• Costa Rica Coffee Guide

Costa Rica archbishop uses annual Catholic pilgrimage to promote church’s anti-gay, anti-IVF agenda

August 2, 2015

In a reminder that Costa Rica’s Catholic Church is still woefully stuck in the past, one of its highest leaders on Sunday used the annual pilgrimage to Cartago, which draws an estimated 2 million people each year, to speak out against legalizing gay civil unions and in vitro fertilization.

During a Sunday sermon to commemorate the annual romería, or pilgrimage, to the colonial city of Cartago and its Basílica de Nuestra Señora de Los Ángeles, San José Archbishop José Rafael Quirós made several references to the need for families to be integrated by a husband and wife, calling marriage between a man and a woman a “patrimony of humanity.”

To prove this point, Quirós cited the biblical figures of Joseph and Mary, urging “all nations” to “consider this reality.”

In the audience were Costa Rican President Luis Guillermo Solís and First Lady Mercedes Peñas.

Quirós also mentioned proposed legislation to legalize IVF, which Solís’ administration this week sent to the Legislative Assembly for consideration. Costa Rica is the only country in the Western Hemisphere to ban IVF, and Solís’ promotion of the bill responds to a requirement to do so by the San José-based Inter-American Court of Human Rights.

Three years have passed since the court condemned Costa Rica for prohibiting IVF. Costa Rica has continued to ignore that ruling, primarily because of conservative Christians in the Assembly and a powerful Catholic Church that still influences politics in this small Central American country of just under 5 million.

“There is no lack of international pressure tied to aid” to obligate the adoption of “certain reproductive policies,” Quirós claimed.

Fulfilling a campaign promise, Solís this week also promoted the legalization of gay civil unions via another piece of proposed legislation sent to lawmakers.

To read more of the archbishop’s thinking, follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

You may be interested

News briefs: Costa Rica news highlights to start your Tuesday
Costa Rica
2133 views
Costa Rica
2133 views

News briefs: Costa Rica news highlights to start your Tuesday

Alejandro Zúñiga - November 24, 2020

Happy Tuesday from The Tico Times! Here's the news you should know as a new day starts in Costa Rica.…

Costa Rica coronavirus updates for Monday, November 23
Costa Rica
6233 views
Costa Rica
6233 views

Costa Rica coronavirus updates for Monday, November 23

Alejandro Zúñiga - November 23, 2020

The Health Ministry now only holds coronavirus press conferences twice-weekly, on Tuesdays and Fridays. As a result, our updates on other…

Back-to-back hurricanes exacerbate poverty in Nicaragua
Central America
46 views
Central America
46 views

Back-to-back hurricanes exacerbate poverty in Nicaragua

Julia RIOS / AFP - November 23, 2020

The North Caribbean, one of the poorest regions of Nicaragua, is mired in uncertainty and despair after the double blow…