relationships and families


3.1 Christian teachings about human sexuality

Human sexuality: how people express themselves as sexual beings.

Heterosexual: to be sexually attracted to members of the opposite sex.

Homosexual: to be sexually attracted to members of the same sex.

"Do not have sexual relations with a man as one with a woman; that is detestable." - Leviticus 18:22

3.2 Sexual relationships before and outside marriage

Sex before marriage: sex between two single unmarried people.

Adultery: voluntary sexual intercourse between a married person and someone who is not their spouse (husband or wife).

Sex outside marriage: sex between two people where one or both of them is married to someone else; adultery; having an affair.

"Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body. Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own." - 1 Corinthians 6: 18-19

"Every sexual act must be within the framework of marriage." - Casti Connubii (written by Pope Pius XI in 1930, addresses Catholic teaching on marriage and procreation.)

"You shall not commit adultery." - Exodus 20:14

"You have heard that it is was said, 'You shall not commit adultery.' But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart." - Matthew 5:27-28

3.3 Contraception and family planning

Contraception: the methods used to prevent a pregnancy from taking place.

Family planning: controlling how many children couples have and when they have them.

"The Conference agrees that other methods may be used, provided that this is done in the light of Christian principles." - Lambeth Conference, 1930

"Every sexual act should have the possibility of creating new life." - Humanae Vitae

3.4 Religious teachings about marriage

Marriage: a legal union between a man and a woman (or in some countries, including the UK, two people of the same sex) as partners in a relationship.

Civil relationship: legal union of same-sex couples 

Same-sex marriage: marriage between partners of the same-sex.

Cohabitation: a couple living together and having a sexual relationship without being married to one another.

"That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh." - Genesis 2:24

"God blessed them and said to them, 'Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it...' " - Genesis 1:28

"The Church sees marriage between a man


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