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Jan 21, 2020

All About Being Pro Life: Abortion after Rape, Excommunicating Politicians, and Single Motherhood

Fr. Josh Johnson

In this week’s pro life themed episode, Father Josh addresses questions about abortion after rape, the often-misunderstood Church teaching on excommunication, and a unique challenge of single motherhood. 

Snippet from the Show 

Any person who exists inside or outside of the womb is willed by God into existence for all eternity. There are no accidental humans and no mistakes, no matter how you were conceived.


Glory Story (2:39) 

Feedback (6:16)

Rape and Abortion (10:50)

My name is Brianna and I live in Kyle, Texas! I absolutely love your podcast and a lot of your episodes have brought so much clarity to my life and helped me grow in my faith, so thank you! 

My question is, with new abortion laws being made, particularly making abortion illegal for women who have been raped, how do we react to such situations with grace? I’m honestly torn on how to feel about this issue because as a woman, I couldn’t imagine being raped and then having to bear that child. I feel women may view having to give birth as a punishment, instead of a good thing. I was wondering what your views on this very sensitive issue are? 

Thank you for your time! 

– Brianna

Excommunication of Pro-Choice Politicians (19:40)

First, I just wanted to thank you for the work you are doing with your podcast. So many times it has felt like you have been talking directly to me. I am so thankful for all you are doing and for your YES to be a priest and help so many strive to become saints. Your podcast has been such an instrumental part of my faith development especially through this past year when I first fell in love with the Lord and my Catholic Faith. 

My question for you deals with excommunication, especially in regards to public officials who claim to be Catholic yet condone and encourage grave evils like abortion. I am a high school teacher at a Catholic high school in Michigan and I am getting a lot of questions from my students as to why an official like Andrew Cuomo is not being excommunicated from the Church after he championed a law like the “Reproductive Health” Act. For as much as I love the discussion and time to discuss the evils of abortion this topic brings, I find myself unable to articulate what the actual teaching on excommunication is or how to appropriately respond to the question a student posed, “How can the church excommunicate someone when we are told that there is nothing God cannot and does not long to forgive. Isn’t excommunicating someone a human judging another and condemning them to Hell?” I understand excommunication is supposed to be used as a call to repentance, but I do not think my explanation to my student was anywhere near adequate for a complete understanding and I didn’t want to fall into a trap of letting my anger over the evil of the law get in the way of the truth of the church’s teaching. Any guidance you could provide would be greatly appreciated!! 

Thank you so much for your time. I’m really working being more committed to praying intentionally everyday and keeping you and all of our amazing priests in my prayers has been such a great motivator. It’s a work in progress but please know I’m trying. Thanks again! 

– Anonymous

A Question from a Single Mom (29:57)

Hey Father Josh!

I love listening to your podcast! Your answers are always so helpful and have gotten me back in touch with my faith on a daily basis. Love listening while I’m doing chores around the house or in the car! My question has to do with children born outside of marriage. I became pregnant with my daughter when I was 19 (outside of marriage). It was a moment of weakness for me, and one that I have been to confession for and am still forgiving myself for. When I found out, there was never a question of “What am I going to do?” I knew I was having my baby and abortion was never a thought in my mind. I knew it would be hard, but I come from a long line of strong women and I can do all things through Christ. I wanted to get your opinion on how to address this topic when my daughter is older. I’m raising her Catholic but I don’t ever want her to think that she was a mistake. I also don’t want to be a hypocrite when teaching my daughter about our faith and its views on sexual relationships.

Peace and love always,

– Mahkayla

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