(CNSNews.com) – The Catholic Church’s Atlanta archdiocese said that Catholic parishes, missions, and schools that support the Susan G. Komen for the Cure should no longer do so because of the group’s reestablished partnership with the country’s largest abortion-provider, Planned Parenthood, “a group whose goals and activities are in direct opposition to the teachings of the Catholic Church on the sanctity of human life.”
In an Oct. 1 “Statement on Non-Support for Komen Foundation” to priests, deacons, sisters, brothers, principals, business managers, parish secretaries and chancery staff, the archdiocese said: “Until recently, donations to the greater Atlanta affiliate of the Komen fund did not constitute a direct cooperation with evil, because none of the money they raised went to Planned Parenthood. However, the local affiliate was involved in recent events which had the Komen fund initially ceasing all assistance to Planned Parenthood and then reversing itself.”
“According to news reports and Facebook postings by Komen Atlanta, they worked behind the scenes to encourage the national Komen office to resume funding for Planned Parenthood – this public declaration of support for Planned Parenthood is an occasion for scandal,” reads the statement.
“In light of these actions by both the national and the local Komen fund, the Archdiocese of Atlanta has reached the conclusion that support for Susan G. Komen for the Cure by Catholic parishes/missions/schools should be brought to an end,” says the statement. “We no longer support the Komen fund in any manner because of this very public display of pro-abortion conformity. We found the action of the Komen fund disappointing, discouraging, and we do not see how continued support is possible at this time.”
The archdiocese of Atlanta is headed by Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory. There are an estimated 900,000 Catholics in the archdiocese, which covers 69 counties in northern Georgia. There are 84 Catholic churches in the archdiocese and 18 Catholic schools.
The Susan G. Komen for the Cure national group, which is dedicated solely to battling breast cancer and finding a cure for the disease, decided in January to stop its annual donations to Planned Parenthood, which totaled around $680,000. That decision was highly criticized by liberal activists and the Komen national office quickly decided to reinstate its donations to the abortion provider.
According to its own fact sheets, Planned Parenthood performed 985,731 abortions between 2008 and 2010 – 329,445 in 2010 alone. Planned Parenthood also receives taxpayer money and got $487.4 million in 2009-2010.
In its statement, the archdiocese further said, “The Archdiocese of Atlanta acknowledges the beneficial work of Susan G. Komen for the Cure in the area of breast cancer education, screening, treatment, and programs for those in financial need. We are also aware of the concerns raised regarding grants given by some Komen affiliates to Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest provider and promoter of abortion, a group whose goals and activities are in direct opposition to the teachings of the Catholic Church on the sanctity of human life.”
In response to the Catholic archdiocese’s position, the Komen Atlanta office issued a statement saying that it, “Did not ‘work behind the scenes to encourage the national Komen office to resume funding for Planned Parenthood;’ and Did not make any ‘public declaration of support for Planned Parenthood.’”
Komen Atlanta also said it was “saddened by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta’s decision not to support its cause,” adding that “Komen Atlanta funding supports only organizations whose efforts directly relate to breast cancer screening, diagnostic and treatment support services” and that it “has never funded a Planned Parenthood grant request.”
Michael W. Chapman contributed to this report.