Pope Francis leaves St. Peter's Square at the Vatican in August. In a letter published Tuesday, he said, in part, "I have decided ... to concede to all priests for the Jubilee Year the discretion to absolve of the sin of abortion those who have procured it and who, with contrite heart, seek forgiveness for it." Gregorio Borgia/AP hide caption

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Dr. David Burkons holds the licensing certificates that allowed him to open a clinic that provides medical and surgical abortions. It took about 18 extra months of inspections, he says, to get the approval to offer surgical abortions. Sarah Jane Tribble/WCPN hide caption

itoggle caption Sarah Jane Tribble/WCPN

A Jizo figure at the Great Vow Zen Monastery in Clatskanie, Ore. Deena Prichep for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Deena Prichep for NPR

Susan Cahill, owner of All Families Healthcare, stands in front of the first building in Kalispell, Mont., where she offered abortion services. After vandalism closed her last clinic down, Missoula became the nearest place for women in the Flathead Valley to find abortion services. Corin Cates-Carney/MTPR hide caption

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The U.S. Supreme Court gave a reprieve to Texas clinics that provide abortion services. Mark Wilson/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Mark Wilson/Getty Images

On July 9, 2013, opponents and supporters of a bill to put restrictions on abortion hold signs near a news conference outside the Texas Capitol in Austin. The bill was passed, but has been battled in the courts for two years; now, the law is set to go into effect July 1. Eric Gay/AP hide caption

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Abortion-rights supporters (foreground) try to disrupt an anti-abortion march to the Texas Capitol during a Texas Rally for Life on Jan. 24 in Austin, Texas. Eric Gay/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Eric Gay/AP

A view of the eastern entrance to the Ohio Statehouse. Bob Hall/Flickr hide caption

itoggle caption Bob Hall/Flickr

An interauterine device provides long-term birth control. iStockphoto hide caption

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