279: We can’t get through life by ourselves. God’s grace – especially in Sacraments.

280: Human dignity – from conception to natural death.

281: True happiness only in God.

282-283: True happiness: the Beatitudes.

284: Beatitudes are Jews’ list of priorities.

285: The eternal happiness in heaven.

286: God’s biggest gift to humanity is freedom – the more we do good, the freer we become.

287: Evil deprives us of what is good and destroys us of freedom – slavery to sin.

288: Humans are responsible for what they do, unless coerced, ignorant, fear.

289: Doing evil must be stopped when it is to the detriment of the freedom of others.

290: The Holy Spirit frees us. The more we sin, the more we think only of ourselves.

2: THE EXISTENCE OF GOD: 3-6; 352-357

3: It is natural to seek for God.

4: All creation points towards God, and beauty and good.

5: Excuses to not search for God – fear of change & difficulty.

6: Our language cannot contain God, so our speech must constantly be purified.

352: 1st Commandment – not to have other gods and to love the only God.

353: Worship of God frees us from servitude to this world.

354: Belief in God must be a free act.

355: False gods: other idol (inc. wealth); superstition; provoking God; sacrilege; desecration, corruption.

356: New Age focuses on cosmic energy & divinity within. Only Jesus Christ can save – not ourselves.

357: Atheism is not a sin if the person has learned nothing about God.

3. A GOD WHO SPEAKS: 7-10; 358; 71-85

7: God has opened His heart to us and revealed what we can understand.

8: Old Testament.

9: In Jesus Christ God becomes visible.

10: Jesus Christ is God’s last Word. We don’t need any more. Private revelations do not reveal any more.

358: The Old Testament forbids us to make images of God but in Jesus Christ we have The Image (icon).

71: The Gospels are The Testimony.

72: “Jesus” – God saves.

73: “Christos” – the anointed One. Christians names after Him.

74: The New Testament calls Jesus “Son”.

75: Jesus is “Lord” i.e. God – e.g. Thomas.

76: The Incarnation – one like us in all things but sin.

77: Jesus is truly God and truly human. No division, no confusion.

78: His life remains a “Mystery”

79: Jesus had mind, soul and body.

80: Mary remained a virgin – truly, not symbolically.

81: Mary had no other children. “Brothers & sisters” refer to cousins.

82: Mary is “Mother of God” – God-bearer from conception.

83: Immaculate Conception – Mary totally free.

84: Mary more than merely passive instrument – her consent was crucial.

85: Jesus gave Mary to us as our mother from the cross.

4: WHO IS JESUS?: 86-112

86: Jesus lived a normal life for 30 years.

87: Jesus was baptised – didn’t need it, but took on OUR sins.

88: Jesus was truly tempted.

89: Jesus proclaimed the Kingdom of God – i.e. it begins in those who allow it.

90: Jesus worked miracles.

91: Miracles were signs of the Kingdom.

92: Jesus chose 12 Apostles with particular mission. Bishops today & Peter, the first Pope.

93: Transfiguration – to help the witnesses understand His death & resurrection.

94: Jesus knew what was going to happen.

95: Jesus chose it to happen at the Passover – feast of liberation from slavery.

96: Jesus was killed because He forgave sins & challenged the Sabbath practices.

97: Sin crucified Jesus, not a particular people.

98: His death exchanges death for life.

99: Last Supper – washing of feet & command of the Eucharist.

100: Jesus showed He feared death in the Garden.

101: The Cross is the utmost degradation, and still Jesus showed perfect love on it.

102: When suffering is unavoidable, we should unite it with Jesus.

103: Jesus truly died.

104: To be a Christian is to believe that Jesus rose from the dead.

105: The disciples saw Him risen.

106: The testimonies in the New Testament are the proof.

107: The Risen Jesus allowed His disciples to touch Him, and He ate with them.

108: He revealed that death would no longer have dominion.

109-110: Jesus ascended to heaven from where He will judge the living & the dead.

111-2: Jesus will have the last appearance & say!


113: Jesus promised “another Counsellor”. The Apostles experienced new gifts.

114: Without the Holy Spirit, we cannot understand Jesus.

115: The Holy Spirit shows in healing, water, storm, fire, dove – the Sacraments!

116: The Holy Spirit is at work in the prophets, preparing the way for Jesus Christ.

117: The Holy Spirit came into Mary and she brought forth Jesus.

118: Pentecost is the birthday of the Church.

119: The Holy Spirit builds up the Church and gives her the necessary gifts & renewal.

120: The Holy Spirit helps me to receive God, pray, respond.

121: Church – ekklesia: to be called out. Intimate communion with Jesus Christ.

122: God wants the Church – He wants us together.

123: The task of the Church is to continue Jesus’s work.

124: Church is human and divine.

125: Baptism makes us the People of God.

126: The Body of Christ – inseparable and dependent.

127: The Bride of Christ – intimate union of love.

128: Temple of the Holy Spirit – the building has now been replaced by the People.

6: THE BIBLE: 11-19

11: The importance to hand on our faith.

12: Scripture & Tradition. The Bible came from the community.

13: The Church cannot err in matters of faith because of the promise of the Holy Spirit.

14: The Bible evolved in the hearts of those chosen by God. The “Canon” (final text) decided in 4th Century.

15: The Bible has cultural ideas of the times they were written in to convey truths.

16: The right way to read the Bible is prayerfully.

17: Old Testament.

18: New Testament.

19: The Church draws her life and strength from Scripture.

7: THE GIFT OF FAITH: 20-25; 299-309

20: To respond is to believe.

21: Faith is gift, necessary, free, certain, loving, must grow, joyful.

22: To believe, allow to be drawn into mystery of Jesus Christ.

23: Faith exists so that we might know things that are not apparent to reason, yet real.

24: We need the Church for faith to develop.

25: The Christian Creeds are the fruits of the Church’s joint journey in faith.

299: Virtues are interior dispositions, positive habits, passion for good.

300: We must not give in to disorderly passions, but focus on what is good.

301: Prudence – i.e. what is essential.

302: Justice – i.e. to give each his due. Equity & fairness.

303: Fortitude – perseverance.

304: Moderation – not to let impulses rule.

305: Supernatural virtues – foundation in God.

306: Faith, hope & charity.

307: Faith – the power to assent to God.

308: Hope – trusting in God.

309: Charity – giving of what God has given to us.


469: Prayer is turning heart towards God.

470: God has created us for Himself – so we have an inclination to pray.

471: Abraham listened – and moved.

472: Moses spoke with God, and God revealed Himself to him.

473: Psalms – prayer of the Jewish people.

474: Jesus learned to pray as a Jewish man.

475: Jesus’ whole life was a prayer – but Gospels show certain moments.

476: In the biggest test, in the Garden, He prayed “Abba…”

477: Jesus is our model in learning to pray.

478: Many who cried to Jesus in His earthly life were heard.

479: Mary – Amen, let it be.

480: Hail Mary

481: Rosary.

482: Early Christians prayed together.

483: Five types of prayer:

484: Blessing – calling down of God.

485: Adoration – kneeling, prostrate – He is great, we are little.

486: Petition – Knock and the door will be opened. Postures: stand, sit, kneel, prostrate, hands.

487: Abraham petitioned. Jesus did.

488: Thanksgiving – especially Eucharist.

489: Praise – delight in God.

9: FINDING TRUE FREEDOM: 291-298; 343-351

291: Reason & conscience enables us to know right & wrong. What I do, intention, circumstances.

292: The end does not justify the means.

293: Our good passions repel the bad ones.

294: Passions ordered to good are virtues, which become the motive force of good.

295: Conscience is the inner voice of God.

296: No one can be compelled to act against conscience.

297: A person though must form their conscience with the Church’s spirit-filled experience.

298: God will not blame us from actions from a wrong conscience, as long as we are not to blame for not forming it.

343: The Church preserves centuries of the living Word of God, and helps us to lead a good life.

344: The teaching authority of the Church about morals.

345-6: Five precepts of the Church – the minimum requirements!

347: Practising our faith is necessary if we are to be salt of the earth & light of the world.

348: Being a Christian is more than living a good life – it’s having a living relationship with Jesus.

349: 10 Commandments

350: All human life is included within the 10 Commandments – we are related to God & each other.

351: The 10 Commandments are part of the binding revelation & can never be dispensed.

10: THE MEANING OF LOVE: 321-342; 359-366

321: You cannot be a Christian alone.

322: Society can never be more important than the individual.

323: Principle of subsidiarity – a higher authority cannot take away initiatives by individuals.

324: No society can exist without justice and love.

325: Every society must be ruled by those appointed by its citizens.

326: Authority must act for the common good.

327: Common good – freedom, peace and security.

328: Everyone is responsible for each other.

329: Social justice comes from the inalienable dignity of every single person.

330: All people are equal in God’s sight.

331: When injustice is man-made, it contradicts the Gospel.

332: Dignity of human work – universal access to material, intellectual & spiritual goods of the world.

333: Natural law – inscribed on all human hearts.

334: The old covenant expresses truths that by nature are evident to human reason.

335: Old Covenant: Torah (10 Commandments). But we need the strength of faith to complete it.

336: Jesus came not to abolish the old law but fulfil it.

337: We cannot be saved by our own power – we need God, and we need baptism to free us.

338: God’s grace is Him communicating with us.

339: Grace brings us into the inner life of God – helping us to be God-like. It comes from the Sacraments, charisms, or in the graces of state (marriage, ordained).

340: Grace does not compel.

341: No one can gain heaven by their own efforts.

342: We are all called to be saints. Holiness is what we were created to be.

359: God has told us His name, which is the key to the heart of the Almighty.

360: Sign of the Cross – calling upon Him strengthens us.

361: The name of a person matters – patron saints.

362: The Sabbath is the command to rest.

363: Jesus taught the Sabbath is for God, so He healed on the Sabbath.

364: Christians replaced the Sabbath with Sunday – the day of the Resurrection.

365: Obligation to attend Sunday Mass and refraining from work that prevents the nature of the day.

366: The state should preserve Sundays to stop human being absorbed with the working world.


26: The Creeds of the Church are formulas of our common faith.

27: Jesus instructed His disciples to baptise “in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” The approved Creeds of the Church elaborate on that.

28: The Apostles’ Creed.

29: The Nicene Creed.

30: God is One.

31: God reveals His holy name to Moses (YHWH in Hebrew), but Jews never verbalise it and call God “Lord” (Adonai).

32: God is truth because of what Jesus revealed.

33: God is love because Jesus proved it on the Cross by dying for pure love.

34: God must be the first place in the believer’s life.

35: God is Trinity – three persons, one God, not in solitude but in perfect communion.

36: The Trinity is a mystery, but Jesus reveals it.

37: Jesus addressed God as Abba, Father.

38: The working of the Holy Spirit is when we discover God within us.

39: Jesus truly revealed He is God particularly in the Resurrection.

40: The ways of God are not our ways, and so to call on God is to believe He is all-powerful.


41: The account of Creation is a theological statement, not a scientific one.

42: Christians can accept the theory of evolution provided that we don’t fall into the trap of believing that humans are just a random product of it.

43: Creation is not by chance. God’s handwriting is all over creation.

44: The Father is the Creator, the Son is the meaning & heart of creation, the Spirit holds all together.

45: We believe in Natural Law – that God’s Law is deeply implanted in human beings.

46: The 7 days of creation are symbolic of order, beauty and wisdom.

47: The seventh day of rest is about completion and fulfilment.

48: God created the world out of love and for love & His glory.

49: God guides in mysterious but certain ways, without taking away our freedom.

50: Humans can reject God’s will. God invites us to collaborate.

51: God allows evil only so as to make something better result from it.

52: Heaven is not a place in the universe, but a condition in the next life.

53: Hell is separation from God. Jesus described it as “outer darkness.”

54: Angels are pure spirit, without a body, constantly in the presence of God.

55: Humans can interact with angels, and every person has a guardian angel.

56: Humans are created in the image and likeness of God, and therefore the summit of creation.

57: Humans must have love and respect for animals as they are God’s creatures.

58: Unlike all other creatures, humans are endowed with a spirit. We are someone, not something.

59: God created everything for humans.

60: Jesus in unique because He shows us not only God’s true nature, but also human’s.

61: All humans are equal in dignity.

62: As humans are body and spirit, the soul is united to the body but not identical to it.

63: A person’s soul is God-given, not evolutionary or generative.

64: God is not male or female, but humanity is in order to give expression to God’s creativeness.

65: Homosexual practice is not approved by the Church but all persons, whatever their sexual orientation, must be respected and loved.

66: God does not want suffering and death, but humans alienated themselves from God.

67: Sin is more than incorrect behaviour, but rooted in rejection of God.

68: The Original Sin of Adam & Eve is that root that exists in us all that we do not trust God.

69: Humans are wounded by original sin but not doomed because of God’s grace.

70: God sends Jesus Christ to snatch us from the power of sin.


129. As there is one Christ, so there is one Church – His Body, built on the Apostles.

130. All baptised people belong to the Church, even if they are separated from full communion with the Catholic Church.

131. Jesus prayed that we may be One, and so it is the business of all Christians.

132. We grow in love & holiness when we allow ourselves to be touched by God, who is at work in the Church.

133. “Catholic” means “the whole”.

134: A Catholic is someone who is union with the Pope, the Bishops, and in profession of the Catholic faith & reception of the Sacraments.

135: God loved and spoke firstly to the Jewish people, and so are the older brothers of all Christians. Anti-Semitism has no place in the Christian faith.

136: The Church recognises all that is good & true in other religions. Freedom of religion is a fundamental human right. We share an affinity with Islam, who revere God as One and Abraham as our father in faith. But we profess that Jesus Christ is THE way, THE truth and THE life.

137: Jesus chose the Apostles as His closest collaborators, and the Church is Apostolic in carrying on their work & calling.

138: All members of the Church are of equal dignity, but with different tasks – laity, ordained, and those who take Religious vows.

139: All lay Christians are sent to engage in society & indeed the Church itself to build up the Kingdom of God.

140: The Church is not a democracy because its power comes from Jesus Christ, but it is collegial in that in synods and councils the manifold gifts of the Holy Spirit are fruitful in its members.

141: The Pope is the successor of St Peter, to whom Jesus gave a unique position of preeminence among the Apostles. The Pope is the “Vicar of Christ on earth”.

142: Bishops cannot act and teach against the Pope, but only with him. But the Pope is bound by the Church’s faith & Divine Law.

143: The Pope is infallible when he makes an authoritative decision in doctrinal questions of faith and morals.

144: Bishops have responsibility for the local Church entrusted to them by the Pope.

14. The Sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation

166. Liturgy is the way we dedicate time to God.

167: Liturgy is something that has grown over millenia of faith.

168: Liturgy is the summit towards the whole activity of the Church is directed, and the front from which its power flows.

169: Liturgy is the way we are drawn into the love of God, healed and transformed.

170: The origin of all liturgy is God in whom there is an eternal banquet. All the liturgy is fundamentally a feast.

171: Liturgy is always firstly communion with Jesus Christ.

172: The Seven Sacraments: Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Penance, Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders, Matrimony.

173: We the need the Sacraments to become like Jesus.

174: We come to God not just with the intellect, but through all our senses, which is why we need the Sacraments as well as having faith.

175: The Sacraments are entrusted to the Church to administer them and protect them.

176: Baptism, Confirmation and Holy Orders leave an indelible mark on the soul of the Christian and therefore can only be received once.

177: Sacraments are not magic and can only be effective if accepted in faith, though does not depend on an individual’s faith but on the faith of the Church.

178: Sacraments take effect even in those who is unworthy.

179: Jesus Christ is the One who celebrates all the Sacraments and liturgy.

180: Worship is firstly the service God offers to us – and only then the service we offer to God.

181: Humans are bodily creatures and need signs and symbols to draw us into spiritual or interior realities.

182: We encounter God in the liturgy by gestures and words, just as Jesus used gestures and words.

183: Music and singing helps when words are not enough.

184: Liturgy is time for God.

185: Every year we celebrate the most important events of Christian salvation history in the litrugy.

186: The litirgical year is divided into: Advent, Christmas, Lent, Easter, Ordinary Time, with feasts of Mary & the saints.

187: Sunday is the centre of Christian time, because it is the day of the Lord’s Resurrection.

188: The Liturgy of the Hours are biblical prayers & readings at seven points of each day.

189: Even though Jesus has penetrated the whole world, His body is the True Temple, and so we need sacred buildings and spaces – a symbol for our heavenly home.

190: Churches are places of prayer, communal and private, stone messagers of faith, but also the dwelling place of God.

191: The altar is the central point of a church, and the tabernacle is the most worthy place where the Eucharistic Lord is truly present, marked by the perpetual lamp. The raised chair of the celebrant (or bishop), the lectern for the Word of God, the baptismal font and the confessional are also central to the church.

192: There are changeable and unchangeable aspects of the liturgy.

193: All the Sacraments are encounters with Christ. The Sacraments of Initiation are Baptism, Confirmation & the Eucharist. The Sacraments of Healing are the Anointing of the Sick & Reconciliation. The Sacraments of Communion & Mission are Marriage & Holy Orders.

194: Baptism is the gateway to life & communion with God.

195: Baptism must be with the pouring of water over the head and the words: “N, I baptise you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”

196: Any person who is not yet baptised can be baptised.

197: The Church baptises infants presupposing that Christian parents will raise the child in the faith.

198: Normally any ordained minister administers baptism, but in an emergency anyone can baptise.

199: Baptism is the only way to God and salvation for those who have received the Gospel and heard that Jesus Christ is the way, the truth and the life. There is a “baptism of desire” for all those who seek God sincerely and cannot learn about Christ.

200: In baptism we become members of the Body of Christ, free from sin, destined for the life of the redeemed.

201: To be baptised by a name signifies that God knows me.

202: Christians should choose the name of a saint at baptism.

203: Confirmation completes baptism, by the laying-on of hands and anointing with Chrism.

204: Both St Peter and St Paul encountered Christians who had been baptised but not confirmed, and they directed they should be.

205: In Confirmation, the gift of the Holy Spirit is strength to put into practice the person’s baptism.

206: Any Catholic Christian who is in a “state of grace” (i.e. not in   any serious – mortal – sin) and who has not yet been confirmed can receive Confirmation.

207: The bishop is normally the minister of Confirmation, though he can delegate a priest to do so.

310: The Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit: Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel , Fortitude, Knowledge, Piety, Fear of the Lord (from Isaiah 11;1-2).

311: The Fruits of the Holy Spirit: Charity, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Generosity, Gentleness, Faithfulness, Modesty, Self-control, Chastity (from Galatians 5:22-23).


208: The Eucharist is the source & summit of the Christian life as we unite ourselves to Jesus and His Sacrifice on the cross as in no other way.

209: Christ instituted the Eucharist at the Last Supper.

210: The oldest account is in 1 Corinthians 11:23-25, by St Paul who was not a witness but received it preserved as a holy mystery by the first Christians.

211: In the Eucharist the community of believers as the Church is increasingly transformed into the Body of Christ.

212: The word ‘Mass’ comes from the Latin dismissal Ite missa est – ‘Go now, you are sent.’

213: Two parts to the Mass – the Litrugy of the Word & the Liturgy of the Eucharist.

214: The essential structure of the Mass: gathering, entrance, greeting, penitence, opening prayer, Scripture readings, Gospel reading, homily, Creed, intercession, preparation of the gifts, Eucharistic prayer, Consecration, Doxology, Lord’s Prayer, prayer for peace, breaking of the bread, Holy Communion, thanksgiving, blessing.

215: The bishop or priest represents Christ at every Mass.

216: Christ is mysteriously present in every Eucharist, fulfilling His command “Do this in memory of me.”

217: In the sacrifice of Christ there is room for our whole life, and so we can unite everything with it and so will be transformed.

218: We must reverence with the greatest respect the Most Blessed Sacrament, kept in the Tabernacle in churches.

219: A Catholic is obliged to attend Mass on all Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation.

220: If serious sin is on a person’s conscience he/she should go to Confession before receiving Holy Communion. The Church recommends one hour’s fast before receiving Holy Communion.

221: Every Holy Communion unites a person more deeply with Christ and fortifies against sin.

222: Holy Communion can only be given to Catholics, though there are some limited exceptions for Orthodox Christians and other Christians.

223: The Holy Eucharist is an anticipation of the heavenly banquet. Jesus promised He would sit at table with His disciples again.


145. Jesus wants there to be Christians who live their whole lives in poverty, chastity and obedience – to live as Jesus lived. These are called the “Evangelical Counsels”.

248. Someone who is baptised & confirmed can receive a special mission in the Church in the Sacraments of Holy Orders & Matrimony. Both are directed to the good of others.

249. Ordination is when a man receives a gift of the Holy Spirit that gives him a sacred authority conferred by Christ through a bishop.

250. Jesus Christ is the one mediator and he ended the Old Testament priesthood. After Christ the only ordained priesthood is in Him.

251. Holy Orders has three degrees: Bishops, Priests, Deacons.

252. Bishops are successors of the Apostles, and together with the other bishops and the Pope are responsible for the entire Church in teaching, sanctifying and governing.

253. Every Catholic Christian is under an obligation to his/her Bishop as Christ’s representative.

254. In priestly ordination the Bishop calls God’s power upon the priest with an indelible seal. A priest promises obedience to his bishop.

255. Deacons are ordained to be a minister of the Word, the altar, and charity. The Apostles chose 7 men to be the first deacons to help them in their service.

256. A baptised Catholic man can validly be ordained to these ordained ministries.

257. Men and women have the same Christian dignity, but have different duties and charisms. Jesus chose men exclusively as His Apostles and so the Church has no authority to ordain women.

258. The Roman Catholic Church generally requires that priests and bishops live a celibate life, while the Eastern Catholic Churches demand it only of their bishops.

259. Every Christian is called to work in the world in God’s name, and so all Christians shared in Christ’s priesthood. At the Last Supper, Jesus equipped some with a sacred authority as pastors (shepherds) of His people.

260. God disposed man and woman for each other to live, be fruitful and thus become a sign of God who is love.

261. The Sacrament of Marriage comes about by a promise made by a man and woman before God and the Church, consummated by the bodily union of the couple, and binding until death.

262. Marriage must be free, permanent, exclusive and open to children.

263. Marriage is indissoluble because there is no reservation, the image of God’s unconditional faithfulness, and because it represents Christ’s total devotion to His bride, the Church.

264. Sin threatens marriage, forgiveness renews it, prayer makes it strong.

265. Single people can have fulfilment in life as Jesus invites them to remain unmarried for the sake of the Kingdom of Heaven.

266. A Catholic must marry before a priest or deacon and two witnesses and make vows in accordance with the Church.

267. A Catholic who wishes to marry a non-Catholic Christian must get approval from the Church.

268. A Catholic who wishes to marry a non-baptised person must obtain a dispensation from the Church authority, and the union is not sacramental.

269. Marriages may be declared invalid by a diocesan tribunal if one or both spouses were not capable or fully consent to the marriage.

270. Jesus was clear about the indissolubility of marriage, and so someone in a second marriage may not receive Holy Communion.

271. Christian families are called to be a unique witness by being “domestic churches”.

400. When a husband and wife express their love for each other in bodily union, their love finds it deepest sensual expression.

401. Men and women have identical dignity as persons.

402. Love is the free self-giving of the heart. The most beautiful form of it on earth is that between a man and woman in marriage.

403. The sexual encounter requires the framework of true, dependable love. People who seek sex without love are lying because the closeness of their bodies does not correspond to the closeness of their hearts.

404. Chaste love is not the same as continence, and is when a person lives his/her sexuality deliberately and only motivated by love.

405. Someone who lives chastely is someone who is free to be loving and not the slave of drives or emotions.

406. Every Christian should be loving and chaste. An unchaste person is torn and not free.

407. The Church is against premarital sex because nobody can really say “I love you” temporarily or on a trial basis.

408. God helps us to seek the whole truth about love, even if we have made mistakes.

409. The Church warns against trivialising masturbation as it uncouples sexual pleasure from its holistic purpose.

410. Fornication is a serious offence against charity, often based on seduction, lies, violence, dependency and abuse.

411. Prostitution makes love into a commodity and the person is degraded as an object of pleasure.

412. Pornography is a serious sin as it is a degenerate form of prostitution, supporting the business of selling sex.

413. Rape is the thorough debasing of another person and wounds the victim to the core of her/his ability to love.

414. The Church rejects the use of condoms to combat AIDS as it provides no absolutely safe protection and avoids tackling the real issue of casual sexual relationships.

415. The Church accepts without reservation those who have homosexual feelings and there should be no discrimination against them. But homosexual relations are contrary to the order of creation.

416. The essential elements of Christian marriage are unity, indissolubility, openess to offspring, commitment to the spouse’s welfare.

417. Sex in a marriage should lead to ever more deep union between the couple, but when the pleasure becomes self-enclosed and not open to new life it no longer corresponds to the nature of love.

418. A child is a gift of God, a complete new and unique creature of God, and therefore does not belong to the parents and is not their property.

419. All children are a grace and should be welcomed with joy and love.

420. A Christian couple should be responsible in using the gift and privilege of transmitting life.

421. Natural family planning respect the innate laws of the female body and demands mutual affection and consideration.

422. There is no absolute right to have a child, but couples who cannot have children can foster or adopt.

423. Surrogate parenthood or artificial fertilisation is not approved by the Church.

424. Adultery, when a married person has sexual relations with someone who is not their spouse, is a fundamental betrayal of love and the violation of a covenant made in God’s sight.

425. For Catholics there is no marriage without a church wedding.