6 October 2015: Family Synod Fathers who support the approach on contraception adopted in the Synod’s working document (Instrumentum Laboris) will bear responsibility for an intensification of the abortion holocaust, warned John Smeaton today, the chief executive of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) and co-founder of Voice of the Family http://voiceofthefamily.com/ Voice of the Family is an international coalition of 26 pro-life and pro-family groups working in Rome at the Synod on the Family.
John Smeaton made his comment (speech text) during a ceremony at an international pro-life conference in Fatima, Portugal. During the conference Fr Shenan Boquet, the president of Human Life International, presented Mr Smeaton with the first Father Paul Marx Pro-Life Award.
John Smeaton said:
“40 years after meeting Fr Paul Marx, the pro-life prophet against the evil of contraception, it’s an extraordinary privilege for me to receive the Father Paul Marx Pro-Life Award from Human Life International, the group he founded. Fr Marx was the first leading pro-life figure, who fully understood that the acceptance and legalisation of contraception provides the basis for the acceptance and legalisation of abortion.”
Speaking about the Family Synod in Rome, John Smeaton said:
“What we as Christian faithful have told our sacred pastors, in accordance with Canon 212, is that the Instrumentum Laboris threatens the entire structure of Catholic teaching on marriage, the family and human sexuality.
One of the ways it does this is by undermining the doctrine of Humanae Vitae by proposing a false understanding of the relationship between conscience and the moral law (paragraph 137). The implication of the whole passage is that contraceptive acts may sometimes be permitted, a “permission” specifically ruled out in Catholic doctrine.
Experienced pro-life campaigners, such as Human Life International from the very beginning of its mission, as well as leading academics, have long concluded that the acceptance of contraception is a basic building block of the culture of death, a view held too by St Pope John Paul II (see Evangelium Vitae, 13). Acceptance by Synod Fathers of contraception in the kind of language used in the Instrumentum Laboris risks intensifying the current abortion holocaust which, it is estimated, has already cost the lives of more children in the womb than there have been lives destroyed in all the wars throughout recorded history .” (see Notes for Editors below)
Stressing that he was speaking with reverence and love for Catholic bishops and for the Synod Fathers, John Smeaton concluded:
“If the shepherd abandons his flock and the sheep are destroyed by the wolves, who will be held principally responsible for the destruction: the shepherd or the wolves? Like the wolves, International Planned Parenthood Federation and other contraception and abortion promoting agencies, merely act according to their nature, with their consciences darkened by not knowing God. However, like the Shepherd, Catholic bishops who teach error know their responsibility before God, to hand on the truth, but they fail to carry it out.”
Read Voice of the Family’s analysis of the Instrumentum Laboris: http://voiceofthefamily.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/Analysis-of-the-IL-of-the-Ordinary-Synod.pdf
John Smeaton can be contacted on +44 7885 914344.
Voice of the Family is available in Rome for interview throughout the Synod, which concludes in the last week in October. Please contact:
- by email to firstname.lastname@example.org
- by telephone on +44 7507 742 957 or +44 20 7820 3129
Notes for Editors:
According to an article published in the New York Times, 6th July 2003, between 150 million and 1 billion people have been killed in wars throughout all of human history. (Chris Hedges, journalist, author of What Every Person should know about war)