Tuesday, September 30, 2008

God's Boundaries

Hey everyone! Thom and I have been busy going out to our first few schools! Everything is going pretty good so far! While in the classroom, Thom and I discuss a wide range of topics regarding the virtue of chastity and the gift of our sexuality with the students. I love our program because it uses a lot of activities, analogies and classroom dialog to teach. One of my favorite analogies that we use is that of a CD player to discuss God's boundaries. We say that just like our CD player came with a set of instructions to tell us how to get the best out of our CD player (like keeping it out of water) God gave us a set of instructions to tell us how to get the best out of our lives. Those instructions are the 10 Commandments. Two of which deal with our sexuality: Thou shall not covet thy neighbors wife and Thou shall not commit adultery. We ask, "Why do you think God placed these boundaries around sex?" He did so because He loves us and wants to protect us from all the harmful consequences of sex outside the Sacrament of Marriage. We talk about how our society today tries to tell us that people should be able to do what they want, that any choice is a good choice and that Christianity is restrictive with it's rules and guidelines. How many us feel like our car manuals are being restrictive when it tells us not to put diesel in our cars? None of us, right? Because that instruction gives us more freedom with our cars. Likewise, God knows what is best for us. He created us with our sexuality and he knows it's real purpose and meaning. He knows what will damage and hurt our sexuality. The boundaries he places around it protect us from harm and thus bring us more freedom and allow us to get the best out of our lives.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Parents Have the Most Influence

The Enquirer published an article yesterday, September 23, 2008, called, "Talking the Talk," which promotes the discovery that parents have the most influence over how their children will view their sexuality and sex and the need for an on-going conversation that is age appropriate as opposed to a hurried one time talk. Check it out at here.

Monday, September 22, 2008

TOB Points

Goodness gracious! It’s been a long time, huh?

This past weekend Karen and I were blessed to go see Christopher West speak in Kentucky. Christopher West is to Theology of the Body (TOB) as the apostle Paul was to spreading Christianity. He is an engaging and enlightening speaker and writer.

I’ll write out a couple points that are essential to the TOB:

1. Man (both male and female) is called to communion. That is, man is not created to be alone.

2. Our sexuality, mine male and perhaps yours female, is a sacramental (i.e. physical sign of the eternal mystery).

3. In our sexuality, we learn that not only are we called to communion but also we get a glimpse into the interior life of God, or the Trinity.

4. Sex is sacred because it mirrors the Trinity. The lover gives his self to the beloved and their love creates a third. “The Father almighty… The Lord eternally begotten of the Father… The Holy Spirit who proceeds from the Father and the Son.” Sound familiar?

5.Sex is created solely for marriage because marriage mirrors the love of God. Marriage is total love in that it is free, faithful, and fruitful. Here’s some vows that the spouses take (forgive me if they aren’t phrased exactly): Do you come here on your own free will (i.e. free)? Do you take this husband/wife ‘til death do you part (faithful)? Do you accept openness to the gift of children (fruitful)?

This is only part of the profound beauty of the TOB. We’ll see how this relates to the passion of Christ and how priests and singles also participate in divine love, among other topics. I will write more about this later. Perhaps, I’ll expand on some of the above points. We’ll see! You’ll just have to keep visiting us to find out more!

(Actually, seriously, if you want to know more before I write more- look up Christopher West or Theology of the Body on the internet and get some materials on this much needed Church teaching.)

God Bless!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


Today, there are many who believe that masturbation is a good thing and even a healthy thing. So is masturbation healthy or is it unhealthy? Is it good or is it bad?

What are the two main reasons for sex? The intimate bonding of a husband and wife and openness to new life. Is there bonding between a husband and wife in masturbation? No. Is there openness to new life in masturbation? No. Any time we take one or both of these reasons for sex out of the equation, we are misusing the gift of our sexuality and ultimately we will not be happy because we are not living God's plan for our human sexuality.

Masturbation can also be harmful in relationships because it trains someone to look at sex as being merely for one's own pleasure. When one gets married, it can be difficult for them to see sex as a way to express love for their spouse and as a way to create new life.

Much of our culture is self-centered. Many of us have been poisoned to believe that if we don't gratify every one of our sexual urges we are putting our sexuality in the dark and somehow denying ourselves something we deserve. Every one has sexual feelings and sex is a good thing! God created us to desire it. But above our sexual feelings, we have our ability to reason and the power to control ourselves. By saying no to sex before marriage, we are saying yes to sex after and for marriage. When we are tempted to want sex, we can pray for the grace to live chastity and witness God empowering us to live according to his plan. Taking things out of our life that encourage negative sexual feelings such as pornography is an important and helpful step. It's also important to remind ourselves that every desire we have is a reminder of our ultimate desire for God in heaven. When we have sexual feelings, we can take that time to remember that we want to be united with God (non-sexually) in heaven and use it as an opportunity for prayer.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Good Morning America on Teen Pregnancy

On today's show of Good Morning America, Chris Cuomo spoke with a group of teens about Bristol Palin's pregnancy and teen pregnancy in America. Chris first split the group up and interviewed the girls and guys separately and then brought them together and asked some more questions to the whole group. Both groups claimed that Sara Palin's nomination as the Republican Vice President candidate should not be affected by her daughter's pregnancy, saying that "mistakes happen" and that "it has nothing to do with politics, that's their family life".

When just interviewing the girls, Chris asked if they and their friends discussed the possibility of pregnancy. One girl answered that no she and her friends don't really talk about it because it's not something they plan on happening. The girls were also asked who they felt were responsible for "safe sex" to which they all replied that both the girl and the guy are responsible for "safe sex." I agree. Both girls and guys are responsible for sex that is safe. However, there is no such thing as sex that is 100% safe unless it is within marriage between two people who love each other and who have saved themselves sexually for one another. Condoms and birth control have failure rates and do not protect against emotional or spiritual consequences.

The guys were asked if there was a fear of pregnancy connected with having sex. One of the guys answered that yes there was a fear because pregnancy forces teenager into adulthood, causing them to have to worrying about getting diapers for their baby at age 16. I agree. Teenagers should not have to worrying about adulthood. They ought to be free to be teenagers! That is why we think they ought to and are capable of saving sex for later in life when they are older and married. Sex is for mature adults who are married because of what sex expresses and the responsibilities that naturally come with having sex.

One girl claimed that our generation is more sexually mature faster then past generations have been. Is our generation really sexually mature? No. Much of our generation is just the opposite - immature with regards to their sexuality. Our society today has degraded human sexuality to merely a physical act and lost sight of the true meaning and purpose of our human sexuality.

The group was asked why they thought so many teens were having sex when they were so smart and knew about the risks. One girl answered by saying, "I don't think it matters how much you know. I think it's something that teenagers are too young to know how to control," but they are "old enough to know how to do it." One of the boys claimed that "the rewards greatly out-weighed the risks." If taught how and why, I believe and know that teenagers have the power and capability to control their sexual urges and that the benefits of saving sex for marriage greatly out numbers the consequences of having sex before marriage.

The group was allowed to ask each other questions where upon one of the girls asked the guys why they think it is so cool to have sex with so many girls? One boy replied that it had to with the "male dominance complex"- an "extremely old concept" that is "traditional." Another boy said that in society a boy is cooler the more "cool points" he wins - the more girls a guy gets with the cooler he is. This raises the question, "What makes a man a real man?" Is a man a real man and more of a man the more women he "conquers" and has sex with? I dare to say no. Animals can have sex. Does that make them a man? No. All that sexual promiscuity says about a man is that he lacks integrity for himself and for women. Are woman mere objects to be conquered? Generations ago, men used their "male dominance complex" for much more noble causes and were thought to be real men when they fought battles, conquered enemies and protected the rights of their fellow country men and women. Real men honor and fight to protect the rights of women, not rob them of it.

I wonder why the teenagers were not asked about abstinence-until-marriage?

Here is the link if you would like to check it out yourself: http://abcnews.go.com/gma

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

A False Reshaping

The United State's largest abortion supporter has recently tried to reshape their image by claiming that they now promote abstinence. This is a false reshaping because what they consider abstinence is not abstinence. In their latest website, they promote masturbation, claiming that it is practicing abstinence. They also promote casual sex, immodesty, homosexuality and even group sex.

The website claims that we "were born to be in love with our bodies," but that "somewhere down the road to growing up we put our reproductive selves in the dark" and that "we are ultimately in charge of our bodies." The website says that this "may be the most important responsibility we have" and encourages viewers to make a pact to make their body their best friend.

My responses:
We were born not to be in love with our bodies but rather to communicate love with and through our bodies. We speak a language with our bodies. A hand shake tells someone that we are happy to meet them. A hug tells someone that we care about them. A kiss tells someone that we love them. We can use our bodies to care for the sick and feed the poor. We act out the love in our hearts through the actions of our body.

To save sex and all sexual activity for marriage is not putting our reproductive selves in the dark but rather putting our sexuality in the light of truth. Someone who practices true abstinence, which is saving all sexuality activity for marriage, does so because they understand the true meaning and power of their own sexuality: union with their spouse and creation of new life. They understand that their sexuality is so special and so powerful that it is meant to bond them deeply with one person and one person only - their spouse: the person whom they love and the person who loves them and therefore the two have made a life-long commitment to one another before God and the Church. They understand that true love is committed, faithful and life-long. They understand that their sexual union is so powerful that it is capable of creating new life and they are ready to love and care responsibly for that new life together.

God is ultimately in charge of our bodies. It is by His will that we are kept alive and it is to Him that we are to give our bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to Him (Romans 12:1). It pleases God when we love with our bodies in a way that is in accord with truth.

Caring for others and ourselves is the most important responsibility we have. Sexual promiscuity is not caring for others nor is it caring for one's self, but rather it is using and abusing others, as well as, ourselves with our sexuality.

This website is promoting a selfish message, saying that sexual activity is solely about a person's own sexual need and gratification.