Our Lady of the Wayside

Our Lady of the Wayside
Protect Expectant Mothers and Their Babies


Friday 16 July 2010

We Must Conform Ourselves to Christ's Church

In the early 1970s, many Catholics chose to ignore what seemed to be the 'impossible' demands made by Humanae Vitae,. noting that ultimately use of contraception was 'up to the individual conscience'... as Cardinal Heenan mentioned in an interview at the time (some would say his words were misrepresented - Editor). Few considered the necessity of an informed conscience in such a situation. In the 'Permissive Society' of that era, flooded with new secular values, very few people realised just how right Pope Paul VI was in foreseeing the disasters of a contraceptive mentality for society.

When Pope Paul died, much was made of the fact that a new Pope would 'almost certainly' change Church teaching on contraception - after all, the Church would have to move with the times.... It came as something of a disappointment that Pope John Paul II was such a great supporter of Humanae Vitae - at the time the only encyclical every one had heard of - but sadly no one had read - or one might have discovered that it was far more than simply 'the Catholic Church saying no to contraception'.

However, a (non-Catholic) journalist who had closely followed the events of the last years of the Communist Eastern Bloc who offered new light on the new pope's staunch defence of Church teaching.

Surely, argued the journalist, any bishop having Auschwitz within the boundaries of his own diocese would not be credible as a pastor of souls at all if, having reflected on the terrors that had existed therein, he did not conclude that utter and profound respect for all human life from conception until natural death was the only way man could truly save himself from the tyranny of an new and even more horrific ideology - however difficult or inconvenient this might appear to be to us.

Therein was the truth of Church teaching - our task has to be be to conform our lives to the requirements of the Church - for the Church to cease to guide us for fear of unpopularity would be disastrous for us all.

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