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Discussion related to living as a Catholic in the single state of life. As long as a topic is being discussed from the perspective of a single Catholic then it will be on-topic.

Tobias and Sarah's story is from the Book of Tobit, and his journey is guided by Saint Raphael.
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Apr 18th 2013 new

(Quote) Robert-864486 said: Jesus about the wife who married seven times, he mentioned to them that there is no marria...
(Quote) Robert-864486 said:

Jesus about the wife who married seven times, he mentioned to them that there is no marriage in heaven. The reason? After the end of the world there will be no more people created, and thus the primary purpose of marriage gone.

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Marriage doesn't cease to exist in heaven simply because there is no procreation. Marriage, like any of the other sacrements are outward symbols of God's Grace, a road sign to get to heaven if you will. When you're in heaven there is no need for the symbol (the road sign) because you're already there!

Both the unitive and the procreative are equally important, because if you say that the procreative is more important then the unitive wouldn't it follow that we should always be able to seek what is most important? That simply isn't the case, a marriage where the couple is infertile and unable to have children is NO LESS valid then then the marriage where the couple has 9 kids!

Apr 18th 2013 new

With the reasons laid out....those were examples, not an exclusive list. When he used the term "such as" and then said "not rarely arise" I think proves my point. He's giving leeway here, not further restriction.

I just answered a question for one of my TOB certification tests regarding primary/secondary ends as equal. Paul VI came after Pius Xii, (and is address to midwives actually an encyclical?) with further clarification on the matter. I'm not saying they are contradicting, but in our understanding of it, further diving into what is actually being said here I think warrants more than what it might seem.

The intention of children most certainly must be present for a valid marriage- absolutely necessary. The yielding of other selfish pursuits for this purpose is expected. It's eventual goal though, is heaven.

Apr 19th 2013 new

(Quote) Jessica-951024 said: THANK YOU Jim!! God bless you, you are so right. For these reasons, I am always hes...
(Quote) Jessica-951024 said:




THANK YOU Jim!! God bless you, you are so right. For these reasons, I am always hesitant when people talk about using NFP because, like you said, it can be abused. It is the same thing as using birth control, only NFP is natural not artificial.

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To clarify some terms here. "Birth regulation/spacing" is not a problem in church teaching. As referred to earlier, we are supposed to be responsible parents. There is an infinite difference between NFP and contraception though, and the natural vs artificial is the least of them.


NFP uses judgement to decide to not engage in the sexual act. Contraception is AGAINST conception. Its desecrating the sexual act itself.

Couples don't engage in the marital act for many reasons. Sickness, staying with relatives, exhaustion, children around etc. Those are all tangent reasons though. All the more reasonable to not engage in an act simply because one wants to avoid the natural intended consequences of the act.

Apr 19th 2013 new

(Quote) Carrie-529869 said: To clarify some terms here. "Birth regulation/spacing" is not a problem in church teac...
(Quote) Carrie-529869 said:

To clarify some terms here. "Birth regulation/spacing" is not a problem in church teaching. As referred to earlier, we are supposed to be responsible parents. There is an infinite difference between NFP and contraception though, and the natural vs artificial is the least of them.


NFP uses judgement to decide to not engage in the sexual act. Contraception is AGAINST conception. Its desecrating the sexual act itself.

Couples don't engage in the marital act for many reasons. Sickness, staying with relatives, exhaustion, children around etc. Those are all tangent reasons though. All the more reasonable to not engage in an act simply because one wants to avoid the natural intended consequences of the act.

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What do you mean by "not a problem"? Church teaching do not allow for the arbitrary or indiscriminate use of NFP techniques for birth spacing: there must be just reasons for doing so. Couples who wish to space births without just reason may do so morally be abstaining from sexual relations entirely, nit just during their fertile periods.

Apr 19th 2013 new

(Quote) Jerry-74383 said: What do you mean by "not a problem"? Church teaching do not allow for the arbit...
(Quote) Jerry-74383 said:

What do you mean by "not a problem"? Church teaching do not allow for the arbitrary or indiscriminate use of NFP techniques for birth spacing: there must be just reasons for doing so. Couples who wish to space births without just reason may do so morally be abstaining from sexual relations entirely, nit just during their fertile periods.

--hide--


I meant it exactly as I stated it, in context of a response to the PP. Please read it in that context. What I said does not contradict church teaching, I'm very well aware of what the church's teachings are about the use of NFP

However, I'm not aware there is a distinction that you state regarding complete abstaining if without a just reason. Please cite that source.

Apr 19th 2013 new

Before NFP teaching was deemed acceptable, what was catholic marriage all about? I assume it was mainly about procreation - something that has been somewhat lost in modern society. It is hard for to me condemn anyone using NFP when just about everyone else (it seems) uses contraception - so I am aware of that.

Although I clearly understand the differences between NFP and artificial contraception, I think intent should matter. If a married couple is having sexual relations hoping NOT to conceive a child, although acceptable under NFP, there is part of me that finds that somewhat wrong. I know NFP is considered acceptable due the openness to life, an obvious significant distinction to artificial contraception.


So the unitive element is there, but is the procreative element there more than in a technical sense? Is a sexual act performed by a married couple hoping to procreate a child on the same level as a sexual act that is hoping not to? Now, in cases where there are infertility issues, I think that is different because the couple is expressing the unitive without hoping the procreative doesn't happen. Many infertile couples have ended up having a child when it was thought virtually impossible.


The main thing is that catholic marriage shouldn't be thought of as freedom to have as much sexual relations as a couple wants without consequence. I think some people think of that way, which is why I have some issues with Christopher West's NFP lectures, which seem to give that impression.

Apr 19th 2013 new

(Quote) Jim-873983 said: This is in response to the recent blog post from Lisa about Natural Family Planning.Lisa wa...
(Quote) Jim-873983 said:

This is in response to the recent blog post from Lisa about Natural Family Planning.

Lisa was right when she listed Natural Family Planning (NFP) as a viable, Church-approved route to reduce the chances of a pregnancy, but she didn't give the whole picture. This is sady a topic that many Catholics of good faith do not understand correctly.

There are certain serious conditions that can make NFP lawful under Church law:

1. Medical- serious real and objective dangers to the physical or mental health of one or both partners.

2. Eugenic- real possibility of serious and incurable hereditary defects in the child. This can last for the duration of the marriage, or just for a period of time (like when the mother is taking perscription drugs that might cause birth defects)

3. Social- covering socal disturbances like famine, war, unjust laws limiting the number of children a family can have, etc.

4. Economic- In the case of TRUE SERIOUS financial hardship for supporting another child. This is perhaps the most common reason cited for NFP-practicing couples. But this reason requires brutal honesty before God. "The reason must be serious. Trifles are not enough. That the birth of other children might mean buying a less expensive car or sending the children to a less fashionable school would not justify the decision to have no more, for that would be making the ornaments of life more valuable than life itself. And not only could no Christian see things so, but only the devitalized could. Indeed, for one who has grasped what a human being is- made in God's image, immortal, redeemed by Christ- only the most serious reason would be strong enough to support such a decision." -Frank Sheehy

There are two purposes of marriage:

1. Allowing for the procreation and education of children.

2. The mutual comfort and support of the spouses and allowing a lawful outlet of concupisence (carnal desires) in the marital act between spouses.

#1 is the primary purpose, #2 is the secondary.

Natural Family Planning, if practiced simply because another child would be inconvenient, is essentially flipping the two purposes of marriage, making #2 the primary and #1 the secondary- the same spirit of those who practice artificial contraception. Regardless of whether the spouses are "open to life" despite their precautionary timing of the marital act, if Natural Family Planning is habitually practiced to take precautions against the likelihood of pregnancy, simply for its own sake, IT IS A MORTAL SIN. Please be aware of that.

Please don't think me a moral busybody. I've just recently learned about all the strings attached to NFP and want to clear the air. NFP is not instrinsically evil like artificial birth control. But it can be abused.

NFP can result in the loss of souls, and not just to Hell. Think of all the souls that could have been created if their parents were more generous in allowing God to bless them with as many children as He desires.

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Its not a mortal sin, Family planning natural or otherwise is just that, planning your family, all the items you mention are legitmate reasons for planning for a little person to arrive EXCEPT eugenics. Eugenics has been opposed by the Church since Pius XII and reinforced by the JP II in his encyclical on the sanctity of life. Essentially Natural Family Planning is control of fertility by using the Lunar menstural cycle and it that rimple, by no means is it exact or foolproof but uses Gods natural biorthymns, and physiological makeup.

Eugenics is human engineering by another name. The blood test before marriage was eugenically based and vehmently denounced by the American Church, Economic reason are also a grey area, as family size, fertility and the ability to concieve is cultural in most of the world, and not economic. JP II made it clear that pure economic reasons were not every a justification for not having children- his words boil down to God will provide.

Apr 19th 2013 new

(Quote) Jerry-74383 said: What do you mean by "not a problem"? Church teaching do not allow for the arbit...
(Quote) Jerry-74383 said:

What do you mean by "not a problem"? Church teaching do not allow for the arbitrary or indiscriminate use of NFP techniques for birth spacing: there must be just reasons for doing so. Couples who wish to space births without just reason may do so morally be abstaining from sexual relations entirely, nit just during their fertile periods.

--hide--

Those reasons are between the parents and God and the Priest they are NOT YOUR DECISION should a couple which to space their family they may, for reasons known ONLY to them and God. Natural Family Planing is just that NATURAL, governed by the physiology of the woman and the monitoring of the menstrual cycle. Its been used for 24000 years by Humanity.

Biologically the female produces a natural contraception after the birth of a child, this effect lasts approximately 6-8 months and allows the mother to ween the child, recover lost minerals and vitamins and repair the damage of childbirth and gain strength for conception. Thus when menstruation begins again the mother is strong, healthy and receptive to a life, marriage and sex are more than for procreation, they are essential for the passing of immunosupportive materials, psychological and physical bonding of the couple.

Natural contraception can occur spontaneous and without planning. Stress, poor nutrition, psychological and other body stress can trigger the same response- amenorrhoea which can last for years or weeks, no sin involved its natural.

Apr 19th 2013 new

(Quote) Patrick-341178 said: Before NFP teaching was deemed acceptable, what was catholic marriage all about? I assume it wa...
(Quote) Patrick-341178 said:

Before NFP teaching was deemed acceptable, what was catholic marriage all about? I assume it was mainly about procreation - something that has been somewhat lost in modern society. It is hard for to me condemn anyone using NFP when just about everyone else (it seems) uses contraception - so I am aware of that.

Although I clearly understand the differences between NFP and artificial contraception, I think intent should matter. If a married couple is having sexual relations hoping NOT to conceive a child, although acceptable under NFP, there is part of me that finds that somewhat wrong. I know NFP is considered acceptable due the openness to life, an obvious significant distinction to artificial contraception.


So the unitive element is there, but is the procreative element there more than in a technical sense? Is a sexual act performed by a married couple hoping to procreate a child on the same level as a sexual act that is hoping not to? Now, in cases where there are infertility issues, I think that is different because the couple is expressing the unitive without hoping the procreative doesn't happen. Many infertile couples have ended up having a child when it was thought virtually impossible.


The main thing is that catholic marriage shouldn't be thought of as freedom to have as much sexual relations as a couple wants without consequence. I think some people think of that way, which is why I have some issues with Christopher West's NFP lectures, which seem to give that impression.

--hide--


I've been finding this discussion to be fascinating, but am starting to be become confused by it as well. For a while I was getting the impression that as long as there was equal consent between a husband and wife on having sex, with the intent of having children during a point or some points during the marriage there wasn't anything wrong there. My sister had 3 children back to back, with her 3rd child likely being the last one she'll have in her life time.

According to some of the information being discussed in various posts, unless I'm misreading it, it would sound like she'd be a sinner if she indefinitely continued to use the NFP method throughout the rest of her marriage and never had another child, even if she was open to the possibility should the NFP method still ended with a child in that rare circumstance. My own parents had 3 children, from a financial stand point perhaps around the time they had me, maybe they could have afforded another child, but I find it to be a rather grey area, as I feel my father follows church teaching extremely well, and is a very holy man, does that mean for all the years following any sexual relations he had in his marriage would be considered sinful since there was an indefinite spacing?

I find it difficult to pin sinfulness on a couple using NFP who are in a loving marriage, and having sex consentually, along with the intent of having children, especially if they've had a couple children already and understand the fact that NFP isn't 100% effective.

Apr 19th 2013 new

(Quote) Emmanuel-940296 said: I've been finding this discussion to be fascinating, but am starting to be become ...
(Quote) Emmanuel-940296 said:



I've been finding this discussion to be fascinating, but am starting to be become confused by it as well. For a while I was getting the impression that as long as there was equal consent between a husband and wife on having sex, with the intent of having children during a point or some points during the marriage there wasn't anything wrong there. My sister had 3 children back to back, with her 3rd child likely being the last one she'll have in her life time.

According to some of the information being discussed in various posts, unless I'm misreading it, it would sound like she'd be a sinner if she indefinitely continued to use the NFP method throughout the rest of her marriage and never had another child, even if she was open to the possibility should the NFP method still ended with a child in that rare circumstance. My own parents had 3 children, from a financial stand point perhaps around the time they had me, maybe they could have afforded another child, but I find it to be a rather grey area, as I feel my father follows church teaching extremely well, and is a very holy man, does that mean for all the years following any sexual relations he had in his marriage would be considered sinful since there was an indefinite spacing?

I find it difficult to pin sinfulness on a couple using NFP who are in a loving marriage, and having sex consentually, along with the intent of having children, especially if they've had a couple children already and understand the fact that NFP isn't 100% effective.

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No your sister is not a sinner. The Church teaches that the point of sex is children, thus limited to stable relationships that is marriage/family. The child is the living proof of the love of the parents for each other, in Human flesh, which is why the Church discourages premartial or unmarried sex in case a child results.

That said, that is procreation, unlike animals who act purely on instinct Man has a Brain, thought, feelings and emotions, we are not animals and so sex is the gift God gives as the ultimate form of love between couples. Therefore non procreational sex is the admission of a couple of their love for each other. The flip side is of course that a child may result if you are using natural protection, as supplied by God.

Rest easy, your sister is not sinning. Women produce 1 egg per month from age 13 to age 45 therefore, after menopause, if you follow the Right wing view expressed here all married couples older than 45 who have sex are sinners, in fact according to the initiator of the thread a Mortal Sinners because their sex is nonproductive, just intimate and enjoyable. This is total bollocks.

Your asumption in the last paragraph is correct, there is no sin being commited as the Church has blessed the union and a marriage is not legal unless consumated (not conception). This stands true in Civil as in Cannon Law.

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