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curious..

Discussion in 'One Bread, One Body - Catholic' started by LouisBooth, Jul 17, 2001.

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  1. Wolseley

    Wolseley Beaucoup-Diên-Cai-Dāu

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    I'll barge in here and put in my 2 cent's worth. :) Regarding the Pope:
    It has to be a bit more specific. :) The Supreme Pontiff can only make an infallible statement (i.e., protected from error) when he is meeting a very stringent set of requirements. One, he has to be speaking in the official capacity as Vicar of Christ, or head of the entire Catholic Church---or to use the Latin term, ex cathedra ("from the chair"), Peter's throne. Two: he must be speaking in an area that pertains only to faith or morals. (No politics, no predicting who will win the World Series, etc.) Three: whatever he says cannot contradict Scripture, Sacred Tradition, or any other previously revealed truth.

    This limits the Pope quite a bit in what he can say to make an infallible statement. Usually when he does make one, it's merely a definition of a previously existing doctrine in the Church; this is what the Pope does in an infallible statement: he defines doctrine, he does not invent it. :)
    The Pope is elected by the College of Cardinals, which is a body of high-ranking prelates in the Church. Cardinal is an honorary title, giving the bearer some prestige, but really they are usually just archbishops or else prefects of an office in the Vatican. Cardinals are not elected, they are appointed by the reigning Pope; when the Pope dies, a select number of Cardinals who are permitted to vote (the College) hold a conclave, and they elect the next Pontiff. Specifically, the Pope is the only Catholic prelate who gets elected---bishops and priests are appointed by the Pontiff.
    Sort of like trying to find a good Catholic church in Holland, Michigan, which has more Christian Reformed Church people than any other place on the surface of the planet. :)
    First, use of artifical birth control is considered by the Church as an intrinsic evil, but it does not incur automatic excommunication. (Procuring an abortion does, however.) Lying to a priest is also a sin, but we are sinful beings, after all, who get into a lot of trouble from time to time.

    It sounds to me as if your MIL is following a line of thought promulgated by liberal American theologians since Vatican II called "following your conscience." It doesn't stand up to examination by the Church, but ultimately God is the only One Who can judge what's in her heart. We should never judge teh entire Church on the mistakes, sins, or disordered actions of one of her members. :) Compassion should rule here, not judgement.

    Blessings,
    ---Wols.
     
  2. StacieHeather

    StacieHeather Member

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    Wols,

    Thank you very much for your insight. You seem highly intelligent. I may not understand or believe everything about the catholic church but, as I said before, I will fight to the death your right to believe it. God is our only judge and that is the bottom line, isn't it? I love all God's creations in one way or another. I love my husband more than the beggar on the streets but we are all equal in the eyes of God (even the pope!), okay, just kidding there...please don't get ruffled.
    So, what my MIL is doing is against the church but she won't be excommunicated for it, is that right?

    Stacie
     
  3. Wolseley

    Wolseley Beaucoup-Diên-Cai-Dāu

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    Some of the math professors I had in college might challenge you on that. :) (I am a mathematical moron.)
    Believe me, it will take much more than a good-natured comment like that to get me ruffled. :) I used to go head-to-head with folks on other boards who were viciously anti-Catholic, seething hatred and vituperation that made Ian Paisley look like a moderate, and I didn't get ruffled; so you're perfectly safe. Thank you, though. :)
    Not formally. The use of artifical contraception is, in the eyes of the Church, a grave evil and a serious sin; but so are many other things. :) Technically, if she is fully aware of the Church's teaching on the subject, and if she is fully aware that what she is doing is wrong, then she would be in a state of mortal sin, which would preclude her from Holy Communion until she had gone to confession and amended her life in that area. However, she may not be aware of the Church's stance, if she has been misled by a well-meaning but misguided or too-liberal priest, or if she truly believes that what she's doing isn't wrong, or if she has certain psychological impediments (i.e., the hurt she has suffered in the past due to childbirth, etc., has given her a bitter or cynical outlook on it, or something of that nature), then she would not be in a state of mortal sin, and she would be free to receive the sacraments.

    In order to commit a mortal sin, you have to be aware that what you're doing is wrong, you have to be fully cognizant of the implications and consequenses of your action, and you must freely choose to do it anyway. If any of these conditions are lacking, it mitigates the seriousness of the offense committed, and it falls into the category of venial sin instead of mortal. This latter case may be your MIL's condition. I am not an expert in moral theology, :) but even I know that only God can see the complete picture of what's going on inside somebody's heart and head---we can't, and that's why it's not up to us to judge. In my own limited view, I would say that your MIL ought to go to confession and eschew artificial contraception, but again, I don't know all the facts of the case, and I am not in a position to make judgements about anyone, anyway. :)

    Does this help?

    Blessings,
    ---Wols.
     
  4. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    just to jump in here..why is contraception a sin? I personally don't think it is at all..What "docterine" and scripture does the catholic church back this up on?
     
  5. Wolseley

    Wolseley Beaucoup-Diên-Cai-Dāu

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    The Church has always taught that every act of sexual love must be open to the conception of children, the birth and rearing of which being one of the duties of a Catholic married couple.

    That aside, the use of contraception takes the possibility of children out of the picture, and the sexual act then becomes not an opportunity to bring a new life into the world to praise God, but a simple act of selfish pleasure for the gratification of the couple in question. There are a lot of other heavy-duty moral theological implications to it, but stripped down to it's most basic components, that's about it. The Church views contraception as an act that is "anti-life", because it negates the possibility of new life being produced. The view is that only God has the right to decide when life will be started or ended---we do not. (War is another discussion entirely; here, we're talking about more or less individual actions.) This is the same reason the Church opposes abortion, capital punishment, sterilization, euthanasia, and destruction of human stem cells.

    When Pope Paul VI published his opposition to artificial birth control (Humanae Vitae) in 1968, he took a lot of heat for it, but stood his ground. Among other things, the Pope said that the use of birth control would lead to marital infidelity and a general lowering of morality, a lessening of respect for women, and a misuse of such techniques by governments and rulers. Considering the divorce rate since 1968, the skyrocketing rate of teenage pregnancy and in the spread of various veneral diseases since 1968, the increased rate of domestic abuse, the incredible explosion of all manner of ****ography in all types of media since 1968, and in the attempts by various Third World governments and the United Nations to force contraception upon citizens of such countries, I think it leaves little doubt that Pope Paul was nothing less than a prophet in his statements. Virtually every last thing he feared would occur has come to pass.

    And that's why the Catholic Church opposes contraception. You are, of course, not required to agree. :)

    Blessings,
    ---Wols.
     
  6. Kirkland1244

    Kirkland1244 Regular Member

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    It's also important to note that every denomination opposed contraception until the late 1930s, when the Episcopal Church, I believe, changed its position on this, and promptly the rest of Protestantdom followed suit.

    Kirk
     
  7. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    "I think it leaves little doubt that Pope Paul was nothing less than a prophet in his statements. Virtually every last thing he feared would occur has come to pass."

    Umm..I think that has NOTHING to do with contraception at all :lol:

    yeah, I don't agree but I won't express my views here as this is the CATHOLIC corner. Question though..

    "The Church has always taught that every act of sexual love must be open to the conception of children, the birth and rearing of which being one of the duties of a Catholic married couple."

    Why is it 1. love must be always be open to conception and if not it is lustful, not sure that is biblical... and 2. Where is it written that it is the responsiblity of a married couple to make babes?
     
  8. Wolseley

    Wolseley Beaucoup-Diên-Cai-Dāu

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    AIR, the idea is that sex simply for the sake of sex, is selfish and immature; contraception prevents the possibility of pregnancy, and thus, without the creation of life within the sexual act, it merely becomes an act of pleasure for its own sake. Children are seen as a gift from God, and the parents have the responsibility to raise them to love and respect God. If the couple refuse to create children, they are in effect refusing to honor God's plan for mankind, to "be fruitful and multiply". In one sense of the word, it is an act of disobedience to God and a declaration to Him to stand aside, we're going to do it our way, thank you very much.
    As has been stated many times, the Roman Catholic Church does not base its entire rule for faith, morals, and practice on Scripture alone; so whether the Catholic prohibition of artificial contraception is "biblical" or not is completely irrelevant. :)
    Catechism of the Catholic Church, Number 2366-2367;

    Paul VI, encyclical Humanae Vitae, 1968;

    Pius XI, encyclical Casti connubii, 1930;

    Vatican Council II, Gaudium et spes, 50:2, 51:3,
    1965;

    Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Donum vitae, II, 1, 4, 5, 1987;

    Catechismus Romanus Concilii Tridentini, II:VIII, 1548;

    John XXIII, encyclical Mater et Magistra, 1961;

    Hippolytus of Rome, Philosophoumena, 9:12, 222 A.D.;

    John Paul II, encyclical Evangelium vitae, 1995;

    .....shall I go on? There are hundreds more in the relevant Catholic literature.

    Again, you are not required to agree. :)

    Blessings,
    ---Wols.














    i
     
  9. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    "AIR, the idea is that sex simply for the sake of sex, is selfish and immature; "

    No its not..its biblical...they become one flesh. That's not selfish at all it's part of God's plan for marrage. What an abserd idea.

    "If the couple refuse to create children, they are in effect refusing to honor God's plan for mankind, to "be fruitful and multiply". "

    So if you're married then that automatically turns her into a breeder? Wow..I'm likeing catholism a lot less now....

    "so whether the Catholic prohibition of artificial contraception is "biblical" or not is completely irrelevant"

    Okay..to me it is though :)

    ".....shall I go on? There are hundreds more in the relevant Catholic literature.

    Again, you are not required to agree. "

    Okay, can you give me ANY biblical refereance, or is it all just tradition?
     
  10. Wolseley

    Wolseley Beaucoup-Diên-Cai-Dāu

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    Well, God wasn't too happy with Onan practicing a form of birth control (crude as it was) in Genesis 38:6-10. :)
     
  11. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    "Well, God wasn't too happy with Onan practicing a form of birth control (crude as it was) in Genesis 38:6-10. "

    yeah, so? :lol: God did a lot of stuff geared toward INDIVIDUALS AND NOT EVERYONE :) This was one such case..
     
  12. Wolseley

    Wolseley Beaucoup-Diên-Cai-Dāu

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    Depends on your interpretation. And undoubtably, we will both consider the source of our respective views of this passage to be infallible, won't we? ;)

    Ciao,
    ---Wols.
     
  13. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    oh, I think its infllible :) but I don't think it is ment for us since it doesn't say that in the context of the passage :)

    Just like in the OT there are specific laws in Lev. and it doesn't say specifically don't do these in the NT..so does that mean we still need to do them? That passage doesn't speak to christians..just the spiller guy ;)
     
  14. StacieHeather

    StacieHeather Member

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    Wols, thanks for the indepth response. In light of the recent events, I haven't had time to check the board. Just for clarification, my MIL had a child with severe cataracts who was legally blind at birth and was in fear of another child being similarly affected, that's her reasoning. I also don't think she's confessed to a priest about it, or maybe she did, I don't have reliable info on that because she's changed her story a time or two. Talk to ya soon.

    Stacie
     
  15. Wolseley

    Wolseley Beaucoup-Diên-Cai-Dāu

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    So, if an OT reference isn't specifically mentioned in the NT, we can safely ignore it, since it isn't meant for us?

    Hmmmm. My, that raises some interesting possibilities, doesn't it? ;)
    And that's what I meant by impediments; her reluctance to have more children is very much influenced by her fear of future children being born with the same handicaps. Again, I don't have a Ph.D in moral theology, but I would say that is definitely a mitigating circumstance in the severity of whatever offense she may have committed. And I'm very sure that God takes that into consideration, too. :)
     
  16. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    "Hmmmm. My, that raises some interesting possibilities, doesn't it? "

    Yeah, bring em at me :) This is a very specific person this is addressed to. VERY specific.
     
  17. sn00zles

    sn00zles New Member

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    I heard somewhere that catholics actually pray to the virgin mary and to angels too?

    Is this true? And if it is, why? when it states explicitly in the bible that we shouldn't worship angels?
     
  18. KC Catholic

    KC Catholic Everybody's gone surfin'...Surfin' U.S.A

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    Snoozles -

    First, welcome to the forum.

    Secondly, you may want to comb through some of the older threads in either "Interfaith Forum" or here in "One Bread" - but we've been through this discussion already and the answers are posted.
     
  19. TheUnknown

    TheUnknown Member

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    I asked that question too, and from what I know, they don't pray to mary.
    Don't think they worship angels either but not sure bout that. :)
     
  20. sn00zles

    sn00zles New Member

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    thanks KC =)
    I'll do that....

    I'm a new christian... and it seems that all the other Christians I know believe that Catholicism is mired in tradition, and alot of the things that catholics do just becomes rote, and the heart isn't there any more. (for the majority of catholics, not all of them)

    That's the impression I get anyway.
     
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