Responsible parenthood-A A +A
The Living Spirit
Monday, January 21, 2013
THE RH bill is called also Responsible Parenthood bill. I prefer this title over Reproductive Health bill.
It is true, the RH bill basically deals with health measures, but responsible parenthood indicates better what reproductive health is all about. It deals with the responsibility of the parents on how to go about reproduction, bringing forth children. When God created man, He said to Adam and Eve: Go and multiply. He did not intend to say: go and produce as many children as you can.
The human being is different from the animal. He is gifted with an intellect and a conscience. He has these sublime gifts in order to fulfill his task of procreation. The aspect of motherhood and fatherhood, the relationship of a mother and a father towards the child is of utmost importance. Animals have an instinct that takes care of the welfare of their brood.
The RH bill has brought in important modifications with respect to the reproductive health of the parents. They have the freedom of choice, the freedom to use their conscience. Who are the Bishops to say how they have to deal with this parenthood? They themselves have never been parents. They have no experience whatsoever when it comes to parenthood.
When I was writing this column, it occurred to me that our lawmakers must design also a bill on responsible priesthood. Even if our constitution says that there is a separation between church and state, it doesn’t say that bishops and priests cease to be civilians. They are subject also to civil law. If a priest makes the mistake of impregnating a woman, he should be man enough to admit this openly and take the consequences of his action. If not, then the law can go after him and tell him that he has to marry that woman so that he can become a ‘real’ father to the child he has produced, or at least he should compensate the woman and the child for the damage he has caused in their life. The bishops cannot cover up this crime so they can protect the sacredness of the priesthood. The same goes for all those pedophiles among priests. They must be punished by law for their misdeeds and they should make restitution for the trauma they have caused in those children.
All ordinary Christians share in the Priesthood of Christ and on that basis the laity has the obligation and the responsibility to protect the sacredness of the priesthood, whether that of the priest or of the lay.
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Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on January 22, 2013.