The Catholic Church is correct in its teaching against contraception

Even though there are people who believe that the Catholic Church should change its teaching against contraception, the Catholic Church is correct in teaching that contracepted sexual intercourse is always intrinsically evil. The Catholic Church cannot change its teaching against contraception because this teaching has already been taught infallibly, because contracepted sexual intercourse always violates natural law, and because contracepted sexual intercourse is always evil in the eyes of God.

Even though all of the major Protestant denominations currently consider the use of contraception to be morally acceptable within marriage, there was a time when all of the Protestant denominations considered the use of contraception to be morally wrong. In fact, every major Protestant denomination had considered the use of contraception to be morally wrong until the Seventh Lambeth Conference in 1930 when the Church of England decided that the use of contraception by married couples could be justified if there was a sufficiently serious reason to limit or avoid parenthood. This decision had led to the acceptance of contraception by all of the other major Protestant denominations.

In order to understand why the choice to engage in contracepted sexual intercourse is always morally wrong and always gravely offensive to God, one needs to understand that God is the creator of all human beings and is the author of life and death. Here are some verses from Sacred Scripture that show that God is the creator of human life and the author of life and death:

  • “God created mankind in his image; in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” (Genesis 1:27)
  • “See now that I, I alone, am he, and there is no god besides me. It is I who bring both death and life, I who inflict wounds and heal them, and from my hand no one can deliver.” (Deuteronomy 32:39)
  • “Please, please, God of my father, God of the heritage of Israel, Master of heaven and earth, Creator of the waters, King of all you have created, hear my prayer!” (Judith 9:12)
  • “Has not one God created us?” (Malachi 2:10)

Here is a story from the Old Testament of the Bible that shows that contraceptive behavior is gravely offensive in the eyes of God: “Onan, however, knew that the offspring would not be his; so whenever he had intercourse with his brother’s wife, he wasted his seed on the ground, to avoid giving offspring to his brother. What he did greatly offended the Lord, and the Lord took his life too” (Genesis 38:9-10). Onan was punished with death by God because Onan had deliberately prevented conception from occurring whenever he engaged in sexual intercourse with Tamar through the withdrawal method. It was not the mere refusal to satisfy the levirate that warranted punishing Onan with the death penalty, since the penalty for merely refusing to satisfy the levirate is to have one’s shoe taken off and to be spat in one’s face according to Deuteronomy 25:8-10. Likewise, those who engage in sexual intercourse while using an artificial contraceptive such as a condom, a diaphragm, an IUD, or the birth control pill also seriously offend God because these acts, like Onan’s sin of withdrawal, involve engaging in acts of sexual intercourse while simultaneously preventing these acts from resulting in the conception of a new human being.

When couples engage in contracepted sexual intercourse, they are choosing to deprive sexual acts of their procreative potential and deciding that an unborn child should not come into being as a result of their contracepted sexual acts. Thus, the decision to prevent bringing about a new child through the use of contraception is at odds with the will of God because the decision on whether or not a child should come into being as a result of sexual intercourse rightfully belongs to God alone and also because God is the creator of all human life. Furthermore, many of the contracepting couples are choosing to avoid contraception through abortifacient forms of birth control, such as the birth control pill, and the choice to engage in sexual intercourse while using abortifacient forms of birth control also offends God because abortifacent forms of birth control have the additional mechanism of preventing implantation of a newly conceived embryo from occurring.

Here is what the Catholic Church has taught regarding the use of contraception:

  • In response to the Seventh Lambeth Conference in 1930, Pope Pius XI taught that “any use whatsoever of matrimony exercised in such a way that the act is deliberately frustrated in its natural power to generate life is an offense against the law of God and of nature, and those who indulge in such are branded with the guilt of a grave sin” (Casti Connubii, n. 56).
  • Pope Pius XI had taught that “each and every marital act must of necessity retain its intrinsic relationship to the procreation of human life” in Humanae Vitae (n. 11).
  • Pope John Paul had taught in Donum Vitae that “contraception deliberately deprives the conjugal act of its openness to procreation and in this way brings about a voluntary dissociation of the ends of marriage.”
  • In his Address on Responsible Procreation, Pope John Paul II had taught that “Contraception is to be judged objectively so profoundly illicit that it can never, for any reason, be justified. To think, or to say, anything to the contrary is tantamount to saying that in human life there can be situations where it is legitimate not to recognize God as God. Users of contraception attribute to themselves a power that belongs only to God, the power to decide in the final instance the coming into existence of a human being.”
  • Pope John Paul II had also taught in Evangelium Vitae that “The close connection which exists, in mentality, between the practice of contraception and that of abortion is becoming increasingly obvious. It is being demonstrated in an alarming way by the development of chemical products, intrauterine devices and vaccines which, distributed with the same ease as contraceptives, really act as abortifacients in the very early stages of the development of the life of the new human being” (n. 13).

In order to show that Protestants also previously believed that contraception is morally wrong, here are some quotes from the major Protestant reformers that show that these reformers considered the use of contraception to be morally wrong:

  • Martin Luther once proclaimed that “the purpose of marriage is not pleasure and ease but the procreation and education of children and the support of a family … People who do not like children are swine, dunces, and blockheads, not worthy to be called men and women, because they despise the blessing of God, the Creator and Author of marriage” (Christian History, Issue 39, p. 24).
  • Martin Luther also said that “Onan must have been a most malicious and incorrigible scoundrel. This is a most disgraceful sin. It is far more atrocious than incest and adultery. We call it unchastity, yes, a Sodomitic sin … Surely at such a time the order of nature established by God in procreation should be followed.”
  • John Calvin said the following in his Commentaries on Genesis 38:8-10: “The voluntary spilling of semen outside of intercourse between man and woman is a monstrous thing. Deliberately to withdraw from coitus in order that semen may fall to the ground is doubly monstrous. For this is to extinguish the hope of the race and to kill before he is born — the hoped for offspring.”
  • The Synod of Dordt said that the act of Onan “was even as much as if he had, in a manner, pulled forth the fruit out of the mother’s womb and destroyed it.”

The Catholic Church is correct in teaching that contracepted sexual intercourse is always morally wrong, despite widespread acceptance of contraception by all of the major Protestant denominations and despite widespread disobedience of the Catholic Church’s teaching against contraception by Catholics. First and foremost, the Catholic Church’s teaching against contraception has already been taught infallibly by the Catholic Church, and therefore free from error, free from the possibility of error, and unchangeable. Second, contracepted sexual intercourse is always contrary to the law of God, always contrary to natural law, always seriously offensive to God, and always evil in the eyes of God, regardless of the intention or the circumstances, and as such is always morally wrong. Third, contracepted sexual intercourse had been considered to be morally wrong by every Protestant denomination between the time of the Protestant Reformation in the 1500’s until the Seventh Lambeth Conference in 1930. Fourth, the choice to engage in contracepted sexual intercourse is at odds with the will of God on the matter of whether a child should be conceived as a result of sexual intercourse. Finally, the widespread acceptance of contraception by Christians has led to many seriously bad consequences, including the danger to the souls of those who have used contraception, the breakdown of the family, an increase in the divorce rate, abortions of unborn children conceived as a result of contraceptive failure, an increased willingness to engage in sexual activity when the conception of a new child is not desired, an increased willingness to pursue extramarital affairs, and an increased willingness to engage in sexual activity outside of marriage.

Why the Obamacare HHS mandate is wrong

The mandated coverage of abortion, contraceptives, and elective sterilization under the Obamacare HHS mandate is wrong to begin with for several reasons. First, the mandate forces those individuals who are opposed to abortion, contraception, or sterilization to pay for procedures that they believe are morally wrong. Second, the mandate does substantially and unreasonably restrict the religious freedom of some Americans because it forces some Americans to engage in actions that violate their consciences and their deeply held religious beliefs. Third, mandating coverage for abortion, contraceptives, and sterilization under the Obamacare HHS mandate takes away money from other healthcare services that are clearly medically necessary. Finally, the Obamacare HHS mandate provides providers that are primarily in the business of providing elective abortions, elective sterilizations, and providing contraceptives for the purposes of preventing unplanned pregnancies, including Planned Parenthood, with federal funds that they need to stay afloat, even though these providers are providing services that are often medically unnecessary.

To understand why the Obamacare HHS mandate is wrong and how American society got into this controversial mandate, one needs to understand how American society has changed from a culture of life where abortion is illegal to a culture of death where abortion on demand is legal during all nine months of pregnancy. Our founding fathers clearly believed that the government should not impose unreasonable restrictions on the right of persons to freely exercise their religious beliefs, and our founding fathers also believed that the right to life should not be restricted to persons who have been born and should be extended to unborn human beings. Back in the 1700’s when the United States was founded, contraception and abortion were both considered to be morally wrong by the Catholic Church and the various Protestant churches that existed in the United States in the late 1700’s. Every major Christian denomination did consider contraception to be morally wrong until the Seventh Lambeth Conference in 1930, where the Church of England for the very first time considered it to be morally acceptable for married couples to use contraception if there is a serious reason to avoid pregnancy. Then in 1960, the birth control pill was made available for contraceptive use, and this will lead to the sexual revolution and the legalization of contraception and abortion nationwide in the United States. The availability of the birth control pill and the sexual revolution of the 1960’s will lead to the legalization of contraception and abortion nationwide. Since then, the culture of death and the support for legalized abortion have existed in the United States, but the promotion of the culture of death and the legalization of abortion and contraception has had many bad consequences for American society for over 40 years.

The sexual revolution, the legalization of contraception, the legalization of abortion, and pro-abortion politics have all paved the way for the Obamacare HHS mandate, and the Obamacare HHS mandate would not have existed without the legalization of abortion in the United States or the existence of a pro-abortion political climate within the United States. In fact, if the so-called constitutional right to an abortion were not created by the United States Supreme Court as a result of Roe v. Wade and if the United States Supreme Court had upheld the laws that were at stake in the Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton cases, then legal abortion on demand would not exist in some states of the United States, the political climate on abortion would be very different in the United States, and the mandated coverage of abortion under Obamacare would not exist. Some of the bad consequences that have resulted from the culture of death of the United States have already occurred, including the deaths of over 50 million babies from abortion, a lowering of moral standards in American society, and an increased willingness to get rid of unwanted unborn children through legal abortion.

The legalization of abortion in the United States has led to a significant increase in the overall abortion rate in the United States and an significant increase in the number of abortion providers in the United States, but this trend has been reversing in recent years due to the closures of abortion clinics, decreased demand for legal abortion, and increased regulation of abortion at the state level in some states. Even though progress has been made in the pro-life movement in the United States, more needs to be done to reverse the culture of death that exists in the United States, including the reversal of the Roe v. Wade decision and the abolition of mandatory coverage of abortion, contraception, and elective sterilization in Obamacare. More information about how to oppose the Obamacare HHS mandate can be found here.

The Fortnight for Freedom, which started today, and runs through July 4th, is intended to raise awareness of the effects of the Obamacare mandate and other proposed laws on the religious freedoms of Catholics and other Americans. The theme of the this year’s Fortright for Freedom is serving the poor and vulnerable in accordance with human dignity and the law of God. In addition to raising awareness regarding the Obamacare mandate and its effects on the religious freedoms of many Americans, the Fortnight for Freedom is also intended to raise awareness of the unjust discrimination being perpetrated against Catholics, conservative Protestants, and others who oppose abortion, contraception, and same-sex marriages. More information about the Fortnight for Freedom can be found at One More Soul’s Fortnight for Freedom 2014 page and USCCB’s Fortnight For Freedom page.

Contracepted sexual acts and direct abortion both violate natural law and the law of God

Contracepted sexual acts and direct abortion always constitute a serious violation of God’s law by the very nature of the act, regardless of the intention or the specific circumstances of the act. Before the Lambeth Conference of 1930, contracepted sexual acts were considered to be morally wrong in every Christian church. At the Lambeth Conference of 1930, the Church of England taught that the use of contraception can be morally justified within marriage where there is a sufficiently serious reason to postpone pregnancy. The slippery slope that started with the Lambeth Conference of 1930 led to contraception becoming acceptable in all of the Protestant denominations and contraception becoming socially acceptable in Western societies. Despite what has happened in Western society and in Protestant churches since the Lambeth Conference of 1930, the Roman Catholic Church continues to teach that contracepted sexual acts and direct abortion always violate God’s law.

One of the most common errors regarding the Catholic Church’s teaching against contraception is that the use of contraception merely violates this Catholic Church teaching and that this teaching is only binding on Catholics. However, the Catholic Church infallibly teaches that any act of sexual intercourse that “is deliberately frustrated in its natural power to generate life is an offense against the law of God and of nature, and those who indulge in such are branded with the guilt of a grave sin” (Casti Connubii, n. 56). Since the use of artificial contraceptives during an act of sexual intercourse “frustrates” the sexual act “in its natural power to generate life,” and since these sexual acts always violate both the law of God and natural law, the Catholic Church’s teaching forbidding the use of contraception during sexual intercourse must be binding on all persons and must also constitute more than a mere violation of Catholic Church teaching. Natural law is always binding on all persons, including all non-Catholic Christians and all non-Christians, and acts which violate the natural law by the very nature of the act are always intrinsically evil, even when committed by a non-Catholic. If the use of contraception during natural intercourse violates the natural law when committed by a Catholic, the use of contraception during natural intercourse must also violate the natural law when committed by a non-Catholic because natural law is binding on all persons.

In addition to condemning the use of artificial contraception during sexual intercourse, the Catholic Church also teaches that direct abortion, or an abortion that is willed either as an end or a means to another end, is intrinsically evil and always gravely contrary to divine law. In addition, direct abortion always offends against the sanctity of human life and always offends against natural law. In fact, Pope Pius XI taught in 1930 that direct abortion constitutes “direct murder of the innocent” and “is against the precept of God and the law of nature: ‘Thou shalt not kill'” (Casti Connubii, n. 64). The Catholic Church is not the only Christian denomination to teach that abortion is morally wrong, and some of the non-Christian religions also consider abortion to be morally wrong. Even though there are abortion rights advocates who support keeping abortion on demand legal and legalizing abortion on demand where it is currently illegal, there are many non-Catholics throughout the world who still consider abortion to be the killing of an innocent human being and consider abortion to be morally wrong. Since there is opposition to direct abortion by Catholics, non-Catholics, and non-Christians throughout the world, and also because direct abortion violates natural law and offends against the right to life of unborn children, the right to life of unborn human beings should be protected at the international level and a movement to outlaw abortion worldwide should occur.

Our founding fathers did believe in the existence of the natural law, even though some of them were not Catholic. The existence of the natural law is even acknowledged in the United States Declaration of Independence. Our founding fathers believed that all human beings are “endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” and that the “unalienable Rights” granted to all persons are derived from natural law. Our founding fathers even intended for the “unalienable Right to Life” to extend to unborn children and never intended to restrict this right to persons who have been born. However, the United States Supreme Court went against the intentions of our founding fathers in the Roe v. Wade case and decided that unborn children do not have a constitutionally guaranteed right to life prior to birth in that case. Unborn children should have never been deprived of the right to life, which is unalienable, and this right should have never been taken away from unborn children by the United States Supreme Court. A prohibition on abortion should be constitutionally possible since abortion infringes upon the right to life of unborn children, which should be unalienable, and also because abortion violates the natural law.

There are some people who advocate for changing the Catholic Church’s teaching against contraception and direct abortion. However, the Catholic Church will always continue to uphold that contracepted sexual acts and direct abortion are always contrary to the law of God and natural law. First, the Catholic Church already knows that contracepted sexual acts and direct abortion are both intrinsically evil acts that also constitute serious violations of the law of God and natural law. Second, the Catholic Church has continuously and infallibly taught that these acts violate the law of God as well as natural law. Third, the infallible teachings of the Catholic Church cannot be changed since infallible teachings are free from error and also free from the possibility of error. Finally, teaching the position that is contrary to what the Catholic Church has taught on abortion and contraception would be contrary to the truth regarding the law of God.

The widespread acceptance of artificial contraception in the Western world has led to many bad consequences. First, the acceptance of artificial contraception has led to an increased willingness to engage in sexual activity at a time where pregnancy is not desired. Second, the increased willingness to engage in sexual activity that results from the widespread acceptance of contraception has led to more unplanned pregnancies and more abortions since no form of artificial contraception provides foolproof protection against unplanned pregnancies. Third, the widespread acceptance of contraception has led to more sexual activity outside of marriage, and this has led to an increase in the divorce rate and more children being born outside of wedlock. Fourth, more people fail to acknowledge the proper meaning of sexual intercourse due to the widespread acceptance of contraception as well as increased acceptance of sexual activity outside of marriage. Fifth, some of the forms of artificial contraception that are widely accepted are also abortifacent because they can cause the death of an human embryo that is actually conceived. Last, other consequences arising from the widespread acceptance of contraception include the breakdown of the family and an increased acceptance of homosexuality, both of which flow from other consequences of the contraceptive mentality.

To bring the Western world back to a culture of life, the use of artificial contraception during sexual acts needs to become unacceptable in Western societies and direct abortion needs to be outlawed in places where it is currently legal. The United States and other Western societies need to acknowledge that the use of artificial contraception during sexual intercourse and direct abortion always violate natural law, regardless of the intention or the specific circumstances. Western societies also need to acknowledge that the proper purpose of human sexual intercourse is to enable married couples to cooperate with the Creator in bringing forth new human life while simultaneously expressing the love between the husband and wife. The use of artificial contraception during sexual intercourse, premarital sex, adultery, and homosexual acts all go against the proper purpose of human sexual intercourse, and as such should become socially unacceptable in the United States and also in the rest of the world.

The immorality and the bad consequences of contraception

Contracepted sexual intercourse refers to acts of sexual intercourse in which at least one of the persons involved has deprived the sexual act of its procreative potential by actively attempting to prevent a process essential to natural human reproduction from occurring. As such, contracepted sexual intercourse is intrinsically evil and always offensive to God since engaging in this kind of sexual act is always inherently ordered by the very nature of the act towards closing the sexual act towards the conception of new life, depriving the sexual act of its procreative potential, and depriving the sexual act of its proper meaning.

God has designed human sexual intercourse to be an act in which a married man and his wife become one flesh and cooperate with God in bringing forth new life. The choice to engage in contracepted sexual intercourse goes against the natural purpose of human sexual intercourse and the will of God since contracepted sexual intercourse seeks to close the act of sexual intercourse to the possibility of new human life. Furthermore, God is offended by acts of contracepted sexual intercourse because God is the creator of new human life, because those engaging in contracepted sexual intercourse are seeking to prevent the conception of a new human being, and because some couples engage in contracepted sexual intercourse at times where God otherwise intends to create a new life. Additionally, God is offended by the deaths of newly conceived human beings that result from the use of abortifacent contraceptives, which can also act by preventing implantation from occurring if the abortifacent contraceptive fails to prevent conception from occurring.

Up until the Lambeth Conference of 1930, the use of contraception had been considered to be morally wrong by every Christian denomination. At the Lambeth Conference of 1930, the Church of England decided that the use of contraception by married couples could be morally licit in circumstances where there are sufficiently serious reasons to avoid parenthood and where there is a morally sound reason to avoid complete sexual abstinence. Since then, the use of contraception had become acceptable in the eyes of many Christian married couples and more widespread among Christian couples. The Catholic Church still continues to uphold its teaching against contraception, but there are many Catholics who choose to engage in contracepted sexual intercourse in contradiction to the Catholic Church’s teachings. The widespread acceptance of contraception by those who profess to be Christian, even by those who are not Catholic, still does offend God, even though many of the people who consider contraception to be acceptable do not view contraception to be offensive by God.

The acceptance of contraception by many Christians has had widespread consequences throughout the world. First, the acceptance of contraception has led to an increase in sexual activity outside of marriage as well as an increase in sexual activity within marriage by married couples at times where the conception of a new child is not desired. Second, the increased availability of contraceptives, the availability of more reliable forms of contraception such as the birth control pill, and the increased acceptance of contraception have enabled couples to engage in sexual intercourse without having to think about an unplanned pregnancy, but no form of contraception is foolproof protection and the possibility of unplanned pregnancy is still there with contraceptive use. Third, the increase in sexual activity that has resulted from the acceptance of contraception has led to more unplanned pregnancies and an increase in the rate of sexually transmitted disease transmission. Fourth, some of the unplanned pregnancies are being aborted, but this consequence is the result of an increased acceptance of contraception, an increased willingness to engage in sexual activity in circumstances where the conception of a new child is not desired, an increase in sexual activity as a result of widespread acceptance of contraception, and the legalization of abortion in most of the world. Fifth, there has been an increase in the divorce rate since the 1960’s, and acceptance of contraception, the legalization of abortion, an increase in childless marriages, and extramarital affairs have all played a role in this increase of the divorce rate. Sixth, the acceptance of contraception has led to a lowering in moral standards and reduced birth rates in countries where contraceptive use is widespread. The bad consequences of the widespread acceptance of contraception have turned out to be worse than what was predicted by most people 50 years ago.