Program #0361 for Tuesday, August 28, 2012: Theology of the Body

August 28, 2012

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Today’s host(s): Scot Landry

Today’s guest(s): Drs. Angela and David Franks from the Theological Institute for the New Evangelization at St John Seminary

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Today’s topics: Feast of St Augustine, Blessed John Paul II’s Theology of the Body

1st segment: Scot Landry welcomed everyone and said Fr. Chris O’Connor could not be with us today due to being sick – we ask all our listeners to pray for his speedy recovery! Scot introduced Angela and David Franks, who work with Fr. Chris O’Connor at the Theological Institute for the New Evangelization at Saint John Seminary.

Scot recalled that today is the feastday of St. Augustine. He said that for those who wish to know more about the life of the Saint to keep an eye out for the movie “Restless Heart,” which will come out towards the end of September.

Scot said today is also important because Republican Convention starts today. He noted that some Catholics spoke negatively towards Paul Ryan at first, but some are warming up – several bishops have defended Ryan’s views. David said that Paul understands that the Church is essentially and consistently committed to the well being of the poor, even before the government. We are not to required by Church teaching to think that care of the poor is only for the government, or indeed that we as Catholics should not make it our own first priority as a faith community.

Scot asked about the upcoming Certificate Programs and other classes offered at the TINE. David said that the Foundational Certificates are based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church and start in October and run through May. The Franks are also teaching a new class this fall for the Masters program that will start in October on New Evangelization. Angela mentioned that all are welcome to take the class, or even to audit the class. Details can be found at the TINE website.

2nd Segment: Scot asked David to explain what is the Theology of the body actually is. David said the Theology of the Body is a series of short talks and audiences from Blessed John Paul II which explain the encyclical Humane Vitae, which was received with controversy in 1958. Angela said the encyclical is very short and to the point, but that Blessed John Paul II thought the people today need more explanation on the topics of the encyclical. Theology of the Body was an attempt to explain and expound upon this basic encyclical about contraception and human sexuality.

Scot asked why some Catholics still use contraceptives. Angela explained that she has learned that its because they were once told it was ok – if you grow up in our society today and don’t try to learn more about it, you would also simply believe it is morally permissible to use contraceptives. Angela said that this is why Catholics need to evangelize further on Catholic teaching regarding life and human sexuality.

Scot asked what would be some summary points of the Theology of the Body. Angela replied that it talks about the fact that the body reveals the person – the body is an expression of truth, of who we are, and that what we do with our body does matter as much as what we say! David added that the Church had to dive more deeply into this “gift of the body and sexuality” because of modern questions to the subject. The sexual revolution has encouraged society to stray from Church teaching here, even though that teaching is nothing new. Scot said that one of the definitions of love in the Theology of the body is self-gift. Angela said that the term self-gist is not at all oversimplified, that love is first and far most self-gift. Scot asked if when Blessed John Paul II addresses this “gift of self” if it relates just to husbands and wives or does it also apply to a friend and neighbor – David said that it is the sharing of person with any other person at all. He continued and said that Blessed John Paul II is not focused on the sexual act but on the human body and how it shows a need for us to give ourselves to other as father, mother, husband or neighbor.

Scot asked what would be some of the resources for those who would like to know more about the Theology of the Body. Angela said that they will be offering another class in the TINE program just on the Theology of the Body, but also recommended a study guide by Mary Healy called Men And Women Are From Eden, and the book The Catholic Girl’s Survival Guide for the Single Years by Emily Stimpson. David mentioned the book Man and Woman He Created Them by Michael M. Waldstein, Th.D.

Scot asked if it would be a good idea if someone wanted to read directly from the documents themselves. David said that the documents are a great creative work of theology but he would suggest some sort of guide to read with it as they can be quite dense at times. Scot wrapped up the show by asking Angel and David how people react when they learn more about the Theology of the body. Angela said that they leave saying that they think about the human body in a whole different way. David added that it is a liberation from the contracted world view from our culture today.

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