Saturday, October 30, 2010

RH Bill author challenges the Church

From Rep. Edsel Lagman, that no good &^!$#%!#^^!@#

"Humanae Vitae is not an infallible doctrine. In 1963, Pope John XXIII created the Papal Commission on Birth Control to study questions on population and family planning. The Commission included ranking prelates and theologians.

Humanae Vitae is not an infallible doctrine. In 1963, Pope John XXIII created the Papal Commission on Birth Control to study questions on population and family planning. The Commission included ranking prelates and theologians.

Voting 69 to 10, it strongly recommended that the Church change its teaching on contraception as it concluded that “the regulation of conception appears necessary for many couples who wish to achieve a responsible, open and reasonable parenthood in today’s circumstances.”

However, it was the minority report that Pope Paul VI eventually supported and which became the basis of Humanae Vitae.

Even 40 years ago when the encyclical was issued, theologians did not generally think that it was infallible. Monsignor Fernando Lambruschini, spokesperson of the Vatican at the time of its release, said “attentive reading of the encyclical Humanae Vitae does not suggest the theological note of infallibility… It is not infallible.”

Five days after the issuance of the encyclical, a statement against it was signed by 87 Catholic theologians. It asserted that “Catholics may dissent from … noninfallible Church doctrine” and that “Catholic spouses could responsibly decide in some circumstances to use artificial contraception.”  [Because a group of Catholic theologians dissented with the Pope, we then ought to disobey the Pope.  Yeah, right.]



Nuff said.


  1. Humanae Vitae is not infallible since the issues that it dealt with HAVE BEEN ACCEPTED BY THE WHOLE CHURCH since the Church came to be. The Orthodox Church, Roman Church, Oriental Churches and till the early 20th Century, the Protestant and Anglican churches have held on to what Humane Vitae teaches. The crucial turning point for the whole Church was the 1930 Lambeth Conference where the Anglican Communion decided that artificial contraception was permissible under certain conditions. While Lambeth was interpreting this according to Christian principles, Anglicans having no Magisterium, interpreted these principles rather broadly.

    The theological commission that John XXIII convened likely took the lead of the Lambeth resolution. In Lambeth, 197 Anglican bishops voted in favour while 67 voted against. That Paul VI stood for the traditional teaching actually defines what these Christian principles are in regulating fertility. Unfortunately almost everyone else interpreted it as the Roman Church being against fertility regulation!

    A close reading of Humanae Vitae would lead us to conclude while the traditional teaching is indeed important, the pastoral approaches are even more important. Humanae Vitae isn't archaic but super relevant and even prophetic. As a scientist I believe that Paul VI was prophetic when he writes that there are "limits to Man's power". We revere the human body in the same way we revere God's creation. Without Humanae Vitae we come into moral dilemmas on stem cells, human embryos and the such.

    This is one of the legs of a theology of the environment and creation which John Paul II had and Benedict XVI have started to develop. Environmentalism cannot be divorced from the principles laid by Humanae Vitae. While Malthusian theory may have some scientific support, the insistence that drastic fertility reduction via coercive artificial means is contrary to a Gospel centered concern for the environment.

    However I find it very unfortunate that some pro life Catholics in the Philippines miss out on Paul VI's exhortation to be understanding and charitable on the situation of married couples with regards to fertility regulation. Instead we hear of "civil disobedience", "excommunication" and the like!

    In this discussion on RH in the Philippines, I would like to inform your readers about the Reverend John Staunton. This Anglican priest-missionary who built the Episcopal Mission in Sagada went home to the Catholic Church because of the Lambeth 1930 resolution on contraception. He was ordained a Catholic priest, celebrated the Latin Mass and retired. He was convinced that departure from the traditional teaching on human life will result in greater separation from the Catholic and Christian faith.

    I wrote about Fr Stauton in the Pinoy Anglican Use blog

    Staunton was our first witness for pro life in our beloved Philippines! And his prophetic statement is true. Acceptance of contraceptive principles in our lives will result in a gradual separation from Christian and of course the Catholic faith!

    I hope we in the Philippine Catholic Church will someday initiate the move to canonize Fr Staunton. We brought up that idea in the Pinoy Anglican Use society and we would like to commemorate him in some way when the first public celebrations of the Anglican prayers in the Philippine Catholic Church become a reality.

  2. This Catholic kuno does not understand the working of the Church. The Church works not through plurality or the voting system, it work through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, whom the Pope consults before giving any decision.

    The Holy Spirit is infinitely higher than all the dissenting theologians combined.