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CHURCH and PUBLIC INCIDENCE: Costa Rican Lutheran Church (ILCO) asks country’s Constitutional Court to guarantee sexual education

In a letter to the Constitutional Court, ILCO Bishop Melvin Jiménez has said that personal beliefs about human sexuality, including those fostered by churches, cannot become criteria imposed on all the people.

San José, Wednesday, August 1, 2012

ILCO recognizes that in a democratic society and in which human rights are respected. The State should guarantee a sexual education that meets international standards.  

"Our church considers human sexuality to be a gift from God, which is to be exercised responsibly by each person, according to his or her own sexual orientation, but always in the context of respect for dignity, freedom and responsibility among people,” says Bishop Jiménez in his letter.   

The letter to the President of the Costa Rican Constitutional Court, Ana Virgínia Calcada, states the position taken by ILCO with regard to the legal recourses presented by citizens and Catholic and Evangelical church authorities, in response to the implementing of the “Education for Affectivity and Sexuality” program by the Ministry of Popular Education (MEP).

For Jiménez, the State cannot condition nor impose on the parents a system of values with which they wish to raise their children, nor can a religious focus or a non-religious one dictate intra-familiar or intra-ecclesial formation. "That would, obviously, be unconstitutional," he says.  

"Furthermore, the parents and still less the churches, cannot intend that the State no longer fulfill its responsibility of educating based on ethical and scientific criteria in fundamental aspects of a healthy development and coexistence among the citizens. Sexuality is, without a doubt, one of those fundamental aspects,” suggests the ILCO letter.  

ILCO expresses its full confidence in the ability of the Constitutional Court to know how to best orient the recourses it has received, according to the legal norms in effect in the country. ILCO also hopes that the measures taken by the court contribute to an overcoming of intolerance and fanaticism. 

File Photo: Melvin Jiménez, Obispo ILCO

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Latin America and Caribbean Communication Agency (ALC)
Information and analysis about the social-ecclesial reality, development and human rights in Latin America and other regions of the world
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