Wednesday 17th July 2019

Home » Our Catholic Faith » Currently Reading:

Catholic Replies

July 27, 2018 Our Catholic Faith No Comments

Editor’s Note: If truth is stranger than fiction, as someone once said, it is also true that truth can be embedded in fiction. Take, for example, Brad Thor’s spy thriller The Apostle. Covert agent Scot Harvath is in Afghanistan to rescue an America doctor who is being held captive by the Taliban.
While approaching a remote village guarded by Taliban men with AK-47 weapons slung over their shoulders, Harvath thought how foolish it was to want to afford these men “all of the protections due signers of the Geneva and Hague conventions. Forget the fact that idiots like the Taliban weren’t signers of either Geneva or Hague, refused to appear on the battlefield wearing even so much as an armband to identify themselves as honorable combatants, and wreaked untold misery upon civilian populations — the major group the conventions were designed to protect.
“Harvath just couldn’t understand the liberal mindset. He was convinced that they believed deeply in what they said and what they did; his only problem was that it so often flew in the face of reality. They continually focused their rage on their protectors rather than their enemy. They denigrated their country, believing it was the source of all evil in the world.
“The truth was, when it came to Islam, it had been violent since its inception. Its clearly stated goal was worldwide conquest. It was a mandate handed down in all its religious texts. And while Harvath believed there were peaceful and moderate Muslims, he knew from studying the religion that there was no such thing as peaceful and moderate Islam” (p. 297).

Q. As we mark the 50th anniversary of Humanae Vitae, I seem to recall that Pope Paul VI was not breaking new ground in 1968 when he reaffirmed the Church’s ban on contraception. Hadn’t that ban been in effect for centuries? — T.L.H., Massachusetts.
A. Yes, it had. In fact, the Church’s opposition to artificial methods of birth control goes all the way back to the first century, when the Didache, a collection of apostolic teachings, said that “you shall not use potions” to prevent the conception of a child.
In the fifth century, St. Augustine said that “intercourse even with one’s legitimate wife is unlawful and wicked where the conception of the offspring is prevented. Onan, the son of Judah, did this and the Lord killed him for it [cf. Gen. 38:10].” A similar position was taken by St. Thomas Aquinas in the thirteenth century and in the sixteenth century by Protestant leaders Martin Luther and John Calvin.
In fact, all Christian churches unanimously opposed contraception until 1930, when the Anglican Church of England, at its bishops’ Lambeth Conference, approved contraception “in those cases where there is such a clearly felt moral obligation to limit or avoid parenthood, and where there is a morally sound reason for avoiding complete abstinence.”
This break with longstanding Christian tradition was quickly addressed by Pope Pius XI, who wrote in the encyclical Casti Connubii:
“Any use whatsoever of matrimony exercised in such a way that the act is deliberately frustrated in its natural power to generate life is an offense against the law of God and of nature, and those who indulge in such are branded with the guilt of a grave sin” (n. 56).
When the Federal Council of Churches (USA) some months later endorsed “the careful and restrained use of contraceptives by married people,” they were criticized by other Christians and, interestingly, by a secular source, The Washington Post, which editorialized on March 22, 1931, that the FCC’s recommendation, “if carried into effect, would sound the death knell of marriage as a holy institution by establishing degrading practices which would encourage indiscriminate immorality.”
Pope Paul VI would echo this concern in 1968.
The Catholic Church’s prohibition of contraception was reaffirmed by Pope Pius XII in 1951, when he told a group of Italian midwives that “any attempt on the part of married people to deprive this [marital] act of its inherent force and to impede the procreation of new life, either in the performance of the act itself, or in the course of the development of its natural consequences, is immoral, and no alleged ‘indication’ or need can convert an intrinsically immoral act into a moral and lawful one.”
He said that “this precept is as valid today as it was yesterday, and it will be the same tomorrow and always because it does not imply a precept of the human law but is the expression of a law which is natural and divine.”
In his 1961 encyclical Mater et Magistra, St. John XXIII said that the passing on of human life “should be done in accord with the most sacred, permanent, inviolate prescriptions of God. Everyone without exception is bound to recognize and observe these laws. Wherefore, in this matter, no one is permitted to use methods and procedures which may indeed be permissible to check the life of plants and animals” (n. 193).
The Holy Father said that while “the provident God has bestowed upon humanity sufficient goods wherewith to bear the dignity of the burdens associated with procreation of children, this task will be difficult or even impossible if men, straying from the right road and with a perverse outlook, use the means mentioned above in a manner contrary to human reason or to their social nature and, hence, contrary to the directives of God himself” (n. 199).
In its 1965 Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World (nn. 47-52), the Second Vatican Council said that “marriage and conjugal love are by their nature ordained to the begetting and educating of children. Children are really the supreme gift of marriage and contribute very substantially to the welfare of their parents.”
The council said that married couples must be “ready with stout hearts to cooperate with the love of the Creator and the Savior, who through them will enlarge and enrich His own family day by day.”
But in their manner of acting, the council continued, “spouses should be aware that they cannot act arbitrarily. They must always be governed according to a conscience dutifully conformed to the divine law itself, and should be submissive to the Church’s teaching office, which authentically interprets that law in the light of the gospel.”
Therefore, the council said that “when there is a question of harmonizing conjugal love with the responsible transmission of life, the moral aspect of any procedure does not depend solely on sincere intentions or on an evaluation of motives. It must be determined by objective standards….Relying on these principles, sons of the Church may not undertake methods of regulating procreation which are found blameworthy by the teaching authority of the Church and its unfolding of the divine law.”
A footnote to this paragraph cited both Pius XI in Casti Connubii and Pius XII in his1951 address to Italian midwives.
So Blessed Paul VI was on solid ground when, on July 25, 1968, he restated the Church’s unbroken tradition on the immorality of contraception by stating that “each and every marriage act must remain open to the transmission of life” (n. 11).
Even though a majority of a 60-member commission originally convened by John XXIII and enlarged by Paul VI to study this question had recommended a change in the teaching, the Holy Father ruled out “every action which, either in anticipation of the conjugal act, or in its accomplishment, or in the development of its natural consequences, proposes, whether as an end or as a means, to render procreation impossible” (n. 14).
Blessed Paul also issued a prophetic warning that the spread of contraception throughout society would lead to “conjugal infidelity and the general lowering of morality”; loss of respect for the woman whereby men, “no longer caring for her physical and psychological equilibrium, may come to the point of considering her as a mere instrument of selfish enjoyment, and no longer as his respected and beloved companion”; and a “dangerous weapon” in the hands of governments, which would impose on peoples “the method of contraception which they judge to be most efficacious” (n. 17).
Paul VI was excoriated for his courageous encyclical, but all of his warnings have come true with a vengeance in the past half-century. This brave Pontiff will soon be elevated to sainthood and, fittingly, the two approved miracles for his canonization involved the healing of unborn children, one in California in 1990 and the other in Italy in 2014. Both mothers refused abortions and entrusted their babies to Pope Paul. Both were born healthy.
Blessed Paul VI, pray that all married couples may be open to the transmission of life.

Share Button

2019 The Wanderer Printing Co.

Twitter Feed

"If men only know what awaits them in eternity they would do everything in their power to change their lives."
St Jacinta of Fatima

Has The Church Been Infiltrated?… And If So, By Whom? @TaylorRMarshall https://t.co/wvpa2x3kD0

Load More...

Tucker Carlson: big business is now at war against your family

July 15, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – The first thing to note about Tucker Carlson is that when he’s on stage and riffing on his irritations, he is hilarious. He began his keynote speech at the National Conservatism conference in Washington, D.C. on Monday…Continue Reading

Teacher sues Catholic school for firing her over pro-abortion posts on social media

BERKELEY COUNTY, South Carolina, July 10, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – A former teacher filed a wrongful termination suit against a South Carolina Catholic school that fired her for championing legal abortion on social media in violation of long-settled, well-known Catholic doctrine.…Continue Reading

Bombshell Claim: Scientists Find “Man-made Climate Change Doesn’t Exist In Practice”

A new scientific study could bust wide open deeply flawed fundamental assumptions underlying controversial climate legislation and initiatives such as the Green New Deal, namely, the degree to which ‘climate change’ is driven by natural phenomena vs. man-made issues measured as…Continue Reading

Cineplex explains decision to screen Abby Johnson’s ‘Unplanned’ in Canada

July 8, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – The pro-life film Unplanned, which tells the true story of pro-life activist Abby Johnson’s conversion from the abortion industry, will be shown in Canada after all thanks to a decision by film distributor Cineplex. Unplanned tells the…Continue Reading

Viganò criticizes Pope Francis’ handling of abuse allegations

Vatican City, Jul 5, 2019 / 02:47 pm (CNA).- Recently published remarks from Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano take aim at two situations described by the former nuncio as “allegations of offenses against minors during Pope Francis’ tenure.” In fact, in…Continue Reading

U.S. Bishops Approve the Pope’s Capital Punishment Ban

Sæva indignatio. Few writers in the history of English letters could express “savage indignation” at human folly as did Jonathan Swift who wrote those words for his own epitaph. Our times give ample opportunity to empathize with him, and that is…Continue Reading

Due to backlash, Pell to live in ‘secure compound’ if appeal succeeds

Sydney, Australia, Jun 25, 2019 / 12:03 am (CNA).- While Cardinal George Pell of Australia is appealing his sexual abuse conviction in court, he and his supporters are making arrangements for a “safe hideaway” for the cleric, should his conviction…Continue Reading

Forced abortion decision overturned on appeal, according to reports

London, England, Jun 24, 2019 / 11:03 am (CNA).- A controversial UK court decision to force a disabled woman to have an abortion has been overturned on appeal. In a decision reportedly reached June 24, the English Court of Appeal, consisting…Continue Reading

Rosary Rally in Reparation for Homosexual and Transgender Grooming of Kids in “Drag Queen Story Hour” at Public Library in Md

A small group ranging from ten to 15 LGBTQ-obedient bots danced and played loud gay anthems like “YMCA” and “We are Family”, and holding a sign which read “Toleration is Godly”, sequestered behind yellow tape on one side of the…Continue Reading

Catholic Rosary Rally Sunday to Protest Maryland Drag Queen Story Time for Kids

Personhood Maryland is asking pro-life Christians to gather at the Lexington Park Library for a peaceful prayer vigil on Sunday, June 23rd from 3:30-5:30 pm Eastern to stand against the Drag Queen Story Hour (DQSH) and Drag 101 event scheduled…Continue Reading

Supreme Court rules WW1 Peace Cross memorial is here to stay

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 20, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 7 to 2 this morning in favor of a nearly 100-year-old World War I memorial in Bladensburg, Maryland, known as the “Peace Cross,” allowing it to remain standing.…Continue Reading

Vatican’s doctrinal office expected to release document on gender theory

Vatican City, Jun 14, 2019 / 12:00 pm (CNA).- The Vatican’s doctrinal office is preparing a document which will address Church teaching and the anthropology of the human person in the context of so-called gender theory, according to a Vatican…Continue Reading

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for 150 years in our weekly print edition.


  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to su
bscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
 
  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 150 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.
 
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

Interview With Cardinal Burke . . . Discriminating Mercy: Defending Christ And His Church With True Love

Cburke3

  By DON FIER (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta and Founder of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, Wis., graciously took time out of his busy schedule to grant The Wanderer a wide-ranging interview during a recent visit to the Shrine. Included among the topics…Continue Reading

Developing Lives Of Peace After The Heart Of Mary

By RAYMOND LEO CARDINAL BURKE (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke delivered the address below at the 32nd Annual Church Teaches Forum, “The Message of Fatima: Peace for the World,” Galt House, Louisville, Ky., July 22, 2017. The address is reprinted here with the kind permission of Cardinal Burke. All rights reserved. This is part one of the…Continue Reading

Catechism

Today . . .

Vatican’s former doctrine head criticizes Amazon synod working doc for ‘false teaching’

July 16, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – The cardinal who was tasked by Pope Benedict with defending the doctrine of the Catholic Church has criticized the Pan-Amazon Synod’s working document (Instrumentum Laboris) for its “radical u-turn in the hermeneutics of Catholic theology” and for its “false teaching.” Cardinal Gerhard Müller, former Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF), said the “main problem” with the working document is that “key terms are not being clarified.” His statement…Continue Reading

2 priests, 2 pro-life activists arrested trying to save babies inside New Jersey abortion center

MORRISTOWN, New Jersey, July 13, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — Two Catholic priests and two lay pro-life activists were arrested this morning for entering and refusing to leave an abortion facility, offering red roses to the women inside and encouraging them to choose life. At least one woman turned away and didn’t go through with an abortion, Red Rose Rescue spokeswoman Lisa Hart told LifeSiteNews. The woman’s mother was forcing her to have the abortion.

Vincent Lambert, France’s Terri Schiavo, dies after 9 days without food and water

July 11, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Vincent Lambert, the disabled man a court ordered to be starved to death in a French hospital, died this morning. After nine days without food and fluids, showing a remarkable will to live despite the cruel death of thirst that doctors had prepared for him, France’s Terri Schiavo departed from this earthly life at 8:24 a.m. on Thursday, July 11. He died of heart failure induced by the malfunction of his kidneys…Continue Reading

Cdl. Zen warns Pope Francis that Vatican directives for China church may lead to ‘death of true faith’

HONG KONG, July 5, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – The Bishop Emeritus of Hong Kong has spoken out forcefully against the Vatican’s newest “pastoral document” for the Chinese Church which gives reasons for why priests should register with the communist government. Cardinal Joseph Zen presented nine criticisms to Pope Francis and Cardinal Pietro

Archbishop Fulton Sheen to be beatified

Vatican City, Jul 6, 2019 / 04:00 am (CNA).- Pope Francis approved the miracle attributed to Archbishop Fulton Sheen Friday, making possible the American television catechist’s beatification. The Vatican Congregation for the Causes of Saints promulgated the decree approving Sheen’s miracle on July 6. The miracle involves the unexplained recovery of James Fulton Engstrom, a boy born apparently stillborn in September 2010 to Bonnie and Travis Engstrom of the Peoria-area town of Goodfield. He showed no…Continue Reading

Advertisement(2)

Archbishop Sheen To Be Beatified

By COURTNEY GROGAN VATICAN CITY (CNA) — Pope Francis approved the miracle attributed to Archbishop Fulton Sheen on July 5, making possible the American television catechist’s beatification. The Congregation for the Causes of Saints promulgated the decree approving Sheen’s miracle on July 6. The miracle involves the unexplained recovery of James Fulton Engstrom, a boy born…Continue Reading

California Confessional Bill Withdrawn… Thanks To All For A Smashing Victory

By BILL DONOHUE (Editor’s Note: Catholic League President Bill Donohue commented July 9 on the final outcome of the California confessional bill.) + + + The seal of Confession is safe in California. The bill to bust it has been pulled. Yesterday, [July 8] on the eve of a scheduled hearing on SB 360, California…Continue Reading

Looking For Light In A World Of Shadows

By DONALD DeMARCO Nothing is random in the light of eternity and when viewed in this way, everything makes sense. To God, there are no accidents. Even forgetfulness can be an occasion of grace, a moment when we find light in a darkened world. There were distractions that might have made my forgetfulness explainable that…Continue Reading

Trump’s Patriotism Vs. The New Anti-Americanism

By PATRICK J. BUCHANAN Despite all the grousing and griping about his “politicizing” of the Fourth of July and “militarizing” America’s birthday, President Donald Trump turned the tables on his antagonists, and pulled it off. As master of ceremonies and keynote speaker at his “Salute to America” Independence Day event, Trump was a manifest success.…Continue Reading

Analysis . . . New Vatican Constitution To Centralize Power In State Secretariat

By ED CONDON VATICAN CITY (CNA) — At the end of June, Bishop Marcello Semeraro, secretary of the Pope’s C6 Council of Cardinal Advisers, announced that the group hoped to present Francis with a final draft of a new Vatican constitution in September. Praedicate Evangelium, as the new governing document for the Roman Curia is…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Serve Others With Charity

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Sixteenth Sunday In Ordinary Time (YR C) Readings: Gen. 18:1-10a Col. 1:24-28 Luke 10:38-42 In the Gospel reading today, we hear about Martha welcoming Jesus and serving Him. Martha became burdened with the task of serving and asked the Lord if He did not care that Mary, her sister who was sitting at the feet of…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World . . . Sexual Immorality Begins With Teaching Failures

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK “For the lips of a priest should guard knowledge, and men should seek instruction from his mouth, for he is the messenger of the Lord of hosts. “But you have turned aside from the way; you have caused many to stumble by your instruction; you have corrupted the covenant of Levi, says the Lord of…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Editor’s Note: Answering a question in a recent column about the meaning of “Jesuitical,” we said that it can mean “dissembling or equivocating, in the manner associated with Jesuits.” We cited as an example of an attempt to skirt around some clear moral teaching of the Church a 2017 comment by the superior general of the Society of Jesus. When…Continue Reading

Before And After the Pill . . . Its Redefinition Of Human Sexuality And Impact On Society

By FR. SHENAN J. BOQUET (Editor’s Note: Fr. Shenan Boquet is the president of Human Life International. He travels around the world spreading the Gospel of Life. Fr. Boquet was ordained in 1993 and is a priest of the Houma-Thibodaux Diocese in Louisiana, his home state, where he served before joining HLI in August 2011. (This commentary first appeared July…Continue Reading

Love God And Love Neighbor

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Fifteenth Sunday In Ordinary Time (YR C) Readings: Deut. 30:10-14 Col. 1:15-20 Luke 10:25-37 Toward the end of the Book of Deuteronomy, Moses pleads with the people of Israel: “If only you would heed the voice of the Lord your God….” It was the failure of the people to follow the Commandments of the Lord that…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . Sts. Louis And Azelie-Marie Guerin Martin

By CAROLE BRESLIN The Lord sends the Church the men and women who are needed to keep her holy in times of trouble. Among these are: St. Francis of Assisi, St. John of the Cross, St. Ignatius of Loyola, St. Faustina, and the first married couple ever to be canonized together: Louis and Azelie-Marie (Zelie) Martin. Their feast day is…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Nazaria March y Mesa

By CAROLE BRESLIN Throughout the 2,000-year history of the Church, there have been periods of great conversions followed by a waning of the faith among future generations. After the initial persecution of the Church during the few hundred years following Christ’s crucifixion and death, the Church grew rapidly. In Latin America, the Catholic Church expanded rapidly after the appearance of…Continue Reading