Iglesia Ni Cristo (INC) Letter to Congress on their support to RH Bill
OFFICE OF THE EXECUTIVE MINISTER
IGLESIA NI CRISTO
12 October 2010 HON. ROGELIO J. ESPINA, M.D. Chairman Committee on Population and Family Relations House of Representatives Republic of the Philippines Dear Congressman Espina,
We would like to thank the Committee on Population and Family Relations for requesting our position concerning the Bills of Reproductive Health. We are all well aware of the dire situation of our country caused by overpopulation. Many of society’s worsening ills—from homeless families starving in miserable conditions and children not in school but instead begging day and night in nearly every major street to the rapidly spreading problems with drug abuse and rising crime rates—can be traced to families growing so large that an increasing number of parents cannot provide the most basic human needs to their families.
We consider it commendable that our lawmakers care enough for our fellow Filipinos that they are doing what they can do to alleviate the hardships so many of our countrymen are facing. IN what they propose, they can bring about not only an economic good for our countrymen but also a moral one. We are ready to support the Bills on Reproductive Health as long as there would be no immoral elements in them.
What are the moral aspects of the proposed bills that we support? We believe that it is moral imperative for parents to watch over all their children and provide them with food, shelter, and clothing, as well as proper education and religious and moral training. Hence, parents today have (sic) a moral obligation to plan the number of their children and keep it under control. The Bible states that a parent who does not provide for the needs of his own household is worse than an unbeliever (I Tim. 5:8). Since modern methods of contraception—by preventing married couples from having any unplanned pregnancies—assist in supporting this Christian principle, we support their use as long as these methods are empirically not abortifacient. Abortion and the use of abortifacients involve the taking of life, which God explicitly forbids (Exod. 20:13).
We do not support the natural family planning method and all its variants. These so-called birth control methods depend upon abstinence on the part of the married couple when the woman is fertile but allows marital relations only when she is not. These methods are not only unnatural and ineffective but they also are immoral, since they contradict the commandment that God has given to married couples. The Bible instructs married couples not to deprive one another of intimate marital relations for long, extended periods of time; further, any abstinence at all for a married couple is supposed to be with the mutual consent of husband and wife and not for the purpose of preventing pregnancies (I Cor. 7:3-5).
We appreciate the Committee’s gesture of soliciting our stand on this timely yet controversial issue.