Theology of the Body

September 7, 2011 under Syllabus 2011-2012

Summary

God has a plan for you as a man, husband and father? Do you know what it is and are you living it? You are invited this coming Friday morning to hear Deacon Russ Feldkamp discuss John Paul II’s Theology of the Body.

Objective

The Objective is become familiar with Theology of the Body and why it is important to us as men, husbands and fathers.

Theology of the Body is the topic of a series of 129 lectures given by Pope John Paul II during his Wednesday audiences in the Pope Paul VI Hall between September 1979 and November 1984. It was the first major teaching of his pontificate. The complete addresses were later compiled and expanded upon in many of John Paul’s encyclicals, letters, and exhortations.

Bible Readings

1. Genesis 1:27-28

God created man in his image; in the divine image he created him; male and female he created them. God blessed them, saying: “Be fertile and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it. Have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and all the living things that move on the earth.

2. Genesis 2:18, 23-25

The LORD God said: “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a suitable partner for him.” When he brought her to the man, the man said: “This one, at last, is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; This one shall be called ‘woman,’ for out of ‘her man’ this one has been taken.” That is why a man leaves his father and mother and clings to his wife, and the two of them become one body. The man and his wife were both naked, yet they felt no shame.

3. Mark 10:6-9

But (Jesus said to them) from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother (and be joined to his wife), and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, no human being must separate.”

4. Tobit 8:4-8

When the girl’s parents left the bedroom and closed the door behind them, Tobiah arose from bed and said to his wife, “My love, get up. Let us pray and beg our Lord to have mercy on us and to grant us deliverance.” She got up, and they started to pray and beg that deliverance might be theirs. He began with these words: “Blessed are you, O God of our fathers; praised be your name forever and ever. Let the heavens and all your creation praise you forever. You made Adam and you gave him his wife Eve to be his help and support; and from these two the human race descended. You said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone; let us make him a partner like himself.’ Now, Lord, you know that I take this wife of mine not because of lust, but for a noble purpose. Call down your mercy on me and on her, and allow us to live together to a happy old age.” They said together, “Amen, amen,”

5. Psalm 51:12

A clean heart create for me, God; renew in me a steadfast spirit.

Catechism Readings

1. Paragraph 387

“Only the light of divine Revelation clarifies the reality of sin and particularly of the sin committed at mankind’s origins. Without the knowledge Revelation gives of God we cannot recognize sin clearly and are tempted to explain it as merely a developmental flaw, a psychological weakness, a mistake, or the necessary consequence of an inadequate social structure, etc. Only in the knowledge of God’s plan for man can we grasp that sin is an abuse of the freedom that God gives to created persons so that they are capable of loving him and loving one another.”

2. Paragraph 221

“But St. John goes even further when he affirms that “God is love”: God’s very being is love. By sending his only Son and the Spirit of Love in the fullness of time, God has revealed his innermost secret: God himself is an eternal exchange of love, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and he has destined us to share in that exchange.”

Small Group Questions

1. What have you learned about Theology of the Body?

2. Are you living according to God’s plan? Are you and your wife together living according to God’s plan?

3. Is God challenging you with this teaching? Explain.

Recommended Resources

1. Theology of the Body Institute: http://www.tobinstitute.org/

2. General Audience By Pope John Paul II on Theology of the Body from 9/5/79 to 11/28/84

http://www.ewtn.com/library/papaldoc/jp2tbind.htm

3. Book: “Theology of the Body some thoughts and reflections”, by Karen Doyle

Accountability

1. Take some time to Reflect on today’s discussion and how God is calling you as a man, husband and father.

2. Have a date night with your wife and discuss the ideas of Theology of the Body with her.

Author(s)

Michael Copfer

Included Resources:

Presentation by Deacon Russ Feldkamp

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