See the daily excerpt from the preparatory catechesis for the 2015 World Meeting of Families, “Love is Our Mission: The Family Fully Alive.”
39. Material creation has spiritual meaning, which has implications for the way we live as male and female. Our sexuality has purpose. Our bodies are not simply shells for the soul or sensory machines for the brain. Nor are they raw material we can freely abuse or reprogram. For Christians, body and spirit are profoundly integrated. Each human being is a unity of body and soul. Saint Hildegard of Bingen wrote, “The body is, in truth, the temple of the soul, cooperating with the soul by means of the senses, as a mill wheel is turned by water.” The body has innate dignity as part of God’s creation. It is an intimate part of our identity and our eternal destiny. The two sexes literally enflesh God’s design for human interdependence, community, and openness to new life. We cannot debase or abuse the body without inflicting a cost on the spirit.
In its introduction, the document says its aim is to present “Catholic teaching in a way that is fresh, insightful, and accessible to contemporary Catholics and all people of good will.” The catechesis “offers a narrative beginning with our creation, soberly noting our fall and the challenges we face, but emphasizing God’s plan for our salvation. Love is our mission, and it is by loving God and one another that we will be fully alive.”
Each day in CatholicPhilly.com’s World Meeting of Families section you can reflect on the official Catholic teaching on the family presented in the catechesis, pray a special prayer together as a family or individually, and stay on top of breaking news about the events coming Sept. 22-27, 2015.
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