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  #16  
Old Jan 4, '10, 8:36 am
OraLabora OraLabora is offline
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

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Originally Posted by crazzeto View Post
A seemingly inocuous act, which has the capacity to take over your life entirely and drag you down in disordered behaviour after disordered behaviour.
You could argue the same thing about a glass of wine or beer taken alone starting a descent into alcoholism.

You could argue the same thing about surfing the Internet starting innocuously shopping for bargains, doing research for work or school, keeping in touch with friends, then descending into the darker side of things.

You could argue the same thing 50 years ago about the telephone, initially a great gadget to communicate that can be misused for gossip, spreading calumny and other parts of the dark side of human nature.

You could argue the same thing about a pleasurable meal being the start of the decline into gluttony.

We have as sinners the capacity to take any innocuous act, even acts with the potential for great good, and twisting them into dark evil.
  #17  
Old Jan 4, '10, 8:55 am
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JBCatholicRN JBCatholicRN is offline
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

I believe this is something that every man struggles with. I am young and have a very beautiful (not just in my opinion) wife who also enjoys sex. When I find myself wanting to masturbate, I read scripture or find something else to do with my time. Yes I fail at this, but as others have said, it leads to other things such as pornography.
The world tells you masturbation is okay and doesn't hurt anyone. As you have probably heard, we are not of this world.
  #18  
Old Jan 4, '10, 9:20 am
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

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Originally Posted by OraLabora View Post
You could argue the same thing about a glass of wine or beer taken alone starting a descent into alcoholism.

You could argue the same thing about surfing the Internet starting innocuously shopping for bargains, doing research for work or school, keeping in touch with friends, then descending into the darker side of things.

You could argue the same thing 50 years ago about the telephone, initially a great gadget to communicate that can be misused for gossip, spreading calumny and other parts of the dark side of human nature.

You could argue the same thing about a pleasurable meal being the start of the decline into gluttony.

We have as sinners the capacity to take any innocuous act, even acts with the potential for great good, and twisting them into dark evil.
No, actually not... In order to try and do what you're attempting to do you have to take it not to the level of having a glass of wine, but of getting drunk which in fact is always sinful regardless of how it happened. Having a glass of wine doesn't produce the same self serving "feel good" state that getting drunk does.

Masturbating however, does in fact reproduce the same feelings one gets from self gratifying disordered sexual behaviour. That's why it's sinful, and for the same reason getting drunk is always sinful. Nice try though.
  #19  
Old Jan 4, '10, 10:09 am
Newbie2 Newbie2 is offline
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

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Originally Posted by OraLabora View Post
You could argue the same thing about a glass of wine or beer taken alone starting a descent into alcoholism.

You could, but it such an argument is quite weak.

You could argue the same thing about surfing the Internet starting innocuously shopping for bargains, doing research for work or school, keeping in touch with friends, then descending into the darker side of things.

You could, but it such an argument is quite weak.

You could argue the same thing 50 years ago about the telephone, initially a great gadget to communicate that can be misused for gossip, spreading calumny and other parts of the dark side of human nature.

You could, but it such an argument is very, very weak.

You could argue the same thing about a pleasurable meal being the start of the decline into gluttony.

You could, but it such an argument is really without a shred of merit. One has to eat, one does not have to masturbate.

We have as sinners the capacity to take any innocuous act, even acts with the potential for great good, and twisting them into dark evil.
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  #20  
Old Jan 4, '10, 11:18 am
OraLabora OraLabora is offline
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

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Originally Posted by crazzeto View Post
No, actually not... In order to try and do what you're attempting to do you have to take it not to the level of having a glass of wine, but of getting drunk which in fact is always sinful regardless of how it happened. Having a glass of wine doesn't produce the same self serving "feel good" state that getting drunk does.
Respectfully I disagree. I find a nice glass of wine or beer after a stressful day very relaxing, and depending on the level of fatigue I can fell a slight buzz from just one glass. It feels very nice. Perhaps not the intense instantaneous hit that masturbation, but the effect is certainly longer lasting.

For some that can lead to drunkenness which in turn can lead to alcoholism.

Another point I should mention, for men, is that the prostate is a gland that secretes and fills with fluid. It needs to go somewhere. Not every man has experienced involuntary ejaculation (aka "nocturnal emissions"). Some fluid gets reabsorbed, but most does not. Trust me for a man who never has experienced a nocturnal emission, "going without" for extended periods is extremely uncomfortable. For those men masturbation isn't so much a pleasure as it is relief. Throw in a 50 y.o. prostate that is starting to enlarge...

While it is true that the analogy with eating and masturbating doesn't take into consideration that eating is necessary and masturbating isn't, not all eating is necessary and one could argue that each meal we take for pleasure beyond the "necessary" is similarly sinful because it's only real impact is self-gratification and weight gain.

In fact the Carthusians get by on one meatless meal a day and during Lent they also exclude dairy products and eggs. You could argue that anything beyond for the rest of us is excessive except for those doing physical labour.

That said, I will contradict myself here: is masturbation sinful? In short I would agree that yes especially in certain circumstances (married). Is it gravely sinful? I would argue yes probably and I don't really argue with the Church teaching on this. Do struggle with this myself? Yes I do, out of a sense of obedience (my mother and father tried their best and sometimes they would be wrong but I did owe them my obedience). But I would also argue that there are far more mitigating factors than the Church admits to and that masturbation is not mortally sinful in the vast majority of cases that don't involve pornography or attempts to withhold one's self from one's spouse, and therefore greater pastoral latitude should be afforded in dealing with this particularly for those not having a natural outlet for their sexuality. And I would also argue that the Church should perhaps prayerfully revisit this issue in the light of some of the more recent scientific evidence.
  #21  
Old Jan 4, '10, 12:18 pm
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

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Originally Posted by OraLabora View Post
Respectfully I disagree. I find a nice glass of wine or beer after a stressful day very relaxing, and depending on the level of fatigue I can fell a slight buzz from just one glass. It feels very nice. Perhaps not the intense instantaneous hit that masturbation, but the effect is certainly longer lasting.
if you find you're being intoxicated at one glass, then perhaps it is appropriate for your situation that you abstain entirly in order to avoid sinning. For the vast majority of us, this is not the case and this is why God encourages us to enjoy wine every once in a while, in the spirit of the virtue of temperance of course.

Regardless, getting intoxicated is a sin each and every time you do it, just like masturbating is a sin each and every time you do it. You can try diagreeing with this if you wish, but the fact is it is the case that both are always sinful and I do believe my arguments are at least one good way of looking at it. I would certainly encourage you to continue reseaching the topic, Catholic Online runs a great website dedicated to the issues of Chastity: http://www.chastity.com/

It seems to be under construction but already has good information there.

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Originally Posted by OraLabora View Post
For some that can lead to drunkenness which in turn can lead to alcoholism.
Like I said, if it is true for you that your situtation is such that one glass of wine is enough to intoxicate you then you should abstaine entirly. What you describe above regarding becoming intoxicated to unwind is in fact a sin similar to masturbation which also can lead to greater sin in many different ways.

For the rest of us (most of us), for whom 1 glass of wine is no where near enough alchohol to become intoxicated then it is both ok and good to have a glass or two here and there. The key is to always bare in mind the virtue of temperance, and never imbibe enough to become intoxicated. That is the point at which you've crossed the line with sinning.

Of course as I pointed out previously, with Masturbation there is no such "grey area". There is no line. Masturbation is intrisicly sinful by it's very nature, for the reasons I've already expounded upon.

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Originally Posted by OraLabora View Post
Another point I should mention, for men, is that the prostate is a gland that secretes and fills with fluid. It needs to go somewhere. Not every man has experienced involuntary ejaculation (aka "nocturnal emissions"). Some fluid gets reabsorbed, but most does not. Trust me for a man who never has experienced a nocturnal emission, "going without" for extended periods is extremely uncomfortable. For those men masturbation isn't so much a pleasure as it is relief. Throw in a 50 y.o. prostate that is starting to enlarge...
Oh please, give me a break. You're not talking to a woman here, I understand very well male needs and very well how it feels to go with out for an extended period of time. Masturbation is not necessary for maintaining your health. Many a pious man has lived to a very ripe old age, having never masturbated.

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Originally Posted by OraLabora View Post
While it is true that the analogy with eating and masturbating doesn't take into consideration that eating is necessary and masturbating isn't, not all eating is necessary and one could argue that each meal we take for pleasure beyond the "necessary" is similarly sinful because it's only real impact is self-gratification and weight gain.
Your really grasping at straws here, there is never a need to Masturbate ever under any circomstance. I don't care how big you believe your prostate is getting, you don't need to masturbate. God isn't stupid, he isn't going to make something necessary for life intrisicly sinful as masturbation is. Eating isn't intrisnicly sinful, masturbating is.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OraLabora View Post
<snip>

That said, I will contradict myself here: is masturbation sinful? In short I would agree that yes especially in certain circumstances (married). Is it gravely sinful? I would argue yes probably and I don't really argue with the Church teaching on this. Do struggle with this myself? Yes I do, out of a sense of obedience (my mother and father tried their best and sometimes they would be wrong but I did owe them my obedience). But I would also argue that there are far more mitigating factors than the Church admits to and that masturbation is not mortally sinful in the vast majority of cases that don't involve pornography or attempts to withhold one's self from one's spouse, and therefore greater pastoral latitude should be afforded in dealing with this particularly for those not having a natural outlet for their sexuality. And I would also argue that the Church should perhaps prayerfully revisit this issue in the light of some of the more recent scientific evidence.
I would only ask you to take a step back, clear your mind of searching for means to justify this disordered behaviour and judge it more fairly. Your talking to someone here who was once very wrapped up in worldly beliefs, and to this very day still struggles with overcoming worldly beliefs and still in many respects fails to do so much to my own grief.

Over the past few years I've prayed to God for his guidence, applyed my self to studying Church teaching, the Bible and various histories of the Church, and it's beliefs from many different sources. The conclusions drawn from my Studies are quite clear, the Church, in fact is everything she says she is. Her teachings are all true and we are all well advised to pay closer attention to them. My own personal failings and whatever desires I used to have do not alter this. So far my own personal desires have been radically and permentatly altered, and unfortunetly the rest of my life is slower to catch up. But I'm still working on it, I hope you will as well.
  #22  
Old Jan 4, '10, 12:35 pm
OraLabora OraLabora is offline
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

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Originally Posted by crazzeto View Post
if you find you're being intoxicated at one glass,
There's a heck of a distance from "feeling relaxed" to intoxicated. Please don't put exaggerate my words or presume to know my state of drunkenness after 1 glass of wine.

As for the rest, I am a generally faithful Catholic. Am I a sinner? Of course I am. For the most part I do not attempt to "justify" my sin and I tend to go with the Church on 99% of issues.

But I do have issues with the Church on this one topic. Oddly enough, its the only topic I have issues with.

As for many men living to a ripe old age without masturbating, that may be true. But everyone is different. Hormone levels, for instance, can be radically different; the "normal" range is wide, and some folks can be off the scale and find temptation more difficult to resist, just as some folks lack the proper enzymes to metabolize alcohol and can become intoxicated very quickly. What can be easy for some can be a great temptation for others.

Quote:
I don't care how big you believe your prostate is getting, you don't need to masturbate.
How big is big enough for you madam? In some men it BPH can render it big enough to cause bladder infections due to urinary retention, serious difficulties urinating, and total urinary blockage; as a summer job in college, I worked as a nurse's aid in a small rural hospital and had to catheterize more than one elderly man who showed up, unable to urinate. Unless you've had to wrestle with this problem, where you're given these alternatives: frequent ejaculation or a finger up your butt to massage your prostate, or medication that can make you impotent or operations that can make you incontinent, impotent or foster retrograde ejaculation, perhaps you shouldn't be sanctimoniously telling men what they can or can't do. Give the above options I'll take my chances on masturbation over the other alternatives any day.
  #23  
Old Jan 4, '10, 12:41 pm
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

Your the one who said you're getting a warm "buzzed" feeling similar enough to intoxication to warrent fear of becoming an alchoholic. If that's the case then I advise you to abstain all together. If you're more like me, and get nothing out of a glass of wine other than the pleasure of enjoying a flavorful beverage then by all means enjoy wine confident that you're not sinning. In fact in my case I can have two or three glasses of wine before I start feeling sort of "warm" or "buzzed" feeling at all. With that in mind, I always endevour to enjoy my adult beverages spaced properly such that I won't get any sort or buzzed or warm feelings from them. Particularly when I'm going to be driving.
  #24  
Old Jan 4, '10, 12:43 pm
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

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Originally Posted by USUlsterScot View Post
It seems to me the Church’s position fails to address problems when normal sex between a man and a woman cannot be consummated and provides no solutions for men and women who are, for what every reason not married.
The ends never justify the means.
  #25  
Old Jan 4, '10, 1:09 pm
OraLabora OraLabora is offline
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

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Originally Posted by crazzeto View Post
Your the one who said you're getting a warm "buzzed" feeling similar enough to intoxication to warrent fear of becoming an alchoholic. If that's the case then I advise you to abstain all together. If you're more like me, and get nothing out of a glass of wine other than the pleasure of enjoying a flavorful beverage then by all means enjoy wine confident that you're not sinning. In fact in my case I can have two or three glasses of wine before I start feeling sort of "warm" or "buzzed" feeling at all. With that in mind, I always endevour to enjoy my adult beverages spaced properly such that I won't get any sort or buzzed or warm feelings from them. Particularly when I'm going to be driving.
What I said was this: "find a nice glass of wine or beer after a stressful day very relaxing, and depending on the level of fatigue I can feel a slight buzz from just one glass."

You're the one that extended this interpretation into my being intoxicated on a single glass of wine.

Stick to my words. Don't add to them. You're as bad as my wife trying to always interpret things that I say deeper than their face value

Believe me I'm not that complicated that I can say one thing and mean something else!

Quote:
The ends never justify the means.
.

Unless of course there's nothing wrong with the means. And that's what this debate is about. It's almost as if the Church still believes, like Aristotle did, that every sperm cell is a complete human being and the woman was only an incubator for what was formed in the man so therefore masturbation is murder.

Since St. Thomas was heavily influenced by Aristotle, it's one reason why I take the Church view on masturbation with a bit of a grain of salt.

The Church will never stop masturbation even among faithful Catholics especially males. The best she can hope for is that most of us will feel guilty enough about it to reduce our frequency of this habit. A few may succeed at stopping it completely if they practice near monastic discipline, a vocation few of us have.
  #26  
Old Jan 4, '10, 1:47 pm
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

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Originally Posted by FiberZilla View Post
It is normal for folks to put on a few lbs with age. Men who berate their wives about this are clearly jerks. But suppose one's darling spouse has balooned to a libido destroying, bed frame busting 400lbs? An afternoon trip to your local buffet shows that this is not an unusual thing these days. What then?

Many men do not berate their wives but they don't touch them after a certain weight gain. I'd say in the instance that you describe there is a lot more than sex that is being neglected and the 400 pound spouse should have sought medical treatment many pounds ago. Chances are good there is a lot of depression and neglect of this overweight spouse that should have been dealt with as well.
  #27  
Old Jan 4, '10, 1:56 pm
DihydrogenOxide DihydrogenOxide is offline
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

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Originally Posted by OraLabora View Post
We have as sinners the capacity to take any innocuous act, even acts with the potential for great good, and twisting them into dark evil.
I can't believe an avowed Roman Catholic just said that about masturbation. Masturbation is a sin. Period. There are no, ands, ifs, or buts. No reasoning your way out of it. If you don't think this perversion is evil, you are a cafeteria catholic. A sin is a sin. Don't lead others off by your false understanding.
  #28  
Old Jan 4, '10, 2:31 pm
chessmane4e5 chessmane4e5 is offline
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

I would simply say to those that think Masturbation is okay, or that in certain circumstances it is okay, or if they have a medical reason to masturbate, or whatever....to read John Paul II's Theology of the Body, or if you want to get right to the point "The Good News About Sex & Marriage" by Christopher West. After reading either of these, I would then ask that you come back to this forum and see if you still have the same opinion about masturbation.

It is our culture that has brainwashed us into thinking that masturbation is "normal." Even if their is a scientific reason to masturbate, I am sure their are alternatives. At the very least, men will have wet dreams which achieves the same end, unless you need to masturbate multiple times a day to achieve the medical benefit. Regardless, the ends do not justify the means.

I think it is telling that any act which goes against God's plan for man and woman (i.e. masturbation, contraception, oral sex, anal sex, divorce) are now being used as reasons or justifications to allow gay marriage.
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  #29  
Old Jan 4, '10, 2:36 pm
OraLabora OraLabora is offline
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

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Originally Posted by DihydrogenOxide View Post
I can't believe an avowed Roman Catholic just said that about masturbation. Masturbation is a sin. Period. There are no, ands, ifs, or buts. No reasoning your way out of it. If you don't think this perversion is evil, you are a cafeteria catholic. A sin is a sin. Don't lead others off by your false understanding.
You took my comment completely out of context. That statement did not refer to masturbation, but to mankind's ability to twist any good into evil, i.e. our fallen nature in general. Since you missed the context, let me help here. I said:

"You could argue the same thing about a pleasurable meal being the start of the decline into gluttony.

We have as sinners the capacity to take any innocuous act (eating), even acts with the potential for great good (you can use your imagination here), and twisting them into dark evil (gluttony)." If you don't think gluttony is a dark evil, I submit that the obesity rate in N. America is proof to the contrary.

Also, you make quite the accusation "cafeteria Catholic". Of all the foods in the "cafeteria" this is the only one I have the most trouble digesting. Moreover I am not denying it is a sin, but merely suggesting that a more pastoral approach to dealing with it in certain circumstances, may be called for. After all even the CCC says that certain circumstances reduce or eliminate the culpability for this sin. Perhaps those circumstances need to be better spelled out, or perhaps they can be dealt with in my preferred manner in the confessional. Still, the latter suggest some need to properly form priests in this issue.

You might also want to re-read this paragraph that I wrote, before trying to excommunicate me:

"That said, I will contradict myself here: is masturbation sinful? In short I would agree that yes especially in certain circumstances (married). Is it gravely sinful? I would argue yes probably and I don't really argue with the Church teaching on this. Do struggle with this myself? Yes I do, out of a sense of obedience (my mother and father tried their best and sometimes they would be wrong but I did owe them my obedience). But I would also argue that there are far more mitigating factors than the Church admits to and that masturbation is not mortally sinful in the vast majority of cases that don't involve pornography or attempts to withhold one's self from one's spouse, and therefore greater pastoral latitude should be afforded in dealing with this particularly for those not having a natural outlet for their sexuality. And I would also argue that the Church should perhaps prayerfully revisit this issue in the light of some of the more recent scientific evidence."

If that makes me, in your eyes, a "cafeteria" Catholic, well there's nothing I can do about it, and frankly your opinion won't change my mind. Particularly since the only argument you seem able to proffer, implicitly, is "because the Church said so".
  #30  
Old Jan 4, '10, 4:13 pm
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Default Re: Masterbation as an Alternative to Normal Sex

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Originally Posted by USUlsterScot View Post
For me, this has been one of the most confusing positions of the Catholic Church. I understand the Church’s position is that sex is for the purpose of pro-creation between man and woman. I have always felt that there are at least three aspects of sex, physical, psychological, and spiritual and that the Church’s position does not always address all three. The joining of a man and woman in marriage can satisfy all three of these, but not necessarily. There is often great disparity in sexual drive between a man and women; being driven in large part by the level of hormones in both which can vary widely. The Church’s position offers no way of reconciling this disparity. Using the Church’s logic, if either the man or woman could not pro-create (sterility for instance), there would be no need for sex.

I think this ignores the physical and psychological needs of sex for both men and women. It can also lead to problems within marriage with no solution for resolution other than abstinence and ignoring of physical and psychological needs.
The church’s position provides no solution for men or women whose partner develops some kind of problem which prohibits normal sexual function, be it physical, psychological, etc. From my reading from medical sources, many men develop prostate problems because of the buildup of testosterone which can be due to the reduced frequency or abstinence of sex. Ejaculation is the only way for excess testosterone to be reduced in the prostrate (other than special medications). I have a friend who is taking these and they can produce enlarged breasts, higher pitched voice, and increased emotional response to events. From the sources I have read, regular ejaculation is beneficial to the prostrate and can help relieve problems from BHP.

My wife began entering menopause more than 20 years ago and coupled with her lack of physical exercise and weight gain has resulted in her sex drive dropping to a point where we have not had sex in over 12 years. As a result, I have also developed prostrate problems and now have to take medications. I have found many of my friends have gone through similar experiences, some of which have developed prostate cancer.
It seems to me the Church’s position fails to address problems when normal sex between a man and a woman cannot be consummated and provides no solutions for men and women who are, for what every reason not married.
don't know all the details but don't think your wife should be denying you. that is NOT right...

but i have no problem with the Church's teaching. i have gone a LONG time without gratification & am still alive to tell about it. i am nOT a guy but the Church would not tell men to abstain from self-gratification if it caused some kind of seiorus irreparable damage to the body... and i don't think it does. besides, if a man goes long enough without satisfcation the body will probably do it automatically in his sleep anyway, which is not a sin... although it is if a person deliberately tries to make it happen... that's difffernt

sexual sins, as stated b4, get pepole to Hell more than any other kind ...according to the saints (and i agree based on waht i have seen in my life... experiended...)

we have to be sexually pure to enter Heaven where "no impure thing will enter"... (Rev 21:27)
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