Marriage and the family now depend upon the clearest possible proclamation of Humanae Vitae and of Familiaris Consortio

We continue to publish the addresses given at the Rome Life Forum and at the seminar for pro-life leaders preceding it in Rome on 8th and 9th May and offer a presentation by Dr Thomas Ward entitled “Diagnosis and treatment of our crisis”.

Dr Thomas Ward is the founder and former President of the National Association of Catholic Families (NACF), which is a member of the Voice of the Family Coalition. He is also a corresponding member of the Pontifical Academy for Life.

In his address Dr Ward explains the history of a wide range of attacks on the right of parents to be the primary educators of their children. In the words of St John Paul II, he reminds us that:

“We are now standing in the face of the greatest historical confrontation humanity has gone through… We are now facing the final confrontation between the Church and the anti-Church, of the Gospel and the anti-Gospel. This confrontation lies within the plans of divine providence. It is a trial which the whole Church… must take up.”

Dr Ward explains that this “greatest confrontation humanity has ever known leaves parents the only protectors of their children.” While discussing the most serious attacks on parental rights in different countries, he argues that “[i]ncreasingly good parents will have little moral alternative to civil disobedience and indeed imprisonment.”

The removal of parent’s rights started with contraception, Dr Ward argues:

“Forty years of experience as a family doctor with a special interest in actively defending the family have left me in no doubt that the heart of this Culture of Death is the artificial separation in sexual intercourse of life, the procreative from love, the unitive by contraception.”

He continues:

“This separation of life from love has spread from contraception, to in vitro fertilisation and now logically and even theologically to homosexual “marriage”.”

In the light of Humanae Vitae teaching clearly that “the inseparable connection, willed by God and unable to be broken by man on his own initiative, between the two meanings of the conjugal act: the unitive meaning and the procreative meaning”, Dr Ward argues that as a result of the rejection of this truth “generations have been lost to the Church”:

“Our children are paying an enormous price for the silence, obfuscation and political accommodations of so many of our Bishops. Yes our children have paid for their policies.”

In his powerful address in defense of the right of parents to be the primary educators of their children, Dr Ward emphasises that “[m]arriage and the family and therefore the Church and civilisation now depend upon the clearest possible proclamation of Humanae Vitae of Blessed Pope Paul VI and of Familiaris Consortio of Saint John Paul the Great.”

The full text of Dr Ward’s address is available here.