Amazing fact: Chastity and abstinence has proved to be only 99.999% effective at preventing birth.

The only time chastity and abstinence ever resulted in a birth

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church

Mary’s virginity

496 From the first formulations of her faith, the Church has confessed that Jesus was conceived solely by the power of the Holy Spirit in the womb of the Virgin Mary, affirming also the corporeal aspect of this event: Jesus was conceived “by the Holy Spirit without human seed”.146 The Fathers see in the virginal conception the sign that it truly was the Son of God who came in a humanity like our own. Thus St. Ignatius of Antioch at the beginning of the second century says:

You are firmly convinced about our Lord, who is truly of the race of David according to the flesh, Son of God according to the will and power of God, truly born of a virgin,. . . he was truly nailed to a tree for us in his flesh under Pontius Pilate. . . he truly suffered, as he is also truly risen.147

497 The Gospel accounts understand the virginal conception of Jesus as a divine work that surpasses all human understanding and possibility:148 “That which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit”, said the angel to Joseph about Mary his fiancee.149 The Church sees here the fulfillment of the divine promise given through the prophet Isaiah: “Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son.”150

498 People are sometimes troubled by the silence of St. Mark’s Gospel and the New Testament Epistles about Jesus’ virginal conception. Some might wonder if we were merely dealing with legends or theological constructs not claiming to be history. To this we must respond: Faith in the virginal conception of Jesus met with the lively opposition, mockery or incomprehension of non-believers, Jews and pagans alike;151 so it could hardly have been motivated by pagan mythology or by some adaptation to the ideas of the age. The meaning of this event is accessible only to faith, which understands in it the “connection of these mysteries with one another”152 in the totality of Christ’s mysteries, from his Incarnation to his Passover. St. Ignatius of Antioch already bears witness to this connection: “Mary’s virginity and giving birth, and even the Lord’s death escaped the notice of the prince of this world: these three mysteries worthy of proclamation were accomplished in God’s silence.”153

Mary – “ever-virgin”

499 The deepening of faith in the virginal motherhood led the Church to confess Mary’s real and perpetual virginity even in the act of giving birth to the Son of God made man.154 In fact, Christ’s birth “did not diminish his mother’s virginal integrity but sanctified it.”155 And so the liturgy of the Church celebrates Mary asAeiparthenos, the “Ever-virgin”.156

500 Against this doctrine the objection is sometimes raised that the Bible mentions brothers and sisters of Jesus.157 The Church has always understood these passages as not referring to other children of the Virgin Mary. In fact James and Joseph, “brothers of Jesus”, are the sons of another Mary, a disciple of Christ, whom St. Matthew significantly calls “the other Mary”.158 They are close relations of Jesus, according to an Old Testament expression.159

501 Jesus is Mary’s only son, but her spiritual motherhood extends to all men whom indeed he came to save: “The Son whom she brought forth is he whom God placed as the first-born among many brethren, that is, the faithful in whose generation and formation she co-operates with a mother’s love.”160

Mary’s virginal motherhood in God’s plan

502 The eyes of faith can discover in the context of the whole of Revelation the mysterious reasons why God in his saving plan wanted his Son to be born of a virgin. These reasons touch both on the person of Christ and his redemptive mission, and on the welcome Mary gave that mission on behalf of all men.

503 Mary’s virginity manifests God’s absolute initiative in the Incarnation. Jesus has only God as Father. “He was never estranged from the Father because of the human nature which he assumed. . . He is naturally Son of the Father as to his divinity and naturally son of his mother as to his humanity, but properly Son of the Father in both natures.”161

504 Jesus is conceived by the Holy Spirit in the Virgin Mary’s womb because he is the New Adam, who inaugurates the new creation: “The first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven.”162 From his conception, Christ’s humanity is filled with the Holy Spirit, for God “gives him the Spirit without measure.”163 From “his fullness” as the head of redeemed humanity “we have all received, grace upon grace.”164

505 By his virginal conception, Jesus, the New Adam, ushers in the new birth of children adopted in the Holy Spirit through faith. “How can this be?”165 Participation in the divine life arises “not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God”.166 The acceptance of this life is virginal because it is entirely the Spirit’s gift to man. The spousal character of the human vocation in relation to God167 is fulfilled perfectly in Mary’s virginal motherhood.

506 Mary is a virgin because her virginity is the sign of her faith “unadulterated by any doubt”, and of her undivided gift of herself to God’s will.168 It is her faith that enables her to become the mother of the Savior: “Mary is more blessed because she embraces faith in Christ than because she conceives the flesh of Christ.”169

507 At once virgin and mother, Mary is the symbol and the most perfect realization of the Church: “the Church indeed. . . by receiving the word of God in faith becomes herself a mother. By preaching and Baptism she brings forth sons, who are conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of God, to a new and immortal life. She herself is a virgin, who keeps in its entirety and purity the faith she pledged to her spouse.”170

What manliness is all about

Where feminist ideology prevails, egalitarianism replaces chivalry. If men and women are equal and the same, then women do not expect or inspire service — indeed, they may be actively contemptuous of men or claim to be utterly independent of them.

If patriarchy is the root of all evil and men are superfluous to the fulfillment of women (as some feminists claim), there is no call for knightly behavior.

As the natural, inherent distinctions between men and women are increasingly denied — even in military institutions and in the armed services — chivalry is forgotten. Chivalry can flourish only when a culture clearly defines the meaning of masculinity and femininity. A gentleman knows that a woman deserves to be treated in special, considerate, sensitive ways that are reflected in manners, speech, and courtesy. If men and women look alike, dress alike, talk alike, and act alike, then the mysterious, idealistic, or romantic relationship between men & women disappears.

Knightliness and gentlemanliness also flourish when women hold men to high standards, expecting them to be magnanimous, gallant, civilized, and chaste. The ideals that women instill in boys, and that they expect of men, determine the moral level of a society.

Do sex-education courses, coeducational dormitories, and condom distribution in schools promote the chivalrous treatment of women, or do they encourage the lustful exploiting of women for selfish pleasure?

Without the virtue of chastity governing the relationships between men and women, the respect due to a woman’s honor is absent.

http://www.newoxfordreview.org

Submitted by Doria2

Married priests: The unfortunate and scandalous “downside”.

We then learn the details of Canon Clitherow’s personal life.  He married his first wife in 1982 and they had two children, but they divorced in 2002.  He married his second wife that year, a women he had first met in 1992 when she was a high school student and he the chaplain of her school.  This marriage also produced two children, but in March 2011 he announced to the congregation that he was divorcing a second time.

The Mail lets us know that rumors at the church swirled around this second divorce, with tongues wagging about the vicar’s affair with a blonde divorcee who was a member of the choir.  At the time of his divorce the vicar informed his bishop that the marriage had broken down but that there was no other person involved. The vicar went on sick leave following Easter services, citing stress as the culprit — and then married the blonde divorcee at a private ceremony at a registry office over the Christmas holidays.

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Editor’s note: The Catholic Church can look forward to these new (for us Catholics) types of scandals, now that we are accepting married Anglican/Episcopalian priests into the pope’s new ordinariate. Nothing wrong with the ordinariate … I’m just saying that we better start getting ready for this new type of moral assault on the Catholic priesthood.

Celibate or not … there’s still no substitute for fidelity and chastity … inside or outside of matrimony … by layman and/or priest.

Teaching adolescents to understand and observe the 6th commandment (regarding, chastity, pornography, fornication, etc.)


by Ed Smetana, a Catholic Catechist, for over 15 years

Having taught CCD for for 15 years, I found that the best way to teach the fundamentals of understanding and observing the 6th Commandment is to let the Catechism of the Catholic Church do it for you.

Just hand the students copies of the Catechism, paragraphs #2346 to #2386. Have them read it to themselves. Then, collect the copies. No verbal explanation is typically necessary. If a student has a question, direct him/her to ask their priest. I never had any questions. Neither has father, as far as I know.

The Catechism does a concise job of outlining various sexual terms that today’s young people will probably never otherwise have explained to them, except perhaps in the locker room, from their friends, or on-line (from stranger-danger).

Reading this material is necessary to help counteract the rampant perversion of sex education in the school’s health classes and textbooks, where masturbation, along with many other types of illicit sexual behavior, is often referred to as “normal” and/or “healthy”.

What led me to see the need for this type of Catechetical guidance, generally beginning with 7th graders, was when I was informed that, in the “truth or dare” games that today’s young people ‘play’, every time you lose, you are required to do something that is sexually sinful.

When a girl observed that doing such a thing was wrong, she was told, “If it’s wrong, the teachers would not have encouraged it, and the pastors and CCD teachers would have said it was a sin. Therefore, how could it be a sin?”

Catechists should help young people form their consciences by reading appropriate portions of the Catechism with them, in class. How else are they to know? Not from their parents, because they were never taught or encouraged to read the Catechism.

I believe that on ‘Judgment Day’ good catechism teachers will be recognized, along with the rest of the sheep, and thanked by their students and their parents.

Link to the relevant section of the Catechism

Editor’s note: “CCD” means “Confraternity of Christian Doctrine” which is the name of the association that used to be responsible for providing religious education in the Catholic Church. Like many other useful things of old, the association is basically out of business, and the term “CCD” is no longer in widespread use.

Priest offers positive, common sense definition (and defense) of celibacy

Fr. McBride said that the real reason for sex abuse and sexual misconduct by priests is not celibacy but “the failure to practice the virtue of chastity when faced with temptations to abandon their vow of celibacy.”

He noted that people often make the unfortunate mistake of defining celibacy in a negative way as if it’s simply the act of giving up marriage and and children.

However, “the positive view of celibacy,” he said,  “is that it is a form of loving God and people with an undivided heart.”

“Celibacy did not block Blessed John Paul II from being admired as one of the most courageous priests on earth,” Fr. McBride underscored. “See how one celibate priest stood up against one of the most corrupt governments of his time.”

“Priests that abused children did not do so because of their celibacy, rather they failed because they broke their vow to be chaste,” he said.

Read more at Father Z’s

Love, Sex, and the Cross

Being chaste until and within marriage, committing day in and day out to the self-giving and self-denial that lifelong marriage and child-rearing require of us, being open to God’s gift of new life in a generous and responsible way, and in this day and age, even carrying to term an unexpected child — these are difficult tasks, and our fallen nature rebels against them.

The world recognizes this natural rebellion, our desire to express human love in sexual intimacy, to seek pleasure and run from pain, to fulfill our own needs and desires while giving ill-attention to the needs and desires of others — in a word, to live our lives for ourselves.
Mistaking these desires for human nature — rather than fallen human nature — the world’s response is to laugh at Church teaching, to make a mockery of the Church and her seemingly archaic rules on sex and marriage, because they are so difficult, because they require so much of us.
Yet those who seek to follow the way of Our Lord understand that much is required of us. This is precisely the point. God calls us out of our fallenness, out of our self-centeredness and pleasure-seeking, to follow the way of perfection, to live in a way that is, by natural means, difficult — at times, even impossible. Many complain that Church teachings on sex and marriage are unrealistic, that the Church is out of touch. If we were meant to live by human means alone, to follow these teachings on our own strength, I would say the world’s complaints were absolutely right. Indeed, by my own strength, I failed at almost every one of them.

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Chastity – A Catholic Truth for Catholic Youth

What does Chastity mean?
by Father Gerard Monaghan

Most people believe that being chaste means that one is not sexually active. WRONG!!!

There are many people living good chaste lives who have healthy and vibrant sex lives. It should be noted that they are married. That’s right, even married people are called to be chaste. As a matter of fact, chastity has more to do with fidelity than it does with foregoing sexual experiences. The essence of chastity is being faithful to one’s state in life. Therefore, for a married couple, it means saving their physical expression of love for their spouse, exclusively.

What does chastity mean for the single person?

For the single person it means the same thing. If you think this is crazy, stick with the tour and see for yourself. Sexual intercourse, despite what the media would indicate, is not an indoor sport. It is the ULTIMATE expression of love between a husband and wife. Sexual intercourse, despite what the media would indicate, is not merely a physical act.

It is the total self-giving of one person to another. It is so intimate that it is an emotional, intellectual, spiritual, and physical experience.

It is so profound that it strengthens and completes the bond of marriage.

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