In a country that’s predominantly Catholic, the Church have always played a big part in the lives of its citizens. Its influence is such that presidents have been elected, impeached or toppled down from position through sheer will power and people power lead by priest, nuns, and other members of the clergy.
Now, there is the big deal about the Reproductive Health Bill. Here is an excerpt from The Philippine Daily Inquirer article (Advocates in House hopeful RH bill passed next year):
“…Common provision among the bills is the promotion not only of natural means of family planning but artificial means as well as a way to curb population growth and ensure the health of the mother and the children. The bills also advocate the education of students of reproductive health at the appropriate age.”
The thing is, as Catholics, we are taught to value life even in its early (fetal) stages, to practice self control for our sexual urges, and to use the rhythm method for family planning. With the introduction of a bill that will promote use of artificial means (condoms, IUDs, pills, etc.) of family planning and integration of sex education in the school system, this is not really in line with the Church’s teachings. Therein lies the point of contention. It’s the Church vs the politicians (who co-wrote this bill) once again.
Disclaimer: The following views are those of the author only.
Personally, I understand the views of the Church in keeping and upholding their teachings but I also believe in giving the people free will on how they want to live their lives and take care of their healths. I believe in family planning of any kind. My parents believed in it too that’s why me and my siblings are properly spaced in years of birth. I don’t believe that it is a sin to want a better life for your family or to want to safeguard the mother’s (as well as the child’s) well-being. If rhythm method works for one couple, then good for them. But for others who prefer other methods such as the use of condoms, IUDs or pills, why should they be stopped? It’s a fact that self control just doesn’t cut it for most people so why not provide assistance for them? Our ever growing population is no joking matter. Living in our world now is harder than it used to be and for a couple to have more than 3 kids when they can hardly afford to feed 1 is just painful to see. When all other methods (rhythm, self control, praying, etc.) doesn’t help the couple, are we going to just stand there and do nothing for them?
If the bill is passed, proper funding for family planning and sex education projects can be provided. This will result in a familiarization and education from the parents (regarding methods of family planning) to the schoolchildren (proper views on sex). Misunderstandings and myths can be clarified. Ignorance can be lessened. The proper information can help citizens make the right choices and families can grow in a healthy environment. Who doesn’t want that? It may be a dream but it can also be a reality.
In all this, I still believe that the Church still has a role to play in providing guidance to its followers but please don’t make us feel like we’re the spawn of the devil just because we chose another method besides the ones you prescribed. I don’t believe in a vengeful God… One who will suddenly strike us with lightning just because we chose to practice free will in improving our lives. And frankly, I don’t think you do too.