Blog Post

Bishop: Contraception Laid Groundwork for House of Horrors

Bishop James D. Conley of the Diocese of Lincoln, Nebraska says the link between abortion and infanticide isn't the only issue raised by the Kermit Gosnell "House of Horrors" case, but also the contraceptive mentality that made it possible.

bishop conleyIn a column appearing in the Southern Nebraska Register, Bishop Conley says in a culture where abortion becomes "backup birth control" and most women who seek abortions are already using contraception, the horrors perpetuated in the clinic run by Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell are the logical outcome of the abortion mentality.

"But they are also, in a deeper sense, the result of what Blessed John Paul II called the 'contraceptive mentality',” the bishop writes.

"Many people wrongly believe contraception prevents abortion. This is not borne out by statistics, or by careful thinking about the issues. Research shows that contraception leads to riskier behavior, more unplanned pregnancies, and consequently, more abortion. When contraception fails – as it inevitably does – couples are tempted to eliminate the 'unwanted' life."

As a result, Gosnell looked at the babies whose spines he snipped and whose tiny hands and feet he kept in jars in his clinic and saw only "unwanted" lives and thus the need to eliminate these "burdens."

"Most people do not share Gosnell’s ruthlessness. But many in our society seem to share his attitude: that human life is sometimes an inconvenient and unnecessary burden, rather than a sacred gift from God," the bishop writes.

"This is the 'contraceptive mentality' that Blessed John Paul II saw as a root cause of abortion. When we see any human life as a troublesome burden we must manage, rather than a sacred gift entrusted to our care, there is a temptation to get rid of the burden by any means necessary."

The case of Kermit Gosnell suggests that society's view of human life is deeply wrong, the bishop writes.

"It suggests that a culture of contraception cannot avoid becoming a 'culture of death' – in which some lives are seen not as gifts, but as burdens."

As for the media's reluctance to cover the case, Bishop Conley rightly points out that while the press is not known for shrinking away from violent stories, they want no parts of the Gosnell case because it raises deeper questions they don't want to face.

"They shy away from suggesting that abortion might lead to infanticide. They don’t dare to ask whether the 'contraceptive mentality' makes us callous toward life. The popular media will not take the risk of raising these more fundamental questions by publicizing Gosnell’s trial."

This is something the faithful must do instead, the bishop says.

"That is why we must raise awareness of this case, to help the world see the consequences of contraception and abortion."

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