Thursday, October 20, 2011

So, Why Catholic? part 4

This is a continuation on the reasons I've accepted the Catholic faith.
Part 1 here.
Parts 2 and 3 here.

4. Views on Life. I’ve always considered myself pro-life, even back when my view was, “Well, sometimes abortion might be alright for other people, but I could never get one.” But why was I so sure I never could get one? Because it would feel like killing a baby. Eventually I came around and realized it was killing a baby. No one says “Sometimes murder might be alright for other people, but I could never murder.” No. Society should step in and prevent murders. Suddenly I find myself an ardent pro-lifer, something the Catholic Christians and evangelical Christians can agree on.

But the Church is not just anti-abortion. She is also against the death penalty. Absolutely lock up criminals, but don’t let them turn our society into murderers, especially when there is always the possibility the person being killed is innocent. The point of prison is to keep a criminal from hurting society. As long as prison is preventing a criminal from being able to harm others, there is no need kill another person just to get a sense of revenge.

The Church’s views on life directly affect the Church’s views on sex. I remember being in my dorm room trying to explain to an ex-boyfriend the actual reasons Christians wait until marriage to have sex. "God wants us to" wasn't cutting it, and the best I could come up with was “You shouldn’t have sex unless you are prepared for the consequence of children.” Even when I believed in contraception, I still believed sex was fundamentally about producing children. It doesn’t take a college biology class to know sex=children, but our culture has distanced itself from this obvious fact. Marriage is the framework for producing and raising children. (This is also why the Church condemns homosexual relationships. She is not bigoted toward homosexuals; it’s that homosexual sex deviates from the biological purpose of sex.)

The Church is pro-life from the willingness of a couple to produce and raise children before the child is conceived, to the right of that child to live from conception to birth, to taking care of the needy throughout life, to making sure a government doesn’t kill it’s own citizens, even the most horrendous of criminals. I think if people understood the Church's comprehensive view of life, then even if they disagreed, they'd be able to see pro-lifers as not sexist bigots but sincerely concerned citizens.

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