"The tragedy of abortion is experienced by some with a superficial awareness, as if not realizing the extreme harm that such an act entails.
"Many others on the other hand, although experiencing this moment as a defeat, believe that they have no other option."
"I have met so many women who bear in their heart the scar of this agonizing and painful decision.
"I am well aware of the pressure that led them to this decision. I know that it is an existential and moral ordeal.
"The forgiveness of God cannot be denied to one who has repented, especially when that person approaches the Sacrament of Confession with a sincere heart in order to obtain reconciliation with the Father," Pope Francis said.
In a statement following the pope's remark's, the Vatican said that "forgiveness of the sin of abortion does not condone abortion nor minimize its grave effects. The newness is clearly Pope Francis' pastoral approach."