From a news story by Trinidad Vásquez for ALC.
The gathering served as a preparation for the delegates of Nicaraguan churches who will be attending the CLAI General Assembly in Havana, Cuba, in February, 2013, one focus of which will be on “The Church and Sexual and Reproductive Rights,” under the assembly’s umbrella theme of “Affirming an Ecumenism of Concrete Gestures.”
Speaking with ALC, the Rev. Alfredo Joiner, Secretary of the CLAI Meso America Region, said that the preparatory gathering dealt with issues such as sexual diversity and the right of women to form a family or remain single. Joiner pointed out that the issue of adolescent pregnancies discussed by the Nicaraguan churches will also be analyzed at 20 other national consultations to be organized by CLAI.
The theme of “The Church and Sexual and Reproductive Rights,” is part of the CLAI agenda that seeks to contribute to the achieving of the Millennium Development Goals set by the United Nations.
The caring for sexual and reproductive health has as its purposes the reducing of maternal mortality, the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/Aids, the reducing of poverty, and the treating of women with dignity. CLAI understands that these purposes are those of the Gospel call for a full and abundant life.
For Ashley Hodgson, one of the coordinators of the Nicaraguan gathering, the consultation is a challenge to the churches to confront the difficult and controversial issues involving sexual and reproductive rights.
Photo: Church and Sexual and Reproductive Rights