The members of the Hong Kong Catholic Marriage Advisory Council expressed deep sorrow over the news that one of their key founders as well as ex-Chairman, Dr. Ramon C. Ruiz passed away peacefully in London, UK in the early hours of 17th February, 2020, at the age of 95.
Dr. Ruiz was a famous Pulmonologist in Hong Kong. In 1965, invited by the late Fr. Edward Collins, S. J., Dr. Ruiz and his wife Dr. Irene Osmund Ruiz joined hands with a few Catholic medical practitioners to set up 5 medical advisory centres in Hong Kong, teaching parish couples as well as the general public the method of Natural Family Planning, aligning with the Church teachings on reproduction. Since then, they had actively committed their time and efforts to the incorporation of the HKCMAC, aiming to promote successful marriages and responsible parenthood with the means of advice, guidance and education.
Dr. Ruiz had been the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the HKCMAC since 1971. Under the leadership of Dr. Ruiz, HKCMAC has grown to be strong and healthy. Many pioneer services, such as Pre-marriage Education, Family Life Education, Marriage Counselling, Marriage Mediation, Sex Therapy, Parish Volunteers Training, etc. were inaugurated because of his commitment to serve couples. During those years, he has been a great support to several Presidents of HKCMAC, including the Most Rev. Lawrence Bianchi, the Most Rev. Francis Hsu, the Most Rev. Peter Lei, Cardinal John Wu Cheng-chung and Cardinal Joseph Zen Ze-Kiun, in promoting joyful marriages and happy families to the parish as well as to the general public.
Dr. Ruiz devoted himself to promoting Natural Family Planning. In 1983, he, on behalf of Hong Kong, organized a five day conference of the International Federation for Family Life Promotion (IFFLP) in Hong Kong for a total of 500 experts and scholars coming from 73 countries. He had invited the late Mother Teresa (now, the St. Teresa of Calcutta) to be the guest speaker for the opening ceremony. The conference was a great success and received a lot of press coverage on healthy family life.
During 1996 to 2007, with the funding from the MISEREOR and Missio, Germany, Dr. Ruiz introduced the Sympto-Thermal Method to Guangzhou, China. He himself, together with a few volunteers, set up 2 clinics there and trained up volunteer instructors serving the people there. He was glad to see that the Natural Family Planning has been included as one of Family Planning Programme in China afterwards.
Dr. Ruiz and his wife, Dr. Irene Osmund Ruiz were the pioneers in promoting Natural Family Planning and Family Life Education in Hong Kong. As a pair of fervent Catholic couple, they share their faith and Christian family values with all members in HKCMAC. They indeed have been a great example to all of us.
Dr. Ruiz formally retired in 2007, accomplished 42 years of service in HKCMAC.
Throughout his life, Dr. Ruiz was dedicated to serving God with his mission of promoting Christian values in marriage and family. His benevolence and concern for the marriages and families will always be remembered. May the soul of Dr. Ruiz, through the mercy of our Lord, enter into His Kingdom and rest in peace. May the love of the Lord bless and console his family members.