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This room is for supportive and informative discussion about divorce and/or the annulment process. All posters must have been previously divorced or annulled.

Saint Eugene De Mazenod is patron of dysfunctional families & Saint Fabiola obtained a divorce from her first husband prior to devoting her life to charitable works.
Learn More: Saint Eugene De Mazenod and Saint Fabiola

Dec 1st 2012 new

Julie, The Pope, any POPE when speaking on faith and morals could NEVER be wrong on faith or morals OR God is a liar and He can't keep His Promise. The Promise God made was to keep the One Holy Catholic Church, HIS CHURCH, in all Truth till the end of time! We know God neither deceives nor is deceived. He is God and He keeps the Church in all truth through the gift He gave the Popes, the gift of infallibility. When Our Holy Father 1 intends to teach 2 by virtue of his supreme authority 3 on a matter of faith and morals 4 to the whole Church, he is preserved by the Holy Spirit from error. His teaching act is infallible and the teaching he articulates is irreformable.

Infallibility is not based on a Pope living a good life or a bad life. If that were the case then we'd be in trouble and the the gates of hell would prevail against the Church. Remember what your mom, perhaps the good sisters taught you during your first Holy Communion. The Bread and Wine become the Body and Blood of Christ when a priest consecrates the bread and wine. This is the gift of Ordained priesthood to the Church! To consecrate the host is not based on the priest being in the state of grace himself, Of course he should be, and he should contiuing to grow in virtue, in sanctity, but can you imagine if these gifts of Christ to the Church could be impeded because of the unworthiness of the ministers!? God would not have that! I think now you get my point!

Infalliblity is not repeat Not just EX Cathedra Another important point made by Vatican II concerns the infallibility of the "ordinary
magisterium" -- that is, the teaching authority of bishops in union with the pope,
exercised in "ordinary" acts of teaching outside an ecumenical council.

Hopefully my explaination is clear for you.

For futher discovery I would direct you to google EWTN and go to the Faith section.

Papal Infallibility

God Bless!

Dec 1st 2012 new

(Quote) Jocelyn-917815 said: I am new to catholicmatch, and as I read the profiles, I see many, many men stating their belie...
(Quote) Jocelyn-917815 said:

I am new to catholicmatch, and as I read the profiles, I see many, many men stating their belief in Papal infallibility, yet not agreeing with the Pope's authority regarding sex outside of marriage and birth control. As stated, Papal Infallibility proclaims the Pope is preserved from the possibility of error[1] "when, in the exercise of his office as shepherd and teacher of all Christians, in virtue of his supreme apostolic authority, he defines a doctrine concerning faith or morals to be held by the whole Church".

Would love to understand from those with these beliefs how this reconciles. I am not judging, just thought it would be enlightening and interesting do discuss.


in other words they're fine with it until it interferes with their enjoyment of life. wink

when people say they have issues with the church, it usually mans that there's some sexual sin they'd rather not forego. oh well, better to have them in the tent that outside it. many will come around.

Dec 1st 2012 new


Here is a talk I did on Papal Infallibility on the last Men's Retreat I went on. It was a 20 minute speach and only begins to scratch the surface of infallibility. The Reader's Digest version is we don't believe in the infallibility of men. Rather, we believe in the supernatural infallibility of Jesus Christ who founded the Catholic Church and promised to guide the Church into all truth.

Narrator: These following words are direct quotations from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. When Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples.
Jesus: Who do people say the Son of Man is?
Narrator: They replied, Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets. He said to them,
Jesus: But who do you say that I am?
Narrator: Simon Peter said in reply, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” Jesus said to him in reply,
Jesus: “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father. And so I say to you, you are Peter. And upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. 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 shall be loosed in heaven.
Narrator: On the night before he died, Jesus during the Last Supper said.
Jesus: “If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father and he will give you another Advocate to be with you always. I have told you this while I am with you. The Advocate, the holy Spirit that the Father will send in my name- he will teach you everything and remind you of all that [I] told you. I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now. But when he comes, the Spirit of truth, he will guide you to all truth. Father, the hour has come. Consecrate them in the truth. Your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, so I sent them into the world. And I consecrate myself for them, so that they also may be consecrated in truth.
Narrator: After the resurrection, Jesus had breakfast with the disciples and said to Simon Peter.
Jesus: “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?”
Narrator: He said to him, “Yes Lord, you know that I love you.” He said to him:
Jesus: “Feed my lambs.”
Narrator: He then said to him a second time.
Jesus: “Simon, son of John, do you love me?”
Narrator: He said to him, “Yes Lord, you know that I love you”
Jesus: “Tend my sheep”
Narrator: He said to him the third time,
Jesus: “Simon, son of John, do you love me?”
Narrator: Peter was distressed that he had said to him a third time,
Jesus: “Do you love me?”
Narrator: And he said to him, “Lord, you know everything: you know that I love you.” [Jesus] said to him.
Jesus: “Feed my sheep”; “Follow Me”

I am starting out this talk with Jesus because people often wonder where the notion of Papal infallibility came from. Some people think it was a dogma that was first defined in 1870 during the First Vatican Council. Others think it was something made up in the middle ages to help the Church maintain control of doctrine. It was neither of these. Papal Infallibility came directly from Jesus Christ. He has sent the Holy Spirit to help Peter and his successors ensure that the Catholic Church that Jesus Christ founded would never teach error.
During this talk, we are going to discuss what Infallibility means, the history of Papal Infallibility, and how it is revealed in both the Old Testament and the New Testament. But, at the end of the talk, we are going to come back to the beginning and ask a very simple question, “Do you trust everything Jesus Christ said?” Do you trust him when he says he is going to build his Church on the rock Peter and the gates of hell will never prevail against it?

Infallibility is defined in paragraph 891 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church as follows: "The Roman Pontiff, head of the college of bishops, enjoys this infallibility in virtue of his office, when, as supreme pastor and teacher of all the faithful - who confirms his brethren in the faith he proclaims by a definitive act a doctrine pertaining to faith or morals. . . . The infallibility promised to the Church is also present in the body of bishops when, together with Peter's successor, they exercise the supreme Magisterium," above all in an Ecumenical Council.418 When the Church through its supreme Magisterium proposes a doctrine "for belief as being divinely revealed,"419 and as the teaching of Christ, the definitions "must be adhered to with the obedience of faith."420 This infallibility extends as far as the deposit of divine Revelation itself. That sounds very grandiose. The truth is it is laser focused. Let’s re-read the first section. The Pope is only infallible when he ‘proclaims by a definitive act a doctrine pertaining to faith or morals. That’s it. It doesn’t say he’s not a sinner or makes mistakes. It doesn’t say that his private theological opinions are infallible. It only applies when the Pope in an “Official Capacity”, defines a doctrine concerning faith or morals to be held by the whole Church. The second section of the definition states that infallibility extends to the Church when the bishops, in union with the Pope, propose a doctrine ‘for belief as being divinely revealed”, as often happens in Ecumenical Councils. Again this, infallibility of the Church’s teaching arm, “the Magisterium”, comes directly from the lips of Jesus. In Luke, Chapter 10 verse 16, Jesus speaking to the 72 he appointed said “Whoever listens to you, listens to me.” And in Matthew 28, speaking to the disciples after his resurrection said, “All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, TEACHING them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.” A practical application of this is that when the Church in the 4th century held a council to define the Canon of the Bible, we can trust that all 73 of the books selected are indeed inspired by God and inerrant. And a good example of when the doctrine of infallibility doesn’t apply is Pope John Paul II’s personal opinion of the Shroud of Turin. JP2 stated that he absolutely believes that the Shroud of Turin is the burial cloth of Christ. But, he also stated that if at a later date, science conclusively proves that it isn’t, he will respect the scientific data and change his position. So, John Paul II can be wrong about the Shroud of Turin. But, we can trust him and the Church when JP2 said that the recently published Catechism of the Church is a “sure norm for teaching.”
The concept of an infallible Pope leading an infallible Church is steeped in Biblical History. It was in both the Old Testament and the New. There are two things we have to remember Jesus and the Bible. The first is that his life was a recapitulation of the life of Israel. Israel, the first born nation chosen by God to lead all the other nations into holiness, failed to obey God and instead was lead into sin by the other nations. So, God sent Jesus to into the world to save us from our sins. Jesus himself said in Matthew 5:17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill.” Let’s take a quick look at how Jesus fulfilled the Old Testament. Adam disobeyed God and did his own will in the Garden of Eden. Jesus obeyed God in the Garden of Gethsemane, praying not as I will, but as you will. Abraham went up to the Mount Moriah to sacrifice as a holocaust his only son Isaac. Jesus went up to Calvary to be sacrificed for our salvation. Moses, after fasting for 40 days, came down from Mount Sinai and gave the Israelites the law of the Old Testament. Jesus, after fasting for 40 days, gave the law of the New Testament in the Sermon on the Mount. God gave the Israelites “Manna” in the desert to eat. Jesus gave us his body to eat at the last supper and in the Eucharist. There were twelve tribes in Israel before they were conquered by Samaria and Persia and lost. Jesus appointed twelve disciples to reconstitute the twelve tribes. The Israelites established the Davidic Kingdom. Jesus established the Kingdom of God. The Queen of the Davidic Kingdom was the mother of the King. The Queen of the Kingdom of God is the mother of God, Mary our mother. The Davidic Kingdom had the office of Prime Minister or master of the palace, who was given the Keys to the Davidic kingdom and took care of the affairs of the Palace when the king was gone. Jesus gave the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven to Peter, who was the first prime minister or Pope of the Kingdom of God. Wait a minute. What’s do you mean the Pope is in the Bible? Well, let’s take a look. First let’s look at the Old Testament. 1st Kings Chapter 4 lists the officials that King Solomon had in his service. Verse 6 references Ahishar, who was the major domo or master of the palace. Now, I want everyone to open their Bibles to Isaiah 22 verse 19. Here, Isaiah is talking about Shebna, master of the palace, who the Lord was greatly displeased with. Let me know when you get there. The Lord says: “I will thrust you from your office and pull you down from your station. On that day I will summon my servant Eliakin, son of Hilkiah. I will clothe him with your robe and gird him with your sash and give over to him your authority. He shall be a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem and to the house of Judah. I will place the key of the House of David on his shoulder, when he opens, no one shall shut. When he shuts, no one shall open.” Now the 2nd thing we have to remember about Jesus is that he is constantly quoting from the Old Testament. He doesn’t just go around making up new things. He’s always pulling from the Old Testament and the life of Israel. With that in mind let’s go back to Matthew Chapter 16 verse 18 when Jesus speaking of Peter says, And so I say to you, you are Peter and upon this rock I will build my church and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. 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 shall be loosed in heaven.” Let’s compare the master of the palace in the Old Testament to Peter, the first Pope in the New Testament. Old Testament “I will place the Key to the House of David on his shoulder.” New Testament “I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven” Old Testament “When he Opens, no one shall shut” New Testament “Whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven”. Old, “when he shuts, no one shall open.” New, “whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven.”

Now some people might say, that’s interesting Will, but how do I know that you didn’t just come up with all on your own. How do I know that God really intended that connection? Fair enough. Well let’s look at the what the Apostles thought and what the Bible says, keeping in mind that all Christians believe that the Bible is the “Infallible, inerrant word of God. Open your Bible to Acts 15. This recounts the Council of Jerusalem, which was convened to determine whether gentile Christians coming into the Church had to follow the Mosaic laws including diet and circumcision, ouch. The problem was that there were good Holy Spirit filled people who loved Jesus on both sides of the issue and they could not determine what the correct interpretation was. In verse 7 , the Bible says “After much debate had taken place, Peter got up and said to them, My brothers, you are well aware that from early days God made his choice among you that through my mouth the Gentiles would hear the word of the gospel and believe. And God who knows the heart, bore witness by granting them the Holy Spirit just as he did us. He made no distinction between us and them, for by faith he purified their hearts. Why then are you now putting God to the test by placing on the shoulders of the disciples a yoke that neither our ancestors nor we have been able to bear? On the contrary, we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, in the same way as they. And note in verse 12 the Bible says that after Peter spoke “The whole assembly fell silent.” So, everyone expressed their opinion and the discussion went back and forth, but once Peter spoke, the whole assembly fell silent. Further on in the chapter, it discusses the “Letter of the Apostles, which was sent to the whole church announcing the results of the council. Verse 28 states “It is the decision of the holy Spirit and of us not to place on you any burden beyond these necessities. Note again that it is the Holy Spirit guiding the Church, not just “men” making up their own ideas. I love this theme, the Year of Faith. It fits directly into the topical of an infallible church and infallible Pope. Our faith in the Church and the Pope is not a natural faith in men, but a supernatural faith in the Holy Spirit. That’s what we have to ask ourselves, do we have faith in the Jesus and the Holy Spirit to make the truth of Christ absolutely clear with no doubt whatsoever. I do. Now some people will still argue that they are Bible based Christians and that the Bible not the church, is the sole source of Jesus’ truth. Fair enough. Well let’s look at what the Bible says about this. We’ll read one last Bible verse. Go to 1st Timothy chapter 3. In this chapter, Paul is writing to Timothy about the qualifications of various ministers. Starting in verse 14, Paul says “I am writing you about these matters, although I hope to visit you soon. But if I should be delayed, you should know how to behave in the household of God, which is the Church of the Living God, the pillar and foundation of truth. So the Bible says that Church, not the scriptures, is the pillar and foundation of truth. So, once again in this year of faith, we are confronted with the question, do we have faith in the supernatural inerrancy of the Bible, which says that the Church is supernaturally infallible. Some people will still say that they don’t have faith in men or a man made institution. But men, I have to tell you, I am all in with my faith in Jesus Christ, 100%. You see Jesus Christ was a man. Our faith says he is TRUE MAN and TRUE GOD. I have faith in the Man/God Jesus Christ. I have faith in the book this Man/God wrote with other men under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the Bible. And if I can have faith that the Holy Spirit can keep a book written by men from error, I must have that same faith that the Holy Spirit can keep an institution run by men and a man The Pope from teaching error. Jesus has promised this through the Holy Spirit and he has kept this promise for the last 2,000 years.
I’d like to close our eyes and end with a prayer to our Blessed Mother, asking for her protection of Mother Church, Hail Mary…

Dec 1st 2012 new

The short answer is that we are flawed human beings and our pride often doesn't allow the word of God to seep into our lives. I know for myself that after I converted to Catholicism, it took me two years of study and prayer before I finally understood the Church's teaching on sexuality.

Now, the one thing I didn't do was state that the Church was wrong. I trusted the Jesus would guide his Church. But, I certainly questioned the teachings.

God Bless,


Dec 2nd 2012 new

Well. Infallibility is making much more sense to me.

One thing I'd be interested to know (both infallibility and contraception have been a problem for me) is the difference between between the Creighton method of birth control (approved) and birth control pills (not OK). One is more mental than physical (Creighton). But it's an unatural behavior (I've used it) if children are to be gifts from God, then we're interfering with his plan. It's also a physical barrier in that it purposely avoids relations during a time when a woman wants to engage in them the most. Anyhow, my problem is that both the Creighton method and birth control interfere with natural consequences. And this is more a medical question, is hormonal therapy OK for perimenopausal women and birth control not OK for reproductive aged women (they both tamper with hormones) because the 1st doesn't interfere with fertility, whereas the 2nd does. That brings me back to the Creighton method. It also interferes with fertility but can be discontinued. Birth control pills can be discontinued also. The rhythm method (OK), the Creighton method (OK) and birth control (not OK) are all methods of contraception. Sigh! I'm going in circles........

Dec 2nd 2012 new

Julie, a good solid priest to speak with on your questions is Fr. Kevin Barrett at Catholic Familyland 1-800- FOR- MARY.

While condemning the use of artificial birth control, the Church recognizes
that some couples face serious situations in their marriage and family which
move them to postpone a pregnancy, even indefinitely. To assist couples, the
Church implores couples to turn to a natural method of regulating birth, which
God Himself has designed as part of the reproductive system. This method is
simply called Natural Family Planning.

Actually, one of the earliest forms of natural family planning is breast
feeding. If a woman breast feeds her baby consistently? she probably will not
conceive for 18-24 months.

However, modern Natural Family Planning is technically called the
sympto-thermal method. This method relies on three signs of fertility in the
woman: basal temperature pattern, cervical mucus pattern and physical changes in
the position of the cervix. These three signs inform a couple when the wife is
in ovulation and possibly could conceive a child if the couple engages in
marital love. Ironically, while many doctors prescribe artificial means to
prevent a pregnancy, they prescribe the techniques of Natural Family Planning to
help a couple who is having trouble conceiving a child identify the period of
ovulation and thereby know when the possibility of conception is the greatest.
Moreover, if one is worried about effectiveness, the sympto-thermal method is
proven to be as effective as the pill and more effective than barrier methods if
used properly.

Immediately, some people may honestly ask, "What is the difference between
Natural Family Planning and artificial birth control? Both seem to do the same
thing." While both means may have the same intent postponing pregnancy the
difference lies in the means themselves. With Natural Family Planning, couples
keep their covenant of life and love intact. They use only the means given to
them by God, which are intrinsic to who they are. In expressing their marital
love, they are mindful that this action not only unites them as husband and
wife, but also may participate in God's creative love. Rather than suppress and
ignore one dimension, they respect both dimensions. Therefore, if they decide
for a serious reason to postpone a pregnancy, then both husband and wife make
the decision and both share in the sacrifice of not expressing their marital
love during the period of ovulation. Natural Family Planning is also safe and
the burden shared by both husband and wife. Moreover the couple is open to the
providence of God's will. If a child should come who "was not planned?" so be
it—that is God's will and God's gift. With artificial birth control, where the
couple has everything nicely planned and is in control, the surprise pregnancy
oftentimes spells disaster. Remember that one of the arguments for legalized
abortion is to correct "unplanned pregnancies."

Pope John Paul II addressed the anthropological and moral differences between
artificial birth control and Natural Family Planning in "Familiaris Consortio"
"The choice of the natural rhythms involves accepting the cycle of the person,
that is the woman, and thereby accepting dialogue, reciprocal respect, shared
responsibility and self-control. To accept the cycle and to enter into dialogue
means to recognize both the spiritual and corporal character of conjugal
communion? and to live personal love, with its requirement of fidelity. In this
context the couple comes to experience how conjugal communion is enriched with
those values of tenderness and affection which constitute the inner soul of
human sexuality, in its physical dimension also. In this way sexuality is
respected and promoted in its truly and fully human dimension and is never used
as an object that, by breaking the personal unity of soul and body, strikes at
God's creation itself at the level of the deepest interaction of nature and
person" (No. 32).

Natural Family Planning has had great success.

...One can NEVER ! cavalierly dismiss the consistent teaching of the
Church on CONTRACEPTION. We cannot simply consider good intentions or motives.
Moreover, we can't just go to the "Yellow Pages" to find the priest or
theologian who will give us the answer we want to hear. We have to be honest and
wrestle with the truth and, by the grace of God, conform to it. As Pope John
Paul II asserted, "As teacher, (the Church) never tires of proclaiming the moral
norm that must guide the responsible transmission of life. The Church is in no
way the author or the arbiter of this none. In obedience to the truth which is
Christ, whose image is reflected in the nature and dignity of the human person,
the Church interprets the moral norm and proposes it to all people of good will,
without concealing its demands of radicalness and perfection" (No. 33).

Fr. Saunders is the author and is president of Notre Dame Institute and pastor of Queen of
Apostles Parish, both in Alexandria.

God Bless theheart

Dec 2nd 2012 new

Thanks Collette-

That reply was very helpful. Of course, it raises even more questions for me but my head is spinning so I think I'll take your advice and call Father Barrett. Sigh!

One more question? Does the Pope explain his answers (I know he doesn't have to). Or just some of them? scratchchin Praying

Dec 2nd 2012 new

If he is doing something big or defining something about faith and morals, he will provide a detailed explanation. The goal is for everyone to understand the "love behind the law" (I am stealing that line from one of the women on CM LOL). Pope Paul VI wrote a great encyclical in 1968 called Humane Vitae, which re-affirmed the historical teaching on contraception and Pope Pius XII wrote an Apostolic Constitution (I am actually not sure what that is LOL) defining the Dogma of the Assumption of Mary.

One thing I would caution regarding contraception, is don't worry if your head is spinning. Understanding things like this sometimes take time (it took me two years to understand it). So, keep praying and keep searching.

A couple of other comments. The teachings on Contraception, like Papal Infallibility, are not something new. This goes back to the very beginning of biblical times. See Genesis Chapter 38. In this chapter, Judah's son Er died. And as was the custom for ancient Israel, Judah asked his other son Onan, to take Er's widow Tamar as his wife. Onan agreed to take Tamar as his wife. Starting in verse 9, "Onan, however, knew that the descendants would not be counted as his; so whenever he had relations with his brother's widow, he wasted his seed on the ground, to avoid contributing offspring for his brother. What he did greatly offended the LORD, and the LORD took his life too."

Not to be too graphic, but Onan was practicing the ancient contraceptive method of "coitus interruptus". In Christian terms, this is known as Onanism. It is interesting to note that prior to 1930, there wasn't one Christian denomination that didn't condemn Onanism, or contraception. In 1930 at the Anglican Council of Lambeth, the Anglicans became the first denomination to approve contraception, but only for medicinal reasons with married couples (if memory serves me). But, obviously it didn't stop there. And now, most denominations approve contraception for any reason and at anytime. But, from the time of Judah, 4000 years ago, to 1930, nobody approved contraception.

One of the main differences between NFP and contraception is that contraception is used for very natural selfish purposes. I want to be physically pleasured right now and I don't want to risk having a child. NFP is used for supernatural purposes. In Matthew 19, Christ talks about celibacy stating that some people "renounce marriage for the sake of the kingdom of heaven." The Apostle Paul also renounced celibacy for the Gospel and talked about groups of women who would remain single and dedicate their lives to Christ (Nuns). In the same way, a married couple practicing NFP, renounces sexual relations for a period of time "for the sake of the kingdom of heaven". So couples using NFP are glorifying God during their abstinence with their prayer and obedience and are glorifying God (the author of life) during their periods of sexual activity with their openness to life being created during their sexual relations. Couples using birth control are fundamentally just glorifying their own bodies, concerned only with how much pleasure they can receive from another person without fully giving themselves to that other person.

Another great resource for NFP is a DVD series on EWTN Theology of the Body, by Father Roger Landry. Christopher West also has some great DVD's and series.

Good Luck, God Bless, and Keep Praying. You are doing great Julie!!

Dec 2nd 2012 new


Paul didn't renounce celibacy. He renounced sexual relations for Celibacy and for the Kingdom of God.

Dec 2nd 2012 new

Julie-909449 asks, "One more question? Does the Pope explain his answers (I know he doesn't have to). Or just some of them?"

Hello again, wave You can read what we believe and why we believe it, (this explains why the Pope teaches it), found in the CATECHISM OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH use 2nd edition as the first edition had translation errors. google that and type next to it /archive/ENG0015/_INDEX.H That should get you to the Vatican: The Holy See and the English site with the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

God Bless theheart

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