Catholic, and nudist behavior

I work with a person who is cradle Catholic. Her and her husband went on a trip to Jamaica. While there at a “couples only” resort they participated in nude beach sun-bathing/swimming et-al.
Is this compatible somehow with being Catholic?
No, I am not trying to be humorous. (For once)
Dominus vobiscum

Probably not

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I’m not figuring how it could be either. Near-occasion of sin, modesty, impure thoughts, who-knows-what-else. They were both ok with it. (I cant see it being appropriate since Adam&Eve.) I figure if it were just those two together, that could make sense.
Dominus vobiscum

In all fairness, serious nudists have a different state of mind about nudity and it usually doesn’t lead to impure thoughts for them, nor do they see it as immodest because again they have trained themselves not to associate nudity with sex or taboo behavior. Also, not all the cultures of the world have the same ideas about nudity as our Western culture does. We also don’t know how crowded the beach was; if there weren’t too many nude people then there might not have even been much to see.

Nevertheless, going to a nude beach on vacation doesn’t seem to be the kind of thing one would mention when yakking it up with your office mates. There is, at minimum, a possibility of creating scandal. And in addition to that, probably some risk of an occasion of sin if everyone involved isn’t a serious nudist and used to separating nudity from bad thoughts.


When younger, I had a childhood friend who’s small family were like that. “True nudists” I had no idea until years later. They would spend time wild camping in hilly desert areas. Only thing that made it apparent was even when going from a one-piece to a two-piece swimsuit she had no tan lines. I felt really dumb for not figuring it out sooner, I just didn’t think like that. (She was like a little sister)
They never volunteered the info until finally I asked. She thought it was funny.
These work people just did it for fun I guess as a one-time thing. (I would not do that, nor would I bring it up at work if I had)
Dominus vobiscum

Peter and his fishing buddies seem to have often been “lightly clad” (ie, totally naked or only in their loincloth undies) when they went fishing. But that was about work requirements and safety, in a hot country before the invention of swimsuits.

Same thing with skinnydipping in medieval times. Swimming in a heavy shirt wouldn’t be safe.

But generally that sort of thing was single sex. That’s why Christians often didn’t attend the public baths, unless they could go same sex (and avoid getting hit on by members of the same sex).

If your friends wanted to go skinnydipping together, why did they have to travel to a couples resort and do it in front of strangers? Not necessarily a sin, but heading towards being an occasion of sin.

And as for nudism, in the Christian tradition it’s associated with asceticism in the desert or wearing out one’s rags, not family outings and conjugal fun.

We aren’t Adam and Eve. And Christ, the New Adam, wore clothing most of the time, except when He was a baby and when He was on the Cross. (And since Mary is supposed to have been a weaver, it would go against part of the family business if he was constantly shucking clothing!)


It would, though, beat chain mail . . .

:rofl: :roll_eyes: :crazy_face:


I don’t think so. Our bodies are a Temple of the Holy Spirit. We’re to be healthy, Holy & modest.,
They slipped.,

There’s ALWAYS one isn’t there? :blush:
Could this be an excuse for sitting on a bank somewhere fishing in underpants? “Fishing safely like in the bible”.
Dominus vobiscum

I could only guess they went for the environment, and maybe for the freedom of anonymity.
Dominus vobiscum

I have a co-worker who went to a nudist resort for a vacation a long time ago. His wife wouldn’t go with him. They’re Unitarian universalists, FWIW.
He’s a very pleasant man in general, but I don’t agree with his moral views or politics.

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It was probably a spur-of-the-moment decision. “Hey look honey, there’s a nude beach. Do we dare? Oh why not, we’re on vacation. YOLO! (giggle, giggle)”.

People often see something on vacation and decide to get a little crazy. In my case it is more likely to be the thrill rides on top of the Las Vegas Stratosphere than a nude beach. (I sunburn very, very easily and do not want to contemplate what would happen if I exposed my normally covered areas, even if I was at a totally private resort.)


As Bear said, not all cultures have the same customs around nudity we do. In the US at least, we pretty much automatically associate nudity outside the doctors office with sexuality. That’s not always the case for the rest of the world.

I can remember walking into a sauna in a hotel in Europe and realizing it was both mixed gender and, ah, towel optional. Perfect strangers just sitting there, some naked, reading magazines and relaxing. (As a prudish American, I kept my towel wrapped around my waist.)

I’m not advocating for these customs, just saying they exist. I don’t know where your friends were, but it’s possible the beach was just a beach. They don’t necessarily have to have a sexual connotation.


The thing about nudists is, they rarely have toned and buff bodies. They usually look like what they are, which is middle-aged people with average bodies.

I read a book of essays by a female writer once - I don’t recall her name but she used to write for The New Yorker - and in one of them she lamented that American men spend very little or no time without their clothes on, unless they are showering or whatever; in other words they don’t spend any time or much time just being in an unrobed state. I puzzled over that sentiment a long time, years even, because I didn’t quite grasp why that was a bad thing in and of itself. I think she felt that you can only fully express your authentic self when your clothes are off - with them on, you are engaging in a form of play-acting: you are assembling a self based on some other role you play, such as hard-charging boss, fun-loving bohemian, hard-working employee, etc.

I don’t necessarily subscribe to this view, but I can’t disprove it either, so it probably has some merit. I tend to see our clothing as an expression of our self, not an attempt to disguise or obscure an authentic self. I’m not even sure I believe in an authentic self as far as that goes. But it’s an interesting perspective that deserves some consideration.

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Haha. I remember in high school a friend of mine went on a trip to Germany, where he somehow snuck off and found his way to a nude beach. In my 16 year old mind, I was picturing legions of nude, nubile German babes wandering the beaches. When I pumped him for details he told me, not in so many words, that most of the people there were well north of middle age and could have used a little more time at the gym. It was, according to him, profoundly unsexy. And for a high school guy to find nudity unsexy…well, that tells you something.


I am a Speedo wearer
I wear them all of the time
Swim in the sea in my Speeedos
Sun-bathe on the sand in them too (Sun is short/bathe is long)

Oh yes I do, Oh yes I do - sing it to this tune


It depends on the culture of the Americans you’re describing. There are plenty of Italian-American and Latino men who are more physical in their expression and affection to their male family members and even their male friends, without anything sexual implied.

By contrast, Northern European cultures like British Isles and Germany and Scandinavia are not “touchy” and a lot of US people are descended from these cultures. They weren’t raised to be hugging on anybody except their romantic partner and maybe their mom.

Please respect people’s cultures and don’t go laughing or calling it “non-sexual touch deprived”. It’s rather rude. I am not touchy myself, it’s not how I was raised (I was taught that you hug your mom and dad and maybe your other close relatives but you don’t go around hugging unrelated people or touching them beyond a handshake), and there’s also an element of personal preference. Some lady I barely know at church (we are in a couple prayer groups and say hello) decided to put an arm around me and say hello about 3 months ago at Mass (pre-Covid) and I nearly jumped out of my pew, I was so startled. I know she meant well but that’s not how I roll.


Sorry! It was a joke…doesn’t carry well over text, but I thought the laughing emojis would do.

I understand this! This is why I only do it with family and good friends.

I wouldn’t like that either. My touchiness is limited to friends and family.

In Germany, at the public spas and baths, it’s just accepted as perfectly normal — there are “free” areas and swimsuit areas, and nobody is forced to do one or the other. In saunas, there is the expectation that one will be “free”. The Carolus Thermen in Aachen does have a segregated area for women, if they wish, but otherwise, everything is mixed-gender.

I have to wonder if the German bishops have ever addressed this.

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Japan also has a culture of nude bathing in onsen, or hot springs. It would be totally weird and unacceptable to wear a bathing suit in an onsen, in fact. Frankly I think it’s a more healthy attitude than ours which boils down to ‘oh my god there’s a naked body underneath those clothes!’ (What else would one expect?)

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