Tagged contraception

Bacon and Contraception? Not the Same Thing


A pro-lifer friend shared his concern with me this morning, asking if we should oppose bacon along with contraceptives, since bacon has been declared a Class 1 Carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer.

First of all, the processed meat and cancer connection is nothing new. I’ve heard that since I was a child, that’s why my mom (who’s a pharmacist) never stocked it at home. Bacon, SPAM, hotdogs — especially the bright red ones available in the Philippines — rarely appeared on our dinner table.

What has always concerned me more as an adult and what I think has not been explored enough is the connection between GMO feed, antibiotic use in animals, factory farming, the use of pesticide in plants that end up as animal feed… and cancer.

My friend is concerned that we make a big deal about OCPs being Class 1 Carcinogens, but we proclaim our love for bacon all the time, and therefore we’re being inconsistent and hypocritical. That bacon is now a proven carcinogen (I don’t agree with this 100%) means we can no longer use “the carcinogen argument”. I still don’t think it’s the same thing.

Contraceptive pills are taken daily and are promoted by the World Health Organization as essential medicine. (Most recent list here.)

The message given to us by the WHO, by Big Pharma, by pro-choice lobbyists, by supposed philanthropists, is worlds apart from anything we’ve ever said about bacon. First of all they either don’t even acknowledge that OCPs are carcinogens, or they downplay that by telling a woman to do it for her family, her country, and for the man who uses her body. They sell it as a NEED and a COMMON GOOD.

By contrast, our position about contraception is so much more nuanced than “It’s a carcinogen.”

Contraceptive pills and bacon are both LIFESTYLE CHOICES. People can choose to take pills or not. They can also choose to consume bacon or not. We’ve never promoted bacon as a MUST. It’s food, and one that poor people can rarely even afford, if at all. We don’t go around giving away bacon for free or selling it at discounted prices. The Catholic Church doesn’t fund bacon distribution to the poorest countries saying that it will help them, whereas contraceptives have been touted as panacea for poverty and hunger. For much of the world, bacon isn’t even an option. One could even say “bacon is carcinogen” is a first world problem.

Contraceptives, on the other hand, are not only sold so people can purchase and use them freely as they wish, they are MANDATED and PAID FOR BY TAXPAYERS, even those of us who don’t use them and don’t agree that it’s beneficial to do so. When was the last time we lobbied for access to bacon?

And I say all this not just because I love bacon, but because I love people too. I am all for increased awareness of the dangers of processed meat consumption. Educating and informing people about it doesn’t dilute our advocacy against contraception one bit. As far as our family is concerned, we are always trying to increase our consumption of plant-based foods, just because we’ve read and learned enough to know that it’s the healthy way to eat. When it comes to meat I try to purchase grass-fed beef, pastured pork, naturally cured meats (or we cure our own without the use of things like saltpeter) whenever I can. I try to find out as much as I can about our local farmers’ practices so I can discern better what to feed my family.

I’ve only ever seen pro-lifers promote healthy diets, with everything in moderation, and that includes bacon, though we tend to agree that bacon makes everything better! Pills? Not so much. Besides, Bacon Causes Cancer? Sort of. Not Really. Ish.

More reading:
Save Your Bacon! Sizzling Bits about Nitrites, Dirty Little Secrets about Celery Salt, and Other Aporkalyptic News
Nitrites & Nitrates: Are They Harmful Or Actually Healthful?

Deconstructing Contraception | Sweetening the Pill


Especially after Pope Francis’ words about birth rate reduction, I’m really excited about this new documentary that’s coming out! It’s called Sweetening the Pill, produced by Ricki Lake and Abby Epstein. Their Kickstarter page is here. Nine days to go!!

As a Catholic, I have several reasons to get excited about it:

1. It’s not Catholic, so those who automatically plug their ears and close their eyes when they see/hear “Catholic” might actually pay attention.

2. I’m hoping that even though it’s focused on The Pill, the film will also open people’s eyes to the general risks of contraception — in all its forms — that too many would rather sweep under the rug, because knowing and understanding those risks might have to mean a change in lifestyle, and nobody likes change.

That, I think, is the scariest thing. Doctors throw these pills at us like they are candy cure-alls when there REALLY hasn’t been enough research done on their effects, especially long term. They just don’t know enough about them. I spent HOURS and HOURS on Google, on different women’s health forums and discovered that so many others had had similar situations to mine. Some had the mental symptoms, others felt like they were no longer themselves. Some likened it to menopause. It was comforting, eye opening, and also made me completely livid. How could doctors do this to us?! How could we let them? How could we not be educated that this was a possibility? How was this feminism, when we were basically losing control of our bodies, of ourselves??
Source: Why I Will Never Take the Birth Control Pill Again

3. I hear that NFP and NaPro are included, which is great since those don’t get nearly as much coverage as they should receive.

4. I’m hoping that they’ll explore the relationship between contraceptive usage and environmental impact, i.e., the state of our waters.

17a-ethinyl estradiol (EE2) is a component of combination oral contraceptives designed for women, of which approximately 16–68%of dose is excreted in the urine or feces19. A substantial amount of EE2has been found in aquatic environments downstream of wastewater treatment plants.
Source: Transgenerational effects from early developmental exposures to bisphenol A or 17[agr]-ethinylestradiol in medaka, Oryzias latipes

5. I’m hoping that they’ll explore the relationship between contraceptive usage and body burden, whereby women pass on chemicals in their bloodstream on to their babies.

6. The film will be a great addition to the growing body of material that dares to expose what has been unknown or hidden for so long.

To illustrate from a UK survey of 1000 women:

– More than a quarter (27 per cent) said you didn’t know what hormonal contraception was doing to your body.
– More than a quarter (27 per cent) of you said you were ‘worried’ and ‘nervous’ about taking it.
– One in three women (35 per cent) said they felt that women were just expected to ‘put up’ with the side-effects of hormonal contraception.
– More than a third of you (41 per cent) said you were only using your method of contraception because a doctor or nurse suggested it.
Source: Telegraph Wonder Women launches Take Back Birth Control campaign

I don’t expect them to discuss, but would be a pleasant surprise if they touched a bit on these at least:

1. The abortifacient methods of action built into every contraceptive, since the producers are still pro-birth control.

“We believe that the birth control pill was one of the greatest inventions of the 20th century. But we think women deserve more and better options, not less of them. Hormonal birth control often dominates the conversation, but, like a hospital birth or cesarean, it’s not always the best choice for all.”

2. An admission that Humanae Vitae was correct after all: the role that contraception plays in the male-female dynamic and the objectification of women, and contraception’s contribution to the destruction of family as a societal structure.

3. Birth control’s connection to abortion. A discussion of how “conception” was redefined in 1959 to mean implantation, how embryology and microbiology textbooks to this day still adhere to the original definition of “conception” as “fertilization”, and how that redefinition contributed to the legalization of contraception, and to the eventual confusion of when life begins.

5. Fertility issues like endometriosis and PCOS that taking the Pill masks and worsens.

6. The role of contraception in aging populations and demographic winter.

7. Something that the Church has known forever: every life is a gift.

All in all, I’m curious to see where this will lead, as I think it could be the beginning of a new era in real comprehensive sex education. I hope you’ll support the project too.

If you’re dying (no pun intended) to find out more about Fertility Awareness Methods as alternatives to the Pill, here’s a great (secular-produced) vid you can watch in the meantime:

There are also more films coming up!! Read about Natural Womanhood and the film Natural Love Stories here.

Further reading:

Bad Feminists: Why It’s So Hard to Critique the Pill
Brianna Heldt: Ricki Lake and Birth Control
Telegraph Wonder Women launches Take Back Birth Control campaign
Birth Control in Drinking Water: A Fertility Catastrophe in the Making?
NuvaRing Caused My Daughter’s Death | Like So Many Women, She Had No Idea of the Risks
Natural Womanhood

(More information on Body Burden + Contraceptives on Page 2)

Contraception, Abortion, Population Control, and Laudato Si’


From Laudato Si’:

50. Instead of resolving the problems of the poor and thinking of how the world can be different, some can only propose a reduction in the birth rate. At times, developing countries face forms of international pressure which make economic assistance contingent on certain policies of “reproductive health”. Yet “while it is true that an unequal distribution of the population and of available resources creates obstacles to development and a sustainable use of the environment, it must nonetheless be recognized that demographic growth is fully compatible with an integral and shared development”. To blame population growth instead of extreme and selective consumerism on the part of some, is one way of refusing to face the issues. It is an attempt to legitimize the present model of distribution, where a minority believes that it has the right to consume in a way which can never be universalized, since the planet could not even contain the waste products of such consumption. Besides, we know that approximately a third of all food produced is discarded, and “whenever food is thrown out it is as if it were stolen from the table of the poor”. Still, attention needs to be paid to imbalances in population density, on both national and global levels, since a rise in consumption would lead to complex regional situations, as a result of the interplay between problems linked to environmental pollution, transport, waste treatment, loss of resources and quality of life.

95. The natural environment is a collective good, the patrimony of all humanity and the responsibility of everyone. If we make something our own, it is only to administer it for the good of all. If we do not, we burden our consciences with the weight of having denied the existence of others. That is why the New Zealand bishops asked what the commandment “Thou shall not kill” means when “twenty percent of the world’s population consumes resources at a rate that robs the poor nations and future generations of what they need to survive”.

120. Since everything is interrelated, concern for the protection of nature is also incompatible with the justification of abortion. How can we genuinely teach the importance of concern for other vulnerable beings, however troublesome or inconvenient they may be, if we fail to protect a human embryo, even when its presence is uncomfortable and creates difficulties? “If personal and social sensitivity towards the acceptance of the new life is lost, then other forms of acceptance that are valuable for society also wither away”.

172. For poor countries, the priorities must be to eliminate extreme poverty and to promote the social development of their people. At the same time, they need to acknowledge the scandalous level of consumption in some privileged sectors of their population and to combat corruption more effectively. They are likewise bound to develop less polluting forms of energy production, but to do so they require the help of countries which have experienced great growth at the cost of the ongoing pollution of the planet. Taking advantage of abundant solar energy will require the establishment of mechanisms and subsidies which allow developing countries access to technology transfer, technical assistance and financial resources, but in a way which respects their concrete situations, since “the compatibility of [infrastructures] with the context for which they have been designed is not always adequately assessed”. The costs of this would be low, compared to the risks of climate change. In any event, these are primarily ethical decisions, rooted in solidarity between all peoples.

More thoughts later.

Contraception vs. NFP in Catholic Philippines


Oh yes, it’s Lent. It seems the anti-life and anti-family movements are out in full force again. Did funding come in recently?

In just the past week, several articles have been published targeting the Catholic church yet again for its [archaic, primitive, bigoted, misogynistic — take your pick] stance on contraception. The Gates- and Ford-funded PRI’s newest series is nothing but recycled material. Periodically trotted out and updated with newer pictures, these articles predictably harp on the same theme year after year: women need/want contraception and abortion, but they are being oppressed by a Church that refuses to get with the times and change its teachings. Ho-hum.

It is well-known among Filipino pro-lifers that this “contraception saves lives” mantra is being globally pushed by those with an agenda. Unfortunately, most people, even Catholics, don’t have a full understanding of Humanae Vitae and Natural Family Planning, much less Theology of the Body. Too many people still don’t have a clear grasp of the innate dignity of human beings, God’s design for sex, and why contraception — whether you look at it from a scientific standpoint or a moral one — is detrimental to marriage, family, and society in the long run. The International Planned Parenthood Federation and its local branches, along with Marie Stopes, Guttmacher, partners from big pharma, foundations like Gates and Ford, and secular NGOs take advantage of this knowledge gap. Contraception is constantly presented as some sort of panacea, ostensibly to prevent abortions, with the ultimate goal to legalize abortion.

The Philippines is one of the few remaining countries where abortion is still against the law. That does not mean abortion is non-existent. It just means that clinics like Likhaan, highlighted in another Sonia Narang article, operate unhindered, connecting women with underground abortionists, a practice that founder Junice Melgar readily admits. Many in government seem to have bought the lie that abortion helps women and therefore are happy to just let these happen under the radar, the law notwithstanding.

What’s not revealed by the PRI articles is the already ongoing, illegal implementation of the Reproductive Health Law. The Food and Drug Administration has completely ignored petitions from pro-life groups detailing specific contraceptives’ abortifacient methods of action, petitions the FDA itself solicited and which are required by law prior to recertification. Since the Philippine constitution unequivocally protects the life of the unborn, the sale and distribution of these items is prohibited, but that prohibition only exists on paper and is not enforced.

In reality, except for continued efforts by the Church to educate Catholics on Church teaching, nothing stops the government or these NGOs from doing what they want to do. Such contempt for the law is possible only in countries steeped in corruption, and where votes for proposed legislation are regularly bought and sold.

The Reproductive Health law actually mandates that other family planning choices be made available to couples, yet funding is only provided for contraceptives, the Church-approved NFP largely left to the laity and private organizations to fund and promote.

Three oft-repeated arguments used to justify contraception and abortion are spousal abuse, extramarital affairs and sexually transmitted disease. Forgotten and ignored is the fact that these problems aren’t cured by making abortion and contraception available. These problems need to be addressed at the root, and bandaid solutions merely perpetuate the cycle of abuse, and do nothing to curb adultery or unethical sexual behavior. Provide men with condoms and women with pills, sterilize them if you will, but only a proper understanding of sex and marriage will eliminate these problems.

That women are “asking” for contraception is largely untrue. For years now, organizations like IPPF and Marie Stopes, the UNFPA and USAID have been pouring money into ““social acceptance”, “demand creation” and other contraceptive “scaling up” projects, many of them funded by US taxpayer money. These all-out media campaigns include TV shows and commercials, magazine ads, and traveling caravans that go from city to city offering free or subsidized contraception.

The Church has no such propaganda machine. Some would argue that it has the pulpit, and others would rightly point out that except for a few brave priests and bishops, hardly anyone ever speaks about the moral implications of contraception and abortion. In fact, there is no ban on contraceptives, they are relatively affordable, and even minors are able to purchase them at drugstores that are supposed to restrict their sales.

Revitalized by Pope Francis’ recent visit and his clear denunciation of threats to marriage, family, and life, however, more Catholics, clergy and laity alike, are initiating new programs and getting involved in the race to preserve the culture of life in the Philippines. Perhaps that explains the most recent round of attacks being hurled anew at the Church. Portraying the church as enemy always has been and always will be the primary tactic employed by these movements. But only the church truly promotes the dignity of the human being, man and woman alike.

One last point: those of us in the first world have the advantage of having easy access to information. Fertility awareness methods and natural family planning are increasingly being recognized as the real solutions to women’s reproductive health needs, and not just by Catholics. If a poor woman with 7 kids living on $2 a day contracts cancer or develops blood clots possibly leading to a stroke or a heart attack because of contraception use, there is no government solution in place that will take care of her family.

Then as now, what women in third world countries need is basic help — food, clothing, shelter, education (not just sex ed), and jobs.

There are many organizations that need and deserve your support. Here are two that Filipino pro-lifers endorse and are directly involved in. In coming weeks I will share information on other worthy organizations where you can send help.

Pro-Life Philippines

Caritas Manila

It’s Not About Rabbits, But Maybe It’s Not About You Either

It’s been a little over 24 hours since I woke up to Facebook hopping (pun unintended) because of a remark the Pope made on the plane to Rome from Manila, where he spent four days with the Filipino people, celebrating, teaching, loving.

Many are upset because once again, the Pope said something that just *hit* them the wrong way.

I am a Filipina who came to the US when I was 18. I’ve lived here, got married, had kids and raised them for the next 28. Today I also work with a pro-life group in the Philippines. The entire transcript is a must read if one wants to fully understand, but I ask that you not stop there. Please consider reading the transcripts from his four days in Manila. The Pope’s rabbit remark has to be evaluated not just within the context of everything he said on that plane, but ALL the teaching he did in the third world last week. I am hoping that today’s clarification helps.

In a nutshell, and because I tend to ramble on, he’s basically teaching BALANCE. In Manila he taught a lot about being open to life, about GENEROSITY. Prompted by further quetions on the plane, he continued the lesson, this time highlighting RESPONSIBILITY. These two go hand in hand. His words on the plane did not cancel out what he said in Manila, as some claim. On the contrary, they are but parts of a whole. But there are farther nuances I’d like to point out if I may.

(Image Credit: ofelio.com)

He came to the Philippines to be with the poor. While there he addressed corruption, the cause of so much suffering there, as opposed to the liberal anti-life mantra of overpopulation. He spoke against foreign ideologies, many of which are funded and exported by us US taxpayers. Instead of helping them with the basics like food, clothing, shelter, education that uplifts them and upholds their dignity — we give them instead contraception, abortion, pornography, and contribute to their corruption. Pope Francis described this ideological colonization as insidious. The colonizers of old may have used guns and swords to conquer other lands. Today they use books, movies, music, social media, to conquer hearts, minds, souls. In addition, programs brought in by population controllers and eugenicists do irreparable harm.

In that same homily, he reiterated the Church’s teachings on the value of human life. During his trip he also traveled to see the victims of Yolanda, and spent time with the youth, many of whom experience suffering as a daily reality. (The rest of the transcripts are at Salt and Light TV.)

When he got on that plane, it’s reasonable to assume that his mind was still on the people he encountered. I’d like to propose that his words on RESPONSIBILITY AND GENEROSITY cover so much more than what appears on the surface:

He was calling pastors to shepherd their flock well, to catechize better. In the Philippines, many are cultural Catholics. They live the faith, but have little understanding of the Church’s basic teachings, especially Her teachings about sex. Many men still think it is their right to have on-demand sex and many women still think they are obligated to comply. Yes, this is partly a failure on the part of the clergy. The Pope is saying they need to teach more effectively; their flock need to listen and understand better. It is a pressing need and Pope Francis addressed it, for which I thank him.

Each person with his pastor seeks how to do that responsible parenthood.

When the Pope talked about responsibility, however, he was addressing not the first-world mother who has access to modern hospitals and well-trained doctors and the newest technology. A woman having an 8th caesarean section in the US is different from a woman having an 8th child in a third world country, caesarean or not. Here in the US, we have 911; they don’t. Here we have a medical team, in the Philippines you’re lucky if you can afford to go to a private hospital. Midwives there are not the same as midwives here. The Philippine maternal mortality rate has improved, but it is not the same as first world numbers.

Please don’t get me wrong, as the mom of 5 who has a lot of mom friends, many of whom live heroic lives of sacrifice, I do have some sense of the confusion or, as one commenter put it, devastation, that some of them felt when they heard the phrase. I have great compassion for them who have been so generous with their lives and with their bodies; and it’s not about the number of children anyway. That’s not the point and never was. Church teaching is clear that it’s a prudential decision left to husband and wife, and that’s beyond the purview of even us pro-lifers. But while those of us who have more than “the experts’ ‘required'” 2.1 kids sit here, tweeting, Facebooking or blogging away, getting our voices heard, what about the moms who don’t even have access to a computer or even a phone, much less good medical care? What about their voices?

Pope Francis was talking to the parents about being responsible because each child needs a mother and a father. In the first world, a mother’s chance of surviving childbirth is higher than it is in the third world. A child losing a parent in the first world, while he/she would not be any less devastated emotionally, would almost certainly have better access to material support and resources than his or her third world counterpart. We may have homeless and jobless people here, but in poverty-stricken Philippines, if a mother is lost, where do the orphans end up? If not in orphanages such as the one Pope Francis visited, they end up in the streets, begging for their food, or prostituting themselves. Trafficking is a huge problem, and it is directly related to poverty. The Philippines is easy prey for those who believe contraception and abortion to be the answer to these ills.

Understanding what responsible parenthood is about and getting access to what Pope Francis refers to as licit ways to plan the family aren’t the same either. NFP instructors have a hard time promoting NFP because those “insidious programs” that Pope Francis talked about refuse to give it priority or simply pay them lip service. The recently passed RH Law, for instance, mandates that people get access to whatever contraceptive method they choose. Millions are budgeted for artificial birth control, with subsidy coming in from outside sources; zero for the Church-approved NFP, which is left entirely to the laity to fund and promote.

NFP instructors have to deal with the “Pinoy macho image”. They hesitate to teach NFP outside of the Catechism *because* they need the Catechism to provide the backbone — there are places where the secular or scientific approach won’t be adequate or appropriate. Often the responsibility falls on the woman. And while that in itself isn’t a problem specific to the third world, the difference is that in the poorest areas of a third world country, men who don’t understand NFP and/or Church teaching fully end up raping their wives during the fertile period — this from a veteran NFP instructor. In the population controllers’ eyes, this is one more reason to accuse the Church of inefficiency and oppression, and one more excuse to promote aggressive anti-life measures.

I ask that you keep these in mind as you read the Pope’s words. All these are part of the whole, and when we take that whole apart and nitpick what is offensive to us, we not only turn a blind eye to those who are most in need of compassion, we undermine our own Church’s and our Pope’s ability to speak out on these issues that we may not fully understand but nevertheless exist. More than that, I am afraid that we also undermine our own efforts to reach those who see the Church’s teachings as archaic and oppressive, and to open their eyes to the truth.

Recommended Reading:
Breed Like Rabbits: The Pope and an Anti-Catholic Slur
Someone is getting lost in all this talk about Francis and rabbits
Pope Francis and Catholic Rabbits–5 Points to Consider
The Pope Said What about Rabbits? And I said Ee-I-ee-I-oh!
“Breeding like rabbits”, eh?
About the Pope’s “don’t be like rabbits” remark UPDATED

Videos, Information, and a Call to Action

For a background on all of this, here again is the link to the video of Fr. Sammie Maletta’s homily + transcript.

Last week, when we thought it couldn’t get any worse, we saw Sandra Fluke’s opening statement before the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee.

If you Google “Sandra Fluke” and click only on links from mainstream media, most of the information you’ll find will refer to Rush Limbaugh’s use of the word “slut” when he was talking about her testimony. These links, as to be expected, don’t tell the whole story. Here’s more information on Sandra Fluke from a REAL Georgetown student and what’s really going on here. Meanwhile, traditional media continues to frame this as a contraception debate instead of a religious freedom debate, to propagate the lie that the Church oppresses women and all who need “reproductive health care”.

As in a well-orchestrated play, Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards releases her “I Have A Say” video the day after Fluke’s statement, inviting women to share their thoughts on why birth control is an essential part of women’s health care. (If you click to watch the video on YouTube instead, YouTube will give you related videos of other women “having their say”, including pro-abortion NARAL’s Nancy Keenan.)

We faithful Catholics, we who Occupy the Pews, we who believe in the teaching authority of the Magisterium and who know that our Truth comes from Scripture and Tradition, *could* just keep quiet about all this and offer it up…. or we could respond to Fr. John Hollowell’s invitation and call to action:

It would be great if we moms and our daughters and other women, young and old, could contribute to Fr. Hollowell’s blog specifically set up for this by sending in a picture, a video or even just a short paragraph sharing our thoughts — because I don’t know about you, but neither Sandra Fluke nor Cecile Richards speaks for me. We cannot and should not underestimate the power of alternative media — Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogs. These ultra-liberal women are using precisely these tools to continue to brainwash those who unfortunately are only marginally aware about these issues. Our Holy Father recognizes the reach that social media has, and even he is Tweeting these 40 days of Lent. We, now more than ever, need to learn to use social media, to do our part to spread the Gospel Truth, and to defeat the father of lies and his minions.

Oh, and I apologize in advance for this, but I just couldn’t resist. I’m still working on becoming a turn-the-other-cheek Christian and Catholic… not quite there yet 😀 !!! So here it is…. the newest movie poster in town, which I found at freerepublic.com.

Fr. Sammie Maletta’s Homily on Religious Liberty and the HHS Mandate (Transcript)

Prayers for and cheers to this courageous priest-lawyer for speaking the truth! May more of our priests be like him. Spread the word.

I’m posting the transcript of his homily here for my parents’ benefit. If you see any errors, please comment and I will edit.

In recent years, we’ve had cause to discuss the subject of political speech from the pulpit here at St. John the Evangelist. Many many many of you have regularly challenged me to speak out more frequently on matters that I deemed are purely political and as a result, I have refused to do so. However, others are so sensitive about this that even when I recently recommended two of our parishioners that were running for local office, they became vocally upset. Generally speaking, the message we priests preach should not be political except when it comes to faith and morals. What I’m about to share with you in my opinion moves beyond faith and morals and goes to our very existence to function and therefore I claim the right as your pastor. I claim the right as an American citizen. I claim the responsibility as a priest to speak what I perceive to be the truth.

Little more than three years ago, after Mr. Obama was elected but not yet sworn in as President of the United States of America, the bishops finally gave us priests permission to tell our congregations the truth about what Mr. Obama’s intention was and that was to force the Catholic Church to engage in morally repugnant actions or lose our ability to carry out the gospel message in health care, social services and education. I gave a stirring talk that Sunday, and you as well as people across the country, because the priests in their parishes also got up and spoke, sent millions of cards, letters, phone calls to DC, demanding reassurances that the Obama administration would not proceed with its plans. Almost immediately, the President-elect contacted the National Conference of Catholic Bishops and invited the bishops to a meeting, at which time he gave his word. He gave his word to our bishops that the conscience clause that exempts religious organizations from participating in those federal mandates that go against our conscience would not be disturbed. At that time, President-elect Obama feigned surprise that Catholics would even think that he would do something like this. And with those assurances, the bishops backed down. Within a few months of his administration, Obamacare was introduced creating a deep division in our country as the President’s vision of comprehensive health care coverage became clearer. Arguing that the poor would finally receive health care which is a longstanding goal of our bishops and of all Catholics, arguing also that the cost of healthcare under Obamacare would be reduced, another longstanding goal of our bishops and Catholics, the President asked the bishops to support this legislation. They were once again given assurances that abortion, sterilization, and other so-called reproductive services would not be included in the legislation, at least not in a way that would compromise Catholic conscience. As a whole the bishops declined to support that legislation. However, some naive bishops believed the President and came out in support of the ideas behind Obamacare.

Last week all those assurances and promises President Obama made were broke and his true intentions made known when the Department of Health and Human Services announced that virtually all insurance plans must pay for reproductive services even if they are morally repugnant to the organizations, specifically including the Roman Catholic Church.

Stop and think of this. We are the one voice that speaks out clearly to this culture of death that abortion is wrong. We are the one voice that speaks out clearly to this nation on issues of life. And now we will be forced to actually pay for someone to have an abortion. This is only part of the war that the Obama administration is quietly waging on the Catholic Church. As I mentioned a few weeks ago, the US Labor Department has aggressively attempted to expand its control of how we conduct business. This is one of the regulations, there’s about eight of them. Imagine how thick that is. This is page after page, detailed. I as a lawyer, it takes me about an hour to go through and try to understand each of these pages.

Now, I’m your pastor! Now, we have to comprehend and implement every detail of that because the government wants to get into our business and tell us how to run our business, how to run our Churches! And there are no exemptions for us. I mean it’s overwhelming, just stop and think of that. How can I be pastor when I got to stick my nose in this kind of stuff every single day. I can’t make a decision about the Church without going through all this stuff, and this is across the country.

Furthermore, again as I mentioned a few weeks ago, federal moneys are being withheld from Catholic social services even though the Catholic services receive top ratings from the government. The government creates the rating system, the government scores the rating system, the government sets the rating system. Catholic social services get the highest score, even though part of that rating service is to penalize the Catholic church because we don’t provide reproductive services. And so the scores drop down, even after that, we’re higher than others. And consistently the government is giving money to other organizations with lower scores in other words to other organizations who reach fewer people, do it less effectively and cost more, will not give it to us because we do not provide reproductive services.

One would think that many of the objectives of the Obama administration would be consistent with Catholic objectives, relative to caring for the forgotten, the underprivileged and the needy. The president has been most eloquent in speaking about this segment of society and frankly, his words are very appealing to our sensitivity as Roman Catholics. So why is this president’s administration so intent on destroying the Catholic Church’s ability to perform our ministries which we do better and for less than the government can do?

Why is President Obama’s administration, with all the problems in this world, with the economy, with terrorism, with our country being sold to China, with Iran possibly becoming a nuclear power, with all these things. Why is it so obsessed on reproductive services and so obsessed by forcing us to go against our faith to do what they want us to do in that matter?

The Catholic Church is the largest non-government provider of health services, social services and education. If the government can put us out of business, and make no mistake, the Bishop is right, we cannot and we will not follow this law. We will close down our schools, our hospitals, our nursing homes, our orphanages. We will go out of business in that area before we will pay to have a child murdered.

And once we are out of business, there will be literally millions of people suffering because who will provide those services for them? There will be a gap, a crisis in our nation and then we begin to see the real issue that’s going on here, because once that happens the government can reasonably argue that we cannot as a nation allow that suffering to continue. And the government will step in and provide less effective and more costly services which will mean more government employees, more individuals who become completely dependent on government help. Taxes will be raised to cover this, and the ultimate goal behind all this is exposed, for the United States of America will be one step closer to socialism. And in every country that has become socialistic, religion has become peripheral, but you’ll be able to have reproductive services available at every corner.

Why is the Obama’s presidency so addicted to expanding abortion and so called reproductive services on all of America and forcing Catholics to participate in what we consider to be the culture of death? Why would they sacrifice the First Amendment of the United States Constitution in favor of reproductive services? When did reproductive services become the national cry of our nation? When did it become more important than the Bill of Rights? More important than the Constitution?

And so before you get upset with me or any priest at our bishops’ instruction for addressing a political issue, get more upset over what’s happening in this country on this issue and how it will be devastating to your Church! I especially address those of you who voted for this President. I cannot believe that you voted for this, and now, I need you and all of us to stand up for the First Amendment, to defend your Church and to stand up for your Catholic faith. This week, we are going to follow the Bishops’ instruction and I ask you all to pray, to fast, to ask God for wisdom.

Next week we will have materials available for you to let your voice be heard to do what we can to stop this. We need to contact DC and demand that the longstanding conscience clause is respected and preserved even under Obamacare.

Let our message be clear. President Obama, let us be Catholic! And let us continue to contribute to this great nation as Catholics providing vital services and care especially to that segment of our nation that needs us the most. Let the Church say Amen.

You can read more about Fr. Sammie Maletta here.

Let’s pray, fast, pray, fast, pray, and fast some more.

St. Michael, defend us in battle! Mama Mary, ora pro nobis!

People of Faith, Stand Up and Be Counted

These are exciting times. Religious persecution is a scary thing, I don’t think my children even fully grasp yet what is happening right now in the country, though we’ve explained it to them. But to see people of all faiths standing up for what is right, not just because it’s in our Constitution, but because it is God’s will, is encouraging and moving. I’m grateful to be living in this century.

Pastor Warren, of course, is the guy who interviewed Obama in 2008 on his thoughts about abortion and when life begins:

and delivered the invocation at Obama’s inauguration.

Hockey player Tim Thomas of the Boston Bruins has spoken up too.

It’s an exciting time because you see not only Catholics you’ve long-respected and admired, but other, fellow Catholics who are speaking up for the faith, like psychotherapist Dr. Michael Ludwig:

But that’s not the end of it. The non-Catholics are speaking out too! (Hooray, humans for religious freedom!)

And of course our dear, faithful bishops. God bless them!

What’s funny is the normally pro-abort pro-contraception secular media, FOR ONCE!!, is with us on this one. We may not agree on many important issues of our day, but they still recognize religious persecution when they see it.

Indeed, it’s time to push back.

See, what some of the world does not get yet, is that there are those of us who actually care about humans, more than we care about sea turtle eggs (nothing against sea turtles, though you gotta admit they’re not as warm and huggable as a human baby).

Know what I mean? They’re just not as cuddly as, you know, humans.

If you’re not Catholic, and you’re not understanding the reason behind all the uproar, it’s because the main issue here is Not the PILL, it’s religious freedom. You don’t adapt to injustice, you oppose it. In that sense, we are all Catholics now.

If you’re a person of faith, you should be up in arms too, because some people can be very very deceptive about the truth, calling evil good. Some of them love abortion so much, being appointed Planned Parenthood’s new President is now equivalent to “a sacred duty”. Well yeah, it’s sacred alright. In an anti-Christ sort of way….

And what about our youth? Long have they been given the lie that the pill is “the answer”. But like most “magic band-aid solutions” that this government seems to think helpful, this mandate will only serve to increase cases like this one.

And then there are those who are you sold us out and then quit very conveniently right after. And you’re disappointed now? Really? You *knew* this was coming! We certainly did.

Another shocker! (Not.) Doug Kmiec “breaks up” with Mr. O, though we’ll have to wait and see on that one. Me not trusting him after 2008. :/

Our waters are already polluted, a contraceptive mandate will make more contraceptives available to even more people, and the assault continues on the few remaining farmers we trust to produce food that won’t kill us. But what we do we expect from the most anti-life administration ever, right?

Compromise schmompromise. Who do they think they’re kidding? Enough is enough! Enough of the CINOs! We’ve let way too many things pass. This army will not kneel to the HHS mandate!!

The “Ideal” Family Size

our "ideal" family size, for now anyway
Prompted by this news article.

I’ve been closely following the RH bill debate in the Philippines for several months now. One of the biggest reasons proponents of the bill give for pushing for the bill is that the bill will legislate helping families achieve their ideal family size. I know. Doesn’t make sense, does it? Let me say that again. The bill will legislate helping families achieve their ideal family size. The bill also mentions that two children is ideal. Hm.

How a bill (or eventually a law, if passed) would do that, I have no idea. How exactly do they propose to do this? I can imagine the conversation now.

Family Planning Official: Good morning, sir, ma’am, what is your ideal family size?
Husband/Wife: Two children. Can you help us achieve that?
FPO: Certainly! We have these contraceptives available for free or at low cost. Take your pick.

Okay. So I don’t really have a clue how that conversation will go down. Do you? I have so many questions I don’t know where to begin.

Why would any country have to enact a law to help families achieve their ideal family size?
Isn’t this a decision that belongs to the married couple and the married couple ALONE?
Except in a communist country, I don’t see how the government could take this decision into their hands. And as far as I know, the Philippines isn’t a communist country. Maybe they’re headed that way. For their sake, I hope not, but stranger things have happened.

How exactly would they help these families ACHIEVE that ideal family size?
Are we talking counseling sessions here on how often to have or not have sex? Are we talking a supply of pills? Are we talking sterilization advice? Are we talking counseling sessions after every child to make sure the parents are “on the right track”? There are so many scenarios running through my head as to how this “achieving” would be accomplished. None of them sound remotely appealing to a married woman like me. I don’t relish the idea of ANYONE, much less the government, butting into a conversation my husband and I should be having IN PRIVATE.

And that word IDEAL. I shudder to think that any person, much less any government entity, would presume to speak to my husband and me about an IDEAL family size. Aren’t we getting too presumptuous here?

My husband and I have been married twenty-one years (thank You, Lord!) and to this day we don’t know what our ideal family size is. Was it when we had only two kids? Was it when we got to four? Is it ideal to stop now that we have five? Whether we plan to have more or not isn’t even an appropriate topic (I don’t think) for this blog. That’s just too private a matter to discuss in public. You’d have to be a VERY, VERY CLOSE, INTIMATE FRIEND to even know what my husband and I think about this.

THAT’S the element, I think, that’s missing in all this talk about ideal family size. So much about marriages, sex, and families have just been assumed to be a matter of public debate the last few years. We have lost so much in terms of privacy and respect and recognizing the autonomy of the individual. We think we can decide for others what’s ideal for them and what’s not. Who am I to tell my friend who has 12 kids, “Enough is enough”? Who am I to tell my friend who has 2, “You need to have more”? Don’t we have enough problems and decisions in our own lives, don’t we have enough on our plates? Why do we even feel it’s necessary to talk about what’s IDEAL for anyone?

It truly pains me to see this happening in my beloved country of birth. I honestly don’t see it leading anywhere that’s good or holy or beautiful. Even if they decide that ten kids is the “ideal family size”, there still would be something inherently wrong in making that pronouncement.

Only a husband and wife have the right to make this decision for themselves. And for the Catholic couple, this is something that’s strictly between them and their God. Neither you nor I, and certainly not legislators, have ANY RIGHT WHATSOEVER to influence this process of prayer and discernment and soul-searching. No one deserves this kind of patronizing, condescending attitude foisted upon them — that SOMEONE else knows better and that they’re not smart enough to figure it out for themselves. No level of intelligence, no economic situation warrants this kind of trespassing, rude interference in the affairs of the individual and the couple. The RH mantra, “Keep your rosaries out of our ovaries”, goes both ways. We don’t wish to impose Catholic morals on anyone. Neither do we want government’s concept of “ideal” foisted upon those who are most vulnerable.

And as a Catholic, it pains me to see that we can presume ourselves more knowledgeable than God when it comes to what’s ideal. I could never have known which child would be my most sensitive, or most loving, or most in need of care, or most in need of physical closeness. I could never have foreseen which child would bring me to my knees. And it’s not one child that will do that; it’s not just one season. Every child, for one reason or another, brings us closer to Him who designed all of these — the sizes of our families, their personalities, their quirks. That this subject would be tackled in the pages of a Filipino newspaper brings me an incredible sadness. God has His plans. It is not up to us to question, or insist that we know better. We don’t know better (though we’d like to think that we do). We trust, we follow, we grow in holiness as we learn to accept and obey. There is blessing in everything He touches. Even in the poorest of the poor, His hand is there, guiding, nurturing, bringing plans to fruition. I shudder to think of where we might drive ourselves if we continue to insist on grabbing the reins instead of sitting back and simply enjoying the ride.

Response to “Reproductive Health Bill: the Bible’s Viewpoint vs. the Catholic Church’s”

Well, I’ve spent the last fifteen minutes trying to post another reply at this blog post over at Definitely Filipino — and my comment just won’t go through, so I’m doing it here.

The latest missive from “Kizmet”: Reproductive Health Bill: the Bible’s Viewpoint vs. the Catholic Church’s

LOL indeed Stef.

Those Bible texts were under the Mosaic Law. I meant Christian laws please. We are not under the Mosaic law today, are we?

Please try harder. ~_^


Jesus came to fulfill the law, not to abolish it. He Himself said it in Matthew 5:17-19:

“Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law, until all things have taken place. Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do so will be called least in the kingdom of heaven. But whoever obeys and teaches these commandments will be called greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”

He didn’t say, “Now that I’m here, forget all that Mosaic law rubbish. We’re starting over.”

You’re the one not doing your homework, my dear. Nice try. Here’s your assignment:

1. Show us where it says in the Bible that we should contracept or abort.
2. Show us where it says in the Bible that Jesus Christ proclaims Mosaic law as passé and should now be ignored or dismissed as such.

When you’ve done that, we can talk again. And seriously, I *am* listening, and I am keeping an open mind. Hope you are too. 🙂

And since I’m here, might as well respond to these:

At times, the Catholic Church fails to understand a simple statement as that. Despite being written in elementary English, the Bishops and the Pope after many years of burning their brows about theology are a disappointment to humanity. They erroneously lay claims to righteousness.

And we should take this person’s word as more credible and authoritative than the Pope’s and Bishops’ because……???? Are we expected to slap our foreheads and say, “Oh my gosh! That *IS* the truth! Now why in the world did we never hear of that or think of that before? Such wisdom in the youth!” As Chesterton says, “First it must be remembered that the Church is always in advance of the world. That is why it is said to be behind the times. It discussed everything so long ago that people have forgotten the discussion. St. Thomas was an internationalist before all our internationalists; St. Joan was a nationalist almost before there were nations; Blessed Robert Bellarmine said all there is to be said for democracy before any ordinary worldling dared to be a democrat; and (what is to the purpose here) the Christian social reform was in full activity… before any of these quarrels of fascists and Bolshevists appeared.”

Your “insights” have long been trumpeted by atheists, agnostics, and Catholic Church haters. Nothing new there.

As the American Standard Version Bible puts it: “Who art thou that judgest the servant of another? to his own lord he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be made to stand; for the Lord hath power to make him stand.”-Romans 14:4

And this means….? The Church proclaiming the truth is judging? Hmmm…. another “new idea”. Not.

As an institution of faith, it does not belong to the Catholic Church’s leaders who are themselves imperfect human beings the right to render judgment against their followers merely because the latter chooses to heed what the Bible really teaches.

But the author hasn’t adequately explained yet “what the Bible really teaches”. We wait with bated breath, Kizmet. Please show us where the Bible says we should contracept or abort.

Mankind does not exist to propagate only. If couples choose not to include pregnancy in constituting a family by employing any of the contraception methods, that is their decision to make, and no one reserves the right to judge them.

Strawman. You came upon this statement where? See if you can find it in the Catechism or any encyclical where it says, “Mankind exists to propagate only.” And again, “speaking the Truth” not = judging. I’ll grant you this: it may feel like judging to those who are not ready to see the Truth from the Bible’s or from the Church’s perspective. That’s okay. We can’t really help that sometimes. But I can tell you this: we hate being judged just as much as you do, so when we speak what we believe as Catholics, at least for my part, I am *not* judging you at all. I am a little frustrated that you can’t see things from my/the Church’s perspective, but that doesn’t mean I see myself as better than you in any way.

Sarah Palin & Contraception?

Nina over at the forum asks about Sarah Palin being pro-contraception. I googled after she asked, but couldn’t find a definitive answer besides the single source American Papist mentions here — no confirmation or denial either after that article. If anyone has the answer, please comment.

This doesn’t change my vote even if it were true. My #1 issue is abortion, and we already know Sarah Palin is solid on this position. While I would love a candidate who is also against artificial contraception, I realize that this may only happen when we have a REAL PRACTICING CATHOLIC on the platform. McCain is not 100% perfect either given his stance on embryonic stem cell research. But I’d rather have these two in office than pro-abortion people. I’m also anti-war, but we are not morally obligated to withdraw support from a candidate on this issue, it’s just something I feel strongly about personally. That doesn’t mean it’s unimportant… just that I’ll take what I can get for now.

Responses to Statements Around the ‘Net

This post may be qualified as venting, because I do need to get these off my chest. While I am a very opinionated person 😀 I don’t believe in confronting people who don’t know me well enough to know that I’m speaking from my heart. What makes this difficult is that I’ve been seeing so many statements lately that just make me go, “Huh?” and I have to respond in SOME way, even if only to record for my kids to find later, or for those wandering readers that may happen to stumble here and just might find something that would help them. If I left these comments on a combox somewhere people are sure to pounce on them right away and I really don’t have the time or inclination to defend my views.

Statement #1: “I am a practicing Catholic but I’ve long ignored Catholic teaching about contraception, and my (married) life has been so much happier since.”

“Practicing” and “ignoring” in the same sentence don’t make sense. Practicing means you know what the Church teaches, you believe the teachings, and you follow them. “Ignoring” can mean several things:

  1. You might know what the Church teaches but you’re purposefully choosing to neither believe nor follow.
  2. You don’t know what the Church teaches and you’re not taking the time to find out
  3. You don’t want to really understand what the Church teaches because you don’t want to accept the Church’s authority over you or any of the life decisions you make, you don’t want to be told you’re wrong, and you don’t want to be told that you have to change.

Whatever “ignoring” means for you, I think we need to agree that “ignoring” and “practicing” just don’t go together. When you say that, it confuses people about the Church, and it confuses people about you. You’re confused enough, so please don’t burden others with your confusion as well.

Also, “happy” doesn’t mean “right”. I’m sure there are criminals around the world that are perfectly happy about the crimes they’ve committed. (Maybe they won’t be happy down the road, but there are sure to be some who don’t have that remorse thing down yet.) There are many things that make us happy. There are many things that make us right. Not all things that make us happy make us right. And not all things that are right make us happy, at least maybe not in the short term. There are long term rewards, however, for doing what’s right. If you’re not into the long-term thing however, you know, that delayed gratification thing — this may be a hard concept for you to accept.

And one more concept that may be foreign to you: there are those of us who DO follow Church teaching about contraception, that are actually HAPPY. Again, just because something may make YOU happy, doesn’t mean it will make EVERYONE happy.

Statement #2: “The Church should trust people to just use and follow their conscience.” (as regards contraception)

I think it’s correct to assume that our consciences are all formed differently. That is, something that may bother my conscience may not bother yours; the opposite is true also. This is why we have Church teaching, and this is why serious Catholics try to follow them. If all we relied on were our own consciences, how do we determine whether your conscience is right and mine is wrong, or vice versa? Ideally, we Catholics would have well-formed consciences by the time we are adults and have to make difficult decisions like who to vote for, or whether we should wash the dishes before hubby gets home or not. Sometimes it doesn’t work that way — maybe we were taught wrong. Maybe we were taught right but we weren’t listening. (Funny but yeah, old habits die hard.) The sad part is that a well-formed conscience doesn’t grow overnight, so when we get to adulthood and realize we’re being wishy-washy, we can’t just flip a switch.

At some point in our lives, it becomes the conscience-owner’s responsibility to continue to inform that conscience, hopefully by putting forth some effort into understanding exactly why the Church teaches what She teaches. There are those of us who can follow Church teaching quite well without asking questions. Blessed are they. There are those of us who need to work on our understanding before we can proceed to application. But just because one attended Catholic school doesn’t make one’s conscience “well-formed”. Ask me how I know; I spent 12 years there and I’m still working on developing mine. That’s why we have converts, reverts, and all kinds of people in between: all of us are on different stages in the journey.

But if Church teaching were to become dependent on OUR consciences, as opposed to what She has always known and taught, how many Catechisms do you think we would have today? And which one would we pick to understand and follow? Hey, we can follow or not follow Church teaching all we want, but don’t you think it’s foolish and ridiculous to expect the Church to FOLLOW US? That’s rather like putting the caboose before the engine.

In a way, I agree with what you’re saying. The Church SHOULD trust us to use our consciences. And actually, She does! Last I checked, there aren’t priests or nuns holding a gun to our heads at the voting booth or even at the sink where my dirty dishes are. I think the real question here though is, “SHOULD we — COULD we — trust our own consciences?” Now that’s the tough one.

Statement #3: “The Pope is an old celibate guy — how can we possibly take his advice on marriage, contraception and abortion? He has no idea what he’s talking about!”

Let’s see, the Pope was born in 1927, a year before my father was born. That would make him 81 years old. Just looking at possibilities here, could he maybe have met and talked to one couple, maybe ten couples, a hundred couples, AT LEAST, before he became Pope? I’m half his age but I can tell you I’ve met at least fifty married couples in my lifetime. Goodness, I’ve got 9 married couples just on my mom’s side of the family — and that’s not even counting their kids, my cousins, who are also married now! That’s not counting my own parents! I can tell you that having met and talked to all these couples through the years, I’ve formed some opinions on what works in a marriage and what doesn’t. My hubby has had a totally different kind of experience growing up, with less married people in the family, etc. But between the two of us we’ve seen enough to have a good idea of what a “happy marriage” looks like. We also have a good idea of what an “unhappy marriage” looks like. I don’t need to tell you we shoot for the former everyday — it does take hard work and conscious effort. But I didn’t need to get married to know what I wanted in a good marriage. I saw good and bad examples everywhere. If I hadn’t gotten married, I would still be seeing examples of both everyday. My job (before I got married and had kids) did not include counseling couples, married or engaged or in trouble. But that didn’t stop my married friends at the time from coming to me sometimes to vent and ask for advice. You think maybe I’ve formed some insights on what goes right and what goes wrong in a marriage based on the stuff they tell me?

Popes and bishops and priests may be celibate, but they are certainly NOT innocent or ignorant of any of these things. They have had PLENTY, I’d be willing to say, MORE THAN ENOUGH experience dealing with all kinds of people from all walks of life, to form some very good opinions about human sexuality and marriage and all that comes with that. Not to mention the Church’s common sense teachings from the very beginning — our priests and bishops and Popes have seen these teachings applied, ignored, discussed and dissected, etc., etc. Just because they’ve chosen the celibate life doesn’t mean they have no understanding of human sexuality. In reality, and you may be surprised — they had to have a thorough understanding of it. It’s quite ridiculous to assume that these men have come to the decision to embrace celibacy lightly. They’re also getting a huge reward for this sacrifice, that most if not all of them believe it’s more than worth it, or that it’s not even really a sacrifice the way WE often think of “sacrifice”. But since we’re looking at this from the outside, I won’t presume to discuss how that all works. If you’re curious enough you might want to invite your parish priest to dinner sometime and see what he has to say about it.

Finally, Someone in the Philippine Media Gets It Right

And a lawyer to boot. You won’t usually see “Filipino”, “lawyer”, “writer”, and “understands Catholic teaching” all in the same sentence. Add to that he’s got an understanding of how contraceptives REALLY work. But hey, there’s always got to be a first time for everything, right?

Contraception and Abortion

A small excerpt, but you do have to see the whole thing to appreciate its impact (and its truths):

The more important moral issue which may even have legal implication is the connection between contraception and abortion. It has been repeatedly pointed out that the following contraceptives have already been medically proven to directly cause abortion: Depoprovera, RU 486, Intra-Uterine Device, Norplant and the Morning-After-Pill (Please see Project Abortifacients, Human Life International, June 1991). This is a claim that has never been denied or disproven by the proponents of the bill and their supporters. Yet the proposed bill will make them available to women. So it is quite clear that even if the bill still considers abortion as illegal and a punishable criminal act, it is nevertheless promoting abortion. In effect, the bill is promoting or abetting an act which it considers illegal. There is no free will or freedom of choice involved here. Such freedom definitely does extend to opting for something illegal.

Thank you very much, Atty. Jose Sison! Now, prayers needed that people actually read and heed…

Hat Tip to Erwin Daculan at Pinoy Defensor Fidei.