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Koncerned Karen wrote:

Hi, guys —

  • Is it wrong in the Catholic faith for a wife to look physically beautiful?
  • Don't you think every woman deep within herself loves to look beautiful and most of their husbands like their wives to take care of their beauty?

Thanks for your reply.

Karen

  { Is it wrong in the Catholic faith for a wife to look physically beautiful? }

Bob replied:

Karen,

It is fine for a woman to want to look beautiful — it is only natural. Of course modesty is always appropriate so she does not try to deliberately provoke men's natural sexual interest by being provocative in her dress. Where the line is for dress that is appropriate versus immodest is sometimes a matter of taste, but good judgement usually goes along with a modest attitude.

My wife is beautiful and I love it when she makes herself look nice with her stylish dress, hair, etc. She is not looking to attract other men, but I feel proud of how good she takes care of herself. It is a healthy, good sign for people to take good care of themselves and be attentive to how they present themselves.

That being said, Jesus cautions us not to make that the priority and be like the pagans who seemed to obsess over appearances and worldly concerns.

Sadly, we have lost a healthy sense of modesty in our current culture and religions that overly mortify women don't help to inculcate balance.

  • Islam is repressive
  • the Amish extol plainness, and
  • Christians who practice modesty are considered out of touch.

You are fighting a difficult battle.

In summary, there is no sin in making yourself up to enhance your natural beauty. God made you beautiful and He delights in it. He also wants you to be modest so others will see the beauty that you are as a person and not simply a body.

Put briefly, that is the Catholic view.

Peace,

Bob Kirby

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