UNITED NATIONS, October 21, 2013 ( – Archbishop Francis Chullikatt, the representative of the Holy See to the United Nations, told the UN on Friday that recommendations promoting ‘safe abortion’ and homosexuality are ‘particularly reprehensible.’ 

The Archbishop called the promotion of abortion and homosexuality “a disservice to the best interests of children” that represent “only the opinions of the Committee” and lack “all force of judicial precedence.”

In light of the Vatican’s diplomatic approach at the United Nations, the condemnations are being seen as a particularly strong rebuke.


The problematic UN committee’s recommendations, as laid out by Archbishop Chullikatt, are that:

… States submit children to education and direction on sexual health, contraception and so-called “safe” abortion without the consent of their parents, caregiver or guardian; abortion be promoted by States as a family planning method, and so-called “sexual and reproductive health information or services” be provided by States, irrespective of providers’ conscientious objections.

The Vatican representative commented, “Such recommendations are particularly reprehensible. No abortion is ever ‘safe’ because it kills the life of the child and harms the mother.”

The Archbishop also criticized the committee’s use of the expressions “sexual orientation” and “gender identity,” noting there is “no international juridical consensus” on their meaning, and are “used spuriously and very unfortunately in these Comments.”

Archbishop Chullikatt strongly urged the Committee to revise the comments to bring it in line with the Convention on the Rights of the Child, “which affirms the right to life of the child, ‘before as well as after birth.’”

Peter Smith, a long-time pro-life activist at the United Nations representing the UK-based Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, called Archbishop Chullikatt’s speech “marvelous.” Smith added that the “speech was very pro-life and pro-family and took a swipe at the crooked compliance committee that oversees the Convention on the Rights of the Child.”

Among the strongest of the pro-life and pro-family statements were these:

Indeed, without life, all other rights are meaningless.

It follows that each child must be accorded in the first place the right to be born.

This is a right, moreover, which must be protected equally – without discrimination on any grounds, including those of sex or disability or policies dictated by eugenics. Thus, pre-natal diagnosis undertaken for the purpose of deciding whether or not the baby will be permitted to be born is inconsistent with the Convention…

The unborn baby is a member of our human family and does not belong to a ‘sub-category of human beings’.

While protection of the rights of children begins with full respect for children themselves at all stages in their development, from conception onwards, parents, for their part, possess an indispensable role in their formation and education, and the family is the proper place for their development

Defence of the rights of the child requires, as its necessary corollary, defence of the family, for which the societal benefits are obvious: it is the family, not the State, that houses our children, feeds them, instructs them, and raises the next generation of society.

The Vatican statement also stressed the rights of parents in educating their children and noted that this primacy is important “especially in the important arena of religious liberty which includes human sexuality, marriage and the statute of the family.”

Finally, Archbishop Chullikatt also specifically referenced “home schooling,” which he said is part of a right of parents in international law to choose the schooling for their children through which to develop their religious and moral convictions.

See the Archbishop’s full intervention here.


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