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Unformatted text preview: for God by loving and respecting
others. This will require that children be helped to develop the virtues so as to become habits in order to guide
their conduct (CCC 1805-1809). According to the Truth and Meaning of Human Sexuality, Guidelines for
Education within the Family by the Pontifical Council for the Family – Rome (hereafter TM), from the age of
innocence until the time of puberty, children are to be trained in friendship skills and virtuous living.
Developing the virtue of temperance involves formation in self-discipline and self-control. The virtue of
temperance is the foundation of the virtue of chastity, which allows us to overcome the temptation to look upon
or use another person as an object for pleasure and sexual satisfaction rather than a person to be loved. This
temptation is a result of the effects of original sin. Therefore, the virtue of chastity needs to be developed.
The document notes that for children in the years of innocence, “this period of tranquility and serenity must
never be disturbed by unnecessary information about sex” (#78). Chastity is training in the “gift of the person”
(CCC 2346). “Chastity is not to be understood as a repressive attitude. On the contrary, chastity should be
understood rather as the purity and temporary stewardship of a precious and rich gift of love, in view of the
self-giving realized in each person’s specific vocation…Chastity means the successful integration of sexuality
within the person and thus the inner unity of man in his bodily and spiritual being”(TM #4). The integration of
sexuality means self-mastery, in controlling desires and submitting them to love and respect as ordered to the
gift of self. “The virtue of chastity blossoms in friendship” (CCC 2347).
“As in the first years of life also during childhood, parents [and teachers] should encourage a spirit of
collaboration, obedience, generosity and self-denial in their children, as well as a capacity for self-reflection
and sublimation. In fact, a characteristic of this period of development is an attraction toward intellectual
activities. Using the intellect makes it possible to acquire the strength and ability to control the surrounding
situation and, before long, to control bodily instincts, so as to transform them into intellectual and rational
activities” (TM #86).
“An undisciplined or spoiled child is inclined toward certain immaturity and moral weakness in future years
because chastity is difficult to maintain if a person develops selfish or disordered habits and cannot behave
with proper concern and respect for others. Parents [and teachers] should present objective standards of what
is right and wrong, thereby creating a sure moral framework for life” (TM #86).
It is the understanding of the Catholic Church that parents are the primary educators of their children. In the
Catholic Schools and Religious Education Programs, formation in chastity will be taught in the context of the
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This note was uploaded on 09/23/2013 for the course RELIGION Religion taught by Professor Hansel during the Fall '13 term at Pacelli High School, Stevens Point.
- Fall '13