15 May 2009

Why Fr. Jenkins Doesn't Have a Problem with Pres. Obama

Fr. Jenkins of Notre Dame has gone at great lengths to explain why he feels it is okay to invite President Obama to receive an honorary law degree. That despite his clear advocacy of abortion and birth control these are balanced by his views on other important social issues which he claims are aligned with Catholic teaching. The fact that Fr. Jenkin's erroneous view is proven false by Church teaching and numerous statements by Bishops and two recent Popes has had no impact on his decision. Perhaps we can understand his obstinate defiance of particularly his own Bishop by the following information. It has come to light that Fr. Jenkins is on the Board of Directors for a group called Millennium Promise whose vision is to end extreme poverty worldwide by 2025. Their flagship initiative, the Millennium Villages, now operating in 80 villages across 10 countries in sub-Saharan Africa, takes a comprehensive approach to addressing extreme poverty. So far there is nothing objectionable with their vision or goals. However upon closer examination we find that along with their noble goals of working with the poor they also promote anti-life policies. On page 92 of their handbook is the following on their vision for maternal care,

Abortion services: In countries where abortion is legal, safe abortion services in controlled settings by skilled practitioners should be established. In villages with a nearby district center with sound surgical capacity, these services can be referred. However, in instances where no district center or alternate post for safe abortion practices is accessible, abortion services can be offered at the village level, provided that sufficient surgical capacity exists.

Contraception and family planning: Family planning and contraception services are critical to allow women to choose family size and birth spacing, to combat sexually transmitted infections, including HIV infection, and contribute to the reduction of maternal morbidity and mortality. Services include: 1) Counseling; 2) Male and female condoms; 3)Pharmacologic contraceptives including oral, transdermal, intramuscular, and implanted methods; and 4)IUDs

I recently spoke with a young woman involved with abstinence and chastity education. She spent several years in Haiti where she was repeatedly told by the residents there how they were insulted by the attitude of these NGO's who came into their country and propogated their anti-life dogma's. Such sentiment is commonly heard by residents of African and other 3rd World countries. These people welcome the traditional teaching of the Church on these matters as was clearly seen on the Pope's recent visit to Africa.

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