What the Synod and the U. S. Supreme Court Have in Common

A Catholic Synod of bishops and others convened on Sunday, October 5, to discuss matters of great importance to the family. On October 7, the U.S. Supreme Court decided not to decide anything about lower court decisions that favored the acceptance of same-sex “marriage” as an arrangement that can be called marriage and entitled to the economic and legal benefits of legal marriage.

What these two events have in common is the subject of sodomy, both heterosexual and homosexual. In his commentary on the Sin of Onan in Genesis 38:6-10, Martin Luther called Onan’s contraceptive behavior (withdrawal and ejaculation outside the woman) a form of sodomy, and on this matter he was uncharacteristically correct. The whole purpose of any and every form of contraceptive behavior is to render the act as sterile as an act of homosexual sodomy.

This is the real issue at stake in the Synod of the Family. It was the real issue at stake in the birth-control debate leading up to Humanae Vitae and thereafter. About two years prior to the encyclical, Pope Paul VI received conflicting reports from his birth control commission. The report from the majority was in favor of the Church accepting marital contraception; the minority argued in favor of upholding the teaching of some 1900 years, a doctrine that had been strongly reaffirmed by Pope Pius XI on the last day of 1930 in his encyclical, Casti Connubii (concerning chaste marriage).

They also argued that there is a logic in the acceptance of unnatural forms of birth control, and that the effects of that logic will be spelled out both in theory and in practice. Specifically, they pointed out that the acceptance of marital contraception would logically entail the acceptance of sodomy. The majority spokesmen replied that they did not accept sodomy and called it beneath the dignity of human persons. That, however, was their personal conviction. They did not and could not provide a logical way of accepting sodomy for married heterosexuals and not accepting it for homosexuals. The truth of the minority  argument was illustrated immediately by a self-styled “revisionist” who argued that his fellow revisionists, in rejecting Humanae Vitae, had also rejected the entire theory of natural law and thus had no way of saying “no” to any imaginable sexual activity that was acceptable to consenting adults, including bestiality.

If we understand that most marriages in the West today are marriages of marital contraception and therefore of heterosexual sodomy, then it is not unreasonable to expect that when the Supreme Court finally has to render a decision about the constitutionality of homosexual “marriage,” it will find some excuse to decide that state laws against such arrangements are unconstitutional. After all, if the Supreme Court can find all state laws against the killing of unborn babies on the basis of a shadow of a shadow (the penumbra of one of the Amendments), it can surely find some way to legalize sodomy as marriage even though it applies to, perhaps, only one percent of the American population. Justices read the papers and see the widespread acceptance.

The effect of this will be to sharpen the need for all Christians who accept the Bible as a source of religious morality to do a better job of teaching about sexuality, marriage and birth control. The State has already decreed via no-fault divorce laws that there is no such thing as permanent marriage—whoever wants out wins. The State is increasingly promoting pre-marital sex via its promotion of contraceptives and anti-STD vaccines. The Catholic Church has its work cut out for it in this immoral environment, and the other Christian communities will need to ally themselves with Catholic teaching or lose all relevance except as propagandists for the liberal agenda.

According to popular media, the big issue at the Synod is whether to ignore biblically-based Catholic teaching against divorce and remarriage and to admit to Holy Communion such civilly remarried couples. The underlying question, I submit, is why there are so many divorced couples in the first place. One reason is that most of them have practiced some form of marital contraception. When couples do not cooperate with the graces of the sacrament of marriage, bad things happen.

Every theist has to admit that God himself put together in one act what we commonly call “making love” and “making babies.” Every form of marital contraception says in bodily language, “We can take apart what God himself put together in the marriage act.” If people really think they can do that, it is only a small jump to thinking that they can also take apart what God himself has put together in the marriage itself.

Thus, what that Synod really has to deal with is the widespread current acceptance of marital heterosexual sodomy, whether it is in the physical form of anatomical sodomy or in less obvious forms such as mutual masturbation, barrier methods, withdrawal, and other birth control agents whether physical or hormonal.

The de facto acceptance of marital sodomy under the title of marital heterosexual contraception has left its practitioners and their supporting clergy logically open to calling homosexual sodomy “marriage.” That’s why I think it is fair to say that the Synod and the Supreme Court are both dealing with the same issue.  If I am correct, and if it is true that sodomy is one of the sins that cry to heaven for vengeance, the Synod better get it right.

Next week: How the Synod could help

John Kippley, October 8, 2014,

See also Sheila’s blog at http://nfpandmore.org/wordpress/ — another factor in the acceptance of marital contraception.

Pray the rosary. Please

Tuesday, October 7, marks the 443rd anniversary of a key event that kept Europe from being dominated by Islam in the 16th century—-the Battle of Lepanto.  This was the last major naval battle fought with ships powered by oars; it was also the largest such battle since the battle of Actium in 31 BC.

March 7th is also the Feast of the Most Holy Rosary. This is not a coincidence. Your life may well depend on understanding the connection and getting practical about it.

In 1571 the Ottoman Empire forces were on the warpath, determined to bring all of Europe under Islamic domination. Europe was divided because of the Protestant reformation as well as traditional national divisions and was not responding well to the challenge. Only Pope Pius V seemed to understand its gravity, and thus he mustered the support of enough of Catholic Europe to raise a navy.  On October 7 under the leadership of 26-year-old Don Juan of Austria, it met the larger Ottoman force in the Bay of Patras in Southern Greece, west of the port of Lepanto.  The Pope realized that the real battle was spiritual and did everything in his power to get everyone in Catholic Europe to pray the rosary for victory so that they could live in peace and not be under rule of Sharia law.

To roughly paraphrase Caesar, Islam came, the Pope saw, the people prayed, and the rosary conquered.

To learn more about this highly important historic event, do an internet search for Battle of Lepanto.   The Wikipedia account http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Lepanto with all its references is somewhat tedious and difficult to read. A military history account is fairly short and a quick read at http://militaryhistory.about.com/od/navalbattles14011600/p/lepanto.htm. The account at http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?recnum=7391 is very well written. The two I liked the best were http://www.catholic.com/magazine/articles/the-battle-that-saved-the-christian-west and http://www.ewtn.com/library/mary/olislam.htm. I liked Christopher Check’s article at catholic.com because it gives an excellent explanation of the events leading up to Lepanto. I appreciated Fr. Ladis J. Cizik’s article at EWTN.com because it connects the links between Lepanto, Fatima—both the name and the events in Portugal in 1917, and our Lady’s plea for us to pray the rosary for “world peace, the conversion of Russia, and the conversion of sinners” throughout the world.

The stakes are high once again. A militant Islam is once again on the rise. The headlines feature Iraq and Syria with widespread murder of non-combatants and deliberately provocative beheadings, but the Islamist warfare has been going on for years in the Sudan and currently threatens the existence of the people of South Sudan. The kidnapping of over 200 adolescent girls by the Boko Haram has let us know of something that has been going on for years in Nigeria. If you think the things we read today are bad, wait till you read about the Islamic conquest of Cyprus leading up to Lepanto.

I suppose there are those who think that military force alone will quell the Islamic forces of terror today, but that is simply whistling in the dark. As it was in 1571, the battle is primarily spiritual as well as being physical. I am not belittling the use of military force; I agree with the saintly Pope Pius V that sometimes we need to resort to force.

But I also agree with Pope Pius V and many Popes since then that we have to pray the rosary. Our Lady of Fatima is reverenced by many Muslims. She has a place to play in the search for peace. It is just not at all smart to ignore her request at Fatima for us to pray the rosary every day for peace.

Somehow I get the impression that not a lot of younger people, say those born since 1980 and maybe even since 1960, pray the rosary consistently. If so, what does it take for them to take seriously Mary’s request that we pray the rosary daily for peace? If they think about it, they are the ones who will suffer the most if Islamic jihad continues to grow. So, if there are any of you younger folks who read this, please, please pray the rosary every day.

I know that some folks claim to be bored while praying the rosary. I admit the problem and have tried to make it less of a problem. In my little Seven Day Bible Rosary, you will find a different set of mysteries for each day of the week. You will find a scripture verse before each Hail Mary. There is also a short meditation before each mystery. I find it very helpful; sometimes when I am especially distracted or tired, it is my best bet for praying the rosary that day. For those interested in how the rosary developed historically, there is a short history at www.sevendaybiblerosary.com.

Please.  For the benefit of your family and for the benefit of our fellow Christians in other lands, and out of gratitude for our Lady’s visits to Fatima, please pray the rosary every day. It’s our Lady’s request.

John F. Kippley, October 3, 2014