Support of the family is real solution to teen pregnancies, Chilean bishops declare

.- The president of the Bishops’ Conference of Chile, Bishop Alejandro Goic of Rancagua, has issued a statement reiterating the position of the Church on the defense of human life and affirming that solutions to social problems such as teen pregnancy must come from “reinforcing the commitment of the family to educate their children in the proper use of sexuality.”

Bishop Goic noted that the Church’s position on the government’s “National Norms on the Regulation of Fertility” is known throughout the country.  “Experts and diverse institutions in the country have expressed similar misgivings,” he said.  “Nevertheless, the government has shown its intention to implement a document that embraces unilaterally a partial vision of man and of society.  It contains public policies that have been adopted without listening to large portion of Chile.”

“What we are talking about is a strengthening of the commitment of the family in the education of their children in human sexuality, and about adopting certain forms of counseling, especially for adolescents.  These essential aspects should have first priority both for individuals and for public policies,” he said.

Bishop Goic said that such an approach would lead to “real prevention of the evils that we are seeking to overcome, and not the measures that are proposed by the new norms.”

“But in order for them to really be effective,” the bishop continued, “these tasks must be established upon the foundation of the nature and dignity proper to the human being, and they should be the fruit of ample dialogue in which diverse sectors of society are listened to, including those who reflect upon the person and his transcendent meaning.”

He also reiterated that the bishops are also concerned about “the social reality of teen pregnancy.  Nevertheless, the norm in its current form is not the solution the country deserves, as it puts already-conceived and completely defenseless human lives in danger.  With the same vigor as always, we seek to protect these lives in danger and we raise our voices to defend them.  Could we act in any other way if we were to be consistent with the Gospels?”

“The defense of life in all of its stages is one of the essential values of human existence and of all that safeguards his dignity,” Bishop Doic stressed.  He invited all Chileans “to maturely and calmly discern about this situation that constitutes a step backwards in the defense of life, and to renew all of the efforts possible to strengthen family dialogue, education in love, the commitment and witness for life and the dignity of persons.”

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