Fr. Soc Villegas says Church is not “autistic”
A Catholic Church hierarch delivered today a stinging message at Philippine President Benigno Aquino who prides himself for his anti-corruption drive. “Contraception is corruption,” Socrates Villegas, Catholic Archbishop of the vote-rich province of Pangasinan said in a speech delivered for him by Tita de Villa, a prominent lay church leader who was once the country’s envoy to the Vatican.
In his proxy speech Villegas said that while the President had said “kung walang kurap, walang mahirap,” his administration was about to embark on a “corrupt” program that would give away free contraceptives to the poor.
The monsignor told the crowd of several thousand rallyists at EDSA:
"My dear youth. Contraception is corruption. The use of government money, taxpayers’ money, to give out contraceptive pills is corruption."
I found the accusation shocking. How, I asked myself, can giving away condoms and birth control pills be considered a corrupt act and be similar to stealing from the state treasury or accepting bribes?
Villegas did not explain it very well to my mind. But I got the sense that what he meant was, it was a form of moral corruption because elsewhere he said:
"We are battling against corruption because we know this can harm your soul. Believe me. Contraception harms your soul."
I wondered then if moral corruption is illegal under Philippine law and under what circumstances. I will have to ask a lawyer about this. Perhaps there is a lawyer out there who can expound on this.
What I did know was that today a serious breach was reached between Church-State relations. Because Villegas proceeded to add:
"I know many of you my dear youth do not believe in the Church anymore. You think the Church does not understand. That the church is autistic. May sariling mundo."
The use of the word “autistic” was a calculated insult against a President who has been ridiculed with that term.
I’m guessing that a taunt like this will put the issue of the RH Bill beyond compromise.
Disclaimer: The views in this blog are those of the blogger and do not necessarily reflect the views of ABS-CBN Corp.