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Reviews | Biden, abortion and the Catholic Church

These measures would prevent most abortions in the United States.

In addition, free home examinations by a public health nurse for pregnant women and visits to mothers and babies in the first six months of life would help prevent the tragedy of poor maternal and child health outcomes. associated with race and amplified by poverty.

Caroline Foley
El Sobrante, California.
The author is a registered nurse.

For the editor:

D “Between the bishops and Joe Biden(chronicle, June 23):

Ross Douthat seems to be using the Catholic Eucharist as a political football. His question is whether the time has come for the American bishops to use it to fight against abortion.

Pope Francis has described Holy Communion as the “bread of sinners”. The contrast to Mr Douthat’s conservative view that this is an award to be defended against those deemed unworthy could not be more stark.

It goes to the heart of the serious differences between Catholics on the meaning of their faith; whether it emphasizes inclusion and mercy, in keeping with the Jesus of the Gospels, or whether it maintains the defensive stance of exclusivity that Douthat describes on issues beyond abortion.

Mr. Douthat frames his argument against abortion as a crusade against moral decay without mentioning women’s health as part of the problem. The church continues to refuse to admit women to priesthood and other frontline religious roles, and presumably the celibate male clergy dictating reproductive health policies will continue to invite accusations of hypocrisy.

Michael Crowley
Washington

For the editor:

Ross Douthat says denying Communion to politicians who support abortion rights is a “pastoral act”. Further, he states that no Republican failure to fund health care has had the “deadly consequence” of taking millions of innocent lives through abortion. It is a myopic view.

What about the Republican-backed gag rule that withdrew funding from health care organizations in developing countries if abortion services were mentioned? This has affected not only contraceptive services, but also general health care, including the treatment and prevention of HIV-AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.