2014-10-20 16:26:00

Pirolas: promoting the sacredness of sex in marriage

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis urged participants in the Synod on the Family, which concluded on Sunday, to speak with courage, humility and honesty about the joys and challenges facing Christian families today. The Holy Father got exactly what he’d asked for when the first of a dozen lay couples addressed the bishops, urging them to promote the sacredness of sex in marriage in a language that resonates with young people today.

Ron and Marvis Pirola from Sydney are co-directors of the Australian Catholic Marriage and Family Council and served for a quarter of a century on the Pontifical Council for the Family. They believe that lay people and families in particular must have a much stronger role in helping Church leaders communicate Gospel values, especially when it comes to issues of sexual intimacy that lie at the heart of most successful marriages.

Philippa Hitchen sat down with Ron and Mavis to hear more about the message they hope the world’s bishops will reflect on over the coming year….


"In the intervening years there’s been a great increase in the crisis of faith and marriage and we see many more difficulties and problems today….

(The causes are) a whole lot of factors…one would be the sexual revolution, which has many good things in it…..it’s a great opportunity for evangelisation. However it has also led to some enormous distortions about ideas of sex and these are causing a lot of harm for people.

Our personal concern is that if we’ve to teach about these distortions, we have to be very clear about what positive opportunities we have. For example we teach about marital spiritual which sound rather ethereal, but what distinguishes that from all other forms of good Christian spirituality is sexual intimacy…….so we live out our spirituality in an incarnate way, in daily life, but for a married couple, the heart of that – and what drew us together in the first place – is sex.

We’re asking the Church to find ways and language to express the sacredness of sex in marriage…it’s a Church teaching but to reclaim or pronounce it in meaningful ways. Our sacrament is a sexual one, there’s no question about that, but somehow we find it difficult to come out and say this…..

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