An Irish bishop said he hopes Pope Francis’ August visit can help bring healing after a referendum that will pave the way for abortion on demand up to 12 weeks’ gestation.
In a May 25 referendum, voters opted by a margin of 66.4 percent to 33.6 percent to remove the right to life of the unborn from the constitution.
Bishop Brendan Leahy of Limerick told worshiper May 26 that the result is “deeply regrettable and chilling” for those who voted “no”.
He said “the final result of the referendum is the will of the majority of the people, though not all the people.”
“It is a vote, of course, that does not change our position. Our message is one of love: love for all, love for life, for those with us today, for those in the womb,” he said.
Referring to Pope Francis’ Aug. 25-26 visit, Bishop Leahy said: “In August, we will unite as a family, to renew that sense of family when the World Meeting of Families comes here. We have the privilege of Pope Francis coming, and today I cannot think of his visit being more timely: to come here and remind us of the importance of family, of the love we have of family, of the reality that, yes, families get bruised sometimes, but they should never be broken.
“So we go forward to that moment, we look forward to the healing it will bring and how we will be renewed again in love and care for one another,” he said.
Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin insisted that “the Irish church after the referendum must renew its commitment to support life”.