What would you say to a mother who knows her child is rebellious and sexually active, that provides condoms out of the intentions of “being proactive,” simply because she knows he is going to remain sexually active? By the way, he is 16.

Well she has sinned and so has her son

That’s like telling your kid not to use heroin, but here’s some needles just in case.

Condoning sin, participating in sin, and failing to correct are all sins in themselves.

From the Catechism:

1868 Sin is a personal act. Moreover, we have a responsibility for the sins committed by others when we cooperate in them:

  • by participating directly and voluntarily in them;
  • by ordering, advising, praising, or approving them;
  • by not disclosing or not hindering them when we have an obligation to do so;
  • by protecting evil-doers.

1869 Thus sin makes men accomplices of one another and causes concupiscence, violence, and injustice to reign among them. Sins give rise to social situations and institutions that are contrary to the divine goodness. “Structures of sin” are the expression and effect of personal sins. They lead their victims to do evil in their turn. In an analogous sense, they constitute a “social sin.”

2284 Scandal is an attitude or behavior which leads another to do evil. the person who gives scandal becomes his neighbor’s tempter. He damages virtue and integrity; he may even draw his brother into spiritual death. Scandal is a grave offense if by deed or omission another is deliberately led into a grave offense.

2285 Scandal takes on a particular gravity by reason of the authority of those who cause it or the weakness of those who are scandalized.

Jesus had this to say, Mt 18:6-7:
“Whoever causes one of these little ones* who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea. Woe to the world because of things that cause sin! Such things must come, but woe to the one through whom they come!"

This is one of the things I’ve never grasped about Catholicism, and have found much of the logic behind it rather limiting at times.

I personally find nothing immoral about contraception (I’m quite aware of Humane Vitae), but that aside…It is a sin to prevent harm coming to this boy and his sexual partners? At that age like it or not teenagers are fairly independent and especially rebellious, and if he’s going to sleep with someone he’s going to do it anyway.

Disagree with his actions rightly or wrongly actions as much as you like, I think it a far greater evil to just sit back while him, his partners or perhaps a child they create is subject to a variety of sexually transmitted diseases or other dangerous risks.

If anything, doing nothing seems like you’re helping someone on their path to self destruction. One can always hope and pray they may change their course, but that’s going to be of little comfort when they’ve died of AIDS and someone (not just an irrational child) could have prevented it.

Why should he do it anyway? Why is he independent? One of the false notions of the last century gave us is that teens should be given so much liberty. You have a son and you think he will disobey and have sex? Well, why would the mother give him enough freedom to sin like that in the first place? He should not go to a girl’s house without supervision, she should not be at his house without supervision. They couple should be nearly stalked by both sets of parents at this age. Teens are not as mature as they were centuries ago. They are irresponsible. Why? Because we have allowed ourselves to teach and our society to teach them that being rebellious is okay, it’s natural. Sorry but that’s baloney! Kids no longer realize that if you sin there are consequences. They are unafraid and think themselves invincible. So, no the mother should not give the boy condoms. She should have put the fear in that child as he grew up. We have spared the rod far too long. Parents love your children and love them tenderly, but lay the smack down when it is called for, and don’t be afraid to be their authority.

“Many assert that the Catholic Church is killing societies with AIDS because it preaches abstinence. That abortion, condoms and extreme sex are a universal remedy. The truth is that the Catholic Church promotes abstinence outside marriage, which is the only effective method to combat these sexually transmitted diseases (STD’s). Condoms are only partially effective during the isolated act of intercourse and create a false sense of security, which leads to more encounters with more partners. Obviously humans are not robots, as intercourse begins with kissing and other oral actions in which bodily fluids make contact. The herpes simplex virus and syphilis are transmitted via kissing (55). Notwithstanding that abstinence is 100% effective and condoms are only 87% effective at best (56). If you had a Russian Roulette pistol that could hold a 100 chamber cylinder, with 13 bullets in it (87 empty chambers), would you willingly spin the cylinder, put it to your head and pull the trigger? A “no” answer is abstinence, a “yes” answer is condoms. It’s simple math, what’s not to understand? Furthermore, the false sense of security of condoms leads to increased sexual encounters, so the hypothetical Russian Roulette pistol is against your head much more often. At some point, the odds will obviously catch up. Moreover, observe the hostility and rage directed at any institution that stands in the way of their Utopian society base purely on sex. They seem to manifest a sexual addiction, like a drug addict who would lash out against anyone standing in the way of their next fix” (

Would you offer a ski mask to a child that wanted to rob a bank?

I mean, why not? You don’t want them to get caught, right? And really, you can’t stop them if they really want to do it.

Well stated.

I’m sorry, but in the good old"50’s, 40’s and even further back then that into the 19th century and beyond people have had sex outside of marriage, they have had abortions too. The only difference now is that it’s not done down dark alleys and can be observed and accounted for. People are no more morally degenerate than they were when Pius IX was still Pope back in the days of ultra-orthodoxy, they just aren’t compelled to hide it as a crime nowadays since it’s foolish to legislate against something you’ve no hope of ever managing to enforce effectively (and what happens in someones sex life is exactly that).

You can teach your children whatever values you like, but as history has proven time and time again some of them will not accept them, or only will after experimenting with alternatives. To think otherwise is pretty naive.

I’m all for strict parenting, but once there at this age there are limits. Morals cannot be forced upon older children, they might bow and mind all their p’s and Q’s but they’re just going to do it behind your back if they don’t buy it.

I honestly find the suggestion that the couple should be stalked quite disturbing, all thats going to do is cause a lot more resentment and deviancy as they plot to get their own way.

History has proven it time, and time again. There has never been a golden age of sexual restraint where all schoolchildren feared divine wrath. It’s a myth.

Ok, I guess I should say now seeing that source that I’m not an Athiest; I know my religion box doesn’t make that clear.

Secondly, that links quite misleading. Abstinence is a good deterrent against AIDS but again, suffers from the innocent naivety that people are actually going to not have sex. Considering the cultural climate of Africa where polygamous relationships are far more common than North America or Europe this is only more so.

I’m not quite sure where abortion fits into this, but it’s not so much the fact that the Church disapproves of Condom use, it’s the times when it claims that using a condom will give you AIDS or actually denies access to non-catholics who don’t care about the “sin” of it.

This is too wild and different a comparison to make. The child who attempts to rob a bank only brings down the wrath of the law upon himself, the child who sleeps around without protection potentially ruins the lives of his partners or could even result worst comes to worse in their death.

It’s not about them getting “caught”, it’s about not endangering the lives of other people.

There is no protection, it’s a false sense of security. Contraception is the reason one in four teenage girls in the US have an STD.

This video should help explain:

On the contrary…the increase use of contraception has helped spead aids and other diseases.

I’m not sure you understand humae vitae if you can’t understand this teaching. Perhaps theology of the body would help you further along.

Thank you for the link, I have watched it and considered the points it makes.

As somone who did do some teacher training recently, I have sat in on a few classes where safer-sex (Safe is as you say, being discareded in favor of the word safer to encourage teenagers to take more care) has been presented to a few different age ranges.

I don’t think anyone really has to worry if the school I was stationed at has anything to go by. The younger children at about 12-13 years were split up into gender divided groups and shown material that merely shared the basic terminology and purpose of various sexual parts, they were essentially told what a penis was, what semen is and the like. I wasn’t party to what the girls were told in that class but no-one has contraception, abortion, porn or homosexuality explained to them, never mind in detail. All in all I found it rather pointless, since most of the boys already knew exactly what everything was.

The older sample, a mixed group for 16 year olds were informed of how to use condoms, where to obtain the morning after pills, who they could contact if they were raped for STD testing and other services. None of them were shown pornography, and the fact was constantly stressed to them that none of these were fail safe protections, that they were wise precautions if they ever decided to have sex.

Children are more knowing about these things than we give them credit for, I think it better they are given the direct facts about what a healthy sexual organ should do or (god forbid) what the warning signs are for any diseases that could be gotten from sex, or possibly even develop on their own rather than relying on the media or here-say of freinds.

And bank robbery doesn’t endanger the lives of other people?

That is why I chose bank robbery. Because of what it does to other people. I have known bank managers that can no longer work. They are afraid to go outside. Their lives are changed forever. Suicide has been attempted. It is awful. All because someone wanted money that wasn’t theirs.

I do not personally know anyone, but certainly have heard about bank robbers that die. They are shot in the commission of the robbery. Or one of their co-conspirators shoots them. Or maybe they shoot someone else.

Either way, lives are changed forever.

So, back to the question. Since the child that wants to rob a bank, will do it with or without your help, would you buy them a ski mask? Since you know you aren’t going to stop them, they are going to do it regardless, why not?

There is a difference. Offering a ski mask to someone to rob a bank does not protect them from something bad. It protects them from something good - being caught early before they rob too many banks. Yes, you would want them to be caught rather than get away with it. But a condom reduces the damage that may be caused by the sin. Getting a girl pregnant outside of marriage or contracting an STD is not something anyone would call “good”.

What no one wants to talk about is the real motivation for denying condoms to sexual sinners. That is we hope that the fear of the increased consequences (which might have been prevented with a condom) will make the difference between deciding to sin and deciding not to sin. And to some extent this motivation has some validity. It is sort of like the reasoning that Nik Wallenda uses when he prefers to walk a tight rope without a safety harness. He reasons that the knowledge that a more serious consequence awaits him if he is not careful will cause him to be more careful than if a safety harness were in place. Well, the condom is like a safety harness. It limits (although not perfectly) some of the damage from the sin, but it does not alleviate the real damage from the sin, which is separation from God. Perhaps we don’t think that argument is good enough for young people. Perhaps we think we can be more persuasive in getting young people to refrain from sex if we can demonstrate more secular consequences to the sin. To that extent, we see condoms as undercutting our position.

Also there is the “message” argument. Providing condoms sends the wrong “message” by saying that we don’t really think these young people are going to avoid sex, and so we feel compelled to concede on that front and limit our concern to the purely secular consequences of the sin. So denying them condoms sends the “right” message. This argument has some validity too. However whenever we make a “message” argument, we have to weigh the cost of sending the right message. In this case that cost is statistically more people with STDs, if the message is ineffective. Of course if the message is effective, that might actually result in a reduction of STDs due to increased abstinence. Sometimes it is a tough call.

“train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it.” this is a quote from the old testament.

Condoms are silly. They give a false sense of security. There is no condom for the heart. When a young man bonds sexually on an emotional level with a young woman and they are not married someone is going to get hurt with a broken heart when they break up.

In addition, they are starting a viscious cycle of promiscuity that may last a lifetime and land them in a mental hospital for depression.

In the unlikely event they get married, statistics show they are more likely to divorce due to later marital unfaithfulness.

My advice is to get into Catholic therapist for family therapy to find out what is at the root of her son’s rebellion. God only reveals so he can heal…

Well, obviously I am not a scientist so I rely on others who have studies biology to confirm this for me but sexual transmitted diseases like syphilis are far less common today than they were many years ago (these results are apparently obtained from the survey of accounts from the historical past or from the examination of corpses).

The only reason it seems like the world has gone sexy crazy is purely because they don’t have to hide it anymore.

I’m yet to read the the full Theology of the body, but I think I have a fairly good grasp of the logic behind Humae Vitae and I just cannot agree with it, it seems to fly in the face of reality and basic rationality. I know his works aren’t very popular with Catholics since his Catholic Theology license was withdrawn but the (still validly ordained) Fr. Hans Kung makes a fairly compelling argument against the formulation of Humae Vitae in his book “Infallible”.

If you play with fire, your are likely to get burned.

I tried to explain to a friend that it is morally wrong (I 100% believe that it is gravely wrong), but she kept saying that if the kid is going to do it anyway, be proactive about it. I fail to understand why so many people do not understand how wrong this is. It bothers me. He is 16, and they have been dating for 4 months. I do not condone premarital sex whatsoever, but I just have so much pity on him. Why would he do such a thing.

Because all sins look good if their consequences are ignored.

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