Saturday, June 23, 2012

Documentary and Indignance

Just heard a documentary about the overpopulation in Philippines and that the government there is about to give free contraceptives.  Of course, the Catholic Church in Philippines have protested.  However, in the mean time, families are getting larger and people are getting poorer.  The Church had been made a villain in the documentary.  Yet, the problem isn't about the use and non-use of contraceptives but family planning.  It is so like the secular and commercial world to consider the surface and not the deeper issues.  The Church has no objection to family planning.  Family planning means that faithfulness in marriage, and discipline and responsibility in marital life.  The use of contraception affects the amount of faithfulness, discipline and responsibility in family planning.  As I write this, I realise that some pro-contraceptive readers would object to that last sentence.  Yet, faithfulness in marriage is not just faithfulness between spouses.  Faithfulness means faithfulness to God as well.  Discipline could mean being mindful of using the contraceptive but being disciplined in marital life also means that abstinence is an intrinsic part of being a married couple.  Responsibility also means that making informed decisions as a couple, like when to stop having children by practising abstinence.

I was indignant because of the way the documentary was made.  It demonised the Church as only concerned with doctrine and not really interested in the lives of the people.   If the leaders of the Church in the Philippines have made adequate efforts to offer assistance to their people to live responsibly as Catholics, then we should not just look upon them as leaders out of touch with the reality in which the rest of the Church lives.  If, however, the leaders are just sitting there vending out doctrine without concrete assistance, they would be like the Pharisees in the time of Jesus who lay heavy burdens but do not lift a finger to help (see Matt. 23:4).

All right.  I have rambled enough.

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