Back in last years of the 1970s, a retired professor from the Catholic Medical School, remembers a two day workshop he gave to a representative group of mothers in a diocese at the request of the bishop. The workshop was sponsored by the Happy Family Movement and was to teach the Catholic birth regulation methods to the women who were to spread the movement within the diocese.
The method was the natural regulation
of births, now well know in Korean society. Whether a person wants to
become pregnant or avoid pregnancy, women are taught to notice the
changes during the period of ovulation by tracking changes in the vaginal
discharge. Examining the mucus would indicate the need for avoidance or not.
the end of the workshop he asked the group of mothers about their
thoughts. He recalls the sharing that took place,and
how moved he was. Each person gave their assessment of the program,
the common element would be the physiological mystery of the women's
fertility cycle, and their surprise in hearing about it, and the desire
to spread the news to those in the diocese.
One woman in
the group when her turn came had her head down and did not arise from
her seat. He thought she was overly moved by the sharing of the group,
and urged her to speak out. Having no other option but to stand up,
she began speaking very softly.
She and her husband had only a elementary school education, and accepted
children as they came along. She had five and not able to take care of any
more had two abortions. Hearing all that was needed to avoid a
pregnancy was to refrain one week before and after ovulation broke her
heart. Her husband was a devout Catholic and avoiding the time of
fertility would not have been a problem. Would a person like me be accepted
in heaven, and she began to cry.
The hall became solemn, and the professor saw many wiping tears from their eyes. For a moment
he didn't know what to do, went over to the woman and held her hand.
Sister, do not worry, if God is going to get upset it will be with me
for not making the message known before.
People do not
like to talk about abortion, contraception and matters of sex but they
are important matters dealing with our religious life and should not be neglected. The Church spends much time teaching about these matters and what is central is the need for self-discipline and responsibility.
virtues are not only needed in matters of sex and contraception for
they are important in all areas of our lives. In matters of sex we are not free
to do anything we want to solve our problems but need these values
to be present--a mysterious reality of our lives.