Easter blessings from UCAN
There is no more important week in the year for Christians than this Holy Week. We call it Holy because of the mystery we celebrate - God's gift of His son who loves us to his death on Calvary and beyond.
Because of that love, we wish each other Happy Easter even when we know there is a lot of tragedy about it - Good Friday. As Christians, we know that what we see happening with and in Jesus goes to the heart of what we know from our own experience of life.
At the Second Vatican Council, the Christian lives we all lead were described as being shares in the Paschal Mystery. We have our share in the death and resurrection of Jesus every day. Our lives are part of the Paschal Mystery.
At UCAN, we work to describe that mystery in the unfolding tragedies and astonishing blessings of the people we seek out and report, feature and comment on.
While at times deeply distressing work, this effort of ours gets its coherence in the same way the death of Jesus did - because of the astonishing grace of a God who never gives up on life and love.
Because of that, we can wish you Happy Easter.
Fr. Michael Kelly SJ
Govt nixes OTC morning after pill
Decision goes against previous indications that existing legislation would be changedWomen's groups have mostly been in favor of relaxing rules on obtaining the pill
- Stephen Hong, Seoul
- August 30, 2012
In an announcement which had been expected to confirm that the sale of the pill would be permitted without prescription, the director for medical policy at the Ministry of Health, Kim Won-jong, instead confirmed legislation would remain unchanged.
â€śThe pill will not be switched from prescription to over-the-counter,â€ť he said during a press conference in Seoul.
The decision â€“ a subject of much debate in South Korea â€“ comes after the government indicated the exact opposite in June.
Kim was non-committal on emergency contraception, another hotly debated topic.
â€śReally difficult challenges in our society make it hard to reach a consensus,â€ť he said, adding that discussions on the issue had taken place with civic, religious and medical groups.
Cho Ki-won, director of medicine safety at the Korea Food and Drug Administration, said authorities would monitor the effects of the pill over the next few years before a possible change in policy.
Leading members of the Church in Korea welcomed the decision while women and pharmacists denounced it.
The Korean Catholic Bishopsâ€™ Conference reiterated that â€śthe pill is an abortive medicine killing life,â€ť while Korean Womenlink said â€śthe governmentâ€™s decision does not protect Womenâ€™s right to self-determination."
According to government figures, South Korea recorded 342,000 abortions in 2005, which dropped significantly in 2010 to 169,000.
Morning after pill to be freely available
Bishops denounce new birth pill