Oh! a Catholic update!

14 10 2012

I forgot!

I went to Confession yesterday and poured my heart out to Fr. Paul, a priest I didn’t know well previously.  I explained how I’d read on the internet that the Catholic Church teaches IVF is a sin… and I couldn’t really confess it and be forgiven then, because I fully intended to go back and do another round of ER and so I couldn’t promise I’d try not to sin.

HOORAY!  He explained to me that it’s NOT the case that IVF is a sin.  He said the websites I was looking at take a very strong position on the issue– in part for political reasons having to do more with the authors’ political positions vis a vis Obama, Abortion, and the American political scene.  He said these authors care more about American democracy and political issues and who wins what than they do about Catholicism.  He said that the Pope only speaks infallibly when he is actually espousing dogma from his Papal Chair and that he has only done that twice, and that neither included a statement of IVF being a sin.  That other explications of Catholic doctrine are not “dogma” and therefore it is not sin if I disagree.  He said literally there is wiggle room afforded to us, and that what gives us this wiggle room is to say “I do not fully understand this explanation of doctrine.”  So as long as I believe in Catholic dogma (the Trinity– forgiveness of sins– Mary is the Mother of God– the Eucharist– etc) and as long as I do not willingly kill embryos which could have produced a child– i.e. I should transfer all embryos which are chromosomally normal or which could be so– that I’m all good on that account.

It was such a great relief.  I really didn’t want to have to choose to either willingly sin and maybe have a baby, or to avoid what I didn’t think was a sin, and almost certainly give up having a baby.

Plus it was SUPER cool talking to him– he is pretty politically liberal and is getting a PhD in Sociology at the University here… and we ended up discussing whether it was a sin to vote for Obama (the same websites I was looking at were saying yes, if you vote for Obama it’s a mortal sin.)  Hahaha, Fr. Paul says voting for Romney is as much a sin, as the actions of Bain Capital caused families to be in a financial position where abortion became more likely (for example.) 

I truly enjoyed seeing a priest as a person too.  And it felt GREAT to receive Communion this morning.

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