Why do Catholics believe that Contraception is Wrong?

To contracept is to willfully exclude the possibility of a conception that could result from a sexual act. The widespread practice of contraception in our day reflects the common attitude that children are more a burden than a blessing. But that notion is utterly alien to Scripture.

In Psalms and Proverbs, for example, we hear a constant refrain about the great joy of being parents and grandparents, even many times over: "Children too are a gift from the Lord, the fruit of the womb, a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children born in one's youth. Blessed are they whose quivers are full" (Ps 127:3-5). "Grandchildren are the crown of old men" (Prv 17:6). To biblical mothers and fathers, barrenness was not a convenience, but a curse (see Dt 28:18; Jb 15:34).

The constant teaching of the Catholic Church has been to prohibit contraception. This prohibition was in fact taught by all major Christian groups until 1930. Spacing of children or limiting of children for serious reasons is permitted, according to Pope Paul VI's 1668 encyclical Humane Vitae and Catholic moral teaching. But this limitation must come about through natural rather than artificial means (such as natural family planning, or NFP) so that the integrity of the marital sexual act is preserved--that is, so that the act remains open to the possibility of transmitting new life, which is part of its natural purpose.

One biblical text cited in support of this truth concerns the grave sin of Onan, who sought the physical pleasure of sexual acts while preventing the possibility that whey might produce children: "Whenever he had relations with his brother's widow, he wasted his seed on the ground, to avoid contributing offspring for his brother. What he did greatly offended the Lord, and the Lord took his life too." (Gn 38:9-10).

Contraception is contrary to our sexual nature and the innate purposes for which God created it. Every marital sexual act, then, must be open to the possibility of conception.

See also: Sexuality and Birth Control Discussion (Mother Teresa's view)

Other related scriptures: Gn 1:27-28; 9:1; 17:6,20; 28:3; Ex 23:26; Lv 26:9; Dt 7:14; 1 Sm 1:4-16; Ps 128:3; Prv 30:16; 1 Cor 7:5.

Catechism of the Catholic Church: 1652-1654; 2249; 2349; 2349; 2352; 2366-2379; 2398-2399.

*Quoted from The New Catholic Answer Bible. Wichita, Kansas, Fireside Catholic Publishing, 2005. www.firesidecatholic.com

Additional insights at: www.catholic.com


On the issue of birth control, I follow Mother Teresa's lead.
Mother Teresa refused to entrust a child for adoption to a couple which uses contraception, for she esteemed that the child would be in a climate of death. Sometimes people object that natural methods are neither sure nor efficacious. This is inexact. Serious medical studies have shown that the Billings method (natural method), for example, is a very efficacious means to avoid an undesired birth. Most women can determine their period of fecundity without any notable risk of error. Here is Mother Teresa's testimony: "At Calcutta, we now run 102 centers where we teach families how to control birth in respect for mutual love and children. Last year, thousands of Christian, Muslim and Hindu families came to our centers and have thus avoided the births of 70,000 children, but without killing a single one, simply by taking support on the three pillars of love, life and fatherland" (Letter to India's Prime Minister, March 26, 1979).
Mother Teresa adds a word for the people of "rich" countries: "Since our poor people can avoid destroying the life God has created in us, how much easier it should be for you (`the rich') who know the means" (December 11, 1979). However, if the poor often have valid reasons for spacing the births of their children, spouses of well-to-do countries, where the birth rate is lowering, must make certain that their desire to avoid a new conception, "is not motivated by selfishness but is in conformity with the generosity appropriate to responsible parenthood" (CCC, 2368).
Source: http://www.clairval .com/lettres/ en/98/u809982504 98.htm
My wife and I struggled with various birth control messages and methods early in our marriage. After a few years we settled on the Billings Method which brought us closer as a couple and helped us plan our family together with the Good Lord. Together we procreated seven children. It was a challenge raising six children (number seven died shortly after birth), but we always found a way. Large families are becoming a lost treasure. Most will never know the special dynamic that exists between its members. Today's American culture seems to favor having no children, or one or two at the most, so that the married couple can get past child rearing as soon as possible and enjoy the affluent pleasures of the world without dealing with children. Birth control is readily available to make this possible. Sadly, God is left out of the family plan and is excluded as the third party in the marriage.