Bishop: give up sex for Lent

Bishop: give up sex for Lent March 16, 2011

And you thought giving up chocolate was tough.

Try this idea, from a bishop in the Philippines:

Proving that Catholic and Islam also have some commonality, a Roman Catholic prelate said abstinence from sex during the Lenten Season is also something that they are encouraging couples to do.

But according to Pampanga Archbishop Paciano Aniceto, unlike Muslims, they do not impose it strictly.

“That is their own decision… But we encourage it,” said Aniceto, who is the chairman of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines – Episcopal Commission on Family and Life (CBCP-ECFL).

He noted that such a practice has enough grounds in the Holy Bible.

“It’s in the Bible that the Jewish priest cannot officiate in the Holy of Holies unless he abstains from conjugal act with the wife,” noted Aniceto.

Based on Muslim practice, they are prohibited to engage in sex during Ramadan, or the Islamic month of fasting.

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15 responses to “Bishop: give up sex for Lent”

  1. It’s only 46 days! Come on, wimps! 😛 If a heathen like me can give up sex for over 3 years, so can you give it up for 46 days! I think periodic abstinence is good for a relationship – so long as there’s a stated limit to that period.

    (This is my idea of encouragement, lol).

  2. yeah! great idea.. let’s propose an option based on an ancient, jewish practice to show we have some resemblance to an anti-christian cult!!! so fun!!

    no, seriously, I think it’s a good idea but it’s not for all couples. I think it’s a good idea, but please bishops, PLEASE!! just don’t turn it into a doctrine as you tend to do with other things.

  3. Islam is an “anti-Christian cult”, is it? Interesting.

    The word cult has many meanings. Which are you using? I suspect you’re using the word to mean “a religion I dislike”, basically using it a a childish gratuitous insult. I’m not impressed.

    I suppose calling Islam “anti-Christian” is not entirely wrong, but I wouldn’t imagine most Muslims would describe their faith that way.


    I can throw around insults myself, and sometimes do, but gratuitous rudeness just for the sake of it is extremely unpleasant, and I didn’t want to leave it unchallanged.


  4. Timothy, I don’t know why you defend a cult (meaning a sect) that believes in KILLING everyone that does not agree with Islam but I stand for what I say. I love muslims but I hate their cult. And I don’t care how they like to describe their cult. I will never have compassion or simpathy to a cult that believes in MURDERING non-muslims.

  5. btw, I couldn’t care less if you’re not impressed or if you think it’s childish. I’m saying what EVERY christian thinks, whether they admit it or not.

  6. I am a Christian and I in no way believe that Muslims are an anti-christian cult. If you are absolutely sure ALL Muslims believe in murdering Christians please back that up with a credible source; otherwise you are passing on an ignorant lie.

  7. Thag Jones,
    it’s not for all couples because not all couples find it hard to give up sex. You have to give up what you feel you can’t give up.

    The great majority of muslims believe in the Sharia Law, which to them is “the sacred law of Islam”.All aspects of a Muslim’s life are governed by Sharia. It restricts freedom of religion, condemns leaving islam with a death penalty, among other things. And I never spoke of ALL muslims, that’s what YOU said, not ME. So see, I don’t speak out of ignorance.

  8. Oh, so the game is Make Suggestions That Don’t Apply To You Because You Are In a Different State Of Life? Can everyone play?

    I think bishops should give up saying mass for Lent.

    C’mon, it’s only 46 days, you wimps.

    Someone could be out of commission longer than that from fairly minor surgery.

  9. I think cathyf is closer to the truth that the other comments in that sex is THE exclusive and primary physical sign of the invisible sign of matrimonial union. That is, sex is not a pastime pleasure but the actual grace-emitting vehicle of spousal love.

    So if one suggests giving up sacramental communion in marriage for Lent one should also recommend that religious give up participation in community exercises and parish clergy give up attendance at community expressions of their ordination.

    While I am sure it was meant as a good intention, this bishop must see sex as an “a la carte” selection on the marriage menu and not part of the main course. I would suggest not only the main course but dessert as well!

  10. Small correction:

    According to a relative of mine who lives in the Middle East and is fluent in Arabic language and culture:
    During Ramadan, Muslims refrain from eating, drinking and sexual relations from DAWN UNTIL SUNSET.

  11. All Muslims want to kill those who are not Muslim? That’s like saying all Black people tap dance and eat watermelon, or all baniks are owned by those who are Jewish or all Irish drink themselves silly or we will all go to hell if we don’t believe in the same divine being or all people who live in New England eat clam chowder, or all Hispanics are Catholic etc. Claiming that members of a certain group believe the exact same thing or eat/drink the same thing or wear the same clothes or own financial institutions etc. is totally ridiculious.
    As to giving up sex for Lent? Would a Bishop know about how hard or easy that would be? Isn’t he supposed to be celibate?

  12. Sexual abstinence during Lent is still considered a norm in many of the Orthodox Churches and to some degree also in the Eastern Catholic Churches. The practice can also be found in the western tradition, but it is in the more distant past. The trend over the centuries has been for a loosening of Lenten discipline, but the state of things in the west is such that only a shadow remains of what was once a very vigorous season of fasting, penance, and almsgiving.

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