Accept the abstinence grant

No matter what your political ideology, there is near universal consensus that children in their pre-teen and early teen years are better off delaying sexual activity.

It is mind boggling, therefore, that Gov. Patrick is even entertaining the idea of refusing a federal grant to continue an existing program that teaches abstinence to middle school children.

Yes, you read it correctly. The governor may shut down a program that tells middle school children -- 12, 13 and 14-year-olds -- that they are not ready for sexual activity.

If that grant is rejected, our state government will be sending a distressing message that Massachusetts promotes sexual activity among children. Lack of prevention can easily be related to tolerance and passive promotion.

The Massachusetts Catholic Conference is asking for our help. Please read the Notes' target='_blank'>">Notes from the Hill in this week’s Pilot and call Gov. Patrick today at (617) 725-4000. Tell him that abstinence is the right message for young students and that you want him to accept the federal money to continue abstinence programs for pre-teens in the Commonwealth.