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Falling fertility rates are cause for alam, Vatican mission alerts UN

April 11, 2014

The Vatican’s representative at the UN has called attention to falling fertility rates around the world, saying that they “should be a great cause for alarm.”

Citing a report from the UN’s secretary general, the Vatican mission observed that “no fewer than 80 countries now register a fertility rate below replacement level.” That trend is dangerous, the Vatican statement observed: “Support systems for the ageing can only be sustained by a larger, not smaller, next generation.”

In its statement, the Vatican delegation suggested that the UN’s Commission on Population and Development should abandon an approach based on population control, and suggested that “a more sensible approach” would emphasize development, providing support for education, economic growth, stability, health care, and family life.

The Vatican especially protested emphasis on “sexual and reproductive rights,” a term frequently used by UN affiliates to suggest support for legal abortion. The Holy See delegation noted that the UN’s formal program regarding population “in no way promotes abortion, but expressly repudiates it.”


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  • Posted by: TheJournalist64 - Apr. 12, 2014 6:03 AM ET USA

    Exactly right. But here's the rub: politicians and business people think that the fast way to economic growth is to put more people (i.e. women) to work so work force can expand while keeping wages low. So women and men must be educated to believe in low fertility. We are now in the third generation of the effort, and many of the twenty-somethings I encounter don't see anyone enjoying parenthood.