NonCatholics & Contraception


#1

I was wondering if any non-catholics out there wouldn’t mind sharing what their denomination is and what their stance on contraception is as a church & personally. I only know the Catholic position and I’d like to know both sides.

If there is already a thread on this, feel free to direct me there. Thank you for sharing!


#2

As a former Episcopalian I can tell you we had no stance. It was never discussed.


#3

As a Non-Denominational/Unaffiliated Christian, I have no stance on Contraception.


#4

As a former Anabaptist (now a Catholic) I can say our church had no moral stand whatsoever on contraception --it was utterly a non-issue. The Church’s teaching, which I now heartily embrace, was extremely difficult for me to understand at first, not because I disagreed but because the whole idea that contraception was sinful was baffling…it was like hearing that taking aspirin or walking the dog was wrong. Mind you, I believed that premarital sex was wrong, as was adultery, masturbation, abortion, etc., etc…but I didn’t consider contraception part of the equation at the time.

It’s interesting to note, however, that up until about the 1930s, all major Protestant denomenations taught that contraception was evil…that proscription simply fell out of vogue.


#5

This is the position of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. I would guess that it is typical of protestant churches.

My own personal position is as follows:
Catholicism’s openness to procreation is a nice ideal. God created us a certain way, and it is usually best to follow God’s created order. However, it is a sad fact that human biology factors in such things as disease and a significant level of infant mortality. Our biology is tuned to a hard life of fighting for survival.

Modern medicine is a wonderful thing, but it creates a mismatch between the reality of our daily life and human biology. People who are blessed to live in modern civilization are healthier, more fertile, and many more infants survive. As a result, we have to be responsible with our sexuality. It would not be responsible for every family to have a dozen kids.

Furthermore, I think NFP and even marital abstinence (as a means of pregnancy avoidance) both thwart God’s created order just as much as artificial contraception. The goal is the same for all three, to avoid pregnancy.

In summary: The avoidance of pregnancy is necessary because we don’t live in our natural state as animials fighting for survival. We used the talents God gave us to create an ordered society. Part of living in that ordered society is using our biology responsibly. Pregancy avoidance is sometimes part of that. Artificial contraception is no more an evil method of accomplishing that than is NFP or marital abstinence.

note: when I say “pregnancy avoidance” I mean just that. Once a pregancy occurs there is a new life. Pregancy termination is evil.


#6

Hi all!

I’ll chime in with my $0.02.

Orthodox Judaism frowns on contraception. It is not generally permitted unless there is some overriding health concern (i.e. pregnancy would place the mother’s mental or physical health and/or life at risk); non-barrier methods are acceptable in such cases (barrier methods are not). An orthodox Jewish couple wishing to use birth control, for whatever reason, would have to ask their LOR (Local Orthodox Rabbi) for a ruling. There are grounds for some leniency (vis-a-vis a ruling on whether or not a given couple may use birth control) in cases unrelated to maternal health if the LOR is satisfied that the couple are committed to having children or if they already have children and wish/need to space births (or if having additional children would place undue hardship on the family). Since sexual relations outside of marriage is prohibited in (orthodox) Judaism, the use of birth control by unmarried individuals is not an issue. (The flipside of this is that orthodox Judaism has always encouraged early marriage.)

See jewishwomenshealth.org/Contraception.php?topic=1 for more details.

Howzat?

Be well!

ssv :wave:


#7

[quote=Angainor]
Furthermore, I think NFP and even marital abstinence (as a means of pregnancy avoidance) both thwart God’s created order just as much as artificial contraception. The goal is the same for all three, to avoid pregnancy.

[/quote]

Angainor,

I can appreciate your position that NFP and artificial birth control methods both have as the goal the avoidance of pregnancy. The difference between them, though, is that one avoids a certain activity at certain times while the other changes that activity. It is the difference between working within the rules to achieve your goal and working outside the rules to achieve your goal.

I might add that the Church also regards the use of NFP for the total avoidance of pregnancy to be sinful.

  • Liberian

#8

**I grew up a Methodist, was a Presbyterian for about sixteen years, then explored the Lutheran Church, as well as the Church fo Christ. We were also Episcopalian for a short time.

I NEVER heard a word concerning contraception or sterlizaion spoken in any of these churches. It was a non-
issue.
**


#9

In the Methodist and United Church of Christ churches that I attended, families were encouraged to work with God in determining the number of children they could responsibly provide for. Contraception was accepted as a means for doing this, much as medicine and other technology are accepted when used with good intention for loving means.

cheddar


#10

[quote=Angainor]This is the position of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. I would guess that it is typical of protestant churches.

My own personal position is as follows:
Catholicism’s openness to procreation is a nice ideal. God created us a certain way, and it is usually best to follow God’s created order. However, it is a sad fact that human biology factors in such things as disease and a significant level of infant mortality. Our biology is tuned to a hard life of fighting for survival.

Modern medicine is a wonderful thing, but it creates a mismatch between the reality of our daily life and human biology. People who are blessed to live in modern civilization are healthier, more fertile, and many more infants survive. As a result, we have to be responsible with our sexuality. It would not be responsible for every family to have a dozen kids.

Furthermore, I think NFP and even marital abstinence (as a means of pregnancy avoidance) both thwart God’s created order just as much as artificial contraception. The goal is the same for all three, to avoid pregnancy.

In summary: The avoidance of pregnancy is necessary because we don’t live in our natural state as animials fighting for survival. We used the talents God gave us to create an ordered society. Part of living in that ordered society is using our biology responsibly. Pregancy avoidance is sometimes part of that. Artificial contraception is no more an evil method of accomplishing that than is NFP or marital abstinence.

note: when I say “pregnancy avoidance” I mean just that. Once a pregancy occurs there is a new life. Pregancy termination is evil.
[/quote]

Actually, that is not entirely true. There is a difference between NFP and contraceptives. NFP can never be used as an abortificant, whereas many birth control means are actually abortificants. The way they work is that they prevent the egg from becoming fertilized or prevent the egg from implanting in the uterus after fertilization. some even cause the expulsion of the fertilized egg altogether. All of the above are impossible with NFP by the very nature of NFP. As to whether i NFP is used for the motive to entirely rule out pregnancy or not, some people do, yes. But NFP never causes abortion at any time.


#11

So… let me add this to my original question… if it is usually a non-issue (and some have shared their personal thoughts) If these denominations were faced with the issue: Artificial Hormones (the pill, patch, & shot) cause abortions (more per year than in a “medical” facility) how would they react, and would they change their mind? I know most are against abortion… so…?

Finally one thought on NFP… the ends never justify the means.


#12

[quote=Angainor]This is the position of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. I would guess that it is typical of protestant churches.

My own personal position is as follows:
Catholicism’s openness to procreation is a nice ideal. God created us a certain way, and it is usually best to follow God’s created order. However, it is a sad fact that human biology factors in such things as disease and a significant level of infant mortality. Our biology is tuned to a hard life of fighting for survival.

Modern medicine is a wonderful thing, but it creates a mismatch between the reality of our daily life and human biology. People who are blessed to live in modern civilization are healthier, more fertile, and many more infants survive. As a result, we have to be responsible with our sexuality. It would not be responsible for every family to have a dozen kids.

Furthermore, I think NFP and even marital abstinence (as a means of pregnancy avoidance) both thwart God’s created order just as much as artificial contraception. The goal is the same for all three, to avoid pregnancy.

In summary: The avoidance of pregnancy is necessary because we don’t live in our natural state as animials fighting for survival. We used the talents God gave us to create an ordered society. Part of living in that ordered society is using our biology responsibly. Pregancy avoidance is sometimes part of that. Artificial contraception is no more an evil method of accomplishing that than is NFP or marital abstinence.

note: when I say “pregnancy avoidance” I mean just that. Once a pregancy occurs there is a new life. Pregancy termination is evil.
[/quote]

So if NFP (and even marital abstinence???) is evil, then married couples could either have sex 3 or 4 times, or they could just have 100 children. Sex wasn’t only made to produce children.


#13

[quote=ImperialPhoenix]As a Non-Denominational/Unaffiliated Christian, I have no stance on Contraception.
[/quote]

Hi Mike!

I read your post script. Welcome! You have made a large leap(from agnosticism to Christianity) - that is great. I don’t know if you have an interest in the issue of contraception per se, but you did post and you do say you are searching for a home.
One thing you may find interesting is what the reformers thought about contraception. They weren’t indifferent. To my mind it would be hard to put my trust in a denomination started by someone who blatantly opposed what that denomination now teaches or fails to teach. Do ya get my drift? Just thought it might save you some time in your search for a home…heres the link from the CA homepage:
catholic.com/library/Birth_Control.asp

The apostolic tradition’s condemnation of contraception is so great that it was followed by Protestants until 1930 and was upheld by all key Protestant Reformers. Martin Luther said, “[T]he exceedingly foul deed of Onan, the basest of wretches . . . is a most disgraceful sin. It is far more atrocious than incest and adultery. We call it unchastity, yes, a sodomitic sin. For Onan goes in to her; that is, he lies with her and copulates, and when it comes to the point of insemination, spills the semen, lest the woman conceive. Surely at such a time the order of nature established by God in procreation should be followed. Accordingly, it was a most disgraceful crime. . . . Consequently, he deserved to be killed by God. He committed an evil deed. Therefore, God punished him.”

John Calvin said, “The voluntary spilling of semen outside of intercourse between man and woman is a monstrous thing. Deliberately to withdraw from coitus in order that semen may fall on the ground is doubly monstrous. For this is to extinguish the hope of the race and to kill before he is born the hoped-for offspring.”

John Wesley warned, “Those sins that dishonor the body are very displeasing to God, and the evidence of vile affections. Observe, the thing which he [Onan] did displeased the Lord—and it is to be feared; thousands, especially of single persons, by this very thing, still displease the Lord, and destroy their own souls.” (These passages are quoted in Charles D. Provan, The Bible and Birth Control, which contains many quotes by historic Protestant figures who recognize contraception’s evils.)

Phil


#14

[quote=Rand Al’Thor]So if NFP (and even marital abstinence???) is evil, then married couples could either have sex 3 or 4 times, or they could just have 100 children.

[/quote]

Hmmm. My guess is you are not very good at math and also not very good in biology. For example, you do realize that a woman cannot become pregnant while she is already pregnant don’t you? And you do realize that a pregnancy is about 9 months long? In addition, if a woman breastfeeds that can also delay ovulation for quite some time. My point? A couple could engage in sexual intercourse literally hundreds of times for each pregnancy without the risk of an additional pregnancy.

I agree, but how do we know this?

Phil


#15

Seventh-day adventists OK contraception.


#16

[quote=Philthy]Hmmm. My guess is you are not very good at math and also not very good in biology. For example, you do realize that a woman cannot become pregnant while she is already pregnant don’t you? And you do realize that a pregnancy is about 9 months long? In addition, if a woman breastfeeds that can also delay ovulation for quite some time. My point? A couple could engage in sexual intercourse literally hundreds of times for each pregnancy without the risk of an additional pregnancy.
[/quote]

That was sarcasm. I know a woman cannot have 100 children. It was an exageration in order to make a point. Hmmm. My guess is that you are not very good at percieving things.

[quote=Philthy]I agree, but how do we know this?

Phil
[/quote]

Because the Church teaches that it is an expression of the love between a husband and wife, and while it must be open to procreation, that is not its sole purpose.


#17

[quote=p.e.driver]So… let me add this to my original question… if it is usually a non-issue (and some have shared their personal thoughts) If these denominations were faced with the issue: Artificial Hormones (the pill, patch, & shot) cause abortions (more per year than in a “medical” facility) how would they react, and would they change their mind? I know most are against abortion… so…?

Finally one thought on NFP… the ends never justify the means.
[/quote]

Since you added this it 'jump started ’ my mind. Generally in all the churches ive been to if anything causes a fertilzed egg (a human) to get out of the mother ( an abortion) it is frowned upon, but condoms and stuff like that arent really discussed and premarital sex is wrong too.


#18

Most Eastern Orthodox churches are tolerant and approve of contraception as well now.


#19

The official United Methodist stance:

Responsible Parenthood

We affirm the principle of responsible parenthood. The family, in its varying forms, constitutes the primary focus of love, acceptance, and nurture, bringing fulfillment to parents and child. Healthful and whole personhood develops as one is loved, responds to love, and in that relationship comes to wholeness as a child of God.

Each couple has the right and the duty prayerfully and responsibly to control conception according to their circumstances. They are, in our view, free to use those means of birth control considered medically safe. As developing technologies have moved conception and reproduction more and more out of the category of a chance happening and more closely to the realm of responsible choice, the decision whether or not to give birth to children must include acceptance of the responsibility to provide for their mental, physical, and spiritual growth, as well as consideration of the possible effect on quality of life for family and society.

To support the sacred dimensions of personhood, all possible efforts should be made by parents and the community to ensure that each child enters the world with a healthy body and is born into an environment conducive to the realization of his or her full potential.

O+


#20

I would identify myself as an unaffiliated Christian. Up until recently I attended an evangelical church but I have started to go to our local Church of Christ of late (not to be confused with the United Churches of Christ). Anyway, I personally support the use of contraceptives in a marriage if that is what the couple wants. I do not agree with using means to kill a zygote because I believe that is equivalent to abortion.


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