Sharing: Trying to be a faithful Catholic under One Child Policy

               One Child Policy was introduced by People's Republic of China government in 1978 and initially applied to first-born children in the year of 1978. It was created to alleviate social, economic, and environmental problems in China, and authorities claim that the policy has prevented between 400 million births from 1979 to 2011. The policy has been implicated in an increase in forced abortions, female infanticide, and underreporting of female births, and has been suggested as a possible cause behind China's gender imbalance. In March 2011, the Chinese government reviewed the policy and expressed considerations to allow for couples to have a second child (
            Here is a story of about a young Indonesian guy who married with a lovely Chinese woman and blessed with two cute daughters. 
            According to the Chinese law if any of the child’s parents is Chinese so the baby will be Chinese as well, which means his wife and the children are bound to the One Child Policy. 
          When his wife was carrying their second baby; they heard rumor that the Family Planning Bureau may force her to abort the baby. The staffs of the bureau came to their house few times, luckily when she was not at home.  They also had to find a hospital out of city to give the baby birth, since the hospital in their city will not issue the birth certificate for the second child before they did other procedures.  Indonesia government recognizes double citizenship for children under 18 years old of a mix marriage, but unfortunately the Chinese government doesn’t. Even though all their children have Indonesian passport, the Chinese immigration wouldn’t recognize their Indonesian passport and would issue a Chinese passport instead of visa.
            The child has to be registered in their Family Card in order to enroll to a school or to get a passport or an ID card.  In their city, when registering the second child in their Family Card, the parents should also provide a sterilization certificate of one of the parents besides paying the fine (the amount is different each city), which is not cheap at all.  He said, “We will never put a price for our baby’s life so no matter how expensive the fine, we will pay it.”  They should pay RMB 120,000.00 (approx USD. 19,000.00), which is half of the fine as he is not a Chinese because the law only applies to Chinese citizens. They surely will not able to pay, thanks be to God that their parents are willing to help to pay it. 
            As faithful Catholics, he knows that according to the Church teaching, contraception is an intrinsic evil.  A local priest said that for the greater good, he was given a kind of dispensation to do it, moreover this is never on his freewill.  His conscience still says “no” for sterilization.  Another priest said that there should not be any dispensation given to something intrinsically evil and his friend, who is an apologist, said that the principle of double effect couldn’t be applied here also.  His wife’s pregnancies were not so smooth so the doctor suggested them not to have any more children. He feels so blessed that her wife gave him full support not to undergo any of contraceptive procedure. He said, “I am just trying to be a faithful Catholic.”  Their baby is seven month old now without any identity and they are waiting in prayers that the conditions will change in the near future so their second daughter can go to school. 

Guangzhou, March 27, 2012

Sr. Anastasia B. Lindawati, M.M.
Let’s do simple things with simple love to make God’s love visible