Pope Francis and family planning | Inquirer Opinion

Pope Francis and family planning

12:01 AM July 12, 2016

THE FOLLOWING is an excerpt: “Speaking to journalists while heading back to Rome from the papal visit to the Philippines, Pope Francis was asked what he would say to families who had more children than they could afford because the Church forbids artificial contraception. He replied with an unexpected turn of phrase: ‘Some people think that—excuse my expression here—that in order to be good Catholics we have to be like rabbits.’”

He cited the case of one woman he had met. She had had seven children by Caesarean section and was expecting her eighth. “She said, ‘I trust in God.’” The Pope said that was irresponsible, but God gave us the means to be responsible.


Parenthood is about being responsible. This is clear: The Pope suggests three children are about right, the same proposal President Duterte made.

How many babies does a rabbit breed?


According to the New Zealand Ecological Society, a field study of wild rabbits showed an average of 29.4 babies per female rabbit in one breeding season of 243 days. Of course, domesticated rabbits may well breed more frequently, given the more stable food supply and lower stress from predators.

 —JOSE S. ALDEA, [email protected]

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TAGS: contraceptives, family planning, letter, Letter to the Editor, opinion, Pope Francis, reproductive health, RH bill
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