Contraception and Contrition: A Christian Perspective

The celebration of Pentecost Sunday is also the perfect time to contemplate our life and review its history, a good opportunity to review our imperfections, ask God for his forgiveness. “The Advocate, the holy Spirit that the Father will send in my name – he will teach you everything and remind you of all that [I] told you.” (J 14:26). Thus, we should pray for the Holy Spirit, the Helper, to guide us and give us a cleared understanding.

I approach this sensitive topic with anxiety and trepidation hoping my article will not be putting the cat among the pigeons.

To appreciate the work of the Spirit in the virgin birth of Christ, let’s follow the Scripture context as the Spirit inspired it in Mt 1:23 “Behold, the virgin shall be with child and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel”.  It was rightly said, that the One who was full of grace, full of the Holy Spirit, will conceive through the power of the Holy Spirit, without a man`s involvement.

Jesus came as a baby. Presumably, bearing the Son of God for the salvation of mankind, only exacerbated the devil`s animosity towards children. Hence, the archfiend burned with even more hatred for the unborn, the effects of which are so much evident today.


Many individuals are imbued with a contraceptive mindset. Across all developed nations, nearly all Christians who partake in conjugal intimate activity contemplate, to varying degrees, whether the prospect of conceiving a child would hinder the achievement of their personal aspirations and goals. There exists apprehension regarding financial capabilities such as purchasing a vehicle or a property, ambitions for career advancement, as well as concerns that the arrival of a newborn might restrict opportunities for overseas travel. Consequently, there is a prevailing inclination towards having one child, occasionally two, and exceedingly infrequently, three.

Consistently avoiding the conception of a child, even if spouses reject immoral methods of contraception, by strictly adhering to the principles of Natural Family Planning, is a stance that is rather difficult to reconcile with true marital love and with the principles outlined in the Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, 50.

Those who choose to delay or forego parenthood without just cause are incurring the disapproval of the Divine; such action elevates personal desires above God’s Will.

Losing one’s own life is the fundamental principle of a Christian. Beyond doubt, in many cases, such attitude requires heroism, often a blind trust in God that He will provide the necessary means for the living, a roof over one’s head, clothing, if we accept the gift of a new life. All in all, the more children we have, the more opportunities we must give up ourselves for others. “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.”  (Mat 16:25)

Contraception goes in precisely the opposite direction; it is a way of boosting one’s ego. In antiquity, people fashioned idols from materials like wood, bronze, or gold. In contemporary times, individuals erect idols constructed from self-centeredness—anything that holds greater significance to them than the Divine.

To atheist and non-religious couples, one might think any form of contraception is acceptable unless they find human life at least as valuable as “the lower animals” which they so staunchly defend. “Certainly, sons are a gift from the LORD, “the fruit of the womb, a reward.” (Ps 127:3)

As stated by Fr. Dr. Krzysztof Bielawny, for a morally healthy family, completely trusting in God, is the only attitude capable of accepting offspring as His gift. Hundreds of such families existed after Marian apparitions in Gietrzwałd in 1877.

Fr. Bielawny, a widely known scholar,  specialising in demography, in his monograph “Saving Independence,” argues that if Poles had maintained the demographic dynamism of  the end of the 19th century, with over thirty children born per thousand inhabitants on average, Poland would currently have 208 million citizens, then Brussels, Berlin and Moscow would be reluctant to interfere in Polish affairs.

In independent and Catholic Poland, in the years of 1922, 1923, and 1925, the birth rate of live children per 1000 people was 35.’Various socialist and feminist movements disseminating anti-human, neo-Malthusian ideas, and very recently advocated by climate change zealots, have prevented this beautiful perspective to come true, he remarks with regret.

“For example, in the case of Poland, over 120 years, approximately 33.5 million children lost their lives due to abortion, while contraception prevented or destroyed human life to the extent of another 113.5 million,” wrote Rev. Bielawny.

To add insult to injury, in 2023, the crude birth rate in Poland plunged to 6.1 (sic!). This alarming trend can only be reversed by Our Lady`s supernatural intervention.


On July 25, 1968, Pope Paul VI issued Humanae Vite, the landmark encyclical that reaffirmed the teaching of the Church that the use of contraceptives is intrinsically evil, a grave sin. The Pope warned that the widespread use of contraception would lead to “conjugal infidelity and the general lowering of morality.” This is exactly what has happened.

With the introduction of contraceptive pills to the Polish market in 1966, the number of broken marriages almost doubled. Fr. Bielawny compares the periods before the introduction of the contraceptive pill from 1956 to 1966 with the period after its introduction from 1966 to 1975. According to the gathered data, the number of divorces increased from 174.2 thousand to 342.8 thousand, which is a rise of almost 96.8%.

On September 1, 1979, Supreme Pontiff of the Universal Church, Pope John Paul II on his pilgrimage to Limerick, Ireland said:

I want to say a very special word to all Irish parents. Marriage must include openness to the gift of children. Generous openness to accept children from God as the gift to their love is the mark of the Christian couple. Respect the God-given cycle of life, for this respect is part of our respect for God himself, who created male and female, who created them in his own image, reflecting his own life-giving love in the patterns of their sexual being.”

In 1966 in Siedlce, the Primate of Poland, Blessed Cardinal Stefan Wyszynski, called out to the nation and state authorities:

“…it is not a matter of indifference whether there will be 30 million people or more living in Poland. Let us remember that today there is a population wave unfolding worldwide. For some, it is a cause for concern, for others, it is hope. Our country is surrounded by nations with over 100 million people on one side and 80 million on the other. If there is a handful of us left here, our name will be erased from the face of earth.  A heavy responsibility rests on us for the future fate of our Christian Country. Therefore, we must overcome all selfishness, egoism, and comfort-seeking. We must raise the spirit of sacrifice and renunciation to better serve the Christian nation, whose place is on this land. The commandment of Our Heavenly Father applies to us here on Polish soil: Be fertile and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it. (Gen 1:28)'” There is plenty of room and resources on this planet for all of us.

Regarding birth control, the Catechism of the Catholic Church #2399 clearly states that “legitimate intentions on the part of the spouses do not justify recourse to morally unacceptable means (for example, direct sterilization or contraception).”

Demonic forces hate children with vehemence. One must understand there is no passing of guilt, shame, or condemnation here. Regardless of how you were conceived, your life was not a mistake as the enemy has always wanted you to believe. God saw you long before you were formed in your mother’s womb! (Jer 1:5).


Contrition is feeling deeply sorry for all our sins and is necessary for repentance. It allows us to open ourselves up to God`s mercy and recognize ourselves as the dust of the earth. It rises within us when we devote time to an examination of conscience, particularly in the light of the moral injunctions of the Lord or the Ten Commandments.

The evangelical parable known as the prodigal son (Lk 15:11-32) invites us to realize God`s love and sympathy toward the poor and fallen and lost. The loving father is pictured as seeing the prodigal a long way off and rushing to him, finally embracing him and kissing. The son attempts to make his statement of contrition but is interrupted by the father`s expressions of love and offering him the best robe, the ring, the feast on fatted calf; and general rejoicing because the dead had come to life and the lost had been found.

God does not despise a broken spirit and a contrite heart. On the contrary, he delights in it.

In the Old Testament, (Ps 51:17) David exhibits a transparent and contrite heart, fully recognizing and admitting his sins before God. He acknowledges the deep-seated nature of sin. The context of this psalm is rooted in the tragic events described in (2 Sm 11:12).

Ahab, another biblical figure, is also known for his contrition. Although he committed abominable acts, incited by his wife, Jezebel, he humbled himself before God so the Lord ceased to bring evil upon him while he was still alive (1 Kgs 21:29), while his wife did not and tragically perished.

The other associated story is of the meeting Jesus with a Samaritan woman (Jn 4 : 42).  The Lord reveals truths about her and about Himself. Only after Jesus told her of her immoral acts, was she able to say, “I can see that you are a prophet.” As soon as the conversation turned to worship, the woman spoke of the difference between the Samaritan temple and the temple of the Jews. In her contrition, the Samaritan woman wanted to know where she could offer sacrifice for her sins. When Jesus named her sins, she did nor rebel and become defensive. Instead, she fully admitted her faults with honesty. In her search for atonement, she was able to recognize the man in front of her as the Messiah who offers her living water.

In the New Testament, the thief on the cross is the most luminous example of deep and sincere contrition. “And indeed, we have been condemned justly, for the sentence we received corresponds to our crimes, but this man has done nothing criminal. Then he said, Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom. He replied to him, “Amen, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.” (Lk 23:41-43).  The thief`s words reflected repentance while his confession confirmed faith in God`s mercy.

Peter’s Denial and Repentance is the other compelling story of the Gospel (Lk 22:62). In weeping bitterly, Peter revealed a contrite heart, which led to God`s forgiveness. He instantly realized he had done something horribly wrong, was stricken with remorse. Cephas was never one to disown his unworthiness and his fallen nature. Despite the betrayal of the Master, he was chosen by Jesus to lead the Church.

And here is the crux of moving the Heart of the Lord so that we could receive the abundance of His mercy. The Scriptures confirm that our hearts must be contrite and sorrowful for our sins and failings.

Considering that mercy is so often on the mind of many Catholics these days, there has arisen a concern that a flawed notion of mercy seems to be prevailing in today`s society. God is always merciful and ready to forgive us as soon as he sees that we desire to amend our lives and are truly sorry. However, God`s mercy is easily confused with leniency, which is a human feature, not divine.

In Conclusion

Living in a culture that takes contraceptive use for granted, just as it accepts sex without marriage, we do not consider that perhaps having, four, five or even six children could be a genuine blessing for our families and country. “Certainly, sons are a gift from the LORD, the fruit of the womb, a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the sons born in one’s youth.” (Ps 127: 3-4)

Nevertheless, it is uncertain whether, at the time of divine judgment, we will not lament that we fell short in fulfilling the will of the Maker in this respect.

July 30, 1986, our current Polish mystic, Alicja Lenczewska, in her diary wrote of the true value of sincerity with God – “Do not hide from Me to cover your sinfulness as Adam and Eve did in the garden. For I know everything and nothing will be concealed from Me. Do not think that you might amend it by yourself and come to Me cleansed. You cannot do anything; delaying will only aggravate the evil that has stuck to you. Evil creates evil. You must offer it immediately to Me, so that I can take it away before it grows. You must overcome shame, and in humility desire My help.” 

The Beatitudes of Wiktoria and Józef Ulma, who are looked upon as heroes of World War II for their actions in sheltering Jews in southern Poland, serve as a poignant illustration of a pro-life ethos. In the face of impending conflict, they consciously chose to embrace the divine calling of parenthood, having four children. Moreover, despite the onset of the global conflict, they displayed remarkable courage by expanding their family to include three more children. This stands in stark contrast to contemporary societal trends, where a considerable number of women, not only in the Land Down Under but regrettably also in remote Poland, opt for pet companionship over embracing the gift of childbirth. (Oh, what folly and hubris!)

Father, I abandon myself into Your hands. Do with me what You will. Whatever You may do I thank You. I am ready for all. I accept all. Let only Your will be done in me and in all Your creatures. I wish no more than this, O Lord.  Into Your hands I commend my soul. I offer it to you with all the love of my heart, for I love You, Lord, and so need to give myself, to surrender myself into Your hands without reserve and with boundless confidence, for You are my Father.

 A postscript:

In contemporary society, where the delineation between truth and falsehood often becomes blurred and where instances of misrepresentation of evil and virtue are not uncommon, there exists a pervasive inclination to coerce expressions of repentance and contrition in contexts where they appear totally unwarranted. This phenomenon is exemplified by the protracted guilt narrative, persisting within highly diverse Australian nation, over the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

For many immigrants, particularly those originating from Central and Eastern Europe, such attempts not only appear absurd but also pose significant social and ethical risks. It might parallel a hypothetical scenario wherein the President of Egypt and individual citizens of that nation would issue apologies, provide restitution, and divest national assets to the citizens of the State of Israel for transgressions committed by Egyptian Pharaohs millennia ago, including the oppression and forced labour imposed upon the Israelites.

Fortunately, notwithstanding substantial advocacy from the left-wing Albanese government and a comprehensive media campaign, the majority Australians exhibited prudence and fortitude during the October referendum, decisively rejecting further concessions in this vein.