The parish of Our Lady of the Assumption, South Oropouche celebrated the 50thanniversary of the Humanae Vitaeencyclical written by Pope Paul VI on July 25. The Family Life Unit of the parish invited parishioners and members of Billings Ovulation Method (BOMA-TT) to discuss the relevance of such a document in the age of social media, eroded morality and easy access to artificial contraceptives.
BOMA-TT members, Errol and Sandra Roberts led the discussion. Contributions were also made by BOMA-TT co-ordinator, Pauline Phelps. Coming out of it, we were reminded of our role as Church family and our collective responsibility for each other.
In Trinidad and Tobago and even globally, there seems to be a fractured worldview that sex is something we want and need but without consequences, and that children are simply a by-product of the act. However, the Church remains a powerful voice for a deeper reality: human life is dignified and sacred from cradle to tomb.
Pope Paul VI said so beautifully “…love is above all fully human, a compound of sense and spirit. It is not then, merely a question of natural instinct or emotional drive. It is also, and above all, an act of the free will, whose trust is such that it is meant not only to survive the joys and sorrows of daily life, but also to grow, so that husband and wife become in a way one heart and one soul, and together attain their human fulfilment.”
Attendees were also informed of the many pitfalls of artificial contraception such as its many physical side effects, promotion of having multiple sex partners and low birth rates.
The Billings Ovulation Method was discussed as an effective method of natural family planning, promoted by the Church. We appreciated the explanations of identifying natural signs of fertility and infertility, how a couple can achieve or avoid pregnancy, as well as allowing women to monitor their reproductive health. – Jo-Ann Smith, FLU Leader