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Consecrated Chastity Revisited

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Dr. Felix Podimattam is
one of the best-known moral theologians in India and outside. Besides his full time job as a professor, he finds time to write books at an amazing rate. He has authored 65 books. He knows how to communicate systematically and logically the intricacies of ethics; has a wise word shedding new light on contemporary problems. Besides his Master’s degree in Political Science from the University of Mysore, he holds a Licentiate in Theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, and subsequently a Doctorate in Moral Theology from the Alphosian Academy, Rome, His post-doctoral studies were pursued in Washington, DC, U.S.A. At Present he is professor of moral theology at St. Francis Theological College, Kottayam, Kerala.

Description

CONSECRATED CHASTITY REVISITED
Dr. Felix Podimattam is
one of the best-known moral theologians in India and outside. Besides his full time job as a professor, he finds time to write books at an amazing rate. He has authored 65 books. He knows how to communicate systematically and logically the intricacies of ethics; has a wise word shedding new light on contemporary problems. Besides his Master’s degree in Political Science from the University of Mysore, he holds a Licentiate in Theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, and subsequently a Doctorate in Moral Theology from the Alphosian Academy, Rome, His post-doctoral studies were pursued in Washington, DC, U.S.A. At Present he is professor of moral theology at St. Francis Theological College, Kottayam, Kerala.
Celibacy has received a lot of attention in recent times. It is affirmed and denounced, lauded and denigrated, in both the secular and religious press.
To arrive at an understanding of celibacy as a Christian commitment, as a choice made in the context of faith, is to move beyond such definitions of celibacy to an exploration of its internal meaning and purpose. Celibacy as a religious commitment to authentic Gospel living is not about isolation, autonomy, fear of dependence, convenience, or freedom. Rather, it is about the reign of God – a reign characterized by deep, loving, committed, and just relationships.
Time after time people would say “If only I had been given more information about these things when I was young, or if I had had more open attitudes about sex, I wouldn’t have made such a mess of my life.”
This book is not a personal story. It is an expression of the right understanding and evaluation of consecrated celibacy. That understanding and evaluation take into account Catholic Church’s teaching and theology, as well as modern philosophical, literary, and scientific insights on the subject.
CONTENTS
INTRODUCTION
CHAPTER ONE
OLDER UNDERSTANDING OF VOW OF CHASTITY…. 15
1. Traditional Understanding of Vow of Chastity 15
2. An Evaluation of Traditional Understanding of
Vow of Chastity 16
CHAPTER TWO
NEWER UNDERSTANDING OF VOW OF CHASTITY…. 23
1. Consecrated Celibacy as a State of
Greater Love for God 26
1.1. Consecrated Celibacy as a State of Greater Freedom 28
1.2. Consecrated Celibacy as Existential Inability to Marry 34
1.3. Consecrated Celibacy as a Witness of Intimacy 48
1.4. Consecrated Celibacy as State of
Special Bridehood of God 49
1.5. Consecrated Celibacy as Prophetic Witness 56
1.6. Support from the Bible 61
1.7. Support from the Magisterium 69
1.8. Support from the Virginity of Mary 70
1.9. Support from the Celibacy of St. Francis 74
1.10. Support from Consecrated Celibacy
in the Early Church 75
1.11. Support from Consecrated Celibacy in the
Anglican Church 77
1.12. Support from the Opinion of Theologians 78
2. Consecrated Celibacy as a State of Greater
Love for Human Beings 82
3. Human Universalism Has Its Source in God 82
4. Jesus’ Celibacy Signified a Universal Availability 83
5. Celibacy as a Higher Marriage 85
6. Celibacy as Call to Be Open to Relationship 86
7. Celibacy as Generativity 87
8. Celibacy as Complementary to Marriage 91
9. Celibacy as a Charism 99
10. Celibacy as Living the Paschal Mystery 100
11. Celibacy as Facilitating Apostolic Activity and Pastoral Care 104
CHAPTER THREE
LIVING OF VOW OF CHASTITY 105
1. Living of Greater Love for God 105
2. Living of Greater Love for Human Beings 119
2.1. Greater Love for Enemies 119
2.2. Greater Love for the Loveless 125
2.3. Greater Love for Strangers 127
2.4. Greater Love for Acquaintances 127
2.5. Greater Love for One’s Family Members 129
2.6. Greater Love for Celibate Friends 130
Homosocial Friendship 130
Heterosexual Friendship 132
3. Living of Greater Love for Self 135
3.1. Love of My Sexuality : 137
3.2. Love of My Affectivity 143
3.3. The Role of Physical Integrity of the Body 146
3.4. Facing Problems of Consecrated Celibacy 152
Proper Attitude towards Sexual Temptation 152
Appropriate Understanding of Masturbation 158
4. Vow of Chastity in My Life 163
CONCLUSION 180
BIBLIOGRAPHY 182
NOTES 207
INDEX 215

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