President Aquino’s contraception plan angers Philippines Catholic Church

October 1, 2010


(Photo: Activists display condoms to support a reproductive health bill in Manila October 1, 2010/Romeo Ranoco)

The senior bishop in the Philippines’ powerful Roman Catholic Church denied Friday any suggestion that the church could excommunicate President Benigno Aquino for backing a plan to teach Filipinos about contraception.

“Abortion is a grave crime, excommunication is attached to this,” Bishop Nereo Odchimar, head of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), told Radio Veritas on Thursday. He said excommunication was a possibility if condoms were distributed to the poor.

But Friday, he denied the church would consider such action against the president. “While the prevailing sentiment of a number of bishops was that of dismay and frustration over the reported stance of the president regarding artificial contraceptives, imposition of the canonical sanction has not been contemplated by the CBCP,” he said in a statement.

The Church is a major social and political force in the poor Southeast Asian country. Its support has been a key factor in the overthrow of two presidents over 25 years and politicians are careful not to offend it. Abortion is illegal in the Philippines, but condoms and birth control pills are available despite church objections.

Like four out of five Filipinos, Aquino is a Catholic. But he backs a program before Congress on grounds that slowing annual population growth of 2 percent could boost living standards, as one in three residents lives below the poverty line.

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Posted by Katolsk Vision » Kyrkan hotar president Aquino – Öppen maktkamp på Filippinerna om preventivmedel | Report as abusive

The most ignorant Catholics are in the Philippines. Majority of the Catholics in this country are Catholics by tradition and very few (counting the multi-millions Catholics) are Catholics by faith. The Catholic Church is aware of this, thus, they would like to control the environment as much as they could because they know that if these Catholics are given the choice, they will readily take the option to us the artifical contraceptives and all the negative way of life connected to this. Why? Because their faith and knowledge of Catholic doctrines are almost non-existent because of the failure of the church.
Majority of the corrupt officials are Catholics and they go to Catholic church religiously every week, the hostage taker who killed the foreign hostages was a Catholic, the cops who take money are Catholic, the house of the Congress and the Senate where majority are Catholics are alleged to be corrupt, majority of the people connected with illegal gambling were baptized in the Catholic Church. It is a country where majority of citizens are Catholic, yet a country that has always ranked high in corruption, human trafficking, etc..
Catholic Church in the Philippines is a huge failure.
If the Catholic church will rally a mass action vs the President or RH bill, I will be standing at the other side of the fence, yet I am a Catholic.

Posted by and.think.again | Report as abusive

i’m stephen ross and 46 yrs old, florida–usa. I met an incredible woman from bacolod, negros occ 4 yrs ago with 3 beautiful kids. she sepperated 7+ yrs and never receive any peso from her husband in that time. I give u short version– long would disgust any person alive about the philippines. Catholicism is way of life there and most are very devout catholics? Most men in phils have many girlfriend on the side–not all but many. look in any barangay (village) so many single moms. divorce is illegal? so we must get what is called anullment? with the corrupt lawyers,judges and catholic church approving all of this–its so un-god-like. they take my usa dollars and promise actions? then of all things? the drunken and womanizing husband wont comply to anullment. we all cant believe this legal? well–you make certain –its legal there. never trust anyone in philippines–they catholic church is most corrupt institution i ever been involved with. a smart girl out of highschool will go to SM city to work and work all day–10 hrs. for 350 peso– 7 usa dollars? sometimes 4 dollars. BTW– if its so forbidden for divorce? why allow anullments? when they see american or foreigner –wow. price goes way up. they are parasites in the community and have the audacity to sit in front row at mass. pathetic. beware catholicism in philippines. Its a big money grab. i have no religious affiliation– thank–god

Posted by steven-204 | Report as abusive