Wednesday, 22 September 2010 10:48
Predominantly Catholic Philippines has expressed dismay following a spate of aborted babies, two of them left at two Manila churchyards recently by their mothers.
Earlier, a baby boy was surreptitiously delivered and abandoned by his mother in a trash bin of a Manila-bound plane from Bahrain. The newly-born baby was found alive upon the aircraft's arrival at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Pasay City.
In a strongly-worded pastoral letter read in all Catholic Churches on Sunday, Manila Archbishop Gaudencio B. Cardinal Rosales condemned abortion as “a moral evil and the Catholic Church attaches the canonical penalty of Excommunication on those who procure it and on those who obtain abortion (Canon 1398).”
“The placing and exhibiting of aborted human fetuses in public places are not favored in other cultures, and decent people refuse to do the same,” Cardinal Rosales said.
“With possible malicious intent, the ugly part of life is again gaining the limelight in our country as the frequency of aborted fetuses is publicly exposed,” he said and quoted the Sixth Commandment “Thou shalt not kill!"
The Philippines is the only Christian nation in Asia with more than 80 percent of the population embracing the Catholic faith.
Last week, two fetuses were left at two churches in Manila. But what was more shocking was when a newly-born baby was found abandoned by his mother inside a Gulf Air plane moments before the aircraft landed at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) without any medical attention.
The mother, whom the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has finally located, delivered her baby inside the plane’s toilet without any medical help.
Crew members found the child alive and immediately brought the baby to the care of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).
The baby, who was named George Francis (based on the plane's flight code), became an instant celebrity and was the cynosure of media coverage for a number of days.
In the pastoral letter, Cardinal Rosales said: “If the expositions of discarded human fetuses are not done with evil intent, then the practice alone of rampant abortion is symptomatic of a grave moral decadence and irresponsible behavior that now seriously threaten the country.
“Human lives are always precious to God and any violation of it will be dealt with by Him for He said, 'Vengeance is mine . . . He will avenge the blood of his servants' (Gen. 4:15, Deut. 32:43). Abortion is a grave sin against a defenseless life; and for this the severe canonical penalty to perpetuator/s is Excommunication.
“Unwanted pregnancies could be avoided if only people are less selfish, are more disciplined and capable of self- control, exercising a strong will, and capable of making sacrifices. These are virtues that are much-needed in a country of disciplined people.
“Short cuts to progress even by way of new laws cannot compensate for abandoned values. Human life, created in the image of its Maker, (Gen. 1:27), the very source of the rights and dignity of the human person, must always be respected and defended.
“In Churches where public exposition of fetuses occurs, special prayers and acts of reparation will be made, for the sins of the perpetrators, at the Church’s Prayer and Adoration Chapels. Pray and include also in your prayers the special prayers to ST. MICHAEL THE ARCHANGEL, for the perpetrators and instigators of this grievous sin against the life of the innocent.
“May Mary, Mother of Life, intercede for all who value the sacredness of life.”
The Catholic Church has vehemently opposed abortion. (Ben Cal-PNA)
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