Turning Spouses into Life-Giving Lovers:
The Creative Power of Sex
One of the most misunderstood areas of Catholic teaching is sexuality. Many people are shocked to learn that the Catechism calls married sexuality “a source of joy and pleasure” and “a sign and pledge of spiritual communion” (CCC 2360-62). Catholicism regards sexuality as a precious gift from God, enriching marriages on a physical, emotional, and spiritual level.
But unlike the culture around us, Catholicism also regards fertility, which is inextricably linked with sexuality, as a precious gift from God. As Manny and Karee say in Chapter Seven of The Four Keys, “Through the conception of a child, a husband and wife are bound together closer than ever before. They become one flesh, even on a biological level. The DNA of the father and the mother combine in a new human being. And the Holy Spirit is there, too, contributing the new person’s soul. It is difficult to imagine a closer unity among husband, wife, and God.” Just like sexuality, fertility is not limited to the physical realm. It has emotional and spiritual aspects as well.
In Chapter Seven, Manny and Karee address some of the common problems couples have with experiencing sexuality and fertility as the great blessings they are meant to be. They give tips on:
• Communicating about sex in a natural and intimate way
• Building healthy body image
• Overcoming the past
• Healing from infidelity and porn addiction
You can use the following conversation starters to get a discussion going between yourselves or in a small group. If it helps, think it over on your own time, take it to prayer, and jot down your answers before talking about them.
1. What preconceived notions of sex did you learn from your parents or your peers? Do they differ from the Catholic view of sexuality and, if so, how?
2. How easy is it for you and your spouse to talk about sex? How might you communicate even better?
3. Do you feel there is a “best” time in marriage to start having children? Why?
4. Do you and your spouse agree on how many children to have? If not, what keeps you from reaching an agreement?
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