The Catholic Church has always condemned abortion as a grave evil. Christian writers from the first-century author of the Didache to Pope John Paul II in his encyclical Evangelium Vitae (“The Gospel of Life”), Pope Benedict and Pope Francis have maintained that the Bible forbids abortion just as it forbids murder.
“You shall not kill the child by obtaining an abortion. Nor, again, shall you destroy him after he is born.” St. Barnabas, “Epistle of St. Barnabas,” c. 70-100 A.D.
“You shall not murder a child by abortion nor kill one who has been born.” The Didache [The Teaching Of The Twelve Apostles] c. 80-140 A.D.
“Women who were reputed believers began to resort to drugs for producing sterility. They also girded themselves around, so as to expel what was being conceived. For they did not wish to have a child by either slave or by any common fellow – out of concern for their family and their excessive wealth. See what a great impiety the lawless one has advanced! He teaches adultery and murder at the same time!” St. Hipploytus, “Refutation Of All Heresies,” c. 225 A.D.
“He [the schismatic Novatian] struck the womb of his wife with his heel and hurried an abortion, thereby causing parricide.” St. Cyprian of Carthage, “Epistle 52 To Cornelius,” c. 251 A.D.
“A woman who deliberately destroys a fetus is answerable for murder. And any fine distinction as to its being completely formed or unformed is not admissible amongst us.” St. Basil the Great, “Epistle 138,” c. 375 A.D.
“Others drink for sterility and commit murder on the human not yet sown. Some when they sense that they have conceived by sin, consider the poisons for abortion, and frequently die themselves along with it, and go to Hell guilty of three crimes: murdering themselves, committing adultery against Christ, and murder against their unborn child.” St. Jerome, “Epistle 22,” c. 380 A.D.
“The rich women, to avoid dividing the inheritance among many, kill their own fetus in the womb and with murderous juices extinguish in the genital chamber their children.” St. Ambrose “On the Hexaemeron,” c. 386 A.D.
“To destroy the fetus ‘is something worse than murder.’ The one who does this ‘does not take away life that has already been born, but prevents it from being born.'” St. John Chrysostom “Homilies on Romans,” c. 391 A.D.