In his address to the Diplomatic Corps, Pope Francis made an appeal along the same lines as the Casablanca Declaration, which will be the subject of an international conference in Rome on 5 and 6 April this year

Brussels, 8 January 2024

The Federation of Catholic Family Associations in Europe (FAFCE) is pleased to echo the words spoken this morning by Pope Francis, in his address to the Diplomatic Corps accredited to the Holy See, calling for a universal ban on surrogate motherhood: “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”.

On 5 and 6 April, in Rome, an international conference will be dedicated to the Casablanca Declaration, which aims to provide all States with a legal instrument banning the practice of surrogate motherhood. Vincenzo Bassi, FAFCE President and one of the signatories of the Casablanca Declaration, said: “For many years, Catholic family associations in Europe have been at the forefront of efforts to protect children and women against any attempt to legitimise this practice, and we will continue to work with the many different people and organisations that support the Casablanca Declaration. Thanks also to the invitation of the Holy Father, it is high time to begin a concrete international reflection at the States’ level”.

Pope Francis had already condemned the practice of surrogacy, for the first time in such an explicit manner, during his audience with the FAFCE Board Members in 2022Today’s appeal has the specificity of promoting an international convention for the abolition of sorrogacy and is part of the traditional address made to the Diplomatic Corps, where the Pope recalls the importance of working for peace and the most important challenges facing humanity today.