Some quotes from Church sources relevant to the RH Bill Debate

Note: There are discrepancies between the teaching and the practice of what is preached by leaders or the community in general. But the teachings are normative. The lives of all, the leaders and the community, are judged as right or wrong (or needs nuancing and modification) according to these norms. So it is good to know what the Church teaches; so one is guided accordingly when leaders or lay leaders or members speak. One can also check what the media says so that embellishments from those who have little knowledge on what the Church teaches will also be corrected justly, eg. The Inquirer.

Pair this article with the previous posts on:

1. Talking Points for Dialogue on RH Bill 96 (filed 1 July 2010);

2. The Ability to Make Good Choices (from Vatican II’s Gaudium et Spes)

3. Steps in Making an Informed Choice (from Conscience in Gaudium et Spes, and Spirituality on the Discernment of Spirits)

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Some quotes from Church sources relevant to the RH Bill Debate

1. The PCP II (2nd Plenary Council of the Philippines) warned against harsh rhetoric in public debate by lay leaders and clergy:

“The public defense of gospel values, especially when carried into the arena of public policy formulation, whether through the advocacy of lay leaders or moral suasion by pastors, is not without limit.” (PCP II #358)

2. PCP II also warned strongly against violating the religious freedom of non-Catholics and even dissenting Catholics:

“It needs emphasizing, that, although pastors have the liberty to participate in policy debate and formulation, that liberty must not be exercised to the detriment of the religious freedom of non-communicants, or even of dissenting communicants. This is a clear implication of Vatican II’s Dignitatis humanae. This is not just a matter of prudence; it is a matter of justice.” (PCP II #358)

There may even be some Catholic believers who in all honesty do not see the truth the way the Church’s magisterium discerns, interprets, and teaches it. In such a situation, the Church must clearly and firmly teach what it believes is the truth and require its members to form their consciences accordingly. Yet the Church must also, with all charity and justice, hold on to its doctrine on religious freedom — that the human person is bound to follow his or her conscience faithfully, and must not be forced to act contrary to it. (PCP II, #362-363)

3. Pope Benedict XVI is against Church actions that imposes on the State and to non-Catholics

Faith enables reason to do its work more effectively and to see its proper object more clearly. This is where Catholic social doctrine has its place: it has no intention of giving the Church power over the State. Even less is it an attempt to impose on those who do not share the ways of thinking and modes of conduct proper to faith. Its aim is simply to help purify reason and to contribute, here and now, to the acknowledgement and attainment of what is just. (Deus Caritas Est, Benedict XVI)

4. The Compendium of the Social Teaching of the Church rejects any imposition of norms by a majority religion that is discriminatory of the rights of minority religions.

Because of its historical and cultural ties to a nation, a religious community might be given special recognition on the part of the State. Such recognition must in no way create discrimination within the civil or social order for other religious groups.” (Compendium #169):

“Those responsible for government are required to interpret the common good of their country not only according to the guidelines of the majority but also according to the effective good of all members of the community, including the minority. (Compendium #422)

5. Social Teachings of the Church deny the existence of a Catholic vote or a Catholic party

“There is generally no such thing as a ‘Catholic vote’ or ‘the Bishops’ candidates’. This is simply a myth. The Bishops do not endorse any particular candidate or party but leave the laity to vote according to their enlightened and formed consciences in accordance with the Gospel.” (CBCP Catechism on Church and Politics 1998)

To claim that one party or political coalition responds completely to the demands of faith or of Christian life would give rise to dangerous errors. (Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church #573)

7 Comments

  1. Hi Fr. Jboy,

    I belong to a Catholic renewal organization. My elders are very active in supporting the Church’s initiatives in its fight against the RH bill. I want to be clarified on this issue. Frankly speaking, I am of the opinion that the RH bill doesn’t espouse abortion but just gives Filipino couples more choices for their families. I also don’t believe that artificial methods are abortifacients but I know that continued use of pills have adverse effects on women. Thank you and more power to you.

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  2. even though all of us were against to this bill….
    we cant hide the truth that the time will come this would be soon implemented….
    im no against or pro to this bill because i believe that a coin has always two sides the head and the tail….
    to my dear constituents dont make your decision on what others say…….
    remember that always weigh facts…..
    thank you….

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    Reply

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