Saturday, July 23, 2011
CBCP renews opposition to RH bill ahead of SONA
MANILA, July 23, 2011— The Catholic hierarchy has renewed its strong opposition to the controversial reproductive health (RH) bill which is crafted based on “secularist and materialistic spirit.”
The proposed measure, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) warned, could further destroy the society morally just like it had done in other countries.
“It is a spirit that considers moral and religious norms as regressive,” said Tandag Bishop Nereo Odchimar, CBCP president, in a statement.
“The bill ignores moral and religious considerations in the name of democracy and freedom of choice in a pluralist society,” he said.
Odchimar made the statement yesterday ahead of President Aquino’s State of the Nation Address (SONA) on July 25.
The date also coincided with the 43rd year of the “Humanae Vitae,” the landmark papal letter about the Church's uncompromising stand on birth control.
Aquino is a known supporter of the RH bill which requires the government to guarantee wide access to reproductive health care services, methods, devices, and supplies to the people.
The bill also pushes the use of “modern” methods of family planning, including condoms, birth control pills, intra-uterine devices (IUDs), and injectables.
In a country where government hospitals have long been dealing with scarce equipment and medicines, the bill categorizes artificial family planning supplies as “essential medicines.”
The Catholic Church accepts only natural family planning methods.
The CBCP head also called on the faithful to defend Christian values by rejecting the bill.
“Ignoring moral values is moral corruption; and moral corruption breeds corruption in public and private life. Its fruit is social decay and disintegration," Odchimar said.
He said the people's right to choose must always be guided by the Gospels and the teachings of the Church.
“To ignore this principle is to ignore the light that illumines an upright conscience," Odchimar said. [CBCPNews]
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