Archbishop Socrates Villegas, D.D., tells us that it is time to move on now that the RH bill has been passed. He says it is now the time for soul searching, prayers, peacemaking and to intensify efforts to improve the moral fiber of our communities. Although his letter is addressed to the Church in Lingayen Dagupan, it is a relevant message for all of us who were opposed to the RH Bill.
My dear people of God in the Church in Lingayen Dagupan:
Conscience attempted to speak but it has been stifled! The Reproductive Health Bill has been passed by the Senate and Congress through a majority vote. They might have won through the tyranny of numbers but it does not mean that they are right. It is only a matter of time and then we will see more violations of “Thou shall not kill” and “Thou shall not commit adultery” among our families, our youth and children. If the President will sign this into law, he will give us a moral time bomb wrapped as a gift to celebrate Christmas. This law will open more doors to abortion and more crimes against women.
In the Archdiocese of Lingayen Dagupan, let us intensify the moral spiritual education of our youth and children so that they can stand strong against the threats to their moral fibre. Let us use all the means within our reach to safeguard the health of expectant mothers in our communities. Let us make available the sacrament of matrimony to our poor couples so that they may be guided in the right path in living out their duties as husbands and wives and as Catholic parents. Let us disseminate through organized pre-wedding seminars the teachings of the Church on natural family planning at the same time warning our people about the hazardous effects of contraceptive pills on the health of women. Let us conduct our own sex education of our children insuring that sex is always understood as a gift of God. Sex must never be taught separate from God and isolated from marriage.
This is also a time for soul searching and prayers. This is a time for peacemaking. We might not see eye to eye but we can work hand in hand for the real progress that your people so richly deserve. It is a progress with God, in God and through God. Daang matuwid without God is a dead end street. Only with God can we see real progress of peoples.
From the Cathedral of Saint John the Evangelist, Dagupan City, December 18, 2012
+SOCRATES B. VILLEGAS
Archbishop of Lingayen Dagupan