Karl Cardinal Lehmann Karl Cardinal Lehmann
Function:
Bishop of Mainz, Germany
Title:
Cardinal Priest of San Leone I
Birthdate:
May 16, 1936
Country:
Germany
Elevated:
Feb 21, 2001
More information:
www.catholic-hierarchy.org
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English Defending his Position in German Abortion Counseling
Sept 18, 2004
Cardinal Karl Lehmann told reporters that he did not regret his opposition to the Holy See on the question of abortion counseling in Germany.

(CWNews.com, 22 February 2001) Cardinal Karl Lehmann, whose elevation to the College of Cardinals was the most surprising note of the February 2001 consistory, told reporters that he did not regret his opposition to the Holy See on the question of abortion counseling in Germany.

When Pope John Paul II named the Bishop of Mainz as a future cardinal, in a belated announcement on January 28, many Vatican-watchers reacted with surprise. As president of the German bishops’ conference, Cardinal Lehmann had been at odds with the Pope on the role of Church-backed counseling centers, which were providing certificates used to fulfill the legal requirements for abortion. Some German bishops — including Cardinal Lehmann — had resisted the Pope’s directive to cease issuing those certificates. The  German prelates argued that by involving themselves in the process of counseling women, the Church-backed centers might discourage abortions. The Pope argued that by filling out the required certificate, the Church agencies were cooperating in the process of procuring abortions.

Responding to reporters’ suggestions that he had been a “rebel” in these discussions, the new cardinal said that such a reading of the situation was “completely foreign to me.” He added, “It is true that I always try to establish dialogue with modern culture, since I see this as an important challenge for the Christian faith.”
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