Statement Regarding Pope Francis’ Abortion Announcement for the Jubilee Year of MercyBy: Bishop James V. Johnston Jr. Springfield MO
The priests of the Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau have had the faculty not only to absolve the sin of abortion, but also to remove any other obstacles such as an ecclesiastical censure so that an individual may be fully reconciled to God and to the Church. This authorization applies to members of our diocese, as well as those from other dioceses who are actually present within our diocese. The priests of the Diocese have had this faculty granted to them by the bishop for decades. While the teachings of the Church are consistent, the faculties of some priests may be different in other parts of the world. The recent comments of Pope Francis extending priests’ authority for the upcoming Jubilee Year of Mercy is meant to facilitate more accessible reconciliation, healing, and mercy throughout the universal Church. This is consistent with his pastoral approach on many issues. In relation to our own priests, it actually extends their faculty to absolve and remit penalties to anyone seeking forgiveness, anywhere, during the Jubilee Year of Mercy.
“The Holy Father has extended the faculty to absolve the sin of abortion to all priests for
the upcoming Jubilee Year of Mercy,” said The Most Reverend James V. Johnston. “Normally reserved to the bishop, it has already been the practice in the Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau, and in much of the Church in America, that priests have this authorization.”
Women in the Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau, and others involved in an
abortion, who have received valid absolution for the grave sin of abortion should be
assured of the mercy previously extended to them in the Sacrament of Penance and Reconciliation.
The Diocese offers spiritual support and counseling through its Office of Family Ministries and the services of Project Rachel. Anyone wounded by abortion is invited to contact the Office of Family Ministries at (417) 866-0841 or via Email to firstname.lastname@example.org. More information on Project Rachel may be found at hopeafterabortion.com.
Media contact: Leslie Anne Eidson, (417) 866-0841, email@example.com.
“Year of Mercy Jubliee: Pope Gives Priests Authority to Absolve Sin of Abortion,”
“Pope Formally Announces Extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy,”