Selections from PERSONA HUMANA. SCDF (Dec. 29th, 1975):
Declaration on Certain Questions
Concerning Sexual Ethics




Persona humana:  De quibusdam quaestionibus ad sexualem ethicam spectantibus.


1. […] In the present period, the corruption of morals has increased, and one of the most serious indications of this corruption is the unbridled exaltation of sex. Moreover, through the means of social communication and through public entertainment this corruption has reached the point of invading the field of education and of infecting the general mentality.

Interea magis magisque invaluit morum corruptio, in cuius gravissimis indiciis ponenda est immoderata sexus praedicatio, eademque instrumentorum communicationis socialis spec­taculorumque ope adeo progressa est, ut educationis campum invaserit communemque infecerit vulgi existimationem.

        In this context certain educators, teachers and moralists have been able to contribute to a better understanding and integration into life of the values proper to each of the sexes; on the other hand there are those who have put forward concepts and modes of behavior which are contrary to the true moral exigencies of the human person. Some members of the latter group have even gone so far as to favor a licentious hedonism. […]

In hac rerum condicione, si ex una parte educatores, pae­dagogi, disciplinarumque moralium cultores, operam conferre potuerunt, ut bona utriusque sexus propria clariore in lumine ponerentur aptiusque traducerentur in vitae usum, ex altera parte alii opinationes proposuerunt vitaeque ducendae ratio­nes, quae veris moralibus postulatis hominis repugnant, immo eo pervenerunt, ut ad edonismi licentiam viam sternerent.

5. […] This same principle, which the Church holds from Divine Revelation and from her authentic interpretation of the natural law, is also the basis of her traditional doctrine, which states that the use of the sexual function has its true meaning and moral rectitude only in true marriage. [12]

Idem hoe principium, quod Ecclesia ex divina revelatione suaque authentica legis naturalis interpretatione haurit, con­stituit etiam translaticiam eius doctrinam, secundum quam potestatis sexualis usus non accipit veram suam significationem probitatemque moralem, nisi in matrimonio legitimo."

        8. At the present time there are those who, basing themselves on observations in the psychological order, have begun to judge indulgently, and even to excuse completely, homosexual relations between certain people. This they do in opposition to the constant teaching of the Magisterium and to the moral sense of the Christian people.

8. Nostra aetate, contra perpetuam Magisterii doctrinam ac moralem populi christiani sensum, aliqui - secuti indicia psychologicae naturae - coeperunt indulgenter iudicare, immo etiam prorsus excusare relationes homosexuales quarundam personarum.

   A distinction is drawn, and it seems with some reason, between

(A) homosexuals whose tendency comes from:

    Distinctionem instituunt - quae ceterum non sine causa fieri videtur - inter homosexuales, quorum proclivitas nata ex

 (1) a false education,

 (2) from a lack of normal sexual development,

 (3) from habit,

 (4) from bad example,

 (5) or from other similar causes,

and is transitory or at least not incurable;

(1) falsa educatione

(2) vel infecta maturitate sexuali

(3) vel consuetudine

(4) vel pravo exemplo

(5) aliisve similibus causis,

ad tempus tantum exsistit aut saltem insanabilis non est,.


(B) homosexuals who are definitively such because of [:]

(1) some kind of innate instinct

(2)  or a pathological constitution judged to be incurable.


homosexuales, qui tales sunt in perpetuum

ob quoddam quasi impulsus innati genus

aut vitiatam constitutionem, quae existimatur sanari non posse

   In regard to this second category of subjects, some people conclude that their tendency is so natural that it justifies in their case homosexual relations within a sincere communion of life and love analogous to marriage, in so far as such homosexuals feel incapable of enduring a solitary life.

 Ad alterum hunc ordinem hominum quod spectat, nonnulli argumentantur eorum propensi-onem adeo naturalem esse, ut considerari debeat tamquam licitas illis reddens relationes homosexu-ales intea sinceram vitae amorisque com-munionem matrimonii consimilem, quatenus ipsi sibi videantur vitam solitariam tolerare minime valere.

   In the pastoral field, these homosexuals must certainly be treated with understanding and sustained in the hope of overcoming their personal difficulties and their inability to fit into society.

Profecto, dum pastoralis animarum cura agitur, tales homosexuales suscipiendi sunt cum considerata animi lenitate iidemque in spem sunt erigendi se diflicultates suas suamque alienationem socialem esse aliquando superaturos.

Their culpability will be judged with prudence.

Eorum quoque culpabilitas prudenter iudicabitur.

        But no pastoral method can be employed which would give moral justification to these acts on the grounds that they would be consonant with the condition of such people. For according to the objective moral order, homosexual relations are acts which lack an essential and indispensable FINALITY.

                Verumtamen nullam adhiberi licet viam aut rationem pastoralem, quae eisdem tri­buat excusationem moralem, propterea quod hi actus talium hominum condicioni congruentes aestimentur. Etenim, secun­dum obiectivum rerum ordinem moralem iunctiones homosexuales sunt actus, qui sua necessaria et essentiali ordinatione privantur.

        In Sacred Scripture they are condemned as a serious depravity and even presented as the sad consequence of rejecting God.[18] This judgment of Scripture does not of course permit us to conclude that all those who suffer from this anomaly are personally responsible for it, but it does attest to the fact that homosexual acts are INTRINSICALLY DISORDERED and can in no case be approved of.

In Sacris Scripturis reprobantur uti graves depra­vationes, immo exhibentur tamquam funesta repudiationis Dei consecutio. Haec quidem Divinarum Scripturarum sententia non sinit, ut concludatur eos omnes, qui ista deformitate labo­rent, hac de causa iam in personali culpa esse; nihilominus testatur actus homosexualitatis suapte intrinseca natura esse inordinatos, neque unquam ullo modo approbari posse.



        9. […] both the Magisterium of the Church - in the course of a constant tradition - and the moral sense of the faithful have declared without hesitation that masturbation is an INTRINSICALLY and SERIOUSLY DISORDERED act. 19

[…] reveratum Ecclesiae Magi­sterium - per decursum constantis traditionis - tum mo­ralis christifidelium sensus sine dubitatione firmiter tenent masturbationem esse actum intrinsece graviterque inordinatum.'9.

19 Cf. Leo IX, letter "Ad splendidum nitentis," in the year 1054 DS 687-688, decree of the Holy Office, March 2nd, 1679: DS 2149; Pius XII, "Allocutio," Oct 8th, 1953 AAS 45 (1953), pp. 677-678; May 19th, 1956 AAS 48 (1956), pp. 472-473.


        12. […] It is important in particular that everyone should have a high esteem for the virtue of chastity, its beauty and its power of attraction. This virtue increases the human person's dignity and enables him to love truly, disinterestedly, unselfishly and with respect for others.

[…] Peculiari autem modo opus est, ut omnes magni existiment virtutem castitatis, eius pulchritudinem eiusque refulgentem splendorem. Quae quidem virtus hominis dignitatem in lece ponit eumque aperit ad amorem verum, magnanimum, non suae utilitatis studiosum, aliorumque observantem.







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