‘The beautiful promise of Humanae Vitae’

Archbishop Jose Gomez pays homage to Paul Paul VI's 1968 encyclica

Archbishop José H. Gomez (photo: J.D. Long-Garcia/Angelus News)

The following is an excerpt from an article by Archbishop José H. Gomez:

This week we are remembering the 50th anniversary of “Humanae Vitae” (“Of Human Life”), Blessed Pope Paul VI’s encyclical letter on human life and love.

Looking back, we can understand better how the world of 1968 was not ready for this document.

It was a time of new ideas about human freedom and love and new attitudes toward traditions and authority. 

Catholics were trying to sort out the teachings of the historic Second Vatican Council (1962–1965) and what those teachings mean for how to live as Christians in the modern world.

Much has been written about “Humanae Vitae” and how it was received in the Church and in the wider society. We know now how much Blessed Pope Paul suffered because his message was misunderstood and misinterpreted.

The world of 1968 did not know how much it needed “Humanae Vitae.” Our world today needs it even more.

Of course, we can read “Humanae Vitae” as a prophecy.

Much of what Pope Paul warned of has come to pass —  from rampant divorce, infidelity and pornography, to “test-tube” babies, widespread abortion, “demographic winter,” and the total confusion about gender, sexuality and the human person that we see in our society today.

But we should also read “Humanae Vitae” as a promise.

This is a letter about happiness and love. Blessed Pope Paul writes of “God’s loving design” — the path he sets before us that will lead us to find happiness. Married love is a part of that plan.

Blessed Pope Paul is a realist. He understands the Church’s teachings on marriage and sexuality are not easy, that following Jesus requires discipline and self-sacrifice. But he wants us to know that God travels with us on this journey. And he sets before us a destination for our lives that is both beautiful and true.

We are made by Love and we are made for love — to love and to be loved. And the blessed fruit of love in marriage is the miracle of new life, in which man and woman realize what it means to be made in the image of God who is the Author of Life.

This is the beautiful promise of “Humanae Vitae.”

Pray for me this week and I will be praying for you. And let us ask Blessed Pope Paul, who will be canonized in October, to help us to read his prophetic encyclical again with new eyes and open hearts. And may Our Lady of Guadalupe, our Blessed Mother, protect and strengthen every marriage and every family, and may she help us to love as we are made to love.

Full story at Angelus News.

To add a comment, click on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ icons OR go further down to the bottom of comments to the Post your comment box.

Comments

  1. Let's hear it from the pulpit says:

    He should order every priest in his diocese to preach on Humanae Vitae. Why doesn’t he? I should add, he should specify that priests are to preach on HV in a way that supports its teaching and does not undermine it in any way. That specification has to be added, unfortunately, because quite a few priests would, if forced to preach on HV, do so in a way that didn’t uphold infallible Church doctrine that the use of artificial contraception to prevent conception is intrinsically and gravely evil. If the world today needs HV even more, as he said, then he should order his priests to preach it. Otherwise it’s just a column that will be thrown in the trash, forgotten.

  2. Ted (not McCarrick) says:

    The Anaheim Religious Education Congress would be a good place to have a workshop about Humanae Vitae.

    • Not likely: the 2019 theme was just announced as “Thirsting for Justice”. You know that means its going to be a SJW, illegal immigrant, leftwing love fest. The Congress is just a SJW convention that uses the church to promote liberal ideas. They will never support Humanae Vitae there. Nor good liturgy. Nor good catechesis.

      • Oh, man… they don’t even try to hide it anymore do they? That could be the slogan of the DNC or La Raza or Antifa. Has Gomez lost complete control?

  3. Anne TE says:

    I like this sermon. Most of us older people have learned a lot since then.I did not always like Pope Paul VI, but learned along the way how wise he was. Sometimes we learned the hard way. May the younger generation listen more and fail less. Pray for us Servant of God, Pope Paul VI.

    • The younger generation isn’t listening. They’re not even going to Mass.

      • Anonymous says:

        Some do, some do not, some will learn the hard way, and some will never learn until it is too late. That is the way it has always been. Read the parable of the Good Sower.

        • This Anonymous post July 20 at 5:20 pm was mine — Anne TE, and I was referring to the dangers of artificial contraception. One being the birth control pill is a carcinogen which can lead to several types of cancer. Sadly, I have known many younger women who died from such cancers who thought the pill was just fine,.not realizing it exacerbated their cancer. Many doctors will not tell you that because of fear of lawsuits.

  4. I’ve never heard this topic preached on at Mass and I’m old.

    • Anonymous says:

      There are children at Mass. I had to explain abortion to my child at a lot earlier age than I would have because of something said at Mass.

      • Sometimes priests are reluctant to mention such things because there are young children present, but there should definitely be articles in the bulletin about Natural Family Planning and other brochures for the adults and teens to learn about the dangerous to the body of certain sins. Many Catholic churches sell books on their bookracks about chastity and why it is necessary . It is better young people learn about sexual the right way than the wrong way. I agree it should be at age level, but every child and situation is different.

COMMENTS POLICY: Comments are limited to 750 characters and will be truncated at 750. Comments should not contain offensive or libelous language. Please strive to be civil. All comments are subject to approval by our moderator and to editing as the moderator deems appropriate. Inclusion of your email address is optional.

Speak Your Mind

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

COMMENTS POLICY: Comments are limited to 750 characters and will be truncated at 750. Comments should not contain offensive or libelous language. Please strive to be civil. All comments are subject to approval by our moderator and to editing as the moderator deems appropriate. Inclusion of your email address is optional.