Pope Praises Zambia for Legal Protection of Unborn

Notes Outside-Africa Influences Seeking to Limit Life

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VATICAN CITY, DEC. 22, 2010 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI says that a “source of particular satisfaction” is Zambian law that respects and defends human life from conception.

The Pope affirmed this Dec. 16 in an address to the new ambassador from Zambia to the Holy See, Royson Mabuku Mukwena.

The Holy Father noted the “powerful influences, many from beyond Africa,” that are seeking to limit the right to life, “seeing it as somehow restricting the freedom of others.”

“Yet, for her part,” he said, “the Church affirms that the right to life of the innocent is inviolable, and must take precedence over all other supposed rights.”

The Church thus “draws attention to an objective moral principle, rooted in the natural law,” the Pontiff said — a principle that can be discovered with reason alone, and is “not dependent upon political choices or social consensus.”

“It is greatly to be hoped, Mr. Ambassador, that Zambia will continue to foster due respect for the rights of every human being without exception, in harmony with the duty to protect life from conception to natural death in the manner of a truly Christian country,” he said.

AIDS fight

Benedict XVI went on to note advances in Zambia’s economic situation, which is making funds available for development.

He noted how progress in this regard is being reflected in “lower infant and maternal mortality rates and other areas related to health.”

And he noted satisfaction at the work of the Church in Zambia in “the fields of education, development and health care, especially in the struggle against malaria and HIV/AIDS.”

“Be assured,” the Pontiff told the ambassador, “that she will continue to be actively involved in promoting the health of the population with a strong emphasis on prevention through education. Long-lasting health improvements will be achieved through formation in moral responsibility and solidarity, and in particular through faithfulness in marriage. 

“In this way, the Church works to encourage a greater sense of integrity on the part of individuals and the building of a society which truly cherishes life, the family and the wider community.”

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On ZENIT’s Web page:

Full text: www.zenit.org/article-31279?l=english

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