The Church Does Not Teach that Infertile People Can’t Marry

January 15, 2012

A lot of buzz has gone around lately regarding the speech that the Holy Father made to the diplomatic corps last January 9. The media feasted on the alleged statement made by the Pope regarding gay marriage. In all the mayhem that this “statement” brought about, what caught my attention was this article that went viral on Facebook, “Infertile People Can’t Marry Says Catholic Church”. This appeared on my newsfeed over and over again; hence, it piqued my curiosity. Upon reading the article, I just wanted to dissect it and point out some of the places where the writer had his “facts” wrong.

 (Italicized paragraphs are quotes from the article “Infertile People Can’t Marry Says Catholic Church”, italicized statements are quotations from various sources).

 “What is there that comes from marrying them? Nothing! They are two, they remain two, they die two.” ~Archbishop Oscar Cruz, CBCP

From Archbishop Cruz’s latest statement about the issue of marriage from an interview on GMA news, Archbishop reiterated the Catholic Church’s stance that marriage along with sex is ONLY for procreation, That those who cannot procreate or decide to procreate is committing a mortal sin in the eyes of God.

Actually, this is not true. The Catholic Church does not teach the sex is ONLY for procreation. True, the primary purpose of marriage and the marital act is procreation, but the word ONLY in this writer’s statement totally disregards the fact that the Church also teaches that marriage, along with the marital act, is also for the unity and the good of the couple. The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) tells us “The matrimonial consent, by which a man and woman establish between themselves the partnership of the whole of life, is by its nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring” (CCC, 1601).
The Catholic Church is planning to ban the infertile people’s right to marry for they cannot conceive. Even couples who does [sic, recte do] not plan to have babies can have their marriage revoked, for they have failed their purpose to multiply.

For one, what is the source for this statement that the Catholic Church is planning to ban the infertile people’s right to marry? The only references listed with this article were links to GMA news. I clicked them and nowhere do they say that the Church is indeed planning to ban the rights of INFERTILE PEOPLE to marry. This is not what the Church teaches. Again, we read from the CCC: Spouses to whom God has not granted children can nevertheless have a conjugal life full of meaning, in both human and Christian terms. Their marriage can radiate a fruitfulness of charity, of hospitality and of sacrifice (CCC, 1654). Again, marriage is not just for making babies. It is also for the mutual good of the couple.

“Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

This statement is taken from Genesis 1:28. While it is indeed a passage from the Bible which pertains to the Sacrament of Marriage, it is by no means the only one. The Lord also tells us through the Bible that marriage is also for the unity of man and woman. It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him (Genesis 2:18). That is why a man leaves his father and mother and clings to his wife, and the two of them become one body (Genesis 2:24). So they are no longer two, but one flesh (Matthew 19:6). To reiterate, while procreation is the primary purpose of man and woman joining together in marriage, unity and mutual good of the people involved are also incorporated in God’s loving design. The latter is in no way unimportant, however, it necessarily subordinate to the former.

This is the belief that the Catholic Church is fighting for, and in the Philippines where majority of the people are Catholics. Even with the separation of church and state, if you cannot get married according to the standards of the Catholic Church, other religions has [sic, recte have] no right to marry you either.

Again, where does it say that you can’t get married in the Philippines if it is not according to the Catholic Church’s standards? To quote from the 1987 Constitution:

Section 3. The State shall defend: (1) The right of spouses to found a family in accordance with their religious convictions and the demands of responsible parenthood.

Furthermore, the Family Code of the Philippines also states the following:

Art. 2. No marriage shall be valid, unless these essential requisites are present:

(1) Legal capacity of the contracting parties who must be a male and a female; and

(2) Consent freely given in the presence of the solemnizing officer. (53a)

Art. 3. The formal requisites of marriage are:

(1) Authority of the solemnizing officer;

(2) A valid marriage license except in the cases provided for in Chapter 2 of this Title; and

(3) A marriage ceremony which takes place with the appearance of the contracting parties before the solemnizing officer and their personal declaration that they take each other as husband and wife in the presence of not less than two witnesses of legal age. (53a, 55a)

Art. 6. No prescribed form or religious rite for the solemnization of the marriage is required.

Nowhere in these laws can we find that “if you cannot get married according to the standards of the Catholic Church, other religions have no right to marry you either”.

This is another sad case of cherry picking where the words of our priests, bishops and our Holy Father were taken out of context. Like what Fr. John Flynn wrote in his article in Zenit.org: […] the whole section on the family, including a reference to the European Union decision to prohibit the patenting of human embryonic stem cells, took up only 174 words of a speech which was 2,778 words long. The speech in fact covered more than this. The Pope also tackled issues regarding the economy, peace, education and religious freedom. Upon reading the Vatican translation of the Pope’s address to the diplomatic corps, the nearest statement to this alleged “Infertile people can’t marry says Catholic Church” is this: Consequently, policies which undermine the family threaten human dignity and the future of humanity itself. How this was interpreted as infertile people can’t marry, I have no idea. Even Reuters made the conclusion that this, together with the statement ” the family, based on the marriage of a man and a woman” was already equal to the Pope saying “gay marriage is a threat to humanity’s future. (For the full translation of the Pope’s address, click here).

Friends in the Faith, let us not be swayed by how the media sensationalizes news nowadays. Let us be more critical in what we read and let us pursue the truth. It is but just that hand in hand with reading all of these things, we also seek what the Church truly teaches us. It is not fair for our Mother, the Church, to judge her based solely on things that other people, who are not even experts on what She teaches, say.

Friends who want to make statements about the Catholic Church, we appeal to you that in making these conclusions about our Faith, please adhere to scholarly standards of truthfulness and integrity. We do not ask you to be experts regarding Church teachings. We only request that you do not take our words out of context. In quoting statements made by representatives of the Church, please take the time to explain the context and the situation behind them. We also ask that you use credible sources to elucidate what the Church teaches. After all, it is our Lord who said: the truth will set you free (John 8:32).

Let us continue praying for each other.

 

References:

Catechism of the Catholic Church

Zenit.org

The 1987 Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines

The Family Code of the Philippines


Oratio Imperata for the Respect of All Human Life

April 26, 2011
God, our loving Father,
Creator and lover of all life,
You fashioned in your own image and likeness every human person.
Give us the strength and courage
to defend and protect human life from conception to natural death.
We pray for your divine healing, comfort and peace
for all affected by past abortions.
Help us serve actively in alleviating the sufferings and troubles
of all women with pregnancy problems.
We pray that all our leaders and legislators
may be guided by the grace of the Holy Spirit
to act responsibly on this critical present issue.
Mary, our loving Mother, to you we entrust the cause of life.
We make our prayer through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Our Lady of Guadalupe, pray for us.
Saint Rosa of Lima, pray for us.
Saint Lorenzo Ruiz, pray for us.

Universal Prayer

April 26, 2011

This prayer is attributed to Pope Clement XI and is said to be a prayer for “all things necessary for salvation”. I use this prayer sometimes as thanksgiving after mass. :)

Lord, I believe in you: increase my faith.
I trust in you: strengthen my trust.
I love you: let me love you more and more.
I am sorry for my sins: deepen my sorrow.

I worship you as my first beginning,
I long for you as my last end,
I praise you as my constant helper,
And call on you as my loving protector.

Guide me by your wisdom,
Correct me with your justice,
Comfort me with your mercy,
Protect me with your power.

I offer you, Lord, my thoughts: to be fixed on you;
My words: to have you for their theme;
My actions: to reflect my love for you;
My sufferings: to be endured for your greater glory.

I want to do what you ask of me:
In the way you ask,
For as long as you ask,
Because you ask it.

Lord, enlighten my understanding,
Strengthen my will,
Purify my heart,
and make me holy.

Help me to repent of my past sins
And to resist temptation in the future.
Help me to rise above my human weaknesses
And to grow stronger as a Christian.

Let me love you, my Lord and my God,
And see myself as I really am:
A pilgrim in this world,
A Christian called to respect and love
All whose lives I touch,
Those under my authority,
My friends and my enemies.

Help me to conquer anger with gentleness,
Greed by generosity,
Apathy by fervor.
Help me to forget myself
And reach out toward others.

Make me prudent in planning,
Courageous in taking risks.
Make me patient in suffering, unassuming in prosperity.

Keep me, Lord, attentive at prayer,
Temperate in food and drink,
Diligent in my work,
Firm in my good intentions.

Let my conscience be clear,
My conduct without fault,
My speech blameless,
My life well-ordered.
Put me on guard against my human weaknesses.
Let me cherish your love for me,
Keep your law,
And come at last to your salvation.

Teach me to realize that this world is passing,
That my true future is the happiness of heaven,
That life on earth is short,
And the life to come eternal.

Help me to prepare for death
With a proper fear of judgment,
But a greater trust in your goodness.
Lead me safely through death
To the endless joy of heaven.

Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.


Easter Triduum: Good Friday

April 22, 2011

In my reflection today, I would just like to focus on two characteristics of Jesus that we can imitate.

First, Jesus is a model of true abandonment. From the Agony in the Garden up to His death on the Cross, we can see how much Jesus truly trusts in the Father’s plan for Him and how He has abandoned His earthly fate to our heavenly Father. In Matthew 26:39, Jesus prays in the Garden of Gethsemane: “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet, not as I will, but as you will.” Jesus fully submits to the what the Father wants Him to do, even if it is humanly impossible, for He knows that if God wills it, then it will be possible. As He journeys through Calvary up to His crucifixion on Golgotha, He never gave up because He knows that this is what the Father asks of Him. Even up to His death, He leaves everything into the Father’s hands: Father, into your hands I commend my spirit (Luke 23:46).  May we imitate Jesus in His abandonment to God’s plan, showing the same trust and reliance on God’s will, especially when it comes to our own vocations. May we learn to accept God’s plan for us and happily take on whatever challenge He presents us with.

Second, Jesus is a model of true forgiveness. What greater sin can we commit against a person than to forsake Him to die? And yet, even during his last breath, Jesus asks the Father to forgive those who have condemned Him saying “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34). If Jesus can forgive the very people who wanted Him to die, what right have we not to forgive the people who have done much less against us? Forgiveness is an essential part of our Faith. Jesus reiterates the importance of forgiving others several times: When you stand to pray, forgive anyone against whom you have a grievance, so that your heavenly Father may in turn forgive you your transgressions (Mark 11:25); in teaching us the Lord’s Prayer, He tells us to pray in this manner: forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors (Matthew 6:12) for if you forgive others their transgressions, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions (Matthew 6:14-15); and when asked how many times we should forgive those who have wronged us, Jesus answered: I say to you, not seven times but seventy-seven times (Matthew 18:22). To forgive and to be forgiven, borne out of charity and love for our neighbors.

As a final word for Good Friday: Jesus died on the Cross so that we may live. He died for our sins, let us then live for His glory.


Easter Triduum: Maundy Thursday

April 21, 2011

Today marks the beginning of the Easter Triduum of the Church which commemorates and re-presents the Passion, Death and Resurrection of our Savior. During this time of the year in the Church, we remember the last days of our Lord, leading up to His crucifixion on the cross. But we don’t stop there, we celebrate and rejoice with Him as He triumphs over sin and death with His resurrection.

On this day, we celebrate the Mass of the Lord’s Supper and the institution of the Holy Eucharist. It is during this time two thousand years ago that our Lord established the Holy Mass  in which we now partake of His Body and Blood. This sacrament, in which we are in communion with Christ, is the “source and summit of the Christian Life” (Lumen Gentium 11). However, for this reflection, I would like to focus more on the optional ritual within the special Eucharistic celebration for today – the washing of the feet.

Maundy Thursday derives its name from the verse before today’s Gospel (or Gospel Acclamation): mandatum novum do vobis ut diligatis invicem sicut dilexi vos ut et vos diligatis invicem which translates to a new command I give you: love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another (John 13:34). Maundy comes from the word Mandatum which means mandated. As Jesus washed the feet of His disciples, He commanded them to do the same – to serve their brethren and not to strive to be the first among them.

In Jesus’ time, the servant who washed the feet of the master was considered as one of the lowest kinds of servants. Thus, Jesus’ act of washing His disciples feet was truly a radical one because it was unthinkable for a Master, such as He, to wash the feet of those who were under Him. And yet Jesus subjected Himself to this “degradation of position” to drive a point – that in the kingdom of God those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted (Matthew 23:12).

Jesus teaches us the kind of leadership that we should imitate: servant-leadership. We are not put in positions of leadership to rule and lord it over other people. Rather, God entrusts us with the responsibility of shepherding His flock because He knows that we can lead by example, for the best way to get people to follow you is to let them see that you yourself are doing what you are asking them to do.

As a final note, Jesus commands us to love one another as He has loved us. He tells us in the Gospel of John: Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends (John 15:13). He’s not asking us to literally die for our friends or anything morbid like that, all He asks of us is to die a little to ourselves everyday, by sacrifice and mortification, and offer this up for our friends and for Him.

Have a blessed Easter Triduum! :)


Our Father

March 15, 2011

This entry is lifted from a previous reflection I made for the daily reflections of FCCY leaders in St. Peter. Aptly, in today’s Gospel, Matthew shares with us the account of the Lord teaching His disciples to pray.

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I’ve long wanted to reflect on each and every line of the Lord’s prayer but have never succeeded. Finally, I’ve been given the chance (or more of a wake up call) to do so.

For most of us, myself included, praying the Lord’s prayer has become lip service, just another string of words we memorized during our younger years and is recited when the need arises. We often fail to realize the meaning behind it.

Our Father
From mere creatures, Jesus elevates us to a higher status – Children of God. I get goosebumps whenever I realize the implication of these two words. We are God’s children. God, who made the sun, the stars, the planets, the whole universe, chose us humans, to be His children. We are nothing compared to Him and yet because of His infinite love for us, He chose us to become His children. Wow. WOW.

in Heaven
Heaven should always be our goal. From my Ash Wednesday reflection [last year]: “…our life HERE ON EARTH is but a mere speck of dust, just a tiny speck of ash, compared to the life that we will be spending in eternity. The more I think about it, the more I realize that while living, I should do everything in my power to be able to enter heaven in the eternal life. Why would I trade the grandeur of Heaven that will last for all eternity for the pleasures of my fleeting Earthly life? Why would I want to satisfy my materialistic and Earthly desires and jeopardize the place that God has prepared for me in Heaven? I’d rather suffer here on Earth than to suffer all eternity in hell (and mind you, Hell is not a place you’d want to spend the rest of eternity in)”. Eyes on the prize, eyes always on the prize.

Holy be Your Name
“You shall not take the Name of the Lord God in vain” as the second commandment asks of us. A name is what defines the person. It gives the person his/her uniqueness. The same is true for God. His Name is so perfect because He is perfect. His Name is holy because God is holy. Thus, we should always give the respect and honor due to God’s name.

Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on Earth as it is in heaven
As I have said above, our eyes and our hearts should always be focused on our main goal – heaven. And one of the ways to attain heaven in eternal life is to imitate heaven here on Earth. How? By following God’s will and His commandments. In everything we do, we should always discern God’s will and have the courage to follow it. Fiat voluntas tua, Your will be done, Lord.

Give us today our daily bread
In this line of the prayer, we realize that everything that we have comes from God. Also, we ask God to give us our daily bread. We learn the importance of asking only for what we need and nothing in excess. Let us learn to be humble enough to ask God for our needs and to be unselfish enough to want what we need and no more.

Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us
If God can forgive, who are we to hold grudges against other people? Let us not ask God for something that we ourselves are not willing to give to other people.

Do not bring us to the test, but deliver us from evil
Test=Temptation
Human as we are, we are very prone to give in to temptation, especially when we do not ask for God’s help in fighting off these invitations from the devil. In the face of temptation, RUN. Do not think that we are strong enough to withstand the desire to give in to the false promises of the Devil. One good practice, as shared by Fr. Paul, SVD, is when faced with the desire to do something evil, or in short, to sin, say to yourself: I’ll do it tomorrow. And when tomorrow comes and you still want to do it, say it again: I’ll do it tomorrow. A very effective way right? :)

I would also like to stress the importance of personal prayers. Yes, these formula prayers are still important and are very effective when we really are at a loss for words, but God also wants us to tell Him our personal praises and petitions – in our own words. So when the time arises that we are asked to lead a prayer, let’s pause for a while, think of our personal prayer and say it out loud. Let us not be afraid in making mistakes in grammar or praying for trivial things – God will not judge us based on our proficiency but rather on the sincerity of our hearts. He will surely be delighted if we speak to Him in a more personal way.

And finally, some nice points to ponder on…
(as published in the Kerygma daily reflections)
Do not say FATHER if every day you do not behave like a son or daughter.
Do not say OUR if you live isolated in your egoism.
Do not say WHO ARE IN HEAVEN if you think only of earthly things.
Do not say HOLY BE YOUR NAME if you do not honor Him.
Do not say YOUR KINGDOM COME if you confuse Him with material success.
Do not say YOUR WILL BE DONE if you do not accept it when it is painful.
Do not say GIVE US THIS DAY OUR DAILY BREAD if you are not worried about the people who are hungry, who are without culture and means to live.
Do not say FORGIVE US OUR SINS if you bear your brother a grudge.
Do not say AND LEAD US NOT INTO TEMPTATION if you intend to keep on sinning.
Do not say DELIVER US FROM EVIL if you do not take position against evil.
Do not say AMEN if you do not take the words of the OUR FATHER seriously.


RH Series: Family – LONG-TERM: A Look into the Reproductive Health Bill and the Family

March 11, 2011


This is the fourth in a series of articles that I have started to share my reasons for NOT supporting the RH Bill. This week, I am very, very pleased to present you with an article written by a very good friend of mine who shares the same point of view. This entry might look lengthy, but trust me, it’s worth the read.

Jen Tan is is a Gen-Y-er who still believes in true love, changing the world and building a better place to live in. She works for the government during weekdays and volunteers in Church during the weekends. She is currently the Spiritual Formation Steward of the Filipino-Chinese Catholic Youth in St. Peter the Apostle Parish.

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Writing this article has been quite a journey for me. To put in context, let me tell you a not-so-secret fact about me: I vocally supported the RH Bill, even rallied and campaigned for it, during my college days. Yet here I am to convince you to rethink your position if you support the Bill or encourage you to stand firm if you do not support it. A number of you might ask, “why the change of heart?” The same question has been in my mind for the past months ever since the Bill has gained heat again in the public eye and the answer has been elusive for some time until I researched for this article and the proverbial light bulb on top of my head lit up.

My initial support rested on the Bill’s health aspects which seek to lower maternal and infant mortality rates – ‘treatment of breast and reproductive tract cancers and other gynecological conditions and disorders’, ‘maternal, infant and child health and nutrition, including breastfeeding’, the deployment of skilled midwives to assist in live deliveries, and newborn health care. As I reflected on my research materials, it dawned on me what I missed to see on the onset– the bigger picture, the long-term impact. This eureka moment is particularly important for me as I reaffirm to myself that this contains values that I wish to impart to my adolescent sister, to share with my future partner and to teach to my future children.

So what is the big picture? A friend of mine captured it succinctly; allow me to quote him, “Two generations from now, there can be a shift in values [if the Bill is passed and particularly, with its promotion of contraceptives].”  In the encyclical Humanae Vitae, Pope Paul VI cautions against the ill effects of a contraceptive mentality on society. He mentions a “general lowering of moral standards” due to sex without consequences; the danger of losing respect for women and reducing women “to being a mere instrument for the satisfaction of own desires” and a false sense of autonomy and dominion over one’s own body[1].

Today’s generation of teenagers is largely affected by distorted values and truths particularly about premarital sex. 46% of grades 9-12 students in the US have had sexual intercourse.[2] Locally, 23% of Filipino youth, ages 15 to 27 years old, admitted to engaging in premarital sexual activity[3] while 35% admitted to having more than one premarital sexual partner[4]. When asked about the circumstances of their first premarital sexual encounter, 42% said they wanted it to happen at that time, 32% did not plan it but it happened anyways, 23% did not want for it to happen but went along with it and 2% said it happened against their will.

Clearly, these numbers are cause for alarm. More and more teens are deciding to forego waiting for marriage before engaging in sex. The good news is, there’s something that can be done. Recent figures show that there is a very significant role that parents can play in influencing their teenagers’ decision whether to stay virgin or engage in premarital sexual activity. In the 2010 national survey for the national campaign to prevent teen pregnancy, eight in 10 teens said that “it would be much easier for teens to delay sexual activity and avoid teen pregnancy if they were able to have more open, honest conversations about these topics with their parents[5]”. In fact, some literature mentions about how “communication with parents protects against early sexual initiation and against risky behaviors”[6]. Filipino teenagers report relatively few conversations with their parents about sexuality and its different aspects but interestingly, respondents expressed that they value their parents’ opinion more than their friends’.

It is sad that there are not too many open dialogues between parent and child in Filipino households. It is even sadder that the opportunity for this to take place and take effect is threatened by the RH Bill, which weakens and undermines parental authority and right over the upbringing of their children by effectively prescribing children and adolescents the right to “have a satisfying and safe sex life” and “to decide if, when, and how often to reproduce”. Nowhere in the Bill also is there a push to promote dialogues between parents and their children on sexuality which this author believes is an uncharacteristic exclusion of the traditional Filipino familial environment. By undermining the participation of parents, there is almost no need for recourse for parental guidance. Is this the culture that we want where we no longer value what our parents have to say?

Additionally, I think it is important for policy makers to consider a reproductive health education taught side-by-side with the appropriate values putting the sexual act in the context of marriage and authentic love and that will act only as a supplement to the parents’ duty to discuss this intimate topic with their children. A high percentage of Filipino high school students (within 83% to 95%) expressed their interest to learn about managing feelings and emotions and what “falling in love” means more than learning about the biological aspects of sexuality[7]. Their desire to learn more about the emotional aspects of relationships and sexuality further highlights the significance of strong parent-child communication as well as the need for reproductive health education to go beyond being value-neutral.

Further exacerbating the problem of early exposure to sexual activity is access to contraception – something firmly espoused in the Bill. Arguably, increased access to contraception “does not decrease long run pregnancy rates[8]” and can promote sexual activity instead by releasing users from sexual inhibitions and misleading them to believe that they have dominion over their own bodies. Combined with the value-neutral sex education that the Bill proposes, the contraceptive mentality spells disastrous consequences for our teenagers and their view on love, sexuality and family. Since contraceptive use emboldens its users, it can actually increase the number of unplanned and unwanted pregnancies, which can subsequently end up in abortion. In a Swedish study, it has been found that teen abortion rates rose to 22.5 per thousand from 17 thousand between 1995 and 2001 even with the provision of free abortions, free contraceptive counseling, low cost condoms and oral contraceptives, and over-the-counter emergency contraception[9].

What starts off as willingness to compromise one’s sexuality in exchange for ‘seemingly authentic’ love can eventually escalate into the willingness to compromise marriage in order to ‘test-drive’ a partner ‘just to see if it works out’. In the United States, the percentage of children being born to married couples declined rapidly by 34% in a 43-year period[10]. Locally, 17% of Filipino youth agree that it is alright for unmarried people to live together even if they have no plans to marry[11]. A phenomenon that Akerlof, Yellen and Katz calls “reproductive technology shock[12]” brought about by contraception, birth control, and legal abortion, is also what they argue to cause an increase in out-of-wedlock births as well as a change in the male-female relationship. According to them, women who did not resort to birth control or contraception were at a disadvantage while men, who are biological fathers of children born out of wedlock increasingly reject their paternal obligation. And now we see the degradation of a family from a mere decision to compromise one’s virginity that has extended into a decision to compromise marriage. In essence, this type of mentality cheapens our regard for the sexual act and marriage as well as, ultimately, for human life. Is this the culture that we want where we are governed by mere selfish desires even at the expense of the true and authentic love?

At the end of this article, I want you to ask yourself: “Is this what I want those who belong in the succeeding generations to believe in and make as their lifestyle?” Would you want your children or even grandchildren to forego marriage, to disregard your parental guidance, to be or get someone pregnant when they do not even know yet what it means to take responsibility for themselves, to resort to abortion and carry it in their conscience for a lifetime? And finally, would you want them to stop believing in authentic love and hoping for its long-term pleasure just so they can satisfy their short-term desires? If you say no to any of these questions, then maybe it’s now your time to re-examine or re-affirm your position on the RH Bill, think long term and voice out why you DO NOT support it.


[1] From the talk of Fr. Melvin Castro, Executive Secretary of the Episcopal Commission on Family and Life as well as designated spokesperson of the Catholic Church on the RH Bill, available at http://www.pcjparish.org/Talk%20of%20Fr.%20Melvin.html

[2]U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “2009 National Youth Risk Behavior Survey Overview” (2009), p.3, available at http://www.cdc.gov/HealthyYouth/yrbs/pdf/us_overview_yrbs.pdf

[3] Demographic Research and Development Foundation, University of the Philippines Population Institute “2002 Young Adult Fertility and Sexuality Study” (2002) available at http://www.drdf-uppi.net/DownloadsD/filipino%20datasheet.pdf

[4] Ibid.

[5] The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, “With One Voice 2010: America’s Adults and Teens Sound Off About Teen Pregnancy” (December 2010), p.5, available at http://www.thenationalcampaign.org/resources/pdf/pubs/wov_2010.pdf

[6] Relationships, Love and Sexuality: What the Filipino Teens Think and Feel; de Irala; Osorio, Alfonso; Lopez del Burgo, Cristina Lopez; Belen, Vina; de Guzman, Filipinas; Calatrava; Maria del Carmen; Torralba, Antonio; 2009

[7] Ibid.

[8] Peter Arcidiano et al, “Habit Persistence and Teen Sex: Could Increased Access to Contraception have Unintended Consequences for Teen Pregnancies?” (Oct. 3, 2005), p.29, available at http://econ.duke.edu/~psarcidi/teensex.pdf

[9] Edgardh, K. et al “Adolescent Sexual Health in Sweden”, Sex Trans Inf 78 (2002): 352-6, Quoted in Ang Kapatiran Party, “A Position Paper on the Reproductive Health Bills” (November 2010), p.5, available at http://angkapatiranparty.org/resources/AKP_Position_Paper_on_RH-Abortion_Bills_rev06.pdf

[10] Rector, Robert “Marriage: America’s Greatest Weapon Against Child Poverty” (September 16, 2010) available at http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2010/09/marriage-america-s-greatest-weapon-against-child-poverty

[11] Demographic Research and Development Foundation, University of the Philippines Population Institute “2002 Young Adult Fertility and Sexuality Study” (2002) available at http://www.drdf-uppi.net/DownloadsD/filipino%20datasheet.pdf

[12] Akerlof, G.A.; Yellen, J.L. and M.L. Katz “An Analysis of Out-of-Wedlock Child-bearing in the United States” Quarterly Journal of Economics, Vol. 111, No. 2 (May 1996) pp. 277-317, Quoted in Ang Kapatiran Party, “A Position Paper on the Reproductive Health Bills” (November 2010), p.5, available at http://angkapatiranparty.org/resources/AKP_Position_Paper_on_RH-Abortion_Bills_rev06.pdf