Pope Francis compared abortion to someone hiring a "contract killer" during his weekly address Wednesday at Saint Peter's Square in the Vatican, Newsweek reported.
"Interrupting a pregnancy is like eliminating someone," the pope told the crowd, according to Agence France-Presse. "Getting rid of a human being is like resorting to a contract killer to solve a problem."
"Is it just to resort to a contract killer to solve a problem?" Francis asked.
"No!" the crowd shouted in response.
"We cannot take out a human being, even if it is small," the pope said.
His comments were reportedly a departure from his prepared message in Saint Peter's Square.
What else did the pope say?
Francis complained to worshippers about the devaluing of life.
"How can an act that suppresses innocent life be therapeutic, civil or even human?" the head of the Catholic Church asked, according to AFP.
The pope also called on parents to resist abortion when it's discovered that a child may have a disease or birth defect.
"When during pregnancy parents discover that their child is affected by a disease, they need real closeness, real solidarity, to face reality overcoming understandable fears. Instead, they often receive hasty advice to terminate the pregnancy," he said, according to Euronews.
It's the second time Francis, who is considered more liberal than his predecessors, has addressed abortion in recent months.
“It is fashionable, or at least usual, that when in the first few months of a pregnancy doctors do studies to see if the child is healthy or has something, the first idea is: ‘Let’s send it away,’” he said in June, USA Today reported. “We do the same as the Nazis to maintain the purity of the race, but with white gloves on.”
Earlier this year, he also opposed a bill that would have made abortion legal in Argentina, his native South America country.