“Despicable” as Pope Francis defines surrogacy which he called on Monday for a global ban, saying carrying another woman’s child is a threat for global peace and human dignity.
The Pope cited the Israel-Hamas war during his New Year’s diplomats at the Vatican which tackles the issue of migration, climate crises, and the “immoral” production of nuclear and conventional weapons, the Pope delivered a list of the ills afflicting humanity and the increasing violation of international humanitarian law that allows them.
The Pope emphasized additional concerns that he considered threats to peace and human dignity, addressing issues such as surrogacy. He advocated for the protection of the unborn child’s life, emphasizing the need to prevent their suppression or exploitation as commodities.
“I consider despicable the practice of so-called surrogate motherhood, which represents a grave violation of the dignity of the woman and the child, based on the exploitation of situations of the mother’s material needs,” he said.
“A child is always a gift and never the basis of a commercial contract,” he added.
Pope Francis expressed a desire for the global community to take steps toward universally prohibiting this practice. The Catholic Church has consistently opposed surrogacy and in vitro fertilization, contending that these methods depersonalize conception and involve the disposal of embryos, a stance it equates to abortion.
In several countries like Belgium, the Netherlands, the UK, Canada, Brazil, and Colombia, “altruistic” surrogacy, a practice where a woman carries a child for another individual or couple without financial compensation, except for essential expenses, is legally permitted.
Surrogacy is prohibited in Italy, and compensated surrogacy faces restrictions or is illegal in many European countries. However, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Portugal, and several other nations permit surrogacy under specific conditions. Paid surrogacy is permitted in certain European countries like Ukraine, Russia, and Belarus.
Individuals from Europe, including same-sex couples, frequently engage surrogate mothers in the United States and Canada to have children, although some American states have banned this practice.