Joe Mizzi's Response

Dr. Mizzi responded, very politely, to my e-mail regarding his NFP article. His response (in green) and my subsequent reply are below (notes in italics are were not included in my reply to him).

Dear Joanna,

Thank you for your letter.

It is too long to answer you on every point.

[I doubt this, as his original article was several pages long and my response was only a few paragraphs. I think he's deflecting my points because he's stymied on how to answer them.]

If you could just answer these two questions, I'd appreciate it:

1. Given that all Christian denominations taught that contraception was immoral until 1930, did God (a) change His mind or (b) allow Christians to believe and teach false doctrine for over 1,900 years?

2. Since spontaneous abortion (miscarriage) occurs naturally (just as the infertile phase of a woman's cycle does), does that mean that induced abortion is also acceptable?

Do not couples using NFP deliberately frustrate the natural purpose of the conjugal act by time sexual intercourse to the safe period? Is not their purpose to prevent pregnancy

Well of course that is exactly their purpose!

[What's interesting here is that he's addressing a point I've already conceded to as if I am disputing it. Note that in my original e-mail to him, I explicitly said that spacing pregnancy was not, in and of itself, an objectively evil or immoral end. I'm not sure if he misunderstood my point or if he's deliberately trying to steer the conversation away from the actual point. I'm going to stay the course, however...]

It is not sinful or intrinsically immoral to desire to space pregnancies for just reasons; moreover, the marital act has DUAL purposes: procreative and unitive, not just the former.

What is sinful is the deliberate frustration of the marital act (i.e., sexual intercourse). When a couple uses NFP to aid in periodic abstinence, they are not deliberately frustrating the marital act because no marital act is taking place. Contraception, however, always frustrates a marital act, either in anticipation of the act (e.g., the Pill, IUDs, diaphragms), during the act itself (e.g., condoms or withdrawl) or after the marital act has taken place (e.g., the "morning-after" Pill).

[I hope he replies, at the very least, to the two questions I sent him... I'm interested to know his answers.]


  1. Oh, wow! Yes, he is totally dodging the questions, and then ignoring points you already made! I hope he answers those two pointed questions (and that he starts to understand the distinction between the 'ends' and the 'means').

    Great job getting him to think!


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