turn’ on condoms

  The Pope last night faced calls to clarify his stance on condoms as confusion reigned over exactly what he meant when he said that they could be used by Catholics in “certain cases”. In a book to be published tomorrow, Benedict XVI said there could be “justified individual cases” in which condoms could be […]

John Cooney

The Times (UK) Vatican critics ‘stung’ Pope into concession on condoms

  The Pope won praise from around the world yesterday for relaxing the Roman Catholic Church’s opposition to the use of condoms in the fight against Aids. Activists on the front line of the battle against the killer disease joined liberal Catholics in lauding the pontiff’s shift of the Vatican’s long-held stance on contraceptives. “This […]

James Bone and Ruth Gledhill

CBS NEWS Vatican: Pope seeks debate on condoms, AIDS

  Pope Benedict XVI wanted to “kick-start a debate” when he said some condom use may be justified, Vatican insiders say, raising hopes and fears that the church may be starting to back away from its condom ban for its flock of 1 billion Catholics. Benedict said in an interview that for some people, such […]

Los Angeles Times Pope says condom use is acceptable in ‘single justified cases’

  In a seemingly offhand remark that caught the Roman Catholic world by surprise, Pope Benedict XVI appears to have relaxed, at least slightly, the Vatican’s longstanding adamant opposition to the use of condoms. In a book-length interview with a German journalist, portions of which were released Saturday, the pontiff said that under some circumstances […]

Mitchell Landsberg

Reuters Condoms sometimes permissible to stop AIDS- Pope

  Liberal Catholics, AIDS activists and health officials on Sunday welcomed Pope Benedict’s comments that using condoms may sometimes be justified to stop the spread of the disease. “It is a marvelous victory for common sense and reason, a major step forward toward recognizing that condom use can play a vital role in reducing the […]

Philip Pullella

Financial Times Pope’s stance on condoms welcomed

  Aids activists welcomed the pope’s apparent softening of the Vatican’s opposition to the use of condoms but sex workers said his concession, directed at infected prostitutes, demonstrated both his prejudice and stark removal from reality. In a book-long interview entitled Light of the World to be published on Tuesday, the 83-year-old German pontiff suggests […]

Guy Dinmore and Andrew Jack

The Telegraph (United Kingdom) Pope’s condom comments welcomed by campaign groups

  Catholic reformers and groups working to combat HIV have welcomed remarks by Pope Benedict that the use of condoms might not always be wrong. The Pope said their use might be justified on a case by case basis to prevent the spread of HIV/Aids. The remarks, due to be published in a book next […]

CHANNEL 4 NEWS Pope condones condoms to stop AIDS

  The Pope says the use of condoms may sometimes be justified to stop the spread of AIDS and in other situations – a “welcome” clarification, says one young Catholic who spoke to Channel 4 News. In a book to be published this week, Pope Benedict cites the example of use of condoms by male […]

The Telegraph (United Kingdom) Confusion over Pope’s condom views after he says they are acceptable in ‘certain cases’

  In a book to be published this week, Benedict XVI said there could be “justified individual cases” in which condoms could be used, softening Rome’s blanket ban on contraception, one of the most controversial issues facing the Church. “In certain cases, where the intention is to reduce the risk of infection, it can nevertheless […]

Nick Squires and John Bingham

The Hidden Power of the Vatican

  Of bekijk de flash versie. This 36-minute Dutch documentary reflects on the Vatican’s attempts to influence public policy, especially around family planning and abortion, through the abuse of its position at the United Nations. While the commentary is in Dutch, many of the interviews are in English, including those with Dr. Nafis Sadik, a […]

Gideon Levy

TIME Is the Catholic Church’s Argument Against IVF a Bit Holey?

  When biologist Robert Edwards, who perfected in vitro fertilization (IVF) more than 30 years ago, was awarded the Nobel Prize on Oct. 4, public reaction was swift and divided. Many applauded the scientist whose pioneering efforts have made possible the births of more than 4 million children worldwide. But detractors, mostly notably the Vatican, […]

Meredith Melnick

Agence France Presse Empire State Building turns down Mother Teresa tribute

  Managers of the iconic Empire State Building declined Thursday to commemorate what would have been Mother Teresa’s 100th birthday by lighting white and blue bulbs atop the building. At nightfall, the lights on top of the 102-story building will instead be red, white and blue in honor of the 90th anniversary of the women’s […]

FOX News Empire State Building Gains Some Catholic Support for Saying ‘No’ to Mother Teresa

  A steady rain dimmed the view from the top of the Empire State Building early this week, but nothing could dampen the red-hot controversy surrounding the decision by the building’s management not to bathe the skyscraper’s iconic tower in blue and white floodlights to honor the 100th anniversary of the birth of Mother Teresa.On […]

Lauren Green

Wall Street Journal Catholics Split Over Idea of Homage to Mother Teresa

  Some progressive Catholic groups have termed foolish the campaign to light the Empire State Building in honor of the 100th anniversary of Mother Teresa’s birth, prompting the leader of the effort to dismiss his critics as not being true Catholics. The groups—including Catholics for Choice and the National Coalition of American Nuns—sent a letter […]

Michael Howard Saul

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Catholic church, contraception coverage collide

  Thousands of Catholic Church employees in Wisconsin are now eligible for birth control coverage through their health insurance plans, under the budget bill passed by the Legislature last year. But because the church considers artificial contraception “gravely immoral,” at least some of those workers – including non-Catholics – could face sanctions, even termination, if […]

Annysa Johnson

WPFW-FM Jon O’Brien Discusses “Seeing is Believing” on WPFW

  Catholics for Choice President Jon O’Brien discusses the findings of “Seeing is Believing” with MetroWatch host Gloria Minott.  The report looked at how faith-based organizations address HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment. Listen to the interview. Read the report.

Gloria Minott

MANILA STANDARD TODAY Breaking the silence

  It’s unfortunate, one women’s rights campaigner memorably noted, that those who will fight to the death for the rights of the unborn suddenly lose interest once the fetus becomes a baby. As for the mother’s own rights, well, they are often not even in the equation in any discussion of abortion and contraception in […]

Jojo A. Robles

Associated Press Catholic group hails new Omaha abortion clinic

  A national group of Catholics supporting abortion rights has issued a public letter of support for a new abortion clinic opening in Omaha later this year.Saturday’s letter from Catholics for Choice takes issue with Omaha Archbishop George Lucas’ opposition of the Planned Parenthood of the Heartland clinic, saying he’s among a minority of Catholics […]

STAYING ALIVE CAMPAIGN Inside Vienna: Catholics for Condoms

The Staying Alive Campaign’s street team featured the Condoms4Life campaign on its blog.  Watch the video below, and visit the Staying Alive Campaign see the full post. catholics from mtv staying alive on Vimeo.   This video originally appeared at the Staying Alive Campaign blog.

Reuters Women priests and sex abuse not equal crimes: Vatican

  On Thursday, the Vatican issued a document making sweeping revisions to its laws on sexual abuse, extending the period in which charges can be filed against priests in church courts and broadening the use of fast-track procedures to defrock them.But while it dealt mostly with pedophilia, it also codified the “attempted ordination of a […]

Philip Pullella

Inter Press Service Extending the Reach of Safe Abortion

  By 5:00 AM, dozens of women are already lined up outside of this clinic in the Mexican capital. Most come with their mothers, sisters, husbands, friends or boyfriends. A few show up alone. Sitting on the sidewalk, the women and the people accompanying them try to catch a few winks, in spite of the […]

Daniela Pastrana

The Guardian Sister Margaret’s Mercy

Sophia Deboick

Religion News Service Catholic Bishops Leave Civil Rights Group after Kagan Endorsement

  The U.S. Catholic bishops withdrew from a national civil rights coalition on Wednesday (May 19) after the group advocated on behalf of Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan. The Washington-based Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights (LCCR) was founded in 1950 by African American and Jewish leaders to press for the passage of national […]

Daniel Burke

CNN Nun Excommunicated for Approving Life-saving Abortion

It was an agonizing decision for all involved. A 27-year-old pregnant patient at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix, Arizona became gravely ill. Doctors told her unless she aborted her 11-week-old fetus she would likely die. The problem: St. Joseph’s is a Catholic hospital and abortions are largely prohibited. Sister Margaret McBride was […]

Carol Costello

USA TODAY Can Abortion Be Life-saving? Does Mother’s Life Count?

  Here’s a horrific choice: OK an abortion for a pregnant woman facing heart failure or let her die? Now, make that question tougher: You’re a Catholic sister charged with standing for the teachings of the Church in the administration of the biggest hospital in town, one that adheres to Catholic teachings forbidding any cooperation […]

Agence France Presse En Dépit des Préceptes de l’Eglise Catholique, les Femmes Prennent la Pilule

  Cinquante ans après l’arrivée de la pilule sur le marché américain, des millions de femmes dans le monde entier vivent sous l’influence des préceptes de l’Eglise catholique qui leur interdit de la prendre. Mais beaucoup ont cessé depuis longtemps de suivre ces interdits. “Les catholiques utilisent la pilule de la même façon que n’importe […]

Toronto Sun Catholic Group Criticizes PM’s Family Planning Initiative

  The Canadian government’s stance on family planning has come under fire again. This time from Catholics. On Tuesday, a group of pro-choice Catholics penned an open letter to Prime Minister Stephen Harper urging him to “reconsider” his government’s decision to exclude family planning from the G8 initiative on maternal and child health. “Historically Canada […]

Bryn Weiss

Canadian Press Catholic Group Urges PM to Include Abortion in G8 Initiative

  A Catholic group is calling on Prime Minister Stephen Harper to include family planning in a G8 initiative on maternal and child health. In a letter to Harper, the group Catholics for Choice argues that access to abortion services is a basic human right and a matter of social justice. The group adds that […]

Canwest News Service Catholic Group Urges Harper to Include Abortion, Contraception in G8 Policy

  A group of pro-choice Catholics is urging Prime Minister Stephen Harper to include abortion and contraception in his controversial G8 maternal health policy. The American-based organization Catholics for Choice, which has about 100 members in its Canadian branch, has penned a letter to Harper that says Catholics around the world support access to family […]

Meagan Fitzpatrick

MANILA BULLETIN Catholic Group Backs DOH on Condom Use

  A group of Catholics Monday pledged their support to the Department of Health (DoH) particularly on the agency’s stand on condom use. Catholics for Choice president Jon O’ Brien lauded the efforts of Health Secretary Esperanza I. Cabral in promoting condom use, saying it will ‘undoubtedly save lives as we confront the HIV and […]

Jenny Manongdo

PHILIPPINES NEWS AGENCY DOH Secretary Gets Support on Condom Distribution

  Amid strong rejection from Philippine clergies, non-government organization Catholics for Choice offered their group’s support and encouraged Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Esperanza Cabral on her condom distribution efforts. Catholics for Choice President Jon O’ Brien remarked that “Cabral’s efforts will undoubtedly save lives as we confront the HIV and AIDS epidemic.” O’ Brien […]

The Nation Papal Indulgences

  My favorite moment of the whole child abuse scandal in the Catholic Church was when Father Klaus Malangré suggested that Peter Hullermann, the redoubtable German pedophile priest, might be sent to work in a girls’ school. No boys, no molestation. Or, in churchly language, no occasion of sin. Problem solved! Plus, the good father […]

Katha Pollitt

The American Prospect Cracks in the Catholic Armor

Sarah Posner

SWEDEN.GOV Gender Equality and Political Will Crucial in Reducing Maternal Mortality

  Gender equality and sexual and reproductive health and rights are key factors in reducing maternal mortality in the world. Political will, adequate financing and men’s responsibility are other vital elements in reducing the number of women who die during pregnancy, in childbirth and due to unsafe abortions. This was established at a seminar arranged […]

Congressional Quarterly House Democrats Still in Search of Abortion Agreement on Health Care Bill

  To listen to House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer tell it, negotiating with the anti-abortion Democrats led by Michigan’s Bart Stupak is not at the top of his priority list for completing a health care bill. “I’ve had no negotiations with Mr. Stupak,” the Maryland Democrat said Tuesday. “Mr. Stupak came up to me […]

Clea Benson and Edward Epstein

Politico Abortion Could be Health Bill Deal Breaker in House

  House Speaker Nancy Pelosi keeps insisting that the abortion fight isn’t relevant in the health care debate. Try telling that to her rank-and-file. Despite the speaker’s repeated denials, it looks like the final act in the year-long health care fight could once again come down to abortion – so much so that Pelosi invited […]

Patrick O'Connor

Channel News Asia Pro-life Democrats Prepared to Derail Healthcare Legislation over Issue of Abortion

A group of pro-life Democrats in the US House of Representative have said they are prepared to derail the passage of healthcare legislation over the issue of abortion. A dozen Democrats fear that US federal government funds will be used to pay for abortions, if Democrats go ahead with a plan to push a Senate […]

Daniel Ryntjes

Agence France Presse Hands off Health Care, US Catholic Group Tells Bishops

  A US Catholic group on Friday accused Roman Catholic bishops of meddling in health care reforms by making backroom deals to ensure the bill does not allow funding for abortion. “Religious and ethical concerns can legitimately inform public policy, but the bishops have overstepped the mark,” said Jon O’Brien, president of Catholics for Choice. […]

THE STAR-LEDGER N.J. Catholic Leaders Confront Same-sex Marriage, Health Care, Illegal Immigration

  With their high-priority issues prominent on national agendas, members of the clergy have been unusually active in politics. Catholic bishops in New Jersey and elsewhere have been especially vocal on matters such as same-sex marriage, national health care and illegal immigration. Yet polls show that when Catholic bishops press their positions with politicians on […]

Jeff Diamant

NATIONAL RADIO PROJECT ‘Hyde-ing’ the Right to Choose

  While lawmakers in Washington mull over the nuts and bolts of health care reform, advocates are concerned that a woman’s fundamental right to reproductive health services is endangered. On this edition, Stupak, the Hyde Amendment, and religion. We take a look at some of the threats to abortion access, more than thirty-five years after […]

Catholics for Choice