Catholic opinion about diagnostic means for extracting semen

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Catholic opinion about diagnostic means for extracting semen

Well, I think this section could easily host the topic.

The following article appeared last year in an italian catholic newspaper (l'Avvenire), and was quickly copied in many sites (for example here).

It was written by Chiara Navarini, professor of bioethics in a catholic private university (Regina Apostolorum), and tries to answer to this most difficult and embarassing question:

"A catholic may extract his semen through masturbation, if required for diagnostic purposes?"



Dear Doctor,
With all these talks about assisted procreation, due to the revision of guidelines, I take this opportunity to ask for clarification on some issues that make me think.
What is the Catholic Church position on taking semen through masturbation for diagnostic purposes?

This is the answer (it is serious, folks!)

The diagnosis of male fertility through analysis of the seed itself is not immoral. No diagnostic exam is wrong because it's diagnostic; but it can be, due to the reasons for which it is required - es. Eugenic abortion - or for the risks involved.

However, the method of sampling must be moral, and therefore masturbation has to be avoided. Masturbation is a grave moral evil, as separates radically the sexuality from its meaning and sexual pleasure from its specific context (in this case from that conjugal act characterized by a procreative meaning and unitive significance), and as such can never be justified, even for a good end. For it is a good thing, in fact, it is necessary that the means are good, or not immoral, since the end does not justify the means.

As the Instruction ("Donum Vitae" ) of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith said in 1987, "masturbation, normally used to obtain semen, is a […] serious sign of this dissociation [between the two meanings of conjugal ]; even when it is placed in view of procreation, the gesture remains devoid of its unitive meaning "

However, there are other semen extraction means ethically acceptable even in the absence of marriage, such as MESA (Microsurgical Epididymal Sperm Aspiration, cf. ML Di Pietro-E. Sgreccia, Assisted reproduction and artificial insemination between science, ethics and law, School , Brescia 1999, p. 33). This method requires general anaesthesia and allows to recover sperm that have not, however, completed the first cycle of aging; this limitation requires a further process of capacitation quite complex, to be done in the laboratory).

Another methos has been tried, VIRICAR or electroejaculation (see E. Sgreccia, Handbook of Bioethics, Vol., Life and Thought, Milan, 1999, pp. 431-439); it stimulates the emission of semen (with more mature spermatozoa therefore) without causing orgasm, but it's ability to spread, because of high costs and uncertainties of application, is not good.

Another method morally allowed consists in picking up semen after involuntary pollution (see ibid), but it is of difficult execution.

In fact, the drawbacks of such advanced techniques are due to a fundamentally hedonistic mentality, which sees no evil in masturbation, even more so when due to diagnostic or therapeutic purposes. Obtaining semen through masturbation represents an easy, economical and efficient solution, often not even called into question. But we can not deny that is also psychologically, as well as ethically, problematic for men, which sometimes waive the diagnosis precisely because of the humiliation and squalor that procurements of semen entails.

It should also be said that these investigations diagnostic means, outside - but often even within - the marriage, cause an incorrect idea of openness to life, and a consequent trend clearly targeted towards artificial insemination.

For spouses - or in the presence of "sexual activity" - the collection of semen can be obtained during a conjugal relationship, through semen collection at the bottom of the vagina, where  residue remains [after the sexual act], together with bladder urine (treated with antacid solution) in the case of retrograde ejaculation (ibid.). During the relationship il could also be used a drilled condom, in order to retain the semen without suggesting an act of contraception (with drilled condom a possible natural conception is possible).

Of course you can also use a normal condom, or you could use a coitus interruptus, with  immediate collection of semen in sterile capsules, but in these cases we would again use a morally illicit type of contraceptive, which separates the coniugal act from his procreative significance.



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Wow, general

Wow, general anaesthesia just to masturbate. I thought American fundies were hung up on sex, but these Italians are something else.

Still, it's good to know the church is serious about protecting us from this evil of evils.

Psalm 14:1 "the fool hath said in his heart there is a God"-From a 1763 misprinted edition of the bible

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 Wow is right. That's so

 Wow is right. That's so ... complicated. Also, scary that someone would have to think about it for so long.

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Hold on for a sec...

Is the joke that he is a professor of bioethics? This is really creating an unnecessary maze(routes to collect sperm) for the benefit of a rat(God) that doesn't exist, but it was fun to read.

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That's seriously fucked up.

That's seriously fucked up. Risking complications from anesthesia just to prevent orgasm. More evidence of the extreme irrationality of religion.

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That's just fucking

That's just fucking amazing...I didn't know the Catholics were still saying this about masturbation.

Just goes to show you that it takes religion to make good people do something really downright evil.

Since masturbation is about as normal as breathing, the idea of trying to make it a sin is just fucking typical.

God sets you up with a set of rules no one, (including priests) can or will keep from breaking, then condemns you to an eternitty of punishment for breaking them....UNLESS you pay money to the priests and give them power.

What a fucking racket.

Being open-minded isn't the same thing as being vacant.

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Never forget every Sperm is

Never forget every Sperm is Sacred:



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Wow, so masturbation is "a

Wow, so masturbation is "a great moral evil"  but burning heretics at the stake is not ?

Listening to such insane pronouncements from the Catholic Church is like hearing serial killer Ted Bundy give a speech about respecting women and their right to say "no".

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 Bloody church! Off into

 Bloody church! Off into irrelevance with you!


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 I also heard the church

 I also heard the church has little boys they use to extract semen from clergy. Is this true???

LOL. Church... stupid shit.

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Conor Wilson
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I'll understand if you don't want to read this.

You...uh...*do* know how the sperm is extracted in the approved method, don't you?  One word: needle.  That's why the anesthetic.  I wonder how many otherwise faithful Catholics in this situation simply think: "You know, I can always go to Confession on Saturday."  It's not very spiritual, but it is completely understandable.


And yes, Catholic morality quite seriously considers violence to occasionally be moral.  In years past, this was to protect people from being tempted to heresies that would send them to Hell; then someone decided that burning folks at the stake was a little too outre, so society settled for less torturous methods of execution.  (I'd lay money on the odds that *somebody* somewhere complained about this showing disregard for Tradition/Church authority somewhere along the way.)


As for sexual know the rules as well as I do...nothing at all outside of marriage; the marriage must be until death do them part; it must be heterosexual, and completely uncontracepted; and the couple is not even allowed to have too much fun even under these circumstances, or else they have committed "adultery with their spouse."  Yes, you read that right.  (Oh, and before I forget: no sexual pleasure outside of these rules is allowed, which practically speaking, means that men are never to get an erection, unless married, etc.  And there is "no parvity of matter" in sexual issues; any sexual sin is, by definition, a *serious* sin, not a small one.  Any such sin, even if only done once, can send you to Hell.)  Now, you might be thinking, "Well, if exceptions can be made in certain circumstances for violence, is there any circumstance under which the rules on sex might be similarly relaxed?"  To which the obvious response is: "Don't make me laugh."  There are no exceptions for *pleasure,* unless, of course, your idea of pleasure involves violence, and not sex.  There are no exceptions for sex, ever.


Ladies and is Exhibit A of Catholic morality.  Love is to be straighjacketed by a list of rules which is humanly impossible to keep, but humanity's very worst instincts can simply be channelled into directions that are, allegedly, "more constructive."  Don't you feel *so* much better?