Taiwan Jesuit Defends Video Depicting Abortion

TAIPEI, April 30, 2004 ( - A video, circulated through some Taipei-area high schools in Taiwan has been criticized by some women’s associations. The video, titled The Eclipse of Reason, portrays an in-utero baby being ripped apart during an abortion.

The video was produced by leading former US abortionist turned pro-life activist, Dr. Bernard Nathanson, as part of his many efforts to undo the damage of the abortion movement. The images left some girls with nightmares, which triggered the criticism. The video is produced and distributed by the Catholic Church.  In response to the public outcry, Fr. Louis Aldrich, SJ, rector of the theological seminary at Fu-Jen Catholic University near Taipei, held a press conference last week.

“The video,” Fr. Aldrich said, “has been in circulation for some time. Many teachers who have viewed it have felt that its content is suitable for use in life-education curricula. That’s why we at Fu-Jen University did not expect that the program would draw social controversy or protest from women’s groups,” as reported by the Taiwan Church News, and translated by David Alexander.  Fr. Aldrich saw the public attention to the film as an opportunity to bring attention to the issue. He described how the Church’s position on sex outside of marriage and opposition to abortion was never much in the public interest before now. Fr. Aldrich described how the video has inspired young women to have greater respect for their own bodies, the Taiwan Church News said. He said that many young people have entered into a pledge with their partners to abstain from sexual relations before marriage as a result.  He encouraged teachers to preview the video before presenting it to students, to be better able to prepare them psychologically for what is portrayed. Fr. Aldrich encouraged teachers to use the video as an opportunity to explain how abortion is harmful to women’s health. He even encourages classes to take field trips to a hospital obstetrics department to cement for youth the reality that abortion kills babies.  He described how the message in the film would also encourage young men to develop greater respect for the health of women.  Fr. Louis G. Aldrich, SJ may be emailed at:  [email protected]

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