Page 5, 20th September 1968

20th September 1968
Page 5
Page 5, 20th September 1968 — Slippery slope

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Slippery slope

—I was brought up in the

the Church of England, and I did not become a Catholic until 1 had taken a degree in Theology at the University of Oxford. 1 joined the Catholic Church because it seemed to me that the Church of Christ, which he feeds and fosters as a man his own flesh (Eph. 5, 29-30), was always more likely to be right in matters of salvation than any individual.

1 am profoundly convinced that this is the basic principle of Catholicism as distinct from Protestantism. A Catholic is a person who elects to inform his conscience by the teaching of the Church.

2—Nobody seems to deny that the ordinary teaching of the Church has always been opposed to artificial birth control. All that the Pope has done is to recognise the fact. In these conditions it is hard to see how any Catholic can fail to feel that the onus probandi is on those who advocate a change. Are they not preferring their individual judgment to the immemorial consensus of the Church of Christ? 2-1 he demand that the Pope should demonstrate his judgments as distinct from merely declaring what the Church believes is an outrageous innovation. Faith is not based on demonstration but on the authority of God revealing; and much that it attests is impenetrably mysterious. 4—it is a great question whether the advocates of change are not on a slippery slope. The arguments by which they endeavour to defend artificial contraception would often appear to tell equally in favour

of divorce, polygamy, euthanasia, etc. Have they woken up to the full implications of what they are doing and saying?

In a word, it appears to me that the advocates of change are departing by implication from the basic principle of the Catholic religion, and embarking upon a course that will take them much further than they think. If one small voice can be of any effect, I would beg them to consider what they are doing before it is too late.

H. Hyslop Bicester, Oxon.

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