Sunday, December 3, 2017


Why would Matt Lauer, the senators and representatives and media moguls expect women to put out for them?

Of course it has always happened, but I think there has been a sea change since the Hugh Hefner inspired sexual revolution of the 1950's.  Yes, wasn't the Playboy mentality touted by those in the media as a release from Victorian and Catholic and Christian (and Muslim) outdated sexual repression? Wasn't free love the mantra of the hippie movement in the 1960's. Have television shows and the movies glorified one night stands, casual sex and the like.

I cannot tell you how many women have told me that if they go on a date with a man, the man expects sex on that first date. Don't teenagers hook up casually and boys expect all kinds of sexual favors from girls apart from sexual intercourse?  Is this seen as perverse and a form of abuse?

And didn't Pope Paul VI tell us that this kind of thing would happen, that men would lose respect for women when the power of pro-creation was removed from the sex act, in marriage and outside of marriage?

Perhaps the most under reported news is how husbands sexually abuse their wives now that they don't have to worry about sex leading to pregnancy. Sex detached from pro-creation become a monster.

And haven't women lost respect for men too and bought into the culture of being as sexually provocative as can be around men? Isn't there a crass sexual component to the fatten lips that women seek with Botox injections?

Very telling  was an interview with Meredith Viera on her own talk show after she left the Today Show. Matt Lauer and another female co-host of the Today Show spoke about a bag of sex toys Matt had and they were so giddy and making light of it on the show.  The audience roared with laughter especially when Matt said that all of them had gotten a bag of sex toys as gifts.

Can adult women have it both ways, be seductive around men and then complain when men expect what they are flaunting? Shouldn't there be some virtus type training to create an safe environment for women so that men don't take advantage of them and ways to report predatory behavior by both men and women as it concerns a desire for sex from those they work with?

Yes, Matt Lauer and others like him are the problem but only the symptom. When will the real cancer be rooted out? The contraceptive and abortion mentality of the Democrats as well as the Playboy mentality so touted by media moguls and others seems to be the cancer. Will anyone in the major medias acknowledge it?

Think of Victoria Secrets advertisement and television specials. Does this promote respect for women or promote women as sex object, sex toys for men? Doesn't it encourage a Matt Lauer type of mentality toward women and the expectation that women fulfill men's sexual fantasies on demand?

Here is a good article supporting what so many believe about the loss of respect for women which was written only 25 years after Humanae Vitae released in 1968:


Janet Smith
University of Dallas

Humanae Vitae 25 years ago "prophesied" that marriages and society would suffer if the use of contraception became widespread. Now the vast majority of spouses, as well as those who are unmarried, use some form of contraception.

To be sure, the encyclical was not written to be a prophetic document. Rather, it was written to be a clarifying document, intending to explain what the Church teaches about contraception. The encyclical does present this teaching clearly, but it has been little heeded during the last 25 years. Statistics show that few Catholics live by these teachings, and it seems safe to suppose that few Catholics have read Humanae Vitae

Christians understand marriage as an elevated calling, whereby God enlists spouses in the all-important enterprise of bringing forth new human life. The Church teaches that to use contraception is to reject God and his life-giving blessings. The Church teaches not merely that contraception is wrong, but that because contraception is wrong, it will have bad consequences.

Four Prophecies
Pope Paul VI made four rather general "prophecies" about what would happen if the Church's teaching on contraception were ignored.

Infidelity and moral decline
The Pope first noted that the widespread use of contraception would "lead to conjugal infidelity and the general lowering of morality." That there has been a widespread decline in morality, especially sexual morality, in the last 25 years, is very difficult to deny. The increase in the number of divorces, abortion, our-of-wedlock pregnancies, and venereal diseases should convince any skeptic that sexual morality is not the strong suit of our age.

There is no question that contraception is behind much of this trouble. Contraception has made sexual activity a much more popular option that it was when the fear of pregnancy deterred a great number of young men and women from engaging in premarital sexual intercourse. The availability of contraception has led them to believe that they can engage in premarital sexual activity "responsibly." But teenagers are about as responsible in their use of contraception as they are in all other phases of their lives--such as making their beds, cleaning their rooms and getting their homework done on time.

Lost Respect for Women
 Paul VI also argued that "the man" will lose respect for "the woman" and "no longer (care) for her physical and psychological equilibrium" and will come to "the point of considering her as a mere instrument of selfish enjoyment and no longer as his respected and beloved companion." This concern reflects what has come to be known as a "personalist" understanding of morality. The personalist understanding of wrongdoing is based upon respect for the dignity of the human person.

The Pope realized that the Church's teaching on contraception is designed to protect the good of conjugal love. When spouses violate this good, they do not act in accord with their innate dignity and thus they endanger their own happiness. Treating their bodies as mechanical instruments to be manipulated for their own purposes, they risk treating each other as objects of pleasure.

Abuse of Power
Paul VI also observed that the widespread acceptance of contraception would place a "dangerous weapon... in the hands of those public authorities who take no heed of moral exigencies." The history of the family-planning programs in the Third World is a sobering testimony to this reality. In Third World countries many people undergo sterilization unaware of what they are doing. The forced abortion program in China shows the stark extreme toward which governments will take population programs. Moreover, few people are willing to recognize the growing evidence that many parts of the world face not overpopulation, but underpopulation. It will take years to reverse the "anti-child" mentality now entrenched in many societies.

Unlimited Dominion
Pope Paul's final warning was that contraception would lead man to think that he had unlimited dominion over his own body. Sterilization is now the most widely used form of contraception in the U.S.; individuals are so convinced of their rights to control their own bodies that they do not hesitate to alter even their own physical make-up.

The desire for unlimited dominion over one's own body extends beyond contraception. The production of "test-tube babies" is another indication of the refusal to accept the body's limitations; so too are euthanasia and the use of organs transplanted from those who are "nearly" dead. We seek to adjust the body to our desires and timetables, rather than adjusting ourselves to its needs.

Positive Prophecies
In Humanae Vitae Pope Paul made some positive predictions as well. He acknowledged that spouses might have difficulty in acquiring the self-discipline necessary to practice the methods of family planning that require periodic abstinence. But he taught that self-discipline was possible, especially with the help of sacramental grace. In Section 21, he remarked:

....the discipline which is proper to the purity of married couples, far from harming conjugal love, rather confers on it a higher human value. It demands continual effort yet, thanks to its beneficent influence, husband and wife fully develop their personalities, being enriched with spiritual values. Such discipline bestows upon family life fruits of serenity and peace; and facilitates the solution of other problems; it favors attention for one's partner, helps both parties to drive out selfishness, the enemy of true love, and deepens their sense of responsibility.

While this passage of Humanae Vitae is rarely studied, Pope John Paul II is one commentator who recognizes the depth of its wisdom. It plays the central role in his reflections on Humanae Vitae; he focuses on the importance of "self-mastery" for the proper use of sexuality, and explains the meaning of the human body and the human person as these bear upon sexuality.

John Paul II has spoken of the Church's teaching on contraception as a part of the "permanent patrimony" of the Faith. Twenty-five years of neglecting Humanae Vitae have produced enough unpleasant consequences to help us recognize how foolish and dangerous it is to squander that patrimony.


Anonymous said...

Australians recently voted 62% to 38% in favour of same sex marriage.

Last week an Australian Catholic historian wrote:

Humanae Vitae was the point at which the Catholic Church in Australia lost the same sex marriage debate. Paul VI (perhaps foolishly) relied on his bishops and priests to get the rather unpopular word out: priests were expected to "spell out clearly and completely the Church's teaching on marriage". Paul pleaded with them to overcome dissensions on this topic and uphold what he taught. The bishops were asked to consider the safeguarding of married life as " one of your most urgent responsibilities at the present time. "

Instead a large number of bishops, episcopal conferences and individual priests decided to do the opposite. For example, the Canadian Winnipeg Statement subverted papal authority. There were no consequences for the Canadian bishops and many clergy across the western world adopted what became known as the "pastoral solution" on artificial contraception- don't ask, don't tell, and emphasize that the person's conscience is always right.

This completely reverses the previous 19 centuries of Church teaching on human sexuality, and it also overturns the Catholic concept of conscience. Conscience is not the source of moral law; objective moral laws already exists. Your conscience helps you to choose the objective right over the objective wrong. But now we have Catholics who believe that their conscience is the SOURCE of right and wrong for them- moral relativism.

Combine these 2 things - sex completely separated from reproduction, and individual conscience determining moral law - and you have a situation where almost any kind of sexual activity can be justified under the right circumstances.

Catholic moral theology in many dioceses, universities and seminaries now sprouted a number of "grey areas". Things which used to be called masturbation, formication, adultery and homosexuality, all with clear definitions and clear moral edges, now became four shades if grey, if not 50. Things like selfishness, cheating on your taxes, and not putting money in the Sunday collection all escaped the grey area treatment.

Given that this doctrinal climate has prevailed in the West for around 50 years, it is no wonder that many Catholics in Australia gave unqualified support to same sex marriage by voting Yes.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

I never thought about it that way. I would agree. Married couples who supported humane Vitae in 1968 should have been selected to promote it. However in 1968 most Catholics wanted to hear the authoritative teachers, priests and nuns, not lay teachers.

Of course in 1968 priests and nuns were in outright rebellion. Thus our situation today.

Anonymous said...

I was once very confused about many aspects of official Church teaching on sexuality and contraception after listening to an ex RC priest talk on this subject.

As I understood him, he was saying that in all other areas of morality circumstances are taken into account and more than just the physical actions are taken into account.
For example, it is not the physical act of killing that is sinful as for centuries the Church taught that physically taking human life in self defense, in a just war or in the death penalty is not sinful. It is unlawful killing, murder, that is sinful. The physical act of killing cannot be intrinsically evil and sinful if circumstances can occasionally make it morally OK. So, how can the physical action of using a condom, for example, be intrinsically wrong? Why aren't circumstances taken into account here as in other areas of morality? How can a man using a condom or a woman having a tubal ligation be of their very nature sinful, wrong and even evil actions?

I would really appreciate if you, Fr MacDonald, or anyone else here with knowledge of Catholic moral theology could explain why
certain actions in the area of sexual morality are of their very nature sinful to an extent that circumstances can never make them OK.

Marc said...

Anonymous, it will make more sense to you if you consider the teaching in light of the reality that people are not forced to have sexual relations.

For example, if someone attacks me and I kill him in self-defense, the alternative was to allow my own injury or death. I have taken a justifiable action in response to some aggression so that my moral culpability is lessened even though the death of the aggressor is wrong.

On the other hand, I am not forced to have sexual relations. There is no circumstance where I would be forced to use a condom because the alternative is to not engage in the activity in the first place.

I hope that helps.

Anonymous said...

It is not hard to see that for many people a "contraceptive mentality" leads to an acceptance of abortion.

And of course, for example, a young woman taking the pill to be able to have a different casual sex partner most weekends and avoid pregnancy is against any Christian sexual morality but for example with a married woman who already has 4, 5 or 6 children and is advised by a physician that another pregnancy could threaten her health, I honestly can't see how in a situation like that it could be a mortal sin for the woman to take the pill or even for the husband to have a vasectomy (sp?).

Anonymous said...

I can remember in the mid 1970s as a teenager a young Catholic priest regarded my devout Catholic mother as almost mad when she said that against medical advice and pressure from her parents and others she for the first decade of marriage accepted as many children as God sent her and since then had basically avoided further pregnancies through abstaining from sex.
Later that night young Father X after several more whiskies told me that my parents reminded him of his brother and his wife who keep having more kids. He said he couldn't understand how his brother who as a person and in his job as a police detective is mostly tough and practical can't be sensible and just make use of birth control.
What chance do millions of Catholics have in this area of morality when fellow Catholics and even Catholic priests regard them as stupid, irresponsible and even almost mad in having a lot of children and then avoiding further pregnancies by either periodic or even long term abstinence?

Anonymous said...

Bee here:

A couple of observations on comments made by Anonymous December 4, 2017 at 5:25 AM
1) "Paul VI (perhaps foolishly) relied on his bishops and priests to get the rather unpopular word out: priests were expected to "spell out clearly and completely the Church's teaching on marriage".

Interesting that bishops and priests acted as if obeying pronouncements by Pope VI were optional, but someone on this site keeps insisting that as Catholics we must always follow the Pope's teaching, even if we don't agree with it. Which is it? Bishops and priests can pick and choose, but lay people cannot?

2) "This completely reverses the previous 19 centuries of Church teaching on human sexuality, and it also overturns the Catholic concept of conscience. Conscience is not the source of moral law; objective moral laws already exists. Your conscience helps you to choose the objective right over the objective wrong. But now we have Catholics who believe that their conscience is the SOURCE of right and wrong for them- moral relativism."

This sounds very much like the humanistic psychology that was able to destroy orders of religious women. From the Church Militant article: "Rogers developed the idea that to spur psychological breakthrough in patients, "we should refer them to the source of authority within them — in other words, refer them to their consciences."

Well, forewarned is forearmed, I guess.

God bless.

Anonymous said...

Contraceptive mentality, Divorce mentality, Abortion mentality, 1960-70 Swedish Surgical Sex Change mentality, Liberal mentality, Women’s liberation mentality.Super Race mentality. The downward spiral.,

TJM said...

Europe should have heeded Paul Vi's warnings, but no, "he was all wet," or something. Well these hedonists are paying a terrible price: their beloved countries are being over-run by Muslim invaders and they are no longer in control of their countries or destinies because of arrogant elitists.

George said...

Marc, you are correct in your response to Anonymous

A person can rightfully and justifiably defend him or herself from an aggressor. In defense of one's life, an action may result in the attacker being mortally wounded, but this cannot be equated with seeking out someone with the deliberate intent to kill the person. In defending oneself, there can be an unintended consequence, but the murder of another person can never be justified. There are actions that cannot be justified under any circumstance.
With artificial contraception, you are doing (whether you intend to or not) something which violates the design and plan of God, and is therefore, according to Church teaching, a sinful act. The goodness or rightness of an act is not determined on the basis of one's own personal judgement. When you separate the unitive from the procreative in the sexual act then you open the door to justifying all kinds of sinful acts. This acceptance of situational ethics has brought about in our own time, for instance, the legitimization of same-sex "marriage".

Sexual pleasure for itself leads to objectification and disordered passions. This is not true for those who are lawfully married and are at that age where they can no longer bring about new life according to God’s for-ordained means for doing so. The operative principle here is: “Are you co-operating with God in what He intended or are you thwarting His Holy Will?” In the older couple, the procreative aspect of the marriage union has run its course according to the natural Divine order of things and how God intended it.

What of couples who are childless for no fault of their own? God does look at good intentions and not just results. As long as the desire of a couple is (or was) to have children, then there is nothing sinful about the marriage act. Is or was the marriage always open to the transmission of life (even if that possibility is remote)?
We must measure our actions according to the teachings God has revealed to us.

Anonymous said...

Marc and George I am very grateful for your replies here.

It is more than 25 years since I completed some basic undergraduate courses in philosophy, Church history and Latin etc.

"Thou shalt not kill" is an important and basic commandment, but more exceptions are made than just individual self defense. A war to defeat Nazi Germany was a just war but any joining that fight and struggle new that the death of millions including tens of thousands of innocent non combatants was going to be involved.

I can remember a Catholic friend from school who attended the same philosophy/ethics tutorials in the 1980s as I did laughing over a beer later how several big exceptions can be made by Christians regarding "thou shalt not kill" but official Catholic moral teaching allows, for example, no exceptions to: thou shalt not useva condom!

The ex priest who was on the philosophy faculty at this university encouraged to think of examples to show how almost crazy it can be to just morally look at a variety of sexual acts in terms of whether or not they undermined the biological integrity of the act. As in the logic of that thinking would lead to regarding an adolescent masturbating or a married man with 6 children later having sex with his wife after a vasectomy as doing something more unnatural and therefore more sinful than say heterosexual rape, which at least often does not undermine the biological integrity of the act!
Or looking at how traditional Catholic morality in sexual matters admitted no "parvity of matter" - in other words, each and every sexual sin was equally and appallingly mortal! (more laughter from a dozen Arts degree undergraduates!)

Again, look at stealing. Dozens of different forms of stealing involve wrongly taking money or goods from another. But again in this matter of morality the very different circumstances involved are important and taken into account. Robbing an old aged or disability pensioner with violence of all their monthly social security money has to be more sinful than a man in a third world country who commits the physical act of stealing but does so to feed his starving family and only steals an amount from another individual or institution that is so much more wealthy that what is stolen will not even be noticed or missed.

I hope I am explaining how what I heard at university all those years ago confused me and bought serious doubts re certain truths in Church teaching on morals in general, and sexual morality in particular.

Thanks again for taking the trouble to reply. If Fathers MacDonald, Kavanagh or Fox or Gene whose theological knowledge would be ten times or more greater than mine could reply to above discussion, I would be grateful.

Sorry to repeat, but is there ANY truth to the claim that the Catholic Church has it wrong in sexual matters in just looking at physical actions and not properly taking into account life circumstances as seems to happen in other areas of morality.

Anonymous said...

I thought I'd have a short break from orthodox blogs as this one to check out a few "progressive" Catholic blogs and came across the following gems:

"Thank God for Pope Francis! PF, in harmony with the work of contemporary theologians like Bernard Haring, Charles Curran and Margaret Farley and others is showing us how to move beyong the narrow legalisms of act - centred morality."


"Steal a candy car from a drug store and you commit a venial sin. Steal a person's life savings and you commit a mortal sin. That makes sense.....but with traditional Catholic teaching on sexuality there are no misdemeanors, only felonies. LOL."

Anonymous said...

Francis' Amoris Laetitia -
Situation Ethics enshrined.

TJM said...

Anonymous at 10:00 am,

Spot on!

Anonymous said...

A long article I just read which described how dissent against HV since 1968 has led to many Catholics in Australia supporting same sex marriage and even abortion in some circumstances, ended with the following low comedy:

Alsatian College (motto Vadus Ad Caneus) is an average Catholic boys high school in the Australian Diocese of Bedlam. The college has a chapel that's very popular with ex students as wedding venue. Dominic, an Old Boy, applies to the college for permission to use the chapel for his same sex wedding to Mark. Dominic wants to have the ceremony by a local priest, Fr Jim Kindness... Fr Jim has a positive media profile, and his parish is made up of middle class people who enjoy hymns about self acceptance and homilies about refugees...

John, the principal if Alsatian college, is a bit stumped. Most boys at the college have said they support same sex marriage. Almost all the teachers voted for it including Gerry the science teacher, who is gay himself....

The principal decides to run this request by the bishop. Bishop Paul Steady is a great guy. Everyone loves him and he has been bishop for 17 years now. He's kind, he's available and he never says or does anything to upset anyone, and it's a mystery why his diocese has produced no priestly vocations for 2 decades. Bishop Paul's response is "Look, John, Alsatian can run its affairs better than I can; I really think this is the school's decision, not mine. Just be careful how you handle it. I'll have a word to Fr Jim about it.....
Bishop Paul's conversation with Fr Jim ends with him telling Fr Jim to be careful how he handles it, and above all to not issue the couple with a Catholic marriage certificate. Fr Jim agrees to everything, and then issues Dominic and Mark with a Catholic marriage certificate as a lovely memento of their special day.....

When the news gets out there is a media circus. Bishop Paul backs down publicly, traditionalist Catholic blogs go berserk. Bishop Paul then becomes defensive and says he will manage his own diocese as he sees fit. Fr Jim is sent on a leave of absence for a month, and when he comes back, he is refused permission to lead a weekend retreat at the Emmanuel Milango Centre for Spirituality and Justice...but then something else happens in the diocese to distract Paul, and life quickly returns to normal....the precedent is established.

Next time, it will be much easier....