LifeNews.com January 2, 2009:
Pope Benedict XVI has a special message for the world with the start of the New Year and it focuses on condemning abortion and birth control. The pope urged efforts to end poverty across the globe but said those efforts must also be life-affirming for women and unborn children.
The leader of the Catholic Church said poverty is often regarded by abortion advocates as a consequence of demographic change
That's the claim that there are too many people on the planet despite evidence that several areas of the world are experiencing underpopulation.
"For this reason, there are international campaigns afoot to reduce birth-rates, sometimes using methods that respect neither the dignity of the woman, nor the right of parents to choose responsibly how many children to have," the pope said.
"Graver still, these methods often fail to respect even the right to life," he added.
"The extermination of millions of unborn children, in the name of the fight against poverty, actually constitutes the destruction of the poorest of all human beings," the pope said.
The pope pointed out that population growth has led to a result in poverty, saying that, in 1981, around 40% of the world's population was below the threshold of absolute poverty and indicating that percentage has been reduced by half despite population growth in some of the worst areas.
"This goes to show that resources to solve the problem of poverty do exist, even in the face of an increasing population," the pontiff said.
"Moreover, among the most developed nations, those with higher birth-rates enjoy better opportunities for development. In other words, population is proving to be an asset, not a factor that contributes to poverty," Pope Benedict concluded.