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Japanese bishops report laity indifferent toward Church teaching on marriage

June 06, 2014

The Catholic bishops of Japan have acknowledged that the faithful are largely ignorant of Church teaching on marriage, and indifferent to Catholic stands.

In a response to the questionnaire circulated by the Vatican in preparation for the Synod of Bishops, the Japanese bishops reported that Catholics in their country “are more influenced by societal norms” than by Church teachings, “especially where birth control is concerned.” The Christian conception of marriage based on natural law “is not generally understood nor is it accepted.”

In addition to these failures to promote Catholic teaching, the Japanese bishops’ report said that preparation for marriage is “generally haphazard.” The report was signed by Archbishop Peter Takeo Okada of Tokyo, the president of the bishops’ conference.


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  • Posted by: Frodo1945 - Jun. 11, 2014 5:09 AM ET USA

    These bishops are just learning what faithful Catholics have known for a long time. The only shock in this story is the surprise expressed by the bishops. IMO, this all started in 1968 when Humanae Vitae was largely ignored or resisted by the clergy. When life and love are separated, you have something but it isn't a marriage.

  • Posted by: Jim.K - Jun. 06, 2014 8:46 PM ET USA

    What's missing in this story? Wasn't it the those very Bishop's duty to educate the people? Marriage prep was "haphazard"? Certainly there was a reason given. Well, it certainly wasn't Vatican II. Perhaps these same bIshops can explain Vat II all over again. I'm sure we can then expect different results!?? Sure we will. Maybe we can simply give everyone annulments. That will fix everything. Perhaps Dr. Jeff and Phil will be able to explain it all better than me. How long oh Lord? How long?

  • Posted by: Minnesota Mary - Jun. 06, 2014 8:03 PM ET USA

    The horses are out of the barn all over the world. Good luck trying to corral them again! It all started with the refusal of Church prelates to teach the Church's teachings and the reasoning behind those teachings.