Saturday, August 29, 2020

Breastfeeding in Churches

 The month of August is Breastfeeding month. One of the mot dedicated breastfeeding advocate I know is Ms. Earlie Pasion-Bautista. We all know about the importance of exclusive breastfeeding for babies in the first six months of their life. But the question I always ask is that why do we not promote breastfeeding inside our church? Why do we not support breastfeeding mothers with the space and equipments they need that will support breastfeeding? Why do we not have Bible Studies and devotions about how God uses illustrations of breastfeeding to characterize God's nurturing? Why do we not see lay groups and churches actively supporting celebrations of Breastfeeding? This month, even with the pandemic, we have organized a Virtual Hakab Na! to promote brestfeeding. Our partners are individuals and small mother's businesses. We barely see the church participate. We do have individuals from our church. But the church has not been institutionally been involved. My wife reminds me that I may need to raise awareness among chruches that the Bible has numerous times described breastfeeding to illustrate the abundant provision and the care God gives to His people. In Isaiah, we read “Rejoice with Jerusalem, and be glad for her, all you who love her; rejoice with her in joy, all you who mourn over her; that you may nurse and be satisfied from her consoling breast; that you may drink deeply with delight from her glorious abundance.”
 We must celebrate and rejoice in the gift of breastfeeding. Thus, breastfeeding must be promoted in chruches, not discriminate mothers who do not cover when they need to feed their babies and encourage young mothers to practice exclusive breastfeeding and beyond. My wife has been actively engaging other young mothers to practice exclusive breastfeeding. Our youngest daughter, who already turned 3 years old, still breastfeeds. I hope that one day, in the next Breastfeeding Month celebration, the church will be the one who will initiate and host our celebration as we celebrate mothers and the important role they take in the nurture and feeding of their chidlren.