Contraception...Why is it considered sinful?

Which is still interfering with the normal process.

Its not all financial sacrifices made by having more kids. There are many reasons a couple would rather not have ten kids. I’ve honestly heard often many many kids isn’t healthier for the parents not for the children psychologically. I come from a large family and know many large families and honestly I don’t want that for my kids. I’d love to give my kids a few siblings but 8 or 10? Never. Sex will evening lead to kids if done when fertile. I’m not going to just “leave it to Divine Providence”. Nor are there any rational arguments based on natural law. Not even ones based on the Bible. Just arguments based on what the Catechism says and telling me we have to follow it. Because you believe everything the Church teaches is directly from God. It’s a belief and there is no way to know it’s true on this Earth.

1 Like

Then don’t have ten kids. Don’t have 2 if you can’t handle them.

You have so many misconceptions on Catholic sexuality.
NFP=natural family PLANNING

The Church encourages couples to do what God created us for: use our rationality to make good decisions and lead well ordered lives.

Do you believe that God gives human beings free will?
Do you believe that God gives us the power of reason?
Do you believe it pleases God when couples use the virtues of wisdom, prudence, patience, to plan a family?

God did not create us as un-reasoned animals. Animals act on instinct. They eat according to their instinct, without reason. They mate according to their instinct, without reason.
Human beings are left by God in the power of our own counsel, to deliberate, discern, us the power of reason to govern passions and instincts, and plan well ordered lives.

God created man a rational being, conferring on him the dignity of a person who can initiate and control his own actions. "God willed that man should be ‘left in the hand of his own counsel,’ so that he might of his own accord seek his Creator and freely attain his full and blessed perfection by cleaving to him."26

Man is rational and therefore like God; he is created with free will and is master over his acts.27

http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p3s1c1a3.htm

Just going to pitch in here. But you’re right, there is no reason a couple would want to have a lot of kids. Nobody is advocating for people to have 10 kids if it’s not within your means, so not sure where that’s really coming from here. And if you don’t want the risk of kids, don’t have sex. It’s really that simple. No method, contraception (which is a mortal sin), nor NFP exists (With the exception of surgical methods) 100% guarantees you will not get someone pregnant. So the only option if that’s what you’re seriously worried about, is abstinence to live a life of Chasity. And to my knowledge, nobody here has tried to argue that “everything,” the church teaches is directly from God. I think this may just be a misconception you may be holding about the church, which I know for a fact is prevalent in a lot of protestant circles of Christianity, so I would check your bias on that if that’s where that line is coming from. And the last note here of “there is no way to know it’s true on this earth,” if you truly believe that then you don’t believe in objective reality of truth at all and seem to be very sympathetic to the idea of moral relativism. And that is self-defeating in itself, for reasons too long to get into here. Simply put though, if you can’t know what’s true or not, then nothing can objectively be wrong in any sense regardless of how gruesome, cruel, upsetting, revolting, etc that it is. And just because we may feel good or don’t understand why a rule exist, doesn’t mean the rule is necessarily wrong or ill-informed. You just gotta work at understanding it.

The immorality of contraception does not depend upon whether it is “natural“ or “artificial“ nor whether it is hormonal or barrier or what have you.

The Church doesn’t teach that we must have any certain number of children.

Then don’t.

The Church doesn’t ask you to. Providentialism is not Church teaching.

You’ve ignored all of them. Doesn’t mean they don’t exist.

5 Likes

Yes.
Just to reinforce:
the confusion here isn’t one of sexual prohibitions, it’s a misunderstanding of man’s standing with God regarding the use of freedom and reason. That use of freedom is evaluated morally.

http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p3s1c1a3.htm
(sorry for the repeat, but it is worth it)

SECTION ONE
MAN’S VOCATION LIFE IN THE SPIRIT

CHAPTER ONE
THE DIGNITY OF THE HUMAN PERSON

ARTICLE 3
MAN’S FREEDOM

[1730] God created man a rational being, conferring on him the dignity of a person who can initiate and control his own actions. "God willed that man should be ‘left in the hand of his own counsel,’ so that he might of his own accord seek his Creator and freely attain his full and blessed perfection by cleaving to him."26

Man is rational and therefore like God; he is created with free will and is master over his acts.27

I. FREEDOM AND RESPONSIBILITY

[1731] Freedom is the power, rooted in reason and will, to act or not to act, to do this or that, and so to perform deliberate actions on one’s own responsibility. By free will one shapes one’s own life. Human freedom is a force for growth and maturity in truth and goodness; it attains its perfection when directed toward God, our beatitude.

[1732] As long as freedom has not bound itself definitively to its ultimate good which is God, there is the possibility of choosing between good and evil , and thus of growing in perfection or of failing and sinning. This freedom characterizes properly human acts. It is the basis of praise or blame, merit or reproach.

[1733] The more one does what is good, the freer one becomes. There is no true freedom except in the service of what is good and just. The choice to disobey and do evil is an abuse of freedom and leads to "the slavery of sin."28

[1734] Freedom makes man responsible for his acts to the extent that they are voluntary. Progress in virtue, knowledge of the good, and ascesis enhance the mastery of the will over its acts.

This is the foundation of the Church’s moral teaching. Couples planning their families work within this framework of true human freedom.

You know what you’re missing? There is what is known as “intrinsic” purposes. Intrinsic means, by its very nature. The intrinsic purpose of sex is twofold: life-giving and love-giving. Sex is “the” way in which we create children. And there is a correct way to use it, and an incorrect way to use it. Would you rather orient your ways according to the purpose of God or away from it? What the church teaches is not some made-up decree by a celibate guy in Rome, it is what God intended.

My wife and I used the Billings Ovulation method successfully for many years. Does it take patience? Absolutely. Does it require periodic abstinence? Absolutely. Does it require you to contain your animal instincts? Absolutely. Is it 100% effective? Nearly. The great advantage of NFP is the joy it brings to a marriage. It retains the dignity of spouses - so they are treated as not merely ends for gratification.

We have three lovely children. Because of my wife’s meticulous charting of her fertility, we conceived easily. Our children were not “oppps’s.” Our children are a blessing.

I’ve hear all sorts of opposition to NFP because of irregular cycles or ovulation. These are irrelevant. Are you according your life to God’s plan or your own?

2 Likes

I had a neighbor who is now 80 something. She and her husband had 7 children. Now that she is older and her husband has passed, I get to see the other side of having 7 kids. Her kids have all married and had families of their own and the grandchildren are adults.

I’ve sat at her place for a visit, and there is always flowers on her table, food in her fridge. Her grass is cut and snow removed by grandsons. When she had a car someone took it for maintenance. She told me one of her sons took her car in and put on new tires. She never worries about how to get to her appointments and there is no shortage of options for birthday celebrations and other special events.

The kids grew up learning how to be good to each other, how to take care of each other. I did not have this treasure growing up and I loved that they were such a wonderful loving witness to me. What a blessing. We need more of that witness to family life and love.

5 Likes

Through the centuries of mankind there were a lot of people who never got to see their 20th birthday.
We seem to think we’ll live forever and when we get to the end of our long life, then we’ll maybe say some prayers and make a connection with God. How we live today is ours to choose! and death is far from us.

Our choices today matter. Do you want to take God’s hand and walk with him? Lots of people had the benefit of growing up in a Catholic home but when it came to their teen years they decided they didn’t need God any more. When we are connected with God, we impact the world for good. We can change the course of human history together. There is a bigger picture here. Don’t miss out on it. At the end of the ‘big game’, the winning team goes off in celebration and the doors close behind them. Don’t be on the wrong side looking at the shut door.

2 Likes

You reminded me of a family in my old parish that had a bunch of kids. They had 4 foster kids at their place too.

During mass the oldest brother took his youngest brother to the bathroom.
You know what a shock that was to me? I had an older brother who tormented me and never was taught to be kind to me who was younger, smaller, and a girl.

When I told people what a witness this was to me, a witness of love and service, you know how many moms asked me for his name so he could date their daughter? He is like a rock star. lol

My guess is that you don’t know what it’s like to be in a family like that. I had no clue. Thank you to the Catholic families and the witness you are to the world.

2 Likes

We used the Creighton NFP method for many years. We also have three amazing children. I can’t say enough good about it. I was so aware of where she was at in her cycle - we shared the burden and miracle of her fertility. At first she was convinced she would be the one person who would not be able to use the method or notice the signs, but she mastered it with little trouble. It is a beautiful embracing of all that a woman is, rather than expecting her to chemically alter her hormones, which is a rejection of how God has made her. And it sends a profoundly unselfish message of “I love you” when you abstain during the fertile days each month. There’s more good here than meets the eye.

4 Likes

Reposting this with permission from Borghesius:

The collapse of marital health and morality since the widespread use of contraceptives in the twentieth century, especially the pill, is a direct contradiction of your statement. You have a hypothesis that is contradicted by reality.

What contraception does is to transform sex from a natural creative act to a selfish act, using the other for the mere purpose of gratification (even if it is a mutually agreed upon gratification). It turns the other from a person to be loved to an object to be used. This ends up weakening the unitive relationship: if sex is used for gratification, then the question becomes “can somebdoy else do it better?” If children and family aren’t an integral part, why should it be restricted to marriage? Why should it be restricted to opposite sex couples? the answers to these become arbitrary.

And the divorce / broken family epidemic is the evident result.
And the collapse of religious denominations that accept (formally or informally) contraception is also an evident result.

We can apply biblical principles to modern technology/pharmacology.

2 Likes

My late mother was the 7th of 9 children. My late father was the youngest of 5 children. He was what you’d call a surprise baby (there was 7 years’ difference between him and my uncle who was the youngest until Dad was born). St. Catherine of Siena was the 24th of 25 children.

If the parents of St. Catherine had stopped having children and said “oh well, we have 2 children; that’s enough”, the Church, the world and Heaven would have been deprived of a great Saint.

If either my paternal or maternal grandparents had stopped having children earlier, I wouldn’t have my aunts & uncles, my siblings & I wouldn’t be here and I wouldn’t be posting this today.

I have 2 nieces and one nephew who is an only child. Honestly, I feel sorry for him. I may not always see eye to eye with my siblings but at least I have them. Otherwise, I’d be worse off.

I can’t have children. My nieces are for lack of a better term “my” children. My late parents and I baby-sat them. I changed their diapers, fed them, took care of them when my sister had to work. I saw my first-born niece take her first steps. She taught me more about perseverance than I could ever read in a book. Every time I’m tempted to give up, I think of how she took her first steps. (And I told her so recently - she’s now in college.)

I have to stop now - I need to get some tissues because I’m crying so hard.

I understand that. My mom is one of 11 and my dad one of 6. I am the eldest of 10. I am pretty sure some of those pregnancies were accidents due to NFP not working the way people say it does. I love them all and would never want to send them back but I see the downsides of having a large family and I don’t think it’s worth it. I think it has caused more problems than good. It’s just not possible to give each child enough individual parental attention with that many. And much of the responsibility falls on the older children which while it can be a nice lesson and a reasonable amount of chores at home is good, is not the older children’s responsibility to do some of the child rearing for parents who had more kids than they could take care of through their own fault. I love children and would love to have my own and give them siblings but I want a better family and home life for them. And I want to be able to get to know each one of them and spend time with each one and be truly present in their lives

1 Like

It’s a lot healthier than contraception or abortion! :confounded:

Contraception in any form 1) offends God, 2) hurts one’s husband/wife (& others who are in adulterous relationships), and 3) screws up one’s body.

The late Dr. John Willke published a book called A Consumer’s Guide to the Pill and Other Drugs.
It’s an eye-opener on the various forms of contraception.

Years ago, a doctor came to our health food store to give a lecture on hormone imbalances. (I’m not giving her name for personal reasons.) Among other things, she talked about the damage that contraception does to the body. One of the fallacies she dispelled was the practice of giving women birth control pills to regulate the menstrual cycle. The damage that does to a woman’s body far outweighs the supposed benefit of regulating the menstrual cycle.

We had 100+ people - men as well as women - for this lecture. I wish we still had the tape of it but unfortunately we don’t.

Why take exception with NFP? As I have said hundreds of times, we used Billings faithfully and never once had a surprise. Each child was wanted.

I do believe however that because NFP couples are open to life, they end up having more children.

One final thought, people often critique NFP because of a supposed high failure rate. But the consequence of contracepting couples is often abortion. Life is always better than abortion.

I know people who have used NFP and had u planned pregnancies. Sometimes their body’s signs we’re not clear and even with extensive tracking and trying different methods they could not prevent pregnancy that way

1 Like

I know people who use contraception and have unplanned pregnancies. Don’t see why it’s relevant that NFP fails sometimes.

1 Like

According to most studies you are much more likely to get pregnant when using NFP than other methods of contraception

1 Like
DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.