Saturday, September 22, 2007

St. John Chrysostom and Contraception's "Evil Filth"

St. John Chrysostom lived from about the second half of the fifth and just into the sixth century (347-407). He was the Archbishop of Constantinople and is a Doctor of the Catholic Church.

Tyler Marshall over at Canterbury Tales has a very intersting post on St. John Chrysostom's denouncing the "evil filth" of contraception:

"Why do you sow where the field is eager to destroy the fruit, where there are medicines of sterility [oral contraceptives], where there is murder before birth? You do not even let a harlot remain only a harlot, but you make her a murderess as well…Indeed, it is something worse than murder, and I do not know what to call it; for she does not kill what is formed but prevents its formation. What then? Do you condemn the gift of God and fight with his [natural] laws?…Yet such turpitude…the matter still seems indifferent to many men—even to many men having wives. In this indifference of the married men there is greater evil filth; for then poisons are prepared, not against the womb of a prostitute, but against your injured wife. Against her are these innumerable tricks."
- St. John Chrysostom Homilies on Romans, 24 (ca. A.D. 391).

Contraception; something worse than murder. It appears that Humanae Vitae wasn't the first time the topic was addressed in the Church.


fertlmertl said...

Very powerful words. How is it these thoughts are lost on so many? Shaking my head at the sorrow of it all.....I can't even tell you how many times I've been told/asked after announcing a pregnancy, "You know there are ways to prevent THAT!" hee hee hee. chuckle chuckle. or "You KNOW what causes THAT don't you?"

I like calling a spade a spade. "Evil filth" is a good start.

I'd best be off, one of the THATS are calling.

Laura The Crazy Mama said...

Whoa, and I thought I spoke MY mind without mincing words!

Oh, and when people say the "that" comment to Butch, he always says, "Yeah I know what causes it...have you seen my wife?" heehee, I love that guy. He came up with that one all on his own.

swissmiss said...

When we lived out in Seattle, we had a hard time find a good Catholic Church. Eventually, we found St. John Chrysostom Byzantine Catholic Church. Ever since, I have had an affinity for St. John Chrysostom's writings. Reminds me of Father Corapi.

The Byzantine (Ruthenian) Catholic Church wasn't bad either :)