By Neil Day
Call of the Times – Dr. Ligaya Acosta
On July 8, 2018, in Kibe Hall, Dr. Ligaya Acosta, Asia-Oceania Regional Director of Human Life International (HLI), made a presentation entitled, ‘PRO-LIFE Activism - Call of the Times’. It was organized by the Faith Formation Class for Adults of the English Center. Paradoxically, Dr. Acosta, once worked as an active promoter of contraceptives and sterilization services. However, in 2004, she had her epiphany. Her eyes were opened to the global anti-life agenda leading her to quit her 28-year career and lucrative job in the Department of Health in the Philippines. Since then, she has become a vocal advocate for the PRO-LIFE Movement.
Using a wealth of scientific data and facts, Dr. Acosta spoke on two key topics: contraception and abortion and how women’s lives are put in danger by both. Speaking frankly, she pointed out, for example, that oral contraceptives have been scientifically proven to be a carcinogenic to humans, (International Agency for Research on Cancer, IARC/WHO 2005), which stated that “Women increase their risk of breast, cervical and liver cancer if they use oral contraceptives.” Other side effects include, high blood pressure, blood clots, stroke, heart attack, depression, weight gain and migraines.
Dr. Acosta also described other contraceptive methods, such as IUDs (intrauterine device) and condoms. IUDs often cause poisoning of the female body while condoms have been shown to have porous flaws leading to leakage, allowing HIV-1-sized and sperm-sized particles through 33% of latex condoms tested. Dr. Acosta then stated that the only answer to the AIDS epidemic and prevention of sexually transmitted diseases was to abstain from sex before marriage and to remain faithful to your spouse after that.
Regarding abortion, Dr. Acosta made it clear that there is no such thing as a safe abortion. Quoting Mother Teresa of Calcutta, famous words, “If we allow our mothers to kill their own children, how can we tell our own people not kill one another?”, she said that the womb was supposed to be the safest place in the world, yet today, the fact is it has become a tomb. Furthermore, a woman who had an abortion can also suffer many side effects, including breast cancer.
The difficulties facing Christians today in defending life were then outlined. These included lack of courage, ignorance of the issues and facts, dislike of stress and strain, loss in the sense of ‘sin’ as something “others commit” and remaining silent, thus, enabling direct and indirect threats to the faith. Dr. Acosta stated that, “when the Church allows evil to exist, without protest, or with in sufficient action, people become accustomed to it, and it is often a wide road out of faith.” As act of courage, Dr. Acosta appealed to everyone to take part in ‘March for Life – Japan 2018” to be held the following week in Tokyo. She said a Pro-Lifer is someone who understands that men are created in the spiritual image and likeness of God, have an eternal soul, which makes us all equal in His eyes. A true Pro-Lifer believes in and works for the right to live of every person, from conception to natural death. She then quoted St. Pope John Paul II, “Man’s life comes from God, it is His gift, His image and imprint, a sharing in His breath of life. God therefore is the sole Lord of this life: man cannot do with it as he wills.” [Ev39].
To help more people get involved, Dr. Acosta highlighted the HLI’s* 3-day training program inviting interested people in Japan to learn how to become a leader in the PRO-LIFE Movement in here. At the end of her talk many showed their appreciation, recognizing that her words were extremely timely and important for the PRO-LIFE cause in Japan.
Dr. Ligaya Acosta
Useful links: Human Life International (HLI)
URL: – www.hli.org
A video recording of Dr. Acosta’s presentation is available on YouTube at,
Chastity As A Tool To End The Culture Of Death
By Adeleine Tajora
Pills and condoms are the two most common methods that the youth of today use to prevent pregnancy. However, are these methods really 100% effective? If they are, then why is abortion still prevalent in the world today? These questions had lingered in my mind until I heard Dr. Ligaya Acosta deliver a very informative talk with scientific bases about condoms and pills.
At the end of her presentation, I realized that condoms and pills do not really eliminate the increasing occurrence of unintended pregnancies among the youth today. It simply promotes a vicious cycle wherein young men and women continue to engage in premarital sex, thinking that they can avoid pregnancy. And in case pregnancy occurs and the woman is not ready yet, she can have abortion as an option. But, abortion must not be an option. It is killing not just the lives of the unborn but the lives of the young people who were once full of vigour and optimism in life.
So, what can prevent unintended pregnancies among the youth today? The only answer is abstinence - to not engage in sex until marriage wherein both man and woman are ready and responsible enough to raise children and build a family. Abstinence takes a lot of self-control and patience, but it is all worth it.
A person that has control over his sexual passions is actually growing in the virtue of chastity which makes him more human, and less of an animal that has no sexual control.
The virtue of chastity exists within the depths of your soul and only you can activate it. It promotes respect for oneself and other people. It magnifies one’s dignity and worth. It makes oneself mindful of the consequences of sex. It makes oneself take relationships seriously, bearing in mind that sex is procreative, and that it should only take place within marriage wherein both man and woman are committed to each other in building a family.
Chastity is definitely one of the most challenging Catholic virtues to practice but it does not mean that it is impossible to do. We need to exert our best efforts to choose chastity at every moment of our lives as it is the only way to stop the current global culture of death, and the only way that can lead us to authentic happiness and freedom.