Last Thursday, an announcement was posted on Facebook, asking pro-RH Catholics to avoid receiving Communion until they have confessed their sin of being pro-RH Catholics. Fr. Melvin Castro, Executive Secretary of the Episcopal Commission on Family Life of the CBCP, refuted the announcement, adding that the statement must have been fabricated by RH advocates:
Catholic Church leaders are saddened and accused some pro-reproductive health bill advocates of resorting to “black propaganda” to get the sympathy of the people…
“First, there’s no such statement made by the bishops. There’s really a deception going on,” said Fr. Melvin Castro, executive secretary of the CBCP’s Commission on Family and Life.
Castro, however, said that whatever the intention of those who spread the statement would certainly “boomerang on them.”
Castro was right about deception boomeranging, but he was wrong about who the deceivers were and whom the boomerang would hit. Because the authors of the announcement have already revealed themselves — and they’re not RH advocates:
The secretary of the parish, which has some 50,000 parishioners, said the pastoral council drafted the statement but had yet to release it to the congregation.
“Yes there is a statement but there was no announcement during the weekend. I don’t know how it was leaked,” parish secretary Ella Dula told abs-cbnNEWS.com
Consider how quickly Castro (and the CBCP) accused RH advocates of propaganda. He could have asked people from the pro-RH side whether the statement came from them or from anyone within their ranks. (Unlike the CBCP, RH advocates are actually open to dialogue.) He could have called the parish to ask about the authors of the statement. And given the recent admission of the parish secretary, he could’ve easily found out the truth.
But instead, they published a post on their website, pointing fingers at the wrong people. They were so sure of their accusations that when interviewed by GMA News Online, they readily made statements with absolute certainty (emphasis mine):
Castro told GMA News Online that he does not know where the announcement came from but it is definitely false.
“It only goes to show na talagang may [there truly is an] element of deception sa pro-RH. ‘Yan ang nakikita ko dito. Gusto nilang galitin ang tao sa Simbahan, [This is what I see here. They want to anger the people of the Church]” said Castro.
Castro’s false accusation shows that if there’s an element of deception in the RH debates, it’s often from the anti-choice side. It also reinforces the fact that the anti-choice side are willing to play dirty. Castro accuses RH advocates of wanting to anger the people of the Church. But why would we need to do that? The CBCP is already doing an excellent job.
We’ve recently released a statement on the Church denying pro-RH Catholics communion.
Below is the draft announcement of the Santuario de San Jose Parish :
“In faithfulness to the call of the Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI, His Eminence Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales, the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), the Parish Pastoral Council of Sanctuario de San Jose would like to implore all parishioners to reject the RH Bill recently approved by the Lower House on the grounds it is not only unconstitutional and ineffective but immoral and evil.”
“In this connection, we would like to advise parishioners who promote or support the RH Bill NOT (repeat NOT) to receive Holy Communion until they go to Sacramental Confession and renounce the RH Bill. The Holy Eucharist is the Sacrament of all Sacraments where Jesus Christ, the Son of God and Our Lord and Savior is present in his true body and blood, his true humanity and divinity. The Church forbids receiving Holy Communion if we are not in a state of grace, meaning we have not committed a mortal sin. Because the RH Bill is inherently immoral and evil, recommending, supporting, defending, promoting and practicing its provisions and tenets constitute a mortal sin against many of the 10 commandments.”
“While we realize this admonition may be received with some controversy, we wish to clarify this is not a condemnation of sinners, but a condemnation of sins and a call to the sacrament of reconciliation.”
Disobedience to the Pope, represented by our Cardinals, Bishops and Priests, is disobedience to God. If you are uncertain about the reasons for why the Church opposes the RH Bill, we implore you to attend talks organized by your parish, read and study the bill, the 1987 Constitution where we implore the aid of our almighty God and commit to protect the sanctity of life, Humana Vitae, the 1968 Encyclical of Pope Paul VI, the Bible and other good books we will make available for sale outside the church. The duty and responsibility for educating our children lies not in the school but in the home, which is the first school, so it is incumbent upon parents to be well-informed so they can form their own children.
The Parish Pastoral Council of Sanctuario de San Jose stands one and united with our local Bishops and Cardinals, with His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI and our Lord Jesus Christ in this fight against evil, and we implore the aid of God the Holy Spirit in guiding us as we fulfill the will of God. Thank you.”