St Francis Q&A

Monday, May 07, 2007

"Good news about sex" - Part I

Anon asked, “So Fr. When are you going to give a talk on Chastity to the Parish? More then just a homily that is...” Actually, I just gave a talk to our Young Adult group last weekend called, “The good news about sex”. The following is the first part of my notes:

How can a celibate priest give a talk about sex?
Same question as, ‘How could Jesus talk about sex?’

-I and any priest re-present Christ’s teaching (God’s revelation about sex)

What did Jesus teach about sex?
- reaffirmed what was taught in the beginning, for one
- Matt 19: 5 (sex within the context of marriage)
- “in the beginning”…what does that mean?

I. Sex is beautiful

One of the first things God reveals to us is the beautiful gift of sex:
Gen 1: 28 – “Be fertile and multiply”
Gen 2: 24 – husband and wife “become one body (flesh)”
- Yahweh is speaking about marriage in Genesis, and to the first married couple(Adam and Eve)
-it is God’s command for them to have sex so that they will become oneflesh (union) and multiply (procreate)
-if it is from God it must be good, true, beautiful, glorious, wonderful (these are all qualities of God)
- The gift of sex is meant for us to understand what love is: the love between spouses + God’s love

- (example of engaged couple)

- “Good news about sex and marriage” (West), p.20: Sex expresses marital love

- So, God has given us sex for these two reasons: union and procreation

- where is pleasure in all of this? not there
- God has made the sexual act very pleasurable so that married persons
will do it!- so they multiply (we need sex to survive as a race)

- those things we need to survive are pleasurable: eating, drinking, sleeping, e.g.
- but need to do it in right context and with moderation
-pleasure is not to be the focus
-any reason outside of union and procreation is not what God intends for sex
-unmarried persons can’t enter into one
-flesh union; haven’t promised themselves to the other
-couples not open to life can’t be fertile and multiply;
artificial contraception is from man, not God
-‘for pleasure only’ is an abuse of the gift of sex; selfish; focuses on what I get, not what I give

II. Sex is holy
- first of all, what is holiness?
- not just praying or being in Church
- holiness = otherness (living for God and others)

- second, how can sex be holy?
- within the marital act

1) husband and wife imitate God the Creator

Union:“the union of man and woman in marriage is a way of imitating in the flesh the Creator’s generosity and fecundity” (CCC, #2335)... fecundity = fruitfulness

Procreation:Continuing God’s work of creation
- they are co-creators with God!

2) husband and wife imitate the life of the Holy Trinity- (example of married couple)

- West, pp. 19-20

- when the couple gives themselves completely to the other in the sexual
act, they are acting in love

- love = gift of self
- God is love, and He gives himself completely
- so, sex is a way to imitate God in a very deep and powerful way
- worshiping God through our bodies
- holiness through our bodies
- marital act = sacramental
- bedroom of a married couple is analogous to a Church
sanctuary just like marital love is analogous to the Eucharist
- Eucharist = union b/w God and man
- marital love = union b/w spouses

to be continued...


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