Attacking the Roots of Abortion

What is really required … is to address the thought processes and motivations that prompt people to seek abortion as a solution to a personal problem that should not have occurred in the first place.

Catholics, and our counterparts in other religions, are making headway in the struggle against abortion.  Women coming to clinics seeking abortion have often been convinced to turn around and plan to give birth to the baby.  Legislatures in many states have thrown up roadblocks by introducing requirements such as time delays, requiring parental consent, or requiring a woman to view a sonogram of the developing baby before going ahead with a planned abortion.  Court action has often been taken in cases of underage girls being coached on how to falsify their story and in cases where girls have been transported across state lines to locations where abortion was legal.  A few states have even denied funding to Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider.  And, through C-FAM, we have been fighting the abortion agenda in the halls of the United Nations.

The publicity front in the abortion war has also been moving ahead, with a concentration on young women and on ethnic groups that have statistically higher rates of abortion.  Pro-life inserts are placed in college newspapers, presentations of photos showing the true nature of abortion are given on college campuses, a film has been produced referring to abortion as black genocide, and a campaign is under way to introduce pro-life literature into barber shops in minority neighborhoods.

The success of the overall effort can be realized from the fact that the numbers of abortion clinics and abortion providers have been sharply reduced, especially in rural areas.

But the effort thus far has been aimed at preventing the act of abortion itself or reducing the numbers of abortions performed.  What is really required, however, is to address the thought processes and motivations that prompt people to seek abortion as a solution to a personal problem that should not have occurred in the first place.

The first of these attitudes and motivations is the widespread acceptance, and widespread practice, of contraception, even among Catholics.  When the Obama administration targeted Catholics and used a mandate to force many Catholic institutions to fund contraception for all their employees, the Catholic bishops responded on the freedom of religion aspect of the issue, but contraception is itself a major moral problem to which the Church has not been giving proper attention for several decades.

People develop a mistaken idea that contraception prevents pregnancy 100 percent of the time, and when an unforeseen pregnancy does occur, they are tempted to resort to abortion.  The Guttmacher Institute reported in 2009 that 54 percent of abortions were performed on women who had used contraceptives in the month before they became pregnant.  The United States Supreme Court in 1992 (Casey v. Planned Parenthood), based a judgment against allowing obstacles to abortion on the very fact that people rely on abortion when contraception fails.

There is an abundance of evidence as to why contraception is morally wrong, beginning with God’s striking Onan dead for using it (Gen 38:9-10), continuing through the earliest Church tradition (the Didache), and the writings of numerous Church Fathers and Popes, right up to Vatican Council II (Gaudium et Spes 48, 50).

In addition to the moral arguments are the harmful natural effects – the increase in adultery due to the lessening of the fear of pregnancy; the resulting increase in divorce, leading to an increase in the number of women forced to be single mothers living in poverty; and, associated problems of their children receiving poorer education, making them vulnerable to incentives toward delinquency and crime; the decline in men’s respect for women; and the tendency of governments to institute population control measures, including forced abortions.  Besides these sociological effects, there are still others – the fact that contraceptives do not prevent the transmission of venereal disease, the damage to reproductive systems from water supplies that contain runoff from the urine of women using the pill, and the damage to Social Security and Medicare because fewer young people are entering the work force, resulting in the fact that contributions are insufficient to match the outlays to retirees.

But the objective of the Catholic Church goes beyond preventing a host of worldly problems.  The reason for the Church’s existence is to help people to gain heaven, but contraception prevents children from even existing. Couples who seek the pleasure of sex, without its natural consequences, are acting in a way that’s directly opposed to their achieving salvation.

The most direct result of using contraception is the fact that it violates the very purpose of sexuality.  When one wants to find the purpose of anything, it is necessary to consider what it does that nothing else does.  In the case of sexuality, it’s procreation.  Nothing else in nature accomplishes that.  Using this God-given faculty in a way that deliberately frustrates its God-intended result is a direct offense against the Creator, who wishes the couple to accept this new human being, and to raise this child in a way that will lead all three of them to life with God.  So, life-long monogamous marriage is the proper and necessary environment for the exercise of sexuality.

Natural Family Planning (NFP) is not the universal solution. In the very encyclical in which he proclaimed that contraception is immoral, Pope Paul VI also declared that NFP is allowable only under certain conditions – medical, psychological or financial – that make it permissible for a married couple to restrict their marital acts to times when procreation is not likely to occur (Humanae Vitae 16 and 10).  While today’s financial environment could mean that more couples qualify now than forty years ago, Pope Paul made it very clear that NFP is not a universal solution for everyone.

But while procreation is the very purpose of sexuality, then the concept of recreational sex, so widely accepted today, is a fundamental component of the attitudes and beliefs that lead to abortion.  When a person is open to the idea that sex is primarily recreational, they seek to explore it, at first vicariously, by means of pornography, and then with actual, contracepting partners, either in one-night stands, or in an ongoing arrangement of cohabitation.  Very often, it leads to abortion.

Contraception, with its underlying concept of recreational sex, has also led to the movement on the part of homosexual people to have their lifestyle, and their relationships accepted, and even considered to be marriage. After all, if heterosexual people can enjoy the pleasure of sex while preventing the birth of children, then it’s difficult to justify the belief that people who cannot have children should be forbidden to have sex.  But our willingness to accept people with same-sex attraction as human beings, and as God’s children, does not mean that one should condone actions that God himself punished with fire and brimstone at Sodom and Gomorrah.

So, we see that abortion, horrible as it is, is just the tip of the iceberg that consists of a series of evils, threatening the salvation of everyone in today’s world.  The notion of recreational sex is a major part of the problem.  So, how must we conduct this part of the fight?

Obviously, we have to publicize arguments regarding the purpose of sexuality, plus the nature and the purpose of marriage.  We must add to this the reasons why contraception is wrong, both the harmful natural effects that apply to everyone, including secularists, and also the evidence from Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition that applies to Catholics and to other Christians.  Parishes need to insure that these are dealt with properly in pre-Cana meetings, in adult education, in training for parents of children and of teen-agers, and in RCIA classes. Instructors in Catholic schools, and in CCD classes, must be properly trained. Catholic high schools and colleges must also ensure proper proclamation of the message.

These must be accompanied by strong opposition to pornography, insisting on proper enforcement of laws that are in effect, plus seeking more restrictions on the distribution of prurient material through the Internet, on television, in magazines, and other media outlets.

But dissemination of the message is the easy part.  It will be more difficult to gain acceptance of the message, given that people have become accustomed to a lifestyle built around the concept of recreational sex. The Church has been silent too long regarding the expression of that lifestyle through contraception.

Just as there were a series of issues underlying abortion, there is another series of issues involved in convincing people what they need to do, for their own salvation, and to overcome the evils throughout society.

The first obstacle that needs to be addressed is the loss of respect for the authority of the Church.  Catholics need to be reminded that Christ’s words to Peter included:  “I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven” (Matthew 16:19).  This authority given to Peter and his successors involves morality as well as doctrine.

Many baptized Catholics intellectually accept the Church’s right to promulgate the moral law but do not act according to what they have been taught.  They rationalize it, finding ways to justify acting as they want, rather than as they ought.  Rationalization involves a misuse of conscience. These people must, therefore, be led to a proper understanding of conscience as a matter of discerning through the intellect, and not a matter of deciding for themselves through the will, influenced by feelings.

But for other baptized Catholics, who do not accept Church authority, the obstacle is a failure of faith, as people question the right of God himself to direct their activity, having been led by a secular world to think of themselves as subject to no one, with an unlimited right to do as they want.  They need to be brought to realize their own limitations, that they did not bring themselves into this world, and that their existence and their well-being depend on others.  They need also to recognize Christ as divine, possessing the nature and authority of God, who came into our world to redeem it, and to point out for us the way to eternal life with him by leading an earthy life based on his teachings.

Apologetics, giving the reasons for the truths the Church teaches, is a necessary first step. It is necessary for presenting the evidence for Christ’s divinity, and it is necessary also for showing that the Catholic Church is the instrument for proclaiming his message, thus showing people the reasonableness of faith.  From there, one can go on to show that the Catholic Church is the one founded by Christ; that the moral law is essentially the road map to salvation; and how to make the proper use of conscience.  All Catholics, but especially parents and teachers, should be trained in the essentials of apologetics.  But apologetics, necessary as it is, must be accompanied by prayer, and a spirit of sacrifice, on the part of those who already believe, all for the sake of conversion of others, that they may be led to realize these truths.

It’s a campaign that needs to be waged on many fronts simultaneously.  The essential theme that needs to permeate the entire effort is love that includes forgiveness.  Christ came into our world out of love for us, precisely to redeem every member of the human race by means of the sacrificial offering of himself on Calvary.  His action there included a prayer that his persecutors might be forgiven, and his promise of Paradise for the repentant thief.  Then, at his first meeting with the eleven remaining apostles, he even gave them the authority to forgive sins against him.

Besides making our salvation possible by his suffering and death, Christ also told us how to achieve salvation, telling us that we must live out the Ten Commandments internally, as well as externally. He gave us the Beatitudes, and the instruction of more than a score of parables.  Christ went even further, by giving us the means of gaining salvation, through the sacraments.  Three of these are especially relevant in combating abortion.

The Sacrament of Reconciliation re-unites the repentant sinner with Christ and his Church.  For one who is truly sorry for offending God, resolved to avoid further sinful acts, thoughts and words, and willing to make restitution for damage done to others, the sincere and complete confession of the sins can bring total forgiveness for multiple abortions, for decades of contraceptive acts, and indulgence in pornography, as well as for other sins they have committed.  A loving Christ is, thus, applying to an individual the fruits of his sacrifice on Calvary.

But sexual abuses, especially pornography and contraception, frequently become addictions, difficult to overcome, so a person needs special help to fight their way back to a moral way of life.  The Sacrament of Holy Eucharist provides that help.  A loving Christ comes personally to the individual, and he himself is the special food that builds up spiritual strength for the struggle against the temptations that inevitably will return.  Frequent reception of Holy Eucharist, even daily if possible, together with quick returns to the Sacrament of Reconciliation, if lapses should occur, can help the person to overcome eventually their long-standing inclinations and weakness.

But there is yet another sacrament that is especially relevant to the struggle against abortion, and that is the Sacrament of Matrimony.  One of the promises the couple makes at the marriage ceremony is to accept all the children God may send them.  A person normally receives this sacrament only once, in contrast to Reconciliation and Holy Eucharist which should be received frequently. But the effects of marriage are constantly renewed throughout life in order to assist the couple in the day-to-day effort to live out their vocation to love each other, and to love the children God sends them, in a way that will bring all of them to be with him.  Given the realities of human nature, and the fact that we frequently offend others, the act of forgiveness—which we often need to request, as well as to extend—is a necessary feature of a healthy married life.

We began this discussion by trying to find the means to attack abortion at its roots, and what we have arrived at is a Catholic way of life, and the day-by-day effort of married persons to live that life.  And that’s exactly the point.  When one is truly convinced that sex is not for pleasure, but for children; and that marriage is a vocation for bringing up children, one is much better able to resist the lures of pornography and of contraception. Those who do not practice contraception, are far less likely to seek abortion.  Even if chemical abortions are increasing to fill the gap left by the decline in surgical abortions, the same arguments apply.

The Catholic concept of marriage—involving the commitment of one’s very life to serve God in the small community of husband and wife, pledging their mutual love exclusively until death, and sharing their love with the children their love brings about—is an ideal way of life that others do not possess, but which they would really want to have if they can be brought to recognize its value.  It must be presented to them in a way that leads them to that recognition.  This way of life is based on faith in God and his Son, Jesus Christ. It is recognizing the love he has shown to us. It is appreciating the Church he has given us. It is thankful obedience to the rules pointed out by his Church. And, it is the willingness to direct one’s life according to his will for us, so that we may eventually experience the eternal happiness he holds out for us.

It is a matter of carrying out the fundamentals of Catholic life in a humble, prayerful way, driven by a lively faith that expresses itself in love, and then evangelizing others from that point of view.

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avatar About Don Murray

After earning a degree in English literature at Fordham University, Mr. Don Murray served as a photo interpreter with the U.S. Air Force, and as a part-time reporter and editor for a Catholic club newspaper. His major career occupation consisted of providing the technical assistance for IBM’s computer marketing. For the past dozen years, he has been a speaker with the Catholic Evidence Guild in New York, giving street talks, leading classes in apologetics, writing apologetic tracts, magazine articles and letters to newspaper editors regarding Catholic issues. His voice has been heard on Radio Maria, Answers Radio and the Sirius radio channel of the New York Archdiocese. He lives in Manhattan. His previous article in HPR appeared in February 2008.

Comments

  1. avatar ELA says:

    Very good article but you have completely ignored the vital teaching role of the Catholic Bishops and their complicity in fostering and maintaining disobedience to the Magisterium. How shall we accomplish your goals without their leadership? Should we give them a free pass? Shouldn’t our first step be to broach the question of their leadership? One Bishop can do more to move the demons of hell in one simple act of obedience than an entire nation of lay Catholics.

  2. avatar Lawrence says:

    well done thank you

  3. avatar cac310 says:

    (JMJ) My hat is off to ELA above*****DITTO****A GREAT BIG DITTO******on Catholic Bishops and their responsibilities…..THEY HAVE BEEN GIVEN MUCH BY THE ETERNAL FATHER AND THAT MUCH IS WITH***** MUCH TRUST (BY THE ETERNAL FATHER)******* as Mother Angelica was used to saying!!!

  4. avatar Patty says:

    Why no mention of the sin of LUST? That and the its lack of knowledge is the first underlying cause of all sexual based sins. When one does become aware of it as a sin, some are libel to think that they are lost and continue in that sin.

  5. avatar nin says:

    Whatever is bound on earth is bound in heaven? Are you serious? If the church declares the easter bunny a person of the Trinity, that is now a truth in heaven? I don’t think so

    • avatar Mary says:

      Nin
      If you are Catholic nin suggest you read your Bible:

      “…Blessed are you, Simon Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. And I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church and the gates of Hades shall not overpower it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” (Matt 16:18-19).
      God Bless

      • avatar Mary says:

        Nin

        Oops! Should also have mentioned that the church does not claim the authority to add doctrine that was not taught by Jesus Christ and the apostles either written or oral. It can only clarify and explain (development of doctrine) and reiterate. So the scenario you suggested can never happen. It can, however, bind and loose in such matters as meat on Friday. Hope I have clarified matters a little bit.

    • avatar als says:

      nin, don’t worry. What the Church teaches and binds, has to be true because Jesus said:
      “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you. (Jn 14:26) Whatever is taught by the Church in matters of faith and morals is actually the teaching of the Holy Spirit.

  6. avatar Kelly P. says:

    I do not personally know any Catholic couples who do NOT contracept, and/or eventually get sterilization procedures. I wish I did. The use of contraception is so widespread among Catholics, and most either do not know or do not care that they are committing a mortal sin. I watch them all march right up to Holy Communion week after week. We receive almost no instruction on this from the pulpit. I am certain our priest fear, and rightly so, that if they told us contraception is a sin that must be confessed and repented of before receiving the Eucharist, they would lose 80% of their congregations. They might be right.

    Even so, the Church must be bolder.

    The first step is to clean house of all abusers (underway) and regain the trust and respect of the faithful. Unfortunately, many Catholics use the sex abuse scandals as an excuse for ignoring Church teaching. (“Why should I be told what to do by a bunch of hypocrites and pedophiles?” they say.) The other excuse is that, “It’s easy for priests to tell us to be open to more children. They don’t have to raise and support them.” I have mixed feelings about the idea of priests marrying, but something must be done to address this common objection to the Church’s teaching on sexuality, if only with more courageous preaching.

    I think priests need to be much more confident in their preaching. State right up front that you know perfectly well that you don’t have children, but that you have given your entire life to the Church in order to minister to the rest of us. Emphasize that Christ gave his authority to the Church, and that even though there have always been bad priests and bad Catholics who do not practice what they preach, that that is no excuse to join them in their disobedience. Tell us that our lives are but a brief moment in eternity, and that all of the Church’s teachings are given to us so that we may achieve holiness, and Heaven. Tell us it is hard to take our financial objections seriously when we buy our kids $200 sneakers and iPhones, and spend ludicrous amounts of money every month on cable television. Tell us we must give up trying to live like everyone else in our materialistic culture. We are supposed to stand out! To be different! To be a light in the darkness for the rest of the world to see. If no one can tell, by how we live our lives, that we are Catholic, then ARE we really Catholic? If someone would have to follow our cars on Sunday morning to see what church parking lot we pull into, what kind of witnesses are we to the fullness of Truth we have been given?

    We Catholic Christians want Heaven, but we do not want the Cross. But the Lord said, “Take up your cross and follow me.” Remind us that if we are faithful, the Cross will be our JOY, and not our burden.

    Perhaps add the words of Sr. Emmanuel (paraphrasing), “Your children are created for eternal life. Your car will be in a junk pile someday.”

    • avatar Emily B says:

      Kelly,
      There are many Catholics who do not contracept. Here is a website where women who are not contracepting have contributed their anonymous stories for the benefit of others. The stories show that although there may be struggles, there is great fruit and peace of mind as well.
      http://www.conversationwithwomen.org/

      • avatar Kelly P. says:

        Thank you, Emily. I will take a look at at that site. I do know there are couples who don’t contracept. I’ve just never met any, except at Catholic Conferences, and they were the speakers, not the people in the seats next to me. I have tried to talk to women I know about the subject, and their attitude is that they don’t care what the Church says about it, because the Church isn’t raising their kids. There is no concept at all of obedience, when they don’t agree. It is disheartening.

    • Hello Kelly – You wrote a wonderful and encouraging response. I hope that all clergy who preach and teach will heed your words, because they were ordained for service of the Gospel of Christ, for the preaching of saving truth! Pope Francis is definitely calling our Church to be mother who upbuilds, not a (hired) babysitter who lulls the children to sleep. Jesus also warns against the hired man, who is not a shepherd of the sheep.
      Would your pastor allow you to organize and lead a Bible Study, or a Catechism Study? We need teachers.

  7. avatar John Keenan says:

    Nicely done. Thank you.

  8. avatar Trysh says:

    While I could rebutt every Bible verse you placed in this article with another, contradicting Bible verse, I won’t because such pointless debates have wasted many a person’s time with no conclusion because people read the Bible and believe what they want to believe. Its also pointless because its obvious to me that you are a person with little to no real life experience.

    As someone who has swirled in and around the abortion controversy (never having had one myself) I have attended pro-life meetings, listened to a thousand speeches from various religious folks, and have sat through 2 abortions with friends (I was there as their support person).

    My own personal stance on abortion is that I wish it wasn’t so, as it is most certainly a murder of a tiny life and it really does an emotional number on the woman having it. But i’m not so naive as to think that throwing out Bible verses at scared young women is going to solve the problem.

    If you want to make a difference in abortion rates, then take the time to get to know these women and why they are considering killing their baby. Try to place yourself in their shoes. Also do you research about our pre-abortion clinic society and see what it was like for women who didn’t have a safe place to go. There were countless deaths and diseases from the ‘table top butcher shop’ operations women were desperately recieving.

    And have some compassion for godssake.

  9. avatar Single Pro-Lifer says:

    I am fifty years old, single never married with no kids and a practicing cradle Catholic. I have been a volunteer in the pro-life movement for about a quarter of a century. What statistics have pointed out is that the majority of women who have abortions are single. Yet I see very little outreach to singles in the Church except for a few singles groups for college and young adult age people which are mainly dating and matching services. What I think would help and what has been completely ignored in this article — as it always seems to be — is for the Church to acknowledge the existence and worth of single lay Catholics for who they are. One example — the Church always says no extramarital sex. “No No No” is fine for adolescents and maybe young adults, but at a certain age people need more than “No No No.” Maybe the priests and nuns get coaching or training in celibacy but I have Never heard of any such assistance for single lay people. As always we’re just on our own. We need, not want, affirmation and support as singles and not the rest of the Church constantly trying to change our vocation to marriage or religious life. Some respect and dignity and support for single Catholics and singles in society would help — whether they are transitional singles of any age en route to discerning another vocation, or persons who are called by God to remain single. I as a single have given more than my share of volunteer time, talent and treasure to families through my pro-life work and through teaching children’s religious education classes on Sunday.

  10. avatar Catherine says:

    This is an interesting article, however, I think you miss the point in this sentence:

    “When one is truly convinced that sex is not for pleasure, but for children…”

    I think it ‘s important to acknowledge that sex is also “for pleasure” and that it has a significant and legitimate role in itself in uniting the couple. It has a unitive function and plays an important role in marriage whether or not there are children.

  11. To understand the truth about Abortion please see the following.

    http://WWW.ABORTION—MY-HEART-WEEPS-TEARS-OF-BLOOD.NET

  12. avatar Jean says:

    The first thing I’m going to do is admit I didn’t read the whole article, though I was impressed with what I did read. I am a grandmother now to 6 children, but once, I was an unwed mother whose friends were choosing to abort their ‘problems’ while I learned the hard way that my body had a capacity I never really understood existed. I never considered the so-called abortion option, trading one problem for another, but I had no clue at 17 years old what I was going to do. I was still a kid myself. The baby’s father and I separated over disagreements on how to structure our lives after the pregnancy more-or-less ended our innocent youth. My father wanted me to give the child up for adoption and told me to move out when I refused. So, no abortion, no adoption, no boyfriend, no father, no money, no where to go…..I chose to keep my baby anyway. God found a way; he changed the boyfriend’s mind and the baby’ father came back, a little more mature than before. His parents helped us furnish an apartment with second hand things. We managed with no educations to get by. At about 22 years of age, with 2 small children, I had a tubal pregnancy and the emergency room personnel said I needed to undergo emergency surgery which would take the tube and the baby. I said ‘no’ so they informed me the tube had ruptured and I would certainly bleed to death (internally) within 24 hours. I still said no, I didn’t believe the baby was dead and refused to let them kill it. They left me alone in a room to think about the fact I would die by the next day, while the test results were pending. I still refused to let them abort my child to save my own life. I thought I was going to die; I was terrified. Finally, a surgeon came in with the results from the tests which confirmed a tubal pregnancy and explained with pencil drawings why my child could not have survived the ruptured tube and was already dead. Eventually, I was persuaded to believe this, but not without a fight. The hospital personnel were dumbfounded that I was willing to die rather than abort my child. So, I say what I have to say below, having experienced an unplanned pregnancy and a pregnancy that threatened my life.

    There is an answer to the problem of unplanned pregnancies. But first, it is time we started to explore the reasons young people engage in risky behavior (like premarital sex) in the first place. I craved love, but there are a myriad of reasons young people do this most of which are selfish. At the end of the day; I was selfish. Humanity it seems has lost its sense of duty, respect, and service to the other. We are no longer ‘other-centered’ but, often think only of ourselves and our own needs. Extra-curricular activities often involve self-aggrandizement; cult worship of pop stars; pleasure-seeking entertainment, material gratification, and sex saturation are a beginning to understanding this problem. Where is the formation of service-oriented individuals who sacrifice themselves for the good of others? Where/when are children taught and rewarded for service to those in need? Where and when are we taught to “carry our crosses?” It is precisely this failure to explain to the young Christian that he/she must carry his/her cross that is at the root of the problem. For youngsters, the cross comes in the form of loneliness, boredom, powerless submission to adults, family conflicts, unmet needs, evils perpetrated against them by others, bullying, academic and/or athletic failures, etc. Youngsters need to understand how and WHY to carry these crosses so they do not seek to solace in risky behaviors like sex and drugs and crime. Each risky behavior is a response to these crosses. God allows crosses in our lives for our good, or the good of others. God has his hand on each and every one of us and he directs our paths and ‘opens and closes doors’ for a reason. Our crosses are meant to form us in His image and have the power to sanctify us. I was NOT taught this as a child, even though I was raised Catholic. I did NOT understand how closely God watches over me and forms me by the events in my life. If these young people REALLY understood the love God has for them, and saw His hand in the things of their lives, they would love God so much they would desire to serve Him in return and lay down their lives for him. With this mindset, they would be equipped to handle the temptations that come at them 24×7 these days from the enemy of the cross, Satan Himself who teaches that pleasure and self-gratification are ultimate goods that lead to the ‘good life’ and therefore to safety, when in fact they ALWAYS lead to death when they become our idols: and idol being those things we will die to have or will harm others to have because we have lost our bearing on the fact that ONLY GOD saves us.

    • avatar Jean says:

      I would like to add one more thing:

      Only God saves us …. and He saves us by and THROUGH our crosses. Children do NOT know this.

  13. avatar TJ says:

    Very good root analysis

  14. avatar Bill Sr. says:

    I’m just an old grandpa Catholic who wondered if my thoughts were out of touch today. Here is something I posted last week.
    The reason we have a rapidly evolving secular society is that currently a major portion of our citizens have been raised in homes without a mother and father who have or planned to be married to each other for life and were mostly educated in schools where God and prayer had been excluded from the curriculum. When family life where children were welcomed as a gift from God by two god fearing adult parents, one working and the other at home, and not seen as an accidental by-product of sheer physical passion there was a good chance for them to become responsible members of society. Unfortunately modern living, led by the uncontrolled lust in the hearts of mankind and liberalism’s always enticing boast of freeing mankind from the bonds of religious scruples, in the last century handed evil the lethal weapons to destroy families.
    The beauty and wonder of the Conception of a child in the womb of its mother was chosen as a target at the very beginning of socialism and its liberal agenda to accomplish the “fundamental transformation of America” way before the current regime and their announced messiah appeared on the national scene. The cry from the desert of dome was that the world God had made for us was in grave danger of Over Population. We had to save the earth from being over run with new life? The pictures accompanying every deceitful article echoing that cry were not of cute toddlers in their mother’s arms or on happy playgrounds or in pleasant classrooms learning of the beauty of God’s good earth. No, we were shown starving skin and bone figures in poor countries of Africa and Asia where Christian missionaries were trying to bring the truth of the gospels to the people. Ironically this deceitful campaign gained support at a time when tens of millions of innocent humans all over the world had just been ritually slaughtered by godless dictators and imperial rulers before, during and after World War II.

    Contraception in all its forms, as part of the selfish passion for freedom from individual responsibility, was hailed as a redeeming blessing for not only married couples who wished not to have the obligation of raising a family but also to any and all who desired to be romantically involved prior to or in lieu of marriage. The personal benefits and blessing of conjugal love which God had reserved for married couples to have families and procreate were transformed and disguised as simply human rights suddenly ordained and made available by the secular progressives to everyone without having to pledge eternal companionship or bare the obligations of parenthood. Giving those with a taste for such freedom, the media offered public cover by naming their cause a Sexual Revolution. Driven by the desire to avoid personal responsibility at any price¸ rejecting any mention of chastity, this was the harbinger of societal perversion as well as the precursor and foundation for what eventually became our own national plague, Abortion.

    One might easily define the demise of American family life by its two most revealing concepts, contraception and abortion. One opposed the creative nature God granted to the union of a man and a woman joined in Holy Matrimony and the other sought to challenge the very involvement of God in the equation. Both have at the center of its premise the denial that man is the product of the goodness and abundance of God’s love and that man was not made in His image and likeness. Therefore, there is no such thing as procreation and God had no purposeful design for the ability of mankind to reproduce.

    Liberalism, like Humanism, stops short of denying the existence of God least they lose the basis for the goodness of man which provides them some footing to espouse their false philosophy of life. This is the same as the satanic Temptation of Christ when he was asked to forsake his divine nature and simply be human and follow the commands of one who would provide him with all he would ever need. The lord of lies has hope; hope that we do not recognize him among those who have unknowingly followed him and wish to control us.

    The world witnessed recently the liberal dominated democratic national convention purposely attempting to remove all mention of God from their platform to proudly but foolishly proclaim what could be called a doctrine of the cultural death. However, they reasoned prior to the election was not good timing for exposing the under belly of their agenda and leaders hastily overruled the mobs there present shouting for its approval.

    When in God’s name is the Body of Christ going to publicly admit we have many elitists in our fold as politicians, entertainers, educators, or media reporters who are giving aid and comfort to the evil enemies of our faith, identify them and officially notify them they can not be in communion with us and continue to cooperate in the erosion of our values and doctrines? Hopefully our new Pope Francis, with the fervent prayers of the faithful, can turn the tide of tyranny in the Church and if need be become a smaller but holier fold for him to shepherd.

    Bill Sr.

  15. avatar TL says:

    Thank you. The Truth is hard, but it sets you free. This topic is incredibly pressing for my generation (I’m 24). It’s so hard to admit when we’re wrong; but I certainly hope enough people can in order to help alleviate the disastrous results of the contraceptive culture. (Folks, I can’t comprehend the vistas that genetic engineering and IVF will open up, when I grow older.) We only find fulfillment in Christ; and He’s never outdone in generosity. He doesn’t leave us orphans, and never gives us a cross heavier than we can carry. We as women must take the step, in courage, to rethink some things; and understand that NOTHING in the world offers us a more supremely beautiful dignity than being made in God’s image, our God who is a lover of life!

  16. avatar Ken says:

    “But while procreation is the very purpose of sexuality, then the concept of recreational sex, so widely accepted today, is a fundamental component of the attitudes and beliefs that lead to abortion. ”

    That sentence says it all. When was the last time any Catholic has heard a sermon condemning recreational sex? I cannot remember hearing such a sermon in the last 40 years (and I have attended mass in the Midwest, West Coast, and East Coast regularly).

    A parent attempting to raise children with a healthy conscience is fighting a losing battle against TV programming, cinema, song lyrics sung on the radio and TV, magazines…

    Kids hear the parents preaching and immediately close their minds because they can see that no one else in society agrees with them. Would it hurt a pastor to help a parent out and just once a year say, “hey, y’all remember that extramarital is verboten, ok?” Just so the kids see that their parents are not the only ones who see it is not morally neutral to engage in extramarital sex. Maybe a pastor could even make sure that the teens in the parish know that “2 and a Half Men” depicts a morally decadent and sinful lifestyle. (Parents are already making that pitch, but it would be nice to get some public back-up.)

  17. avatar John says:

    A well written article

  18. avatar John Kippley says:

    I think that in all of this we need a positive statement about God’s plan for love, sex and marriage. I offer this: “Sexual intercourse is intended by God to be at least implicitly a renewal of the marriage covenant.” That helps to explain why adultery, fornication, and sodomy are more evils. They are not marriage acts. It helps to explain why marital contraception is wrong. Instead of being a renewal of the “for better and for worse” of the marriage covenant, in the contraceptive marriage act, the couple say, “We take each other for better but positively NOT for the imagined worse of possible pregnancy.” Thus contraception and sterilization contradict the marriage covenant; they pretend to be what they are not; they are dishonest and immoral.
    Back in 1989 a committee of US Catholic bishops published a small book on marriage preparation in which they urged that every engaged couple should be required to attend a full course on natural family planning as a normal part of preparation for marriage. About a half-dozen have followed through on that. When the entire body of bishops decides to get serious about Humanae Vitae, they will do so. But the problem will be only slightly addressed by NFP courses that are simply exercises in Catholic birth control. What is needed in such courses is the teaching of ecological breastfeeding as a form of NFP, all the common signs of fertility so that couples have choices, and a theology and new evangelization that connects the dots between Jesus and Humanae Vitae. For what that looks like, see Natural Family Planning: The Complete Approach at http://www.nfpandmore.org.

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