Archbishop Jose Antonio Eguren of Piura and Tumbes encouraged Peruvians to defend life from the moment of conception, noting that when human rights are separated from natural law, they lose their meaning.
During Mass on the Solemnity of the Birth of John the Baptist, Archbishop Eguren said the precursor of the Lord “was sanctified in the womb of his mother St. Elizabeth by Christ himself, who was already incarnated in Mary.”
“All of this tells us that from the moment of conception there is a human person who has the sacred and inviolable right to life,” he continued.
All Peruvians “should do everything possible to defend the unborn, to create a greater awareness of the sacred value of life from conception to natural death, to convince everyone to reject abortion, which is the most abominable crime of all because it is the murder of an innocent life. Abortion is the greatest destroyer of peace,” he said.
St. John the Baptist, Archbishop Eguren said, was “the prophet devoted to the truth.” In the same way, Peruvians should “generously work for the defense of the truth about the human person, his dignity and freedom in Christ, who is the new and perfect man, in full fidelity and in tune with the Social Doctrine of the Church.”
The defense and promotion of human rights must be all inclusive and not selective, as some people believe, “beginning with the right to life, which is the first and fundamental right upon which all others are based,” he added.
“Human rights are based on the natural law inscribed in the heart of man, and therefore they are present in all cultures and civilizations.”
“To remove human rights from this context would mean to restrict their scope and to give in to a relativistic understanding, according to which the meaning and interpretation of rights could vary and their universality be denied in the name of different cultural, political, social and even religious contexts,” the archbishop said.