UK
20/09/2013 14:07 BST | Updated 20/09/2013 14:09 BST

Pope Francis Denounces Abortion, Day After Blasting Church's 'Obsession' With 'Small-Minded Rules'

Pope Francis attends a vigil for peace in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013. Tens of thousands of people have answered Pope Francis' call and massed in St. Peter's Square for a 4-hour-long prayer vigil for peace in Syria. It was believed to be one of the first, and certainly the largest popular rally in the West against U.S.-led plans to strike Syria following the Aug. 21 chemical weapons attack near Damascus. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca)
AP
Pope Francis attends a vigil for peace in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013. Tens of thousands of people have answered Pope Francis' call and massed in St. Peter's Square for a 4-hour-long prayer vigil for peace in Syria. It was believed to be one of the first, and certainly the largest popular rally in the West against U.S.-led plans to strike Syria following the Aug. 21 chemical weapons attack near Damascus. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca)

Only yesterday Pope Francis said the Catholic Church needs to stop interfering, but today he denounced abortions as a symptom of today's "throw-away culture."

Just a day after he blasted the church's obsession with "small-minded rules," Francis issued a strong anti-abortion message and cited Vatican teaching on the need to defend the unborn during an audience with Catholic gynecologists.

Perviously, Francis had warned that the Catholic Church's moral edifice might "fall like a house of cards" if it doesn't balance its divisive rules about abortion, gays and contraception with the greater need to make the church a merciful, more welcoming place for all.

In an incredibly frank interview with the Italian Jesuit journal La Civiltà Cattolica, the Pope described his new vision for the church saying: “We have to find a new balance,” saying it should be a “home for all” and not a “small chapel.”

In a complete U-turn on the comments, today he encouraged doctors not to perform abortions and said they are forced into situations where they are called to "not respect life," the Associated Press reported.

"Every child that isn't born, but is unjustly condemned to be aborted, has the face of Jesus Christ, has the face of the Lord," he said.

In an incredibly frank interview with the Italian Jesuit journal La Civiltà Cattolica, the Pope described his new vision for the church saying: “We have to find a new balance,” saying it should be a “home for all” and not a “small chapel.”

Expanding on the explosive comments he made about homosexuality in July when he was returning to Rome from Rio de Janeiro, where he had celebrated World Youth Day, the Pope said he has no right to judge anyone from the LGBT community.

“A person once asked me, in a provocative manner, if I approved of homosexuality,” he said in the interview.

“I replied with another question: ‘Tell me: when God looks at a gay person, does he endorse the existence of this person with love, or reject and condemn this person?’ We must always consider the person.”

In July, he famously said “Who am I to judge” gay people.

Now, he has admitted he has faced criticism, but determinedly insisted that the church's priorities must change to incorporate his views.

“We cannot insist only on issues related to abortion, gay marriage and the use of contraceptive methods," he said.

"I have not spoken much about these things, and I was reprimanded for that."

"It is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time," Francis said.