Little support for Bishop Doran’s view on contraception

The Bishop of Elphin is unlikely to receive much support from other Bishops or the government for his view on the Catholic Church’s teaching on contraception, based on reaction from a fellow priest and several ministers.

Speaking at a conference at the weekend hosted by the Nazareth Family Institute marking the 50th anniversary of Pope Paul VI’s 1968 encyclical Humane Vitae, Bishop Doran says that the principles that every act of intercourse should be open to the gift of life, have been ignored for too long.

He also stated that it was perfectly legitimate for married people to make use of the married cycle to both achieve pregnancy and avoid it.

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Speaking on Let’s Talk today, Redemptorist Father Tony Flannery said that even 50 years ago, Humane Vitae was controversial and has since been largely ignored by the church and practising Catholics.

He says that some of the concepts were too far off the mark:

In the course of his address Bishop Doran also stated that there should be a place in schools for an appropriate presentation of the church’s teachings on human sexuality.

Health Minister Simon Harris insisted on Twitter that increasing availability of contraception and access to it will “remain public health policy”.

Mary Mitchell O’Connor says the Bishop’s comments won’t interfere with the government’s approach to the issue:

Father Flannery says that in particular some of the remarks made by the Bishop would not reflect current views amongst the hierarchy: