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Saturday, June 9, 2007

The "City of Brotherly Love?"

Cardinal Rejects Pro-Choice City Label

Philadelphia Council Adopts Resolution for New Status

PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania, JUNE 8, 2007 ( Cardinal Justin Rigali issued a statement against the city council's new resolution to adopt the status of a "pro-choice city."

Cardinal Rigali, the archbishop of Philadelphia, in Thursday's statement called upon "all people of good will to join me in rejecting the divisive and erroneous label that Philadelphia City Council has forced upon the citizens of Philadelphia today."

"I reject the resolution because so many heroic efforts are made continually to safeguard unborn children from the evil of abortion, to protect vulnerable children and families and to defend all women and men in crisis," he said.

Cardinal Rigali, who is also the chairman of the U.S. bishops' committee for pro-life activities, continued: "In a city where so many people vigorously defend life at every stage, proclaiming Philadelphia 'pro-choice' is inconsistent with reality. It unfairly saddles those who support life at all stages with this shameful label.

"Philadelphia is experiencing homicide at a record rate; now is not the time to affirm the false choice of procured abortion. Rather, all residents should rally around the common cause of eliminating the hopelessness that generates violence.

"Everyone deserves to be born and live in a society that builds conditions conducive to life, not despair and death."

The 72-year-old prelate added: "The dialogue between individuals and groups working to build a just society is ill-served by City Council's unproductive resolution.

"I commend those members who opposed this resolution. Council members who voted for it should apologize to the thousands of Philadelphians they have offended today, and turn their energies toward improving the quality of life and the safeguarding of all residents."

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