(Quote) Pat-5351 said:
Some think that we can have a civil and charitable conversation about the important issue of chastity...
(Quote) Pat-5351 said:
Some think that we can have a civil and charitable conversation about the important issue of chastity in this room. I said I would put something up and see if that is indeed possible!
So, what is your best piece of advice to an adult trying to live a chaste and pure life?
"More souls go to Hell because of sins of the flesh than for any other reason. " --Our Lady to the children at Fatima
How can we as adult (not teenaged) Catholics help ourselves to save our souls from the sins of impurity?
I will go first:
Wear on your person a blessed sacramental at all times. The miraculous medal, the brown scapular, a crucifix (not a cross, a crucifix). Wear it always, not taking it off for anything. There is grace and power in sacramentals, and it is a physical reminder of to Whom you belong, and Who has given you this body, and Who dwells within you.
If you are tempted, you will have to, as an act of your will, physiclaly remove this sacramental if you are to proceed with whatever you were going to do. It will be a physical sign that you are separating yourself from God, that you are doing it willingly, with full knowledge. That's enough to give you pause and a chance to change your mind.
I think this is a fantastic topic and one that we as adults should be able to discuss openly. While I have not encountered a moment yet when this might be a problem, I have pondered it, because it is possible that it will come up. Being widowed I think adds a different perspective to this, as I have and very much enjoyed all aspects of the marital life, including the conjugal. But, this is how I think of it:
Sexual intimacy is a beautiful, physical expression of both love and surrender to one's spouse. It is the unique language of love between spouses. And most importantly it is a gift. The ultimate human gift of spouses to each other and as a gift, I want it to be the purest, deepest, most beautiful gift I have to offer.
I am not afraid of my sexuality, nor my sexual thoughts nor my desire to embrace that language and I know that using that language outside of its most perfect and ordained place results in a diminished expression, a mere facade of what it is truly meant to be. As a result, it cheapens the expression, the language becomes confused and our expectations are unmet.
I've mentioned in a post on another thread how we brought this up with the teens during a lesson on sexuality. We went to Dillard's Department Store bought three men's dress shirts in the package the ones with all the pins and clips and collar holders lol. We had them gift wrapped. Then at the beginning of class we handed two of them out and let the kids open them, then put them on, pass them around, try them on and pass them around again. When they were nice and rumpled and out of whack, we picked one boy and a one girl and said, okay, now put them back exactly as we gave them to you. Of course they couldn't, the wrapping paper was ripped, the bows were squashed, the shirts wouldn't fold back and getting the pins put back and the clips etc. So when they were done, we set them in front of them and took the third one that had not been opened, and said okay, your sexuality is a gift, its a gift meant to be shared with one special person your mate, the person you love and respect more on this earth than any other one --- which gift would you rather give to that person. Then we gave them time to journal about it.
And, that is how I think about sex and my sexuality -- a special and unique gift shared in a beautiful and exquisite divinely designed language reserved only for the one who treasures me enough to stand before God and man and surrender themselves to my care and take into their keeping all that is me.
I hope to again be able to share that with someone, but I am content at the moment, knowing its true depth and beauty between those married far surpasses any misuse of the gift. If I am meant to remain single for my remaining days, I will at least have known that gift given and received. And, if I am meant to remarry, I will bring that gift and a real understanding of the enormity and beauty of it to my new spouse.