June 8, 2002
"When He comes, however, being the Spirit of truth, He will guide you to all truth. He will not speak on His own, but will speak only what He hears." John 16:13
While many Catholics ignore the teaching of the Church against unnatural forms of birth control, the Holy Spirit is raising up other Christians who accept God's truth on this subject. The teaching prohibiting artificial birth control is a matter of truth. It is not based on being Catholic but on reality revealed through the Scriptures. Artificial birth control is either wrong or right; either God's will or against God's will.
Therefore, this teaching is only initially about sexuality and family planning. It ultimately concerns our relationship with the triune God. The Father cares, Lord Jesus rules, and the Spirit teaches. The Trinity created us and continues to create each human person. The Triune God plans our families. However, in our secularized society so alienated from God, many have difficulty believing that our heavenly Father cares about planning our families. But He has a very personal love for us, His children. Furthermore, Jesus plans our families, as He plans everything in our lives. He tells us when to have sexual relations with our spouses. He is Lord. Finally, the Spirit is teaching couples from diverse backgrounds that artificial birth control is not in accord with Biblical revelation.
We don't have to "help" God with pills, IUDs, or condoms. All He asks of us is obedience. I know of no couple who has sought the face of God, submitted to the lordship of Jesus, searched the Scriptures in the Spirit, and then has maintained that the Lord called them to artificial birth control. I know of some couples who carelessly took the "pill", but later the Spirit convicted them of sin.
God's plan is ecological breast-feeding which spaces babies, on the average, about two years apart. Pope John Paul II has urged every mother to breast-feed if possible. For couples who have a serious need to further delay pregnancy, the Lord has provided them with systematic natural family planning. Breast-feeding and following natural family planning is not sinfully interfering with God's plan but acknowledging His work in the woman's cycle which He created.
In addition to the devastation artificial birth control works in our relationship with God, most forms of birth control abort babies by preventing implantation. IUD's and some birth control pills always abort. According to scientific studies the pill most commonly used will abort in a small percentage of cases. The possibility of aborting through taking the pill or using an IUD makes them grossly immoral actions.
Possibly the Spirit is convicting you at this moment. Don't feel sad or think God is burdening you. He is freeing you. You don't have to run your life. He cares for you personally. You don't have to play God. All you need to do is obey. Your marriage will be a sign of Christ's love for the Church (Eph 5:32). It will get better and better and stand the test of time. It will not be built on the sands of human opinion but on the rock of obedience to God's word and relationship with Him. Thank the Lord for planning your family!
Nihil obstat: Rev. Robert J. Buschmiller, July 28, 1997
Imprimatur: Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 31, 1997