Jesuits support Catholic bishops vs RH bill-A A +A
Wednesday, August 29, 2012
THE continuing battle of the Catholic bishops against Reproductive Health (RH) bill has gained support from the Jesuit hierarchy.
In a report posted in the Catholic Online, Fr. Jose Magadia, provincial superior of the Society of Jesus in the Philippines, said in a letter that their congregation is “behind the bishops’ campaign against reproductive health bill.”
“In the country’s many struggles, the Jesuits have always sought to work with the bishops as their ‘pastors and guides’,” Magadia said.
In a letter to Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) president, Magadia said that as prior issue of national concern, “it is our preference not to lead you but to follow you, our bishops.”
Copies of the letter were also sent to Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Tagle, Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas of the CBCP’s Episcopal Commission on Catechesis and Catholic Education and Antipolo Bishop Gabriel Reyes of the CBCP’s Episcopal Commission on Family and Life, retired Archbishops Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales of Manila and icardo Cardinal Vidal of Cebu and Cubao Bishop Honesto Ongtioco.
Meanwhile, Cagayan de Oro Archbishop Antonio J. Ledesma has been strongly pushing for the All Natural Family Planning (NFP) in the diocese.
Ledesma, in an earlier forum on NFP, said over the past six years, the All-Natural Family Planning Program has convincingly shown that many couples today have three felt needs.
Among the needs is to plan their families wherein they prefer NFP once given enough information; and wanting the freedom to choose from among available scientific NFP methods.
Ledesma said the Archdiocese of Cagayan de Oro is more challenged to say yes to NFP even as the Catholic Church continues to say no to RH bill.
The Jesuits’ position on the issue was put into question after one of their confreres, constitutionalist Fr. Joaquin Bernas, vocally threw his support behind the artificial contraception measure.
Magadia said, however, that while they respect the professors of Ateneo de Manila who expressed support for the RH bill, “we will continue to dialogue with them about the Church’s teachings on the sanctity of human life and the family.”
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on August 29, 2012.