Pope Francis advocates for a worldwide prohibition on surrogacy


Pope Francis, in his New Year’s address to diplomats at the Vatican on Monday, expressed his strong condemnation of surrogacy and called for a global ban on the practice.

He described the act of a woman carrying another person’s child as “deplorable” and emphasized that it represents a “grave violation of the dignity of the woman and the child.”

Amidst addressing conflicts worldwide, the 87-year-old pontiff stressed the importance of respecting life, starting with the unborn child in the mother’s womb, which, he asserted, should not be subjected to suppression or treated as an object of trafficking.

“In this regard, I deem deplorable 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.

“A child is always a gift and never the basis of a commercial contract. Consequently, I express my hope for an effort by the international community to prohibit this practice universally.”

In June 2022, the pope condemned surrogacy as an “inhuman” practice.

“Altruistic” surrogacy, whereby a woman gives birth to a baby on behalf of another woman or couple but no money changes hands, excluding expenses, is legal in countries including Belgium, the Netherlands, the UK, Canada, Brazil and Colombia. Commercial surrogacy is permitted in some US states.