While in flight, returning home from the Philippines capital, Manila, on Monday, Pope Francis had some plain words for Catholics about family planning. The church’s ban on contraception doesn’t mean Catholics should breed “like rabbits,” the pontiff said during an hour-long news conference.
In a related report by the Inquisitr, while Pope Francis has shown a more conservative side condemning irresponsible proliferation, he affirmed the Catholic churches opposition to artificial contraception while in the Philippines. He opposed the Philippine government’s decision to introduce a family planning law — allowing public health centers to hand out contraceptives, such as condoms and pills, and teach sex education in schools. In a country where more than 80 percent of the 100 million population is Roman Catholic, the church opposed the law, effectively blocking its passage for 13 years, for fear it would lead to a spike in abortions. The Philippines has one of the highest birth rates in Asia.
In the mid-flight interview, Pope Francis wanted to admonish Catholics who felt compelled to breed “like rabbits” because of the church’s ban on contraception.
“Some think, excuse me if I use the word, that in order to be good Catholics, we have to be like rabbits – but no.”
The pope instead said “responsible parenting” should be practiced, reported the Richmond Times. Parents should consider natural family planning methods already approved by the church, adding there were “many ways that are allowed” to practice natural family planning.
He cited the case of a woman he met who was pregnant with her eighth child after seven Cesarean sections.
“That is an irresponsibility!” he said. The woman might argue that she should trust in God. “But God gives you methods to be responsible,” he said.
Pope Francis views the push of the government to change traditional family values as the “ideological colonization” of Western ideas in the developing world.
In the interview, the pope indirectly criticized rich countries and international organizations that he said tried to influence lifestyles and morals of young people in poorer nations. According to Reuters, he even compared their coercion of the poor to that of Nazi and Fascist propagandists.
“They introduce to the people an idea that has nothing to do with the nation. Yes, with groups of people, but not with the nation. And they colonize the people with an idea which changes, or wants to change, a mentality or a structure.”
“But this is not new. This was done by the dictatorships of the last century,” he said, referring to indoctrination of youth done by Nazis and Italian fascists with their programs, Hitler Youth and Balilla.
“When imposed conditions come from imperial colonizers, they search to make people lose their own identity and make a sameness.”