Pope Saint Paul VI

7 Basic Points: Humanae Vitae Summary

Humanae Vitae (On Human Life) is Pope Paul VI’s  famed 1968 encyclical on contraception and reproductive ethics. Written in light of a study commissioned by the Vatican on modern reproductive issues, its timing coincided with the sudden prevalence of contraception and concerns about overpopulation in society at large. Pope Paul [...]

The Teaching of the Prophetic Encyclical Humanae Vitae IV

The Second Prediction: Men Would Lose Respect for Women The second prediction of Paul VI in Humanae Vitae, no. 17, was that if people resorted to contraception, men would lose respect for women: Another effect that gives cause for alarm is that a man who grows accustomed to the use [...]

The Teaching of the Prophetic Encyclical Humanae Vitae III

The Predictions of Pope Saint Paul VI The first prediction of Paul VI in Humanae Vitae, no. 17 was that if people resorted to contraception, there would follow a general increase in immorality, especially among the youth, and also an increase in marital infidelity: Upright men can even better convince [...]

Respect Life Month and the “Great Campaign”

“What is urgently called for is a general mobilization of consciences and a united ethical effort to activate a great campaign in support of life.” — Pope St. John Paul II, Evangelium Vitae, ¶95 The release of St. Pope John Paul II’s encyclical Evangelium Vitae in 1995 marked a watershed [...]

Keeping Lines of Communication Open with God and Each Other

Man as Collaborator “Married people are the free and responsible collaborators with God the Creator in the most serious duty of transmitting human life,” reads the very first sentence of Humanae Vitae.  Explicit mention of God also occurs at least 24 times in the encyclical.  Then Pope Paul VI refers [...]

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The Teaching of the Prophetic Encyclical Humanae Vitae II

The Predictions of Humanae Vitae We begin our exposition of Humanae Vitae (HV) with section no. 17. In this part of the document, Pope Paul VI lays out four predictions as to what would happen in society if teaching against contraception went unheeded. Let us remember that this teaching is [...]

The Heart of the Matter? Human Dignity

In Evangelium Vitae, Pope St. John Paul II identified a sinister paradox in contemporary culture. "Precisely in an age when the inviolable rights of the person are solemnly proclaimed and the value of life is publicly affirmed," he lamented, "the very right to life is being denied or trampled upon, [...]

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The Teaching of the Prophetic Encyclical Humanae Vitae I

Humanae Vitae Was No "Invention." It Repeated Church Teaching Since the 1960’s Western culture has been in a downward spiral of moral decadence. The contraceptive pill, introduced in the U.S. during that decade, brought about the so-called “sexual revolution.” This revolution brought in turn an unprecedented increase in sexual promiscuity, [...]

The Challenges of Natural Family Planning Lead to Virtue

"[U]sing the natural [family planning] methods requires and strengthens the harmony of the married couple, it helps and confirms the rediscovery of the marvelous gift of parenthood, it involves respect for nature and demands the responsibility of the individuals. According to many authoritative opinions, they also foster more completely that [...]

The Priest is Irreplaceable in Preaching the Gospel of Life

Perhaps no other encyclical in the history of the Church has received so much ridicule and caused such controversy as Humanae Vitae. Even today, 50 years later, it still evokes heated discussions and debates, often from people (including some priests) who have never read the document. Yet when encouraged to [...]