Tuesday, December 26, 2023


By Tim Rohr

Okay. In the spirit of Pope Francis, I am going to "make a mess," and address this crazy stuff in a way I have not seen anyone else do. 

By "crazy stuff," I mean the pope's recent full frontal shot between the eyes of traditional Catholic orthodoxy, aka Fiducia supplicans: the pope's declaration authorizing public blessings of same-sex unions and so-called "irregular situations" of every kind.

It's easy to point fingers at what many call "the lavender lobby in the Vatican" and other homosexual stuff going on in the highest halls of power in the Catholic Church that many of us have been aware of for years, nay, decades. 

However, the real culprit is not the usual suspects: homosexuals and their supporters. The real culprit is sacramentally married men and women whose marriage is not "open to life." 

And beyond that, the "really real" culprit is the teachers and preachers within the Catholic Church who not only authorize, but also promote sexual sterility within a sacramental marriage. 

You may want to stop reading at this point, but I'll go on anyway.

I ain't making this up, so I'll quote the Catechism of the Catholic Church at this point.

 "every action which, whether in anticipation of the conjugal act, or in its accomplishment, or in the development of its natural consequences, proposes, whether as an end or as a means, to render procreation impossible" is intrinsically evil..." (CCC 2370)

It is important to note that while the Catholic Church condemns every form of contraception as "intrinsically evil," it stops short of doing so when it comes to homosexual acts and instead labels said acts as only "intrinsically disordered:"

"homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered" (CCC 2357)

There's a big difference between intrinsically evil and intrinsically disordered, and the Church's choice to distinguish the two is critical to anyone who cares, not just about the current controversy, but about the eternal destination of his or her soul.

Contraceptive acts between sacramentally married couples is EVIL (not just disordered) because the Sacrament of Matrimony confers on the man and woman the grace to conform to God's will which is to "accept children willingly and lovingly from God," which are the words each spouse is required to say "I do" to before God and men at the marriage ceremony. 

Homosexuals, specifically persons in a homosexual relationship, take no such vow and receive no such grace. Their sexual unions are naturally sterile which is why the Church labels them "disordered." 

However, sacramental marital unions between a man and a woman are not only not naturally sterile, but are ordered to procreation. Thus, the deliberate, intentional frustration of the natural consequence of the "marital act" is to spit in God's face because not only do we say "NO" to God, we say "I am God...We are God...We will decide when and where our act shall bear fruit."

This is why the Church labels contraceptive marital acts between sacramentally married persons "intrinsically evil" while pronouncing the much lighter sentence of "disordered" on homosexual acts. 

In His Mercy, God sees that persons who engage in homosexual acts do not have the same sacramental grace to resist such acts as do sacramentally married persons.

In short, persons who engage in homosexual acts are less mortally culpable than sacramentally married persons who engage in contraceptive sex.

As terrible as this all is, it is not really even the fault of sacramentally married couples. 

It is the fault of pastors who 1) sanction, promote, or otherwise turn a blind eye to contraception, or 2) sanction, promote, support, and teach a contraceptive mentality in their so-called "pre-Cana" classes, aka "marriage prep."

Here's what I mean.

Most Catholic "pre-Cana" classes include at least a module or two of how to "chart" fertility, aka Natural Family Planning. 

The short course is this: a sexually mature female is usually fertile for only about seven days of a 28 day "cycle." The idea is to identify the bodily markers before and after those 7 days and refrain from sexual intercourse to avoid pregnancy. 

This is taught to all Catholic couples preparing for marriage within usual diocesan prescriptions. 

Promoters of "NFP" like to counter that NFP can be used to "get pregnant" as well. And that is true. But no one is fooled. 

The real import of the NFP module is to teach couples how to avoid pregnancy "naturally." However, teaching couples about to be married flies in the face of the vow they will publicly pronounce at their wedding: "to accept children willingly and lovingly from God."

If a couple is not ready to "accept children willingly and lovingly from God" then they have no business getting married, at least not in a Catholic marriage.

Tying this back to the point of this post. 

If sexual intercourse is not ordered to procreation, whether it be frustrated by homosexual sex or contraceptive sex, then both acts are "disordered," with contraceptive sex between sacramentally married persons being "intrinsically evil," aka "mortal sin," i.e. you are eternally damned unless you repent and swear to "sin no more." 

There is much debate as to how many Catholic couples contracept. The accepted number is 90%. But we don't need a census to figure this out. We only need to look at the empty pews and the empty schools. 

Meanwhile, I am not going to end here. I am going to lay the blame on a pope. No, not Francis, but the already sainted Paul VI, and specifically his encyclical Humane Vitae (HV).

HV upheld traditional Church teaching regarding the evil of contraception, however, and this is a big HOWEVER, no defender of HV or Paul VI that I know of has ever pointed out that Paul VI, via HV, left contraception up to a vote. Here is what HV says in its opening:

...within the commission itself, there was not complete agreement concerning the moral norms to be proposed (HV, Par. 6)

The "commission" is the Birth Control Commission, initially established by Pope John 23 and later expanded by Paul 6. John's commission consisted of 7 prelates, Paul's expansion jumped the number to 72 inclusive of a wide array of "lay experts."

And here's what happened:

The commission produced a report in 1966, proposing that artificial birth control was not intrinsically evil and that Catholic couples should be allowed to decide for themselves about the methods to be employed. This report was approved by 64 of the 69 members voting.

In other words, the vote was a staggering majority in favor of birth control. 

Paul 6 had few options. In fact, he only had one. He already knew he could never overturn God's plan for marriage, so he blamed it on the vote, saying that, umm, well, the vote was not unanimous ("complete agreement"). 

This is where the real mess started. So apparently all that's really needed to upend immutable moral doctrine is "complete agreement" (a unanimous vote) by some "commission" established on a papal whim. 


To conclude. Paul VI, like it or not, opened the door via HV for FS. If a pope, via a commission or a letter can upend God, then what?

The short answer is cling to Jesus. 

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