[quote=FrOg][As far as sterilization is concerned], the conditions which would justify disposing of a part in favor of the whole in virtue of the principle of totality are lacking. It is not therefore morally permissible to operate on healthy oviducts if the life or (physical) health of the mother in not threatened by their continued existence.
Setter, it appears that based on this quote, a tubal ligation would be within moral standards. It does not seem that it would apply to me, the guy in the equation. That is unless the union of marriage erases that boundary. What do you think?
BTW, I will consult a priest and check with the Paul VI ppl. I’m on call this weekend so it’ll be later.
I appreciate your intellectual honesty. It is my understanding that of Church teaching that direct sterilization (tubal ligation) is never morally permissible. The treatment of a medical problem with the unintended side effect of indirect] sterilization is morally licit.
This is a relevant CA Ask An Apologist (AAA) forum response from search words: sterilization medical:
Can a hysterectomy be done for sterilization purposes?
Question: Would hysterectomy be justified for contraceptive reasons if and only if pregnancy is 100% guaranteed to be fatal for both mother and child?
CA Apologist Answer: A hysterectomy could be done if there were a medical problem with the uterus itself that endangered the life of the mother (e.g., cancer, unstable or ruptured uterus). In such a case sterilization would be an unintended side effect and therefore the procedure would be morally licit. But a hysterectomy cannot be performed if the intention itself is sterilization, which appears to be the case in the hypothetical situation posed. A woman facing such a situation should contact the organizations listed below for help in determining licit courses of action that would do what is possible to protect her life.
Pope Paul VI Institute for the Study of Human Reproduction
National Catholic Bioethics Center
That Celibate Bachelor Was Right! by Rachel Fay
Catholic Answers Apologist
You may also want to check out these relevant AAA forum responses from search words: tubal ligation:
Are there exceptions to the ban on sterilization?
Should I have been sterilized for medical reasons?
Can I get a vasectomy?
To put it another way: “…a simple way to determine whether a proposed treatment that impacts a woman’s fertility is morally acceptable or not is to consider whether the same treatment would be necessary for a single or celibate woman. If the answer is no, then the proposed drug or procedure is immoral.” Source: catholicmom.com/nfp0304.htm
Except when performed for strictly therapeutic medical reasons, directly intended amputations, mutilations, and sterilizations performed on innocent persons are against the moral law. (CCC 2297)
Regarding you query if “That is unless the union of marriage erases that boundary”, conjugal fidelity in the sacrament of holy matrimony demands that husband and wife “Both give themselves definitively and totally to one another”:
The married couple forms “the intimate partnership of life and love established by the Creator and governed by his laws; it is rooted in the conjugal covenant, that is, in their irrevocable personal consent.” Both give themselves definitively and totally to one another. They are no longer two; from now on they form one flesh. The covenant they freely contracted imposes on the spouses the obligation to preserve it as unique and indissoluble. “What therefore God has joined together, let not man put asunder.” (CCC 2364)
Additional citations from the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) #'s 2366 & 2370 specifically point out why contraceptive intercourse speaks a contradictory language to the total self-giving of husband and wife:
You may want to read Section III “The Love of Husband and Wife” (paragraphs 2360 – 2379) from the CCC for a fuller presentation of why contraceptive intercourse if prohibited by the Church.
I hope (and pray the beads along with the others) that this is helpful in your discernment process.