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Concerning Pat Lowry's pro-life bumper sticker editorial, the Catholic Church has always held that all human life is sacred and must be treated with dignity and respect. The Catholic Catechism, says "From its conception, the child has the right to life. Direct abortion, that is, abortion willed as an end or as a means, is a 'criminal' practice, gravely contrary to the moral law. The Church imposes the canonical penalty of excommunication for this crime against human life. Because it should be treated as a person from conception, the embryo must be defended in its integrity, cared for and healed like every other human being."

So as to the point of the bumper sticker -- "You can't be both Catholic and pro-choice" -- is correct. Of course in America, "pro-choice" is a euphemism for the right of a pregnant woman to end the humane life in her womb. It is morally wrong for Catholics to promote, encourage, support or participate in such a killing of life.

Catholics for Choice is not sponsored by any arm of the Catholic church. It is not a Catholic organization, actually it is anti-Catholic. Are there Catholics who believe they can support the killing of humans in early development and yet remain Catholic? Yes. It may be that they did not expand their religious education beyond the eighth grade or they are inactive Catholics or the church may have failed to educate them or they simply are interpreting moral laws to satisfy their own ego or appetites. Regardless, we are a church of sinners, and because of God's great love for us there is forgiveness and healing. Jesus entrusted the Catholic church to protect and preach his proclamations, no matter which millennium, the engineered social changes, or who doesn't like it.

I also believe for many, the support for abortion, is out of compassion for the social and physical pain and suffering of the pregnant woman. They see death of the baby as the answer to these problems. Recognizing that life can be hard, we love them, give them and their babies support and more solely, give them the "peace of Christ," which comes from making the right moral choice in giving life to a new soul created by God.

Pat Lowry asked the questions: "How can one compromise such a sacred principle? How can the practice of situational ethics offer any credibility for a moral position?" The answer is easy: There is no moral compromise or situational ethics when I vote for a man that is against abortion except of rape, incest or life of the mother. It is the difference between moral reality and political reality. In this case I maintain my moral integrity by choosing the lesser of the two evils.

The exceptions of rape, incest and life of the mother make up for only 2 percent of the 1.3 million abortions done annually in the United States. If we can save 1.274 million babies from death, then we'll see what we can do for the mothers and babies to reduce the numbers that are left.

Michel Werth

Hays