Question 80


How do non-Catholics feel about contraception? 

 Contraception is not just a Catholic issue. Any thinking person would have problems with it for what it does to the individual, to the couple, to their relationship, to marriage and the family; and, in a broader sense, what it does to society. 

Consider the following statements: 

“Contraception is the one sin for which the penalty is national death, race death; a sin for which there is no atonement.” -- Theodore Roosevelt 

“The abandonment of the reproductive function is the common feature of all sexual perversions. We actually describe a sexual activity as perverse if it has given up the aim of reproduction and pursues the attainment of pleasure as an aim independent of it.” -- Sigmund Freud in Introductory Lectures in Psychoanalysis 

“Contraceptive methods are like putting a premium on vice. They make men and women reckless. Nature is relentless and will have full revenge for any such violation of her laws… If contraceptive methods become the order of the day, nothing but moral degradation can be the result. As it is, man has sufficiently degraded woman for his lust, and contraception, no matter how well meaning the advocates may be, will still further degrade her.” 

-- Mahatma Gandhi 

“By accepting contraception, the world is trying to form a civilized but non-Christian mentality. The experiment will fail, but we must be very patient in waiting its collapse; meanwhile redeeming the time so that the Faith may be preserved alive through the dark ages before us, to renew and rebuild civilization and save the world from suicide.” -- T.S. Elliot in Thoughts after Lambeth (1931) 

The questions we must ask ourselves are: why is the world rushing to the alluring left, when our great leaders are walking confidently to the right? Who has reshaped our thinking, so that what was once so obvious is now so far from being obvious? Is there money involved? Then follow the money trail. Is self-control and self-mastery difficult to acquire? Then be very suspicious of those who encourage us to yield to our lusts and sexual appetites. Has God’s plan for marriage and spousal love changed? If not, then how did we depart so far away from it? 

“The sexual urge is a vector of aspiration along which our whole existence develops and perfects itself from within.” -- Pope John Paul II in Love and Responsibility 

“I know that couples have to plan their family and for that there is natural family planning. The way to plan the family is natural family planning, not contraception. In destroying the power of giving life, through contraception, a husband or wife is doing something to self. This turns the attention to self and so it destroys the gift of love in him or her. In loving, the husband and wife must turn the attention to each other as happens in natural family planning, and not to self, as happens in contraception. Once that living love is destroyed by contraception, abortion follows very easily.” -- Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta at the National Prayer Breakfast, sponsored by the U.S. Senate and House of representatives on 3 Feb 1994

Cordially yours, 
Fr. Matthew Habiger OSB