Pope Francis Decries Abortion and Euthanasia as Treating Human Life Like ‘Waste’

The Pope added that both abortion and euthanasia “deny hope” by negating “the hope of children who bring us the life that keeps us going and the hope that is in the roots that the elderly give us.”

Pope Francis addresses participants in the plenary assembly of the Pontifical Academy for Life in the Vatican’s Clementine Hall, Sept. 27, 2021.
Pope Francis addresses participants in the plenary assembly of the Pontifical Academy for Life in the Vatican’s Clementine Hall, Sept. 27, 2021. (photo: Vatican Media. / Vatican Media)

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis decried abortion and euthanasia in a speech Monday in which he said that today’s “throwaway culture” leads to the killing of children and discarding of the elderly.

“There is the discarding of children that we do not want to welcome with the law of abortion that sends them to the dispatcher and kills them directly. And today this has become a ‘normal’ method, a practice that is very ugly. It is really murder,” Pope Francis said Sept. 27.

Vatican Media.

Vatican Media.

In a live-streamed address to members of the Pontifical Academy for Life, the Pope said that to understand what abortion is, it helps to pose two questions. 

“Is it right to eliminate, to take a human life to solve a problem? Is it right to hire a hitman to solve a problem? That’s what abortion is,” the Pope commented.

Vatican Media.

Vatican Media.

Pope Francis said that the elderly today were also viewed as “waste material” and “of no use” in today’s throwaway culture.

“But they are wisdom. They are the roots of wisdom of our civilization, and this civilization discards them,” he said.

Vatican Media.

Vatican Media.

“Yes, in many parts there is also the law of ‘hidden euthanasia,’ as I call it. It is the one that makes people say: ‘Medications are expensive, only half of them are needed,’ and this means shortening the life of the elderly.”

The Pope added that both abortion and euthanasia “deny hope” by negating “the hope of children who bring us the life that keeps us going and the hope that is in the roots that the elderly give us.”

Vatican Media.

Vatican Media.

Pope Francis underlined that this was not a path for Catholic universities or hospitals to follow. 

“This is a road on which we cannot go: the road of discarding,” he said.

The speech marked the second time this month that Pope Francis has spoken out strongly about abortion. 

Vatican Media.

Vatican Media.

During a press conference on his return flight from Slovakia on Sept. 15, the Pope repeatedly said that “abortion is murder” and compared the acceptance of abortion to “accepting daily murder.”

The Pontifical Academy for Life was founded by Pope John Paul II in 1994. It is dedicated to promoting the Church’s consistent life ethic. 

This week, the academy is holding its plenary assembly in Rome, focused on the pandemic, bioethics, and the future of public health.

Vatican Media.

Vatican Media.

“I entrust to the Virgin Mary the work of this assembly and also the whole of your activity as an Academy for the defense and promotion of life,” Pope Francis said in his speech in the Vatican’s Clementine Hall.

‘Tearing Us Apart’ book cover, with authors Alexandra DeSanctis and Ryan T. Anderson

Tearing Us Apart: How Abortion Harms Everything and Solves Nothing (July 2)

Roe v. Wade has been struck down. Abortion on demand is no longer the de facto law of the land across the United States. The question of the legality of abortion has returned to each state and the democratic process. The work to protect the unborn and create a better environment for women and families doesn’t end now. Instead it must continue with even greater vigor. Our guests Ryan Anderson, head of the Ethics and Public Policy Center, and Alexandra DeSanctis, a National Review journalist, know that reality well. Their newly released book, Tearing Us Apart: How Abortion Harms Everything and Solves Nothing, makes the case that abortion hurts more than simply an unborn child. Abortion harms society far more than it helps it. They join us today on Register Radio.