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Abortion, Forgiveness and World Youth Day

A week of forgiveness for abortion? The Catholic church calls it World Youth Day. I'm skeptical.

I wouldn’t say I’m terribly religious, but even I was surprised by this announcement from The Vatican: in celebration of World Youth Day, anyone who's had an abortion can confess and be forgiven by the church. Come one, come all excommunicated sinners!

Apparently, this has been going on every year since 1984. For one week, women who've gotten abortions were able to come forth and be forgiven at one of over 200 confession booths in Madrid (it's in a different city/country each year). The church’s World Youth Day came to Madrid at an odd time: Spain’s youth unemployment rate just reached 40 percent. It’s also interesting because abortion is such a tricky subject in Spain: it’s legal but only up until 14 weeks into the term.

Maybe all of this is a sign of a more liberal church? Hmm, doubtful. The Pope gave his two cents on gay rights and marriage as well (plenty of demonstrators attended, and it did get ugly at certain points). Personally, I think the six-day "celebration" is just a yearly ploy to get Catholic church's numbers up -- I hear their membership is dipping lately. If any women were questioning their faith and abortions, they sure aren’t now.

Ok, ok, I’m making light of a serious subject. This is a huge success for pro-choicers out there. Good on the church for offering this option, however short a time span it may be.

I don’t mean to get all political and religious all of a sudden (and Holly always tries to avoid the topic of religion, but hey, it’s an interesting turn of events. What do you guys think?

-- Jack