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Petitioning Cardinal, Archbishop of Boston Cardinal Seán O'Malley and 2 others

Support Responsible Family Planning with Artificial Contraceptives at the 2014 Synod of Bishops

As laity of the church, we are members of the body of Christ. “For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ” (1 Corinthians 12:12). As members of the body of Christ, we have a role in co-creating the Church. The Vatican II Constitution Lumen Gentium emphasizes this role of the laity in the life of the Church, stating, “Pastors of the Church, following the example of the Lord, should minister to one another and to the other faithful. These in their turn should enthusiastically lend their joint assistance to their pastors and teachers. Thus in their diversity all bear witness to the wonderful unity in the Body of Christ” (Ch. 4, 32). It is our privilege and our duty, as members of this church, to share our voice.

The use of artificial contraceptives is largely consistent with the Catholic Church’s approved method of family planning (Natural Family Planning, or NFP) which involves monitoring physical signs to predict a woman’s fertility. As effective as artificial contraceptives, NFP prevents pregnancy, accomplishing the same goal as that of artificial contraceptives. Both methods have the potential to foster intimacy between couples, thus fortifying the strength of Catholic marriage. Additionally, couples using both methods of contraception can be conscious of planning their family in a fiscally, socially, and spiritually responsible manner while remaining open to children in their lives at a later point in time; as NFP illustrates, planning pregnancy does not signify disinterest in procreation. If both NFP and artificial contraceptives are used for the regulation and timing of pregnancy, as long as the measures are preventative and non-abortive, then both NFP and artificial contraceptives have the same moral stature in the Church’s teaching. Both methods have the potential to strengthen marriage and engender responsible family planning.

As mothers and fathers, single and married people, wives and husbands, we believe that our opinion has something valuable to contribute to the conversation about “Challenges of the Family.” We join our voices and call on Cardinal O’Malley to bring our voices – voices of the laity, voices of the body of Christ – to the 2014 Synod of Bishops.

This petition was delivered to:
  • Cardinal, Archbishop of Boston
    Cardinal Seán O'Malley
  • Chief Secretary to the Cardinal
    Reverend Robert Kickham
  • Administrative Assistant
    Judy Haglof

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