Saturday, July 03, 2004

Quiverfull 2

I got such interesting responses to my last post on being a "Quiverfull" mom. I want everyone who posted to know that I have continued to give this topic a great deal of thought, prayer, and scripture reading. Here are some of my thoughts.

Comparing birth control to health care, scripturally, doesn't work. Again it goes back to the whole "children are blessings" thing. Saying that using birth control is like seeing a doctor is not an accurate comparison. God wants us to care for the temple that our body is. Going to a doctor is not trying to counter acceptance of blessings. Using birth control is. Also, sickness and death is directly related to the fallen state of the world. Fertility is not.

The Catholic church teaches that marriage is for the building of families. Marriages must be open to the possibility of children. In the church, marriages can be annulled if one of the two parties never had any intention of having children. Scripturally this is a complicated issue. The bible talks about some people being eunuchs for the Gospel. The bible also says it is better to marry than to burn with passion. However, while I'm sure birth control existed then, it was not used regularly by the masses as it is now. I truly believe that it was assumed that those who were engaged in marital intercourse had the possibility of getting pregnant. However, I can not find anything totally clear on the specific issue of whether or not married people are required to have children if possible. I would say that the whole of scripture as I understand it [disclaimer: my understanding is far from perfect] is that married people are to be open to God's gift of children.

Do we have the right to put up road blocks in front of God's gifts? This is not as easy an issue as either side would have us believe (also a "my opinion" thing, just keep in mind). This culture is far too closed to the idea of children. In fact many of the people using birth control are the very people who should be having children. Margaret Sanger would be so disappointed that the "undesirables" are still having lots of babies, while the middle and upper classes are often not.

My conclusions are thus: Abortifacient birth control I still believe is wrong. Barrier forms while not as wrong are not accepted by my faith and will not be used by us. NFP is a fabulous way to achieve pregnancy or to avoid it. It lacks chemicals and is acceptable by the Catholic church. But most of us aren't looking at the blessings that our children are. Even NFP users could find themselves not welcome God's blessings the way they should. I will continue to use NFP to keep track of my health. I may not be using it to avoid pregnancy, however. I also believe there is NOTHING wrong with a person avoiding pregnancy for the safety of their health. If it will kill you to have babies, I think you are well within your rights to avoid having them. While it scares me more than a bit, I believe I'm much closer to "Quiverfull" on the spectrum at this point. I will keep studying, praying, and searching for a more definitive answer.

Oh, I'd like to add that I don't think that people who disagree with me are sinful, or bad, or even wrong. Thank you. :-)

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