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Vamshi wrote:

Hi, guys —

I am Vamshi (19). I am in a relation with Sowmya (19).

We love each other a lot and we have dreamed about many things including living together but her mom found out about our relationship from a Church father. He said before marriage, everything is a sin. We won't get married, and we won't live together but we love each other a lot. We want to live together. We can't forget each other.

  • Did we really commit any sin?

We can't fight against Jesus; we have faith in Him.

  • Is it true that we can't live together and, if so, why?

Vamshi

  { Can we live together before marriage and is what we are doing really a sin? }

Mike replied:

Dear Vamshi,

Thanks for the question.

I am unsure where you and Sowmya are in your relationship, so let me step back and give you a general outline. My colleagues may also wish to comment if I am off on anything.

God created (women for men) and (men for women) and told them to go and multiple for future generations of Christians.

Nevertheless, finding a woman that you can make a life-time commitment to, can for some, be very difficult. It's not as easy as finding someone you love, "hopping in the sack", and starting to procreate.

Jesus' Church sees Marriage as a sacrament and a lifetime commitment to your spouse and the children of your love. Church-wise and legally there has to be a commitment to the children that the three of you (including God here) create.

For this reason within Christianity, we have a period of dating and courtship with possible future mates.

The Catechism doesn't talk about dating or courtship so I'll share my own opinion.

Dating and courtship involve sharing our lives, events and activities with another person (of the opposite sex). Events and activities can include:

  • eating out
  • going to the movies
  • going to an array of shows
  • going to an array of fun activities like miniature golf.
  • going to sports events, and even
  • double dating

Echoing what Mary Ann has said, we should never seriously date someone that we would not consider for marriage.

During this period of dating or courtship there is nothing wrong with:

  • kissing
  • hugging, or
  • light petting

But in addition, it's key to discuss with each person we seriously date:

  • our current and future interests
  • our current and future desires
  • our values, especially our religious values, which are often overlooked, and
  • keep asking yourself:

    Is this a person I can make a life-time commitment to for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part?

It's very important to have a prayer life while you are dating because it ensures you're focused on the important things in this life, as well as the next life. Remember there is no marriage in Heaven.

For this reason, one of the key characteristics of anyone we date revolves around the question:

  • Will this person help me be, not only a happier but, a holier person?

  • Will they encourage me to go higher in my spiritual life, or drag the spiritual life I currently have down to Hell?

More recently visitors have been asking us about whether pre-marital sex is OK.

While the short answer is No, I'll share with you Paul's answer, which I thought was very good.

Finally, there is no need to worry about "fighting with Jesus" if you follow and obey the teachings of His Church.

Any teaching His Church has, is for our own good, even if we don't see the good at the present time.

I hope this helps answer your question.

Mike

Paul replied:

Hi, Vamshi —

I would agree with most of what Mike wrote, but I wonder what he means by "light petting".

What is commanded by natural and divine law is that pre-marital couples do nothing intentionally that might sexually arouse either one, because this is the body's way of preparing for intercourse, which is only morally lawful within marriage. This topic would need to be talked over by the ones who are courting, but it's safe to say that for many french kissing and other various kinds of petting could be a cause of this arousal, as is the case with various styles of clothing and language.

It can be very difficult to control the self when the lower self strongly seeks intimacy with the other; but since such intimacy is only appropriate and moral within the sacred commitment of marriage then self-control must be on top of the priority list.

Peace,

Paul

Mike replied:


Yeah, I guess I would concur with Paul.

The godly side of me says he makes sense while the human side says he's a party pooper : )

Mike

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