Pastor's Page
By Fr. George Welzbacher
December 13, 2009

When we think about the blood, the virtual sea of blood, of the innocent unborn children who have been murdered in their hundreds of millions in China, in India, in Japan, as well as in Russia, Africa and Europe, and, to our national shame, right here in our own beloved land- since Roe v. Wade some forty million thus far and counting-we have good reason to wonder just how long it may be before the justice of God unleashes some avenging catastrophe upon us. But while an intervention of this kind cannot be dismissed out of hand, God may simply choose, as He often has, forsaking direct intervention, to allow us, so to speak, to pull the roof down on our own heads. Which is what is happening in Europe today.

More than forty years ago--in July of 1968--Pope Paul the Sixth warned the Catholic world (and the whole Christian world more widely) about the moral and social evils that would flow from a massive flouting of the order that is rooted in the very nature of man. His encyclical letter Humanae Vitae (On the Sources of Human Life) set forth once again, with a detailed and lucid exposition, the age-old Catholic teaching on the limits that govern the moral use of the sexual power. Though the letter's focus was primarily on the sinfulness of contraception, allusion was made to the related evils that would inevitably appear once a contraceptive mentality should come generally to prevail: abortion, homosexuality and euthanasia, with a rapid breakdown of family life and a concomitant rise in divorce, promiscuity and cohabitation, creating in turn a devastating impact on the lives of the children whose parents allowed them to be born.  The encyclical was widely derided by prominent scientists, medical doctors, UN politicians, spokesfolk for Protestant churches, agronomists, economists, ecologists, "greenologists,"  radical feminists, and a host of loyal camp-followers in the media, but also by far too many of the Catholic clergy, from rank and file parish priests, moved perhaps by a false sense of compassion, to arrogant university professors like Charles Curran, Richard McCormick and Robert Drinan (three of the rebel theologians who also assured the Kennedys and like-minded Catholic politicians that they could support abortion with their votes while remaining "personally opposed"). Some prophets of doom were even trumpeting their fears that the teaching reaffirmed by Paul the Sixth, if obeyed by Catholics in great numbers, would lead to world-wide famine and ensuing murderous riots- "There'll be way too many people for the earth to feed!" -with the Pope indictable as criminal-in-chief.

Swayed by this intense and sustained campaign of propaganda, large numbers of the Catholic laity who had previously obeyed the teaching of the Church came to repudiate this teaching as out-of-date. Andy Greeley was right, so they came to believe, and the Pope was wrong.

History has a way of sorting out which are the ideologies that are productive of good and which are the ones that generate evil. In evidence of which may I share with you here an analysis of the official report that was recently submitted to the Parliament of the European Union. The analysis, written by Hilary White, appeared in the November 26th edition of The Wanderer.
*          *         *         *         *
To Avoid Demographic 'Catastrophe"
   By: Hilary White
   From: The Wanderer, November 26, 2009

The news about abortion, marriage, divorce, and the birthrate in Europe is bad and only getting worse, a report recently presented to the European Union said.

According to the report by Norway's Institute for Family Policies, abortion rates in Britain have leaped by a third among unmarried teenage girls and abortion is helping to age the population of Europe. Without a massive shift to family-friendly policies, the pattern of increased abortion and increasingly aging population will inevitably lead to the collapse of social welfare benefits, and ultimately, to the bankruptcy of Europe's cradle-to- grave social welfare state.

Presented to the European Parliament the report said that the situation of the family in Europe is a "desolate panorama."

"Europe is plunged in an unprecedented demographic winter and has become an elderly continent, with a large birth deficit, fewer marriages, and more of them broken, homes emptying."

The 2009 Report on the Evolution of the Family in Europe added. "The aging population, critical birthrate, escalating abortions, the collapse of marriage, the explosion in family breakups, and the emptying of homes are the MAIN problems of Europeans." [Emphasis added]

The study found that the annual number of abortions in the EU equals the entire combined population of its ten smallest member states, with the three top aborting countries being Britain, France, and Romania. In Europe there is one abortion every 25 seconds, for a total of more than 1,200,000 abortions a year. Nineteen percent of all European pregnancies end in abortion and 28 million children have been killed by abortion since 1990, making abortion the main cause of death in Europe.

The population over 65 years in all European states already exceeds the population under l4 years. The EU under-14 population has fallen [in l5years] from 89 milion in 1993 to 78.4 million in 2008. Over-65s have risen from 68.3 million in 1993 to 78.4 million in 2008-an increase of 16.5 million elderly people. The average age of EU citizens is 40.3 years, with Italy and Germany having the highest populations of elderly people.  

The dropping European birthrate, the report says, with its concomitant increasing health and pension costs, will lead to increases in public expenditure to care for the aging population and the eventual collapse of public revenues, leading finally to the bankruptcy of tlie welfare state. The average birth irate of EUcountries is now l.38 per woman, well below the replacement rate of 2.1 births per woman, even in relatively fertile countries like France.

Without a significant shift in family policies in all EU countries, the report predicts the result will be "catastrophic." Starting in 2010, the population of Europe overall will begin to fall from 499 million to 472 million by 2050 and every third inhabitant will be over 65.

 According to the study, Britain is the "abortion capital of Europe" with rates that last year pulled ahead of France. Its abortion rate is fifth in the world, behind Russia, the U.S., India, and Japan. [Due to its "one-child" policy China's abortion rate, though unreported, must be astronomical].

The population of the 27 EU nations reached 500 million last year with most increases in population (78%) attributable to immigration [largely Muslim, not to births. The natural increase of Europe's population is 12 times lower than the U.S. Spain has immigration 9 times greater than its internal birth increase and Italy's native population fell (-0.14 million) and had 23 times more immigrants than births (+3.28 million). Poland, Romania, and Bulgaria are losing citizens by emigration and Lithuania, Latvia, Romania, and Bulgaria have falling populations due to low immigration rates.

Only France, Holland, Finland, and Slovakia have internal rates of population increase higher than their immigration figures.

Other indicators show that the number of marriages, especially first marriages, is down and divorce rates are up. The marriage rate has fallen in nine out of ten countries. One out of every three children (36.5 percent) is born outside marriage. In some countries the fall in the marriage rate has been around 50% since 1983 and there are over one million divorces a year, the equivalent to one marital breakdown every 30 seconds.

More people (55 Million) are living alone than ever before. One in four households in Europe has a single dweller, and in two out of three households with children, 50% have only one child.

The report recommends the creation of a European Union ministry of the family, laws to increase flexibility of working hours to accommodate families, increases in tax benefits for families, and an emphasis on family welfare for individuals.