Sexual revolution of Karol Wojtyla

Fr Andrzej Przybylski

A letter to Ania who belongs to the JPII generation
Hello, Anka,
People say that May is the month to speak about love. Recently you have written about your problems concerning love. What is love? How can I check if someone really loves me? What should we do with this strange sexual desire? What about life in chastity? Is sex dirty? What is marriage and should we actually decide to get married in these times? I know you have more questions like that.
In the 1960s the so-called sexual revolution was announced that meant complete permission to make sex freely, which was regarded as the most important element of love.
In this letter I would like to tell you about a completely different revolution, initiated by a young priest from Krakow, who was called Karol and who then became Pope. This was not a widely announced revolution but as it happens with the truth: it always sounds more silent than a pile of lies. I will try to tell you briefly about five important thoughts from the book that I strongly recommend to you, namely 'Milosc i odpowiedzialnosc' [Love and Responsibility] by Karol Wojtyla.

Love because you are a human being!

One cannot forget that in love you are a human being because only human beings are able to love. Animals just fulfil their natural drives. Do not love like animals that want to satisfy their needs. Animals love automatically. They do not mind where, with whom and how they do that. Only human beings can love with responsibility and beauty. If you fall in love some day remember these words: people love responsibly, i.e. they know the consequences of their choices. They also love beautifully, and that's why they do not make love at any place and in whatever way. Karol Wojtyla called it wisely 'the personalistic norm' and he meant that in love one must always remember that one is a human being, and not an animal.

Do not call everything love!

You know yourself that it is difficult to discern real love and this is because it is not easy. Love comes and grows, consists of many elements that must come together to say 'I love you'. Therefore, real love needs time and waits till it is ripe. Do not hurry with love. Observe it and see how it changes. Do you try to call one sign, one kiss and one gesture love? I know that you, young people, like shortcuts, for example you tend to call sex love. But love is not only sex.

Sex is so beautiful that one must care for it

Now I come to the most important thing. I remember telling you that God loves you and I remember you answering that it was fine but you wished God had body. When you are young you have many problems with your body. But I want to tell you that your body is beautiful since it is created to love. It is not true that sex is dirty. After all I was born thanks to sex, you were born thanks to it, and even John Paul II was born thanks to it. This must be pretty. Praise God for your body and ability to have sexual intercourse. And since it is so beautiful one must not make it dirty and destroy it. Today the Church is the only community in the world that appreciates sexuality so much. Others tell you to reduce this function to the lowest human need.
But your body is the temple of God. To tell the truth it was God that gave us his Body. Bethlehem, Calvary, the Cross or the Eucharist would not be needed if the body and sexuality were not sacred. Look at your body with God's eyes before you make some decision concerning your sexuality.

It is good that you feel ashamed since healthy shame is the best protection

Anka, I like your modesty, that you do not expose your navel, that you wear modest clothing and have not strong makeup. Because of this I can focus on who you are. I am glad that you do not hide behind things, your makeup and that you do not show off. You have written that sometimes you feel like a stupid and shy goose. Do not be afraid of your shame! We, men, do not like shameless women. Karol Wojtyla described shame in a very beautiful way. God gives us shame so that it can protect us against dirty thoughts, unwanted associations and against looking at somebody through the prism of objects.

Marriage is a sacrament, i.e. a sign of God's love

You asked me if I knew some tips for a successful marriage. I have thought about it and I found out the answer in Karol Wojtyla's book. This recipe is the sacrament of matrimony. I do not mean a white veil and cleaned shoes of the bridegroom. I do not mean the wedding, vodka and guests. As you remember a sacrament is an external sign of God's reality. When you marry someone you are with him an external sign of the most beautiful marriage in history: God's marriage with his people. And this is the recipe. Love your husband as Christ loves the Church and expect the same love from him. And how does God love? You know it well: God loves for good and bad, loves until death and he loves sincerely, and does not divorce his Church. And the sign of his love is the gift of his Body laid on the cross. His body is the seal of his love and the sign of sacrament. Therefore, wait to give your body till your wedding since Christ gave the sacrifice of his body when he loved us to the end...
I must finish now. You can read more, after all you remember our Pope. I am sure that reading the book will bring about a real revolution concerning love in your life. I wish you much success.

"Pokolenie" 2/2007

Editor: Tygodnik Katolicki "Niedziela", ul. 3 Maja 12, 42-200 Czestochowa, Polska
Editor-in-chief: Lidia Dudkiewicz • Translation: Aneta Amrozik • E-mail: redakcja@niedziela.pl