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Poll
Question: Is Birth Control (Condemns, Vasectomies, Birth Control Pill) same as Abortion?
No; Abortion kills a living person. Birth Control Prevents Conception in the First Place - 27 (90%)
Yes. A Sperm is a Potential Life, and Preventing Conception is Murder - 2 (6.7%)
Not Sure - 1 (3.3%)
Total Voters: 30

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Author Topic: Birth Control vs. Abortion  (Read 2524 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: July 20, 2012, 09:42:03 PM »

This is kind of an addendum to a poll I started about the true state of fetus and abortion. The responses became focused on birth control pill or so it seems
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« Reply #1 on: July 20, 2012, 10:01:18 PM »

Of course, Onan spilled his seed on the ground in Genesis 38:9...

I personally don't believe in Birth Control.  I have 5 children and see all children as a blessing from God.  If he wants us to have more, then we'll have more.  Perhaps we'll have our own TV show some day like the Duggars.   laugh

I do not see it as killing a living person though.

I have heard that many EO bishops accept birth control (of course in MARRIAGE!!).

I have also heard some EO bishops are very weary on the issue, and some reject it.
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« Reply #2 on: July 20, 2012, 10:11:41 PM »

I believe the way the poll is structured is too narrow.  What I mean to say is a vasectomy is entirely different from the morning after pill in relation to how it works and what it disturbs.  As worded, I would have to say “no”, they are not the same as abortion.

And allow me take this opportunity to explain my position on birth control pills is not a “high perch” position.  We used them for many years prior to learning how they worked.  What I am NOT saying is anyone who has ever used BC pills is a murderer due to the absence of understanding and intent.  I hope this clarifies things. 
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« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2012, 10:10:40 PM »

I likewise think the poll is too narrow. I disagree with contraception, not because I believe in some theory of "sperm is potential life", but because the fathers say that sex must include the possibility of having children. One could argue that even with contraception there is a possiblity, but it seems a bit of "testing the Lord Thy God" and I think anyone without a previously though-out agenda could clearly see what the fathers mean by that, otherwise, there would be no purpose to its being said.
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« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2012, 10:28:48 PM »

As long as the "birth control pill" referred to in the poll is not RU-486 or its kin (as they actually do cause an abortion), then I would vote "No".  If, however,  such abortifacient pills are included in the definition of "birth control pill" (as many pro-abortion advocates would want you to believe), then none of the choices is sufficient.
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« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2012, 11:00:27 PM »

I have never heard of a birth control method called "condemns."

I didn't vote. I see barrier methods, sterilization methods, and hormonal birth control are distinctly different. I don't think that having surgery to prevent conception on a man or a woman is wise. I don't think that taking medication to cease ovulation is healthy either. The least potentially physically harmful method is using a barrier. They aren't fun, but they can be effective. So my disagreement is in taking medication that forces the body to work contrary to how it is supposed to, or "fixing" something that isn't broken. It is shortsighted at best to have surgery to prevent pregnancy. If I live into my 80's it is a little ridiculous to have surgery to prevent pregnancy for the next 17 years of fertility when I have another 50 years of potential sex Grin There are side effects to those surgeries, I don't think the risk is worth the short term benefit.

Choosing to limit family size can be done in a variety of ways. If a couple has decided that they can not have a larger family then they have the option of using birth control or abstaining from sexual relations altogether. I think the latter is not realistic for many couples.
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« Reply #6 on: July 21, 2012, 11:15:16 PM »

This is kind of an addendum to a poll I started about the true state of fetus and abortion. The responses became focused on birth control pill or so it seems

Until today I would have answered no to all three possibilities if that were possible. I am now leaning towards number one on the list. There is a logical argument that oral contraceptives can prevent implantation of the embryo. Given the rate this occurs naturally, my objection seems to be within the noise of statistical insignificance and can never be proven one way or another. I currently have no answer to this question. I am still thinking about it.
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« Reply #7 on: July 21, 2012, 11:33:10 PM »

As long as the "birth control pill" referred to in the poll is not RU-486 or its kin (as they actually do cause an abortion), then I would vote "No".  If, however,  such abortifacient pills are included in the definition of "birth control pill" (as many pro-abortion advocates would want you to believe), then none of the choices is sufficient.

This.
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« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2012, 02:59:47 AM »

As others have said:

1. To my understanding, birth control pills can cause very early abortion. I think that one might not even know that an abortion happened. There may be other methods that cause abortions, and don't know exactly what pills can do that.

2. There is no sex without the desire for children; that wouldn't be love, it would be selfish, thus a sin. Family planning, or birth control are not part of Orthodox understanding of what love and life are.
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« Reply #9 on: July 23, 2012, 12:45:02 AM »

As others have said:

1. To my understanding, birth control pills can cause very early abortion. I think that one might not even know that an abortion happened. There may be other methods that cause abortions, and don't know exactly what pills can do that.

2. There is no sex without the desire for children; that wouldn't be love, it would be selfish, thus a sin. Family planning, or birth control are not part of Orthodox understanding of what love and life are.

Glad to hear similar sentiments as far as your second point goes. I was a little worried there that Orthodox were really going to get into the statistical chances thing and ignore the fact that it is wrong, whether it is stopping semen from reaching the egg or whether it is "technically an abortion." Christians have survived without these methods for nearly two thousand years, are we really going to let our hedonistic society get in the way now?
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« Reply #10 on: July 23, 2012, 11:30:37 AM »

Just as a matter of interest, could someone point me to a verse in either the Gospels or the Epistles that says that childbirth is the only reason for making the beasts with two backs?
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« Reply #11 on: July 23, 2012, 12:14:07 PM »

Just as a matter of interest, could someone point me to a verse in either the Gospels or the Epistles that says that childbirth is the only reason for making the beasts with two backs?

There isn't.
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« Reply #12 on: July 23, 2012, 12:17:47 PM »

Just as a matter of interest, could someone point me to a verse in either the Gospels or the Epistles that says that childbirth is the only reason for making the beasts with two backs?

There isn't.

And St. Paul only mentions marrying so as to be able to avoid lust (probably leading to greater sins than lust). But many Church Fathers said that procreation was one of the only reasons that sexual relations was justified. Wrongly, IMO, but that's what they said. So where did they get the idea? Oral tradition? Stoicism?
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« Reply #13 on: July 23, 2012, 12:43:04 PM »

Back in school, my θεολόγος (theologian teacher? I don't know how it is translated) used to say that sex does not have a sole purpose of having kids, since were that the case, sterile people shouldn't be married in the first place.
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« Reply #14 on: July 23, 2012, 01:12:47 PM »

I thought Orthodoxy was a place where one could get away from people putting their own wants over the words of the fathers. I don't understand why we can see that Christians lived for nearly 2000 years without our non-abortive contraceptive methods and yet we let our own hedonism and selfishness try to justify using them. It is only a move to compromise with our sex-crazed society.

For the record, the fathers (for the most part) do not say that procreation is the only reason for sex. They do, however, say that the possibility of having a child is a must for sexual relations.
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« Reply #15 on: July 23, 2012, 01:35:44 PM »

Just as a matter of interest, could someone point me to a verse in either the Gospels or the Epistles that says that childbirth is the only reason for making the beasts with two backs?

There isn't.

And St. Paul only mentions marrying so as to be able to avoid lust (probably leading to greater sins than lust). But many Church Fathers said that procreation was one of the only reasons that sexual relations was justified. Wrongly, IMO, but that's what they said. So where did they get the idea? Oral tradition? Stoicism?

Benjamin/Asteriktos, that was the point I was heading towards.  I'm not sure where the Church Fathers got that, but I did find it interesting that they quote Paul, not the other way around.  If our technology has gotten to the point that A- we can block pregnancy without killing a child, and B- that the vast majority of children born will survive to adulthood...then the situation seems pretty clear cut.  IF you are married, do what you need to do to avoid lust.
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« Reply #16 on: July 23, 2012, 03:18:11 PM »

Back in school, my θεολόγος (theologian teacher? I don't know how it is translated) used to say that sex does not have a sole purpose of having kids, since were that the case, sterile people shouldn't be married in the first place.
The fault with this idea is you would not know they were sterile until they married.
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« Reply #17 on: July 23, 2012, 03:52:05 PM »

Just as a matter of interest, could someone point me to a verse in either the Gospels or the Epistles that says that childbirth is the only reason for making the beasts with two backs?

There isn't.

And St. Paul only mentions marrying so as to be able to avoid lust (probably leading to greater sins than lust). But many Church Fathers said that procreation was one of the only reasons that sexual relations was justified. Wrongly, IMO, but that's what they said. So where did they get the idea? Oral tradition? Stoicism?

Many do. Other Fathers disagree. This isn't a clear-cut "right vs. wrong" issue for our faith. It's a pastoral one that, I think, depends on the individual. If you can abstain at all times except for procreation, then glory to God...that's a great asceticism. For the rest of us, "it is better to marry than to burn with passion."
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« Reply #18 on: July 23, 2012, 04:12:38 PM »

Back in school, my θεολόγος (theologian teacher? I don't know how it is translated) used to say that sex does not have a sole purpose of having kids, since were that the case, sterile people shouldn't be married in the first place.
The fault with this idea is you would not know they were sterile until they married.
Yes, I see how I gave the wrong idea. He meant that they would consider their marriage worthless after finding that one or both of them are sterile. Also, how can you tell your wife "I won't have sex with you anymore, since the tests showed there's no possibility of pregnancy"?
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« Reply #19 on: July 23, 2012, 05:15:32 PM »

Back in school, my θεολόγος (theologian teacher? I don't know how it is translated) used to say that sex does not have a sole purpose of having kids, since were that the case, sterile people shouldn't be married in the first place.
The fault with this idea is you would not know they were sterile until they married.
Yes, I see how I gave the wrong idea. He meant that they would consider their marriage worthless after finding that one or both of them are sterile. Also, how can you tell your wife "I won't have sex with you anymore, since the tests showed there's no possibility of pregnancy"?

Traditionally, at least in the Latin Church, sterility was an impediment to marriage.

The point of not having sex if you are sterile since there is no chance of conception is not the same as actively blocking conception. A sterile couple are not taking active, artificial means for blocking conception.

This is admittedly my biggest hurdle in possibly converting to Orthodoxy. I am convinced that artificial birth control is always sinful, to one degree or another. The constant tradition of the Church seems to favor this view as well. It is more in keeping with the hedonistic ethos of the the World to actively prevent preganancy by artifial means. It prevents the natural end of the marital union as intended by God.

Doctrinal controveries aside, the Roman Church has always taken an unambigious stance against moral evils such as contraception and abortion in ALL cases. I was disappointed to see a statement on, I believe the GOarch website, condoning abortion in cases of life of mother (a medical non-necessity).

I'm currently struggling with this mightley since it is about my last hurdle to Orthodoxy. If someone can point me to some doctrinal resource regarding the Orthodox teaching regarding these things I would appreciate it.
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« Reply #20 on: July 23, 2012, 06:10:40 PM »

Back in school, my θεολόγος (theologian teacher? I don't know how it is translated) used to say that sex does not have a sole purpose of having kids, since were that the case, sterile people shouldn't be married in the first place.
The fault with this idea is you would not know they were sterile until they married.
Yes, I see how I gave the wrong idea. He meant that they would consider their marriage worthless after finding that one or both of them are sterile. Also, how can you tell your wife "I won't have sex with you anymore, since the tests showed there's no possibility of pregnancy"?

Traditionally, at least in the Latin Church, sterility was an impediment to marriage.

The point of not having sex if you are sterile since there is no chance of conception is not the same as actively blocking conception. A sterile couple are not taking active, artificial means for blocking conception.

This is admittedly my biggest hurdle in possibly converting to Orthodoxy. I am convinced that artificial birth control is always sinful, to one degree or another. The constant tradition of the Church seems to favor this view as well. It is more in keeping with the hedonistic ethos of the the World to actively prevent preganancy by artifial means. It prevents the natural end of the marital union as intended by God.

Doctrinal controveries aside, the Roman Church has always taken an unambigious stance against moral evils such as contraception and abortion in ALL cases. I was disappointed to see a statement on, I believe the GOarch website, condoning abortion in cases of life of mother (a medical non-necessity).

I'm currently struggling with this mightley since it is about my last hurdle to Orthodoxy. If someone can point me to some doctrinal resource regarding the Orthodox teaching regarding these things I would appreciate it.

I'd argue that the life of the mother is a medical necessity...for her. If either the child or the mother is going to die, death is inevitable...it's just about which one. It's a tough decision, but I'd keep my wife.

Though, I heard once of a priest who had to counsel a woman facing this situation. He told her that he wouldn't condemn her choice to have an abortion, if it came to that, but that if she didn't and died...he'd consider her a martyr. I'd have to agree with that sentiment.
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« Reply #21 on: July 23, 2012, 06:15:42 PM »

I also would rather have the wife live only because if the baby was to survive it would not have its biological mother which I think is a very big issue. But of course it's hard imaging the grief a mother would have knowing she had to abort the baby to save her own life. I worry regret would consume the wife and it probably would take along time to heal.

I pray I am never in that sitaution.
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« Reply #22 on: July 23, 2012, 06:51:35 PM »

I'm currently struggling with this mightley since it is about my last hurdle to Orthodoxy. If someone can point me to some doctrinal resource regarding the Orthodox teaching regarding these things I would appreciate it.

The problem is, it depends on who you ask. A text with lots of patristic quotes (East and West) is Contraception: A History of its Treatment by Catholic Theologians and Canonists by the RC John T Noonan, but it isn't very tradition in methodology or conclusions. A great book on sexuality and gender generally, from a more traditional Orthodox viewpoint, is Women and Men in the Early Church: The Full Views of St. John Chrysostom by David Ford, who takes the position that the Greek east never went as far as the Latin west in worrying about these kinds of things, and was never as rigorist. And here is an excerpt from what the Russian Orthodox Church believes:

Quote
Among the problems which need a religious and moral assessment is that of contraception. Some contraceptives have an abortive effect, interrupting artificially the life of the embryo on the very first stages of his life. Therefore, the same judgements are applicable to the use of them as to abortion. But other means, which do not involve interrupting an already conceived life, cannot be equated with abortion in the least. In defining their attitude to the non-abortive contraceptives, Christian spouses should remember that human reproduction is one of the principal purposes of the divinely established marital union (see, X. 4). The deliberate refusal of childbirth on egoistic grounds devalues marriage and is a definite sin.

At the same time, spouses are responsible before God for the comprehensive upbringing of their children. One of the ways to be responsible for their birth is to restrain themselves from sexual relations for a time. However, Christian spouses should remember the words of St. Paul addressed to them: "Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency" (1 Cor. 7:5). Clearly, spouses should make such decisions mutually on the counsel of their spiritual father. The latter should take into account, with pastoral prudence, the concrete living conditions of the couple, their age, health, degree of spiritual maturity and many other circumstances. In doing so, he should distinguish those who can hold the high demands of continence from those to whom it is not given (Mt. 19:11), taking care above all of the preservation and consolidation of the family.

The Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church in its Decision of December 28, 1998, instructed the clergy serving as spiritual guides that "it is inadmissible to coerce or induce the flock to… refuse conjugal relations in marriage". It also reminded the pastors of the need "to show special chastity and special pastoral prudence in discussing with the flock the questions involved in particular aspects of their family life".
« Last Edit: July 23, 2012, 06:51:48 PM by Asteriktos » Logged

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« Reply #23 on: July 23, 2012, 07:02:56 PM »

Back in school, my θεολόγος (theologian teacher? I don't know how it is translated) used to say that sex does not have a sole purpose of having kids, since were that the case, sterile people shouldn't be married in the first place.
The fault with this idea is you would not know they were sterile until they married.
Yes, I see how I gave the wrong idea. He meant that they would consider their marriage worthless after finding that one or both of them are sterile. Also, how can you tell your wife "I won't have sex with you anymore, since the tests showed there's no possibility of pregnancy"?

Traditionally, at least in the Latin Church, sterility was an impediment to marriage.

The point of not having sex if you are sterile since there is no chance of conception is not the same as actively blocking conception. A sterile couple are not taking active, artificial means for blocking conception.

This is admittedly my biggest hurdle in possibly converting to Orthodoxy. I am convinced that artificial birth control is always sinful, to one degree or another. The constant tradition of the Church seems to favor this view as well. It is more in keeping with the hedonistic ethos of the the World to actively prevent preganancy by artifial means. It prevents the natural end of the marital union as intended by God.

Doctrinal controveries aside, the Roman Church has always taken an unambigious stance against moral evils such as contraception and abortion in ALL cases. I was disappointed to see a statement on, I believe the GOarch website, condoning abortion in cases of life of mother (a medical non-necessity).

I'm currently struggling with this mightley since it is about my last hurdle to Orthodoxy. If someone can point me to some doctrinal resource regarding the Orthodox teaching regarding these things I would appreciate it.

I'd argue that the life of the mother is a medical necessity...for her. If either the child or the mother is going to die, death is inevitable...it's just about which one. It's a tough decision, but I'd keep my wife.

Though, I heard once of a priest who had to counsel a woman facing this situation. He told her that he wouldn't condemn her choice to have an abortion, if it came to that, but that if she didn't and died...he'd consider her a martyr. I'd have to agree with that sentiment.

Direct abortion is always sinful. This is not a matter of situational ethics.

I believe the principle of double effect comes into play here. In a situation you describe one could decide to save the mother in such a way that it would unintentially cause the death of the infant. This is different then directly aborting the baby wherein the intention is to take the life of the baby. An example I suppose would be for a mother who has cancer taking chemotherapy in order to save her own life while, not intending to but as a side effect, the baby dying.

I know Thomism is frowned upon by a lot of Orthodox but it does help to answer these difficult questions.
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« Reply #24 on: July 23, 2012, 07:14:27 PM »

I'm currently struggling with this mightley since it is about my last hurdle to Orthodoxy. If someone can point me to some doctrinal resource regarding the Orthodox teaching regarding these things I would appreciate it.

The problem is, it depends on who you ask. A text with lots of patristic quotes (East and West) is Contraception: A History of its Treatment by Catholic Theologians and Canonists by the RC John T Noonan, but it isn't very tradition in methodology or conclusions. A great book on sexuality and gender generally, from a more traditional Orthodox viewpoint, is Women and Men in the Early Church: The Full Views of St. John Chrysostom by David Ford, who takes the position that the Greek east never went as far as the Latin west in worrying about these kinds of things, and was never as rigorist. And here is an excerpt from what the Russian Orthodox Church believes:

Quote
Among the problems which need a religious and moral assessment is that of contraception. Some contraceptives have an abortive effect, interrupting artificially the life of the embryo on the very first stages of his life. Therefore, the same judgements are applicable to the use of them as to abortion. But other means, which do not involve interrupting an already conceived life, cannot be equated with abortion in the least. In defining their attitude to the non-abortive contraceptives, Christian spouses should remember that human reproduction is one of the principal purposes of the divinely established marital union (see, X. 4). The deliberate refusal of childbirth on egoistic grounds devalues marriage and is a definite sin.

At the same time, spouses are responsible before God for the comprehensive upbringing of their children. One of the ways to be responsible for their birth is to restrain themselves from sexual relations for a time. However, Christian spouses should remember the words of St. Paul addressed to them: "Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency" (1 Cor. 7:5). Clearly, spouses should make such decisions mutually on the counsel of their spiritual father. The latter should take into account, with pastoral prudence, the concrete living conditions of the couple, their age, health, degree of spiritual maturity and many other circumstances. In doing so, he should distinguish those who can hold the high demands of continence from those to whom it is not given (Mt. 19:11), taking care above all of the preservation and consolidation of the family.

The Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church in its Decision of December 28, 1998, instructed the clergy serving as spiritual guides that "it is inadmissible to coerce or induce the flock to… refuse conjugal relations in marriage". It also reminded the pastors of the need "to show special chastity and special pastoral prudence in discussing with the flock the questions involved in particular aspects of their family life".

Thank you for those book suggestions. I'll take a look.
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« Reply #25 on: July 23, 2012, 07:41:40 PM »

Back in school, my θεολόγος (theologian teacher? I don't know how it is translated) used to say that sex does not have a sole purpose of having kids, since were that the case, sterile people shouldn't be married in the first place.
The fault with this idea is you would not know they were sterile until they married.
Yes, I see how I gave the wrong idea. He meant that they would consider their marriage worthless after finding that one or both of them are sterile. Also, how can you tell your wife "I won't have sex with you anymore, since the tests showed there's no possibility of pregnancy"?

Traditionally, at least in the Latin Church, sterility was an impediment to marriage.

The point of not having sex if you are sterile since there is no chance of conception is not the same as actively blocking conception. A sterile couple are not taking active, artificial means for blocking conception.

This is admittedly my biggest hurdle in possibly converting to Orthodoxy. I am convinced that artificial birth control is always sinful, to one degree or another. The constant tradition of the Church seems to favor this view as well. It is more in keeping with the hedonistic ethos of the the World to actively prevent preganancy by artifial means. It prevents the natural end of the marital union as intended by God.

Doctrinal controveries aside, the Roman Church has always taken an unambigious stance against moral evils such as contraception and abortion in ALL cases. I was disappointed to see a statement on, I believe the GOarch website, condoning abortion in cases of life of mother (a medical non-necessity).

I'm currently struggling with this mightley since it is about my last hurdle to Orthodoxy. If someone can point me to some doctrinal resource regarding the Orthodox teaching regarding these things I would appreciate it.

I'd argue that the life of the mother is a medical necessity...for her. If either the child or the mother is going to die, death is inevitable...it's just about which one. It's a tough decision, but I'd keep my wife.

Though, I heard once of a priest who had to counsel a woman facing this situation. He told her that he wouldn't condemn her choice to have an abortion, if it came to that, but that if she didn't and died...he'd consider her a martyr. I'd have to agree with that sentiment.

Direct abortion is always sinful. This is not a matter of situational ethics.

I believe the principle of double effect comes into play here. In a situation you describe one could decide to save the mother in such a way that it would unintentially cause the death of the infant. This is different then directly aborting the baby wherein the intention is to take the life of the baby. An example I suppose would be for a mother who has cancer taking chemotherapy in order to save her own life while, not intending to but as a side effect, the baby dying.

I know Thomism is frowned upon by a lot of Orthodox but it does help to answer these difficult questions.

It's murder, and is sinful...regardless. No argument here.

And, yes, my argument is a choice between the life of the mother or the baby wherein one must die to save the other. ANY other reason is invalid, in my opinion.
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« Reply #26 on: July 23, 2012, 07:56:24 PM »

Back in school, my θεολόγος (theologian teacher? I don't know how it is translated) used to say that sex does not have a sole purpose of having kids, since were that the case, sterile people shouldn't be married in the first place.
The fault with this idea is you would not know they were sterile until they married.
Yes, I see how I gave the wrong idea. He meant that they would consider their marriage worthless after finding that one or both of them are sterile. Also, how can you tell your wife "I won't have sex with you anymore, since the tests showed there's no possibility of pregnancy"?

Traditionally, at least in the Latin Church, sterility was an impediment to marriage.

The point of not having sex if you are sterile since there is no chance of conception is not the same as actively blocking conception. A sterile couple are not taking active, artificial means for blocking conception.

This is admittedly my biggest hurdle in possibly converting to Orthodoxy. I am convinced that artificial birth control is always sinful, to one degree or another. The constant tradition of the Church seems to favor this view as well. It is more in keeping with the hedonistic ethos of the the World to actively prevent preganancy by artifial means. It prevents the natural end of the marital union as intended by God.

Doctrinal controveries aside, the Roman Church has always taken an unambigious stance against moral evils such as contraception and abortion in ALL cases. I was disappointed to see a statement on, I believe the GOarch website, condoning abortion in cases of life of mother (a medical non-necessity).

I'm currently struggling with this mightley since it is about my last hurdle to Orthodoxy. If someone can point me to some doctrinal resource regarding the Orthodox teaching regarding these things I would appreciate it.

I'd argue that the life of the mother is a medical necessity...for her. If either the child or the mother is going to die, death is inevitable...it's just about which one. It's a tough decision, but I'd keep my wife.

Though, I heard once of a priest who had to counsel a woman facing this situation. He told her that he wouldn't condemn her choice to have an abortion, if it came to that, but that if she didn't and died...he'd consider her a martyr. I'd have to agree with that sentiment.

Direct abortion is always sinful. This is not a matter of situational ethics.

I believe the principle of double effect comes into play here. In a situation you describe one could decide to save the mother in such a way that it would unintentially cause the death of the infant. This is different then directly aborting the baby wherein the intention is to take the life of the baby. An example I suppose would be for a mother who has cancer taking chemotherapy in order to save her own life while, not intending to but as a side effect, the baby dying.

I know Thomism is frowned upon by a lot of Orthodox but it does help to answer these difficult questions.

It's murder, and is sinful...regardless. No argument here.

And, yes, my argument is a choice between the life of the mother or the baby wherein one must die to save the other. ANY other reason is invalid, in my opinion.

You will find some people will make the argument in support of abortion relating the smallest percentage of occurrences.  I once has someone suggest to me a justifiable reason and found the statistics were something like 0.04 percent of all abortions.  But this is what they used to argue for all abortions.
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