Benedict XVI tries to exert influence on questions of abortion and gay marriage
[Translation of an article from El País of Madrid, Spain, for October 28. See original article here.]
By Juan Arias
Three days before the Brazilian presidential election to choose a successor to President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, in a campaign strongly dominated by debate of a religious nature, Pope Benedict XVI has thrown fuel on the flames with an address at the Vatican in which he asks the bishops to influence the faithful “with a moral judgement in politial questions.” His message could influence the vote on Sunday.
The theme of decriminalization of abortion has been a thorn in the side for both candidates, who were charged by Catholics and evangelicals alike with being in favor of abortion. Out of fear of losing the votes of Christians (60 percent of them Catholics, 30 percent evangelicals), Lula’s candidate, Dilma Rousseff, had to back down and with a letter to Catholics and evangelicals promised solemnly that if she becomes president she will not allow legislation on the questions of abortion and same-sex marriage. Rousseff had begun the campaign arguing for the decrimininaliztion of abortion as a question of public health. (more…)