Catholic violations of government. CATHOLICS FOR CHOICE SPEAK OUT Pro-choice Catholics spo

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Catholic violations of government. CATHOLICS FOR CHOICE SPEAK OUT Pro-choice Catholics spoke out against the pope's recent statements against abortion in health care reform and abortion policy at the U.N population conference scheduled for Cairo in September. "The Vatican cannot be allowed to set policy for the whole world," said Frances Kissling, the group's president. Within the last few weeks the Vatican has accused pro-choice supporters of "cultural imperialism," "abortion blackmail," and "biological colonialism." "As Catholics, we are embarrassed by both the viciousness of comments by Church officials and by the way they misrepresent and misstate ... what the U.N. document says," Kissling said. "The fact of the matter is that women want to have control of their fertility. They want modern, safe contraception." POPE JOHN PAUL - THE FALL TOUR On July 12 the Vatican announced that Pope John Paul II will address the United Nations and hold three stadium masses in an October visit to the United States focusing on "the family." The four-day visit, the pope's first overseas trip since he injured his leg in a fall in April, will run from October 20 to 23. He will address the U.N. General Assembly on October 21. The pope will celebrate mass at Giants Stadium in New Jersey, and at Shea Stadium in New York and will visit nearby Newark, New Jersey. The visit will end in Baltimore, where he will hold an outdoor mass at Camden Yards, the Baltimore Orioles's stadium, before returning to Rome later in the day. This will be the 5th visit to the U.S. for this pope. Pope watchers wonder if it is a coincidence that the pontiff is visiting during the height of the election season. U.S. WILL NOT GIVE IN TO VATICAN On July 12, Timothy Wirth, undersecretary of state for global affairs, said Washington "will continue to pursue" wording in a declaration to be issued at September's United Nations Conference on Population and Development in Cairo. The disputed wording says women should have access to "the full range of reproductive health care services" including abortion. Last month, President Bill Clinton and Pope John Paul II discussed their dispute over the U.N. conference declarations when Clinton visited the pontiff at the Vatican. "Clearly, the Catholic Church will never agree" with the U.S. position as expressed in the draft declaration, Wirth said. "That, however, is the policy of the United States of America, and it is one we will continue to pursue. . . "We also believe very strongly that women ought to have the choice about the size of their families and the spacing of their children, and we believe very firmly that women ought to be empowered in every way possible so that they might have the ability to make these decisions themselves." Wirth said Washington hopes to "come out of Cairo with a very firm and broad document that is a ringing endorsement of the need to stabilize population and also a ringing endorsement about the power and opportunity of women as change-agents in the world."


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