The Catholic church and birth control, sin or not? As this topic was being researched, the main point and question in need of an answer was, how has the Catholic Church dealt with the issue of birth control since the 1960s? According to a couple articles along with actual people who attend the Catholic church 2-3 days a week, it appears that the perspective on birth control remains the same for some mostly due to the Bible remaining the same but of course there are other various and different beliefs that surround birth control that could and have changed all throughout time with technology progressions. To start off, before getting into the articles along with the information they have provided for this specific research. I would like to start with the information I was able to collect after getting the opportunity to speak to some of the older members of the St. Jude Catholic church here in Sarasota, Fl. I with the help of one of the church coordinators we got together to find out what day would best be helpful when it came to the most elderly and religious people attending the mass. As soon as I got knowledge of the best day to attend and listen to the mass, I began to think about important questions to ask so the information I gained would be as relevant to my research topic as possible. As I approached the elderly after mass, I clarified the reason behind my questions and what I would be using the answers for.
I also let them know that I would keep all information anonymous. The questions I asked were Before the 1960s what were your views on birth control?, Your perspective on the church believing that only sex in marriage was not a sin, but the pleasure in sex was, Now that the times have changed, have your perspectives on contraceptives changed, or do you still believe that it is a sin?. Most of the elderly did not feel comfortable speaking to someone about something they felt more personal and something they should not be talking about with a complete stranger. But all in all, I was able to get answers from 6 elders and all of their responses were with no surprise at all, the same. They all agree with the use of contraception being a sin because you are preventing a human being from being created. Especially when in the Bible it states Rom.1:26-27- sexual acts without the possibility of procreation is sinful. Self-giving love is life-giving love or love is a lie. The unitive and procreative elements of marital love can never be divided, or marital love is also divided, and God is left out of the marriage.. They all also agreed on that yes, times have changed, but not God. Gods beliefs will remain the same so should all of the catholic followers’ beliefs. Now, to get to more factual and more web searched part of the research. According to the article How the Catholic Church came to oppose birth control, birth control increased in availability and the size of Catholic families began to decrease in size due to it.
The Catholic papacy’s’ response to these changes was to make teachings on birth control more visible and a priority for the church and its members. This article also talks about 1930s pronouncement called Casti Canubiis on birth control. This pronouncement not only did it declare birth control evil, but it also said that any spouse who practiced such act, violated the law of God and nature and was permanently stained with a mortal flaw. To give a little bit more details, the Catholic church made it clear that all contraception; condoms, diaphragms, the rhythm method, and the withdrawal method were forbidden and frowned upon. The only way permissible to prevent pregnancy was abstinence. But, 1960 was the year that viewpoints and perspectives could possibly change, for the better. According to the article by PBS The Catholic church and Birth Control, in 1960 the birth control pill arrived. The pill was going to be up for discussion within the church to either forbid it or allow the use of it. The reason it was going to be discussed was because the Catholic church had in previous years forbidden the use of artificial birth control, but the pill would be considered natural. The PBS article explained that the pro-pill Catholics had a very important ally on their side when fighting for the permission of the use of the birth control pill. This ally was Dr.Gregory Pincus, this was the Catholic physician that had carried out the Pill trials. Dr. Gregory was able to argue that the pill was indeed natural because the pill used the same hormones already present in the female reproductive system and did into tamper with sperm with this asking the church to view the pill as a natural form of contraception.
Though it took the church took eight years to decide its policy on the Pill. The Pill ended up becoming the most popular method of birth control amongst women, no matter the religion. Along with the church forbidding any contraception and giving the reason that it is murder, the church also gave the reason that If you are in a marriage with someone you should procreate no matter what. It is what is expected as you are having sexual intercourse with your spouse and it is what God wants and the Catholics should do as he says. Two articles, Marriage in the eyes of God and the church and The Bible on contraception, both emphasize the Catholics interpretation of marriage along with the Bible. The first article is Marriage in the eyes of God and the church. This article speaks about marital love. It explains that marital love is when a husband and a wife come together as one flesh, with this participating in Gods creative love. Where they not only come together as one, but they have the ability to create new life. The article includes that throughout the Bible it is said that we find the birth of children as a blessing from God and a sign of the living covenant between God, husband and wife. The second article The Bible on contraception, quotes to parts of the Bible that are quoted amongst people to show the disapproval on contraception.
The first is God commanded his people to “Be fruitful and multiply,” and contraception is seen as specifically flouting this instruction. But this Bible phrase is usually rebutted because as we have seen times changed we have in fact noticed that the use of contraception has not stopped many from being fruitful and multiplying as God wants us all to. The second Bible phrase is Onan was killed by God for “spilling his seed,” which is often taken as divine condemnation of coitus interruptus. This phrase has two different interpretations when it comes to what it could possibly mean but only the first interpretation has to do with the topic of birth control. The first interpretation the article describes is that God may have been mad at Onan for having sex for a purpose other than having children. This one interpretation being in support that birth control is morally wrong. It also tries to imply that there is only one kind of acceptable sexual act, which is, sex between a man and a woman who are married and who are only having sex to have children and not just for pleasure.
This bringing back up the PBS article the catholic church and Birth Control where it states that for the Vatican the primary purpose of intercourse was for the sacred act of precreation and that if a couple was interested in having intercourse, then they had to be willing to accept the potential for the creation of another life. It Is now 2018 and if it is thought about, birth control (specifically the pill) use was on a rise when it was being forbidden by the Catholic church and the Pope himself. Imagine how high the use of birth control is now that it has been well developed and that the mindsets of many people have changed. There is an online graph on The Pill demographics that shows the increased use of birth control more importantly the pill itself. The article After 50 years, a Pope’s birth control message still divides the Catholics, in fact talks about Pope Paul VI Humanae Vitae message which means of human life, human life came from God, belongs to God, and goes back to God. Which is still an important piece of the discussion when it comes to Catholic church and birth control.
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