I dissent on the church’s teaching regarding contraception. In holding onto this teaching the church has in many ways lost its teaching authority and respect. I do look to the church for guidance and direction but can not in good conscience obey everything the Magisterium says. Especially in regards to this teaching.
Pick and choose “Catholics” need to listen to Christ Himself: “if he refuses to hear even the Church let him be like the heathen and a publican.” (Mt 18:17). Even theologians have no authority to dissent from any teaching, and thus no real Catholics will try to place themselves above the Magisterium.
- Since conscience is not a god, but a judgment of the practical reason as Msgr Cormac P Burke (Law and Dissent, 1985) points out, "for the Catholic, there is never a conflict between the authority of the Church and conscience, because belief that Christ has given His Church authority to teach without error is part of his conscience, freely accepted. According to Canon 205, Catholics are those in full communion with the Church through the bonds of profession of faith, the sacraments and ecclesiastical governance.
"If one holds a personal opinion that a particular course of action seems licit – contrary to the Church’s teaching – he has a conflict within his own conscience. This is doubt or rejection of the divine guarantees of the certainty of the truths already present in his mind, to accommodate a contrary opinion. We now have a house divided against itself.
"He cannot escape the conclusion that his contrary opinion must be mistaken, as he would be acknowledging the accepted fact of the fallibility of conscience – it does not make truth. He then has to see where he has been mistaken, to reflect more deeply on the arguments for the Church’s teaching. If he feels that he is not mistaken, then he must conclude that Christ’s Church is mistaken and naturally his faith in Christ and His Church has started to collapse.
“He has no grounds then to believe in any truths – the sacraments (especially the Eucharist), or in Her worship or any other aspect of Her life. Such a Catholic needs the counsel of a faithful priest.”
Thus no one can in good conscience deny Christ’s authority as taught by His Magisterium in dogma or doctrine. That mandate from Christ means that those that do have tarnished their Catholicity and lost the respect of real Catholics.
- The reality is that the infallible teaching was clear in Casti Connubii, 1930, from Pius XI, after the Anglican denomination at the Lambeth Conference had scuttled the unanimity up to then of the Protestant consensus against contraception.
The majority of bishops and cardinals who were part of the Birth Control Commision also disagree with this teaching !!!
The reason for the Commission was only to examine the effects of the “Pill”.
“It is often said that Paul VI was himself in doubt about the doctrinal point at issue for some time and took a long while to make up his mind. However, Fr. Ermenigildo Lio told the present writer that the Pope assured him personally, at around the time *Humanae Vitae *was issued, that he had never at any stage been in doubt about the intrinsic evil of contraception. **The long time lapse was due only to the need to ponder carefully the precise manner in which this truth - which had already been authoritatively settled by Pius XI in Casti Connubii (1930) - could best be reaffirmed.”
See: Fr Brian Harrison, O.S., *Humanae Vitae And Infallibity *at rtforum.org/lt/lt12.html
Not even a bishop or cardinal may dissent from doctrine in good faith.