WOOMB International


This paper was originally given at the Humanae Vitae International Conference, University of Melbourne, 1978. The transmission of life is quite paradoxical. We know with certainty that the link which relates parents to children is at every moment a material link, for we know it is from the encounter of the female cell (the ovum) and the male cell (the spermatozoon), that a new individual life will emerge. But we know with the same degree of certitude that no molecule, no individual particle of matter enclosed in the fertilized egg, has the slightest chance of being transmitted to the next generation. Hence, what is really transmitted is not the matter as such, but a specified conformation of the matter, or more precisely, an ‘information’.

The medical research which led eventually to the recognition, development and refinement of the Billings Ovulation Method® began in Melbourne in 1953. At that time, now nearly 50 years ago, the only natural methods of regulating fertility were the Rhythm Method and the Temperature Method, but there was not yet very much interest in the Temperature Method. The gynaecologists showed little interest at all in natural methods except a few Catholic gynaecologists who taught the Rhythm Method.

Patrick has been actively involved with the management of the financial and legal requirements for both the Australian Affiliate of WOOMB International, OMR&RCA, and for WOOMB International Ltd, acting as Company Secretary and Treasurer. His role has covered a half-century of selfless dedication. He worked closely with Dr John Billings in the management of all WOOMB finances and the incorporation of WOOMB International Ltd in Australia. During the 1990s, the AusAID funding of the work in China and their reporting requirements was an additional task that Pat readily accepted. We know how much John and Lyn depended on Pat’s knowledge and integrity to support the work they knew was their mission to the world.

The Directors of WOOMB International Ltd wish to acknowledge and thank Joan Clements for the contribution she continues to make for the Billings Ovulation Method® and take pleasure in awarding to her the John and Evelyn Billings Award.