The bishop of the Diocese of Alabany attempted to convince New York Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo not to sign a bill that removes all restrictions on abortion in the state, but Cuomo signed it anyway.
In an open letter in The Evangelist, the Most Rev. Edward B. Scharfenberger condemned Cuomo’s support of abortion before the governor signed the Reproductive Health Act (RHA), which repealed the state’s 24-week abortion ban, among other things. Scharfenberger penned the open letter ahead of Cuomo’s signing ceremony. (RELATED: New York Passes Bill On Roe V Wade Anniversary Casting Abortion As A Woman’s Right)
“Although in your recent State of the State address you cited your Catholic faith and said we should ‘stand with Pope Francis,’ your advocacy of extreme abortion legislation is completely contrary to the teachings of our pope and our Church,” Scharfenberger said. “Once truth is separated from fiction and people come to realize the impact of the bill, they will be shocked to their core. By that time, however, it may be too late to save the countless lives that will be lost or spare countless women lifelong regret.”
Today I signed the #ReproductiveHealthAct — codifying Roe v. Wade into state law and protecting women’s reproductive rights no matter what the federal government does.
This is a victory for all New Yorkers. pic.twitter.com/90oMDDnCwV
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) January 23, 2019
Cuomo has previously sought to align himself with the pope because of their shared opposition to the death penalty. (RELATED: Is The Pope Right That The Death Penalty Is Against The Gospel?)
The bishop said the recently signed legislation “threatens to rupture the communion between the Catholic faith and those who support the RHA” because of the bill’s “aggressive extremism.”
“It is very difficult to understand how you can align yourself with Pope Francis and so vehemently advocate such profoundly destructive legislation,” Scharfenberger said. “I find myself wondering how it can be viewed as ‘progress’ to have gone from a society working to make abortion ‘rare’ to one that urges women to ‘shout your abortion’ as some advocates of this bill boldly announce.”