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We are women, we are wives, we are mothers, and we are open to life. This is our way of standing by one another, learning from each other, and leaning on Christ our Savior.

Mar 21, 2011

A Plea to Pastors---Birth Control, NFP, and the Pulpit

I didn't realize it's been over a month since the last post. I'm currently trying to put together a great team of writers and guest writers so that the posting can be more consistant and regular.

This entry however is from my husband, an unlikely guest writer since he's pro NFP only 20 days out of the month and usually curses it the other ten ; ).

This "Plea to Pastors" is a three part series that will be published in our local Catholic Diosesan newspaper. It came about from the need to try and ask Pastors to speak about NFP in their sermons since it is often times a silent subject.

Feel free to use it in your own parishes if you need to - Can anyone else relate or has found other solutions that work well?

A Plea to Pastors ---Birth control, NFP and the Pulpit

The symptoms were visible. The sickness was evident. The tests now complete. Sarah took a deep breath and shifted side to side in her chair as she waited in a small room at the cancer hospital to hear the diagnosis. In a short time, the doctor gracefully entered into the waiting room, closed the door behind him, adjusted his glasses and held his clipboard in front of him. “Well…Doc, hit it to me straight,” Sarah blurted out. “Is the tumor life threatening?” Her mind raced with obnoxious anxiety as the doctor paused for what felt like an eternity. “Does he know and is afraid to tell me?” she wondered. “Is the problem worse than I had originally thought?”

The doctor leaned forward, relaxed his clipboard, paused, and then confidently explained, “We removed the tumor, and I am sorry to tell you that it is indeed cancerous, but there are ways to help.” “How bad is it?” She quickly interjected, as a tidal wave of emotions poured through her body. “What do I need to do to overcome this? Please, doctor, tell me what the next steps are and what I need to do to live healthy again.”

After a clear and thorough explanation from the doctor, Sarah sighed, “I understand, and thanks for telling me what I needed to know…my life now depends on it.” The doctor spoke back softly, “This is not a fun part of what I do, but I am here for you and will do everything in my power to help save your life.”

This sensitive situation is a common occurrence that many doctors face when telling patients their fate. They are often burdened with the difficult task of handling the serious life issues of many individuals. In the same measure, what difficulty and intimidation the priest must feel in being a doctor of souls; a mission from God to explain the teachings of the Catholic Church to hundreds, maybe thousands of people. In some respects, this mission would be extremely rewarding to see the hearts that are touched and souls that are saved; while at other times, emotionally draining, watching many leave the church for various reasons.

From the seats of the pews, we, the Catholic body, wait on our “doctors”, our “moral specialists”, to lead a clarion call on serious moral issues, especially in regards to the difficult moral teachings of contraception. We need a thorough, clear, un-vague, tell–it-like-it-is message--- from the pulpit. Please teach us about NFP, explain to us why contraception is gravely immoral. Show us the beauty of the Church’s teaching on this matter and how it correlates to the spiritual life. Please tell us how contraception is an abortifacient and what to make of the staggering statistics that indicate roughly 94% of our Catholic flock currently use artificial contraception. Please educate us often about the theology of our bodies and be with us every step of the way. We need your guidance. We are praying for you.

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