Statements by the Churches and the Secular Press Condemning Artificial Contraception Following the Anglican's Lambeth Conference of 1930
The Lutheran Church
* "Birth Control, as popularly understood today and involving the use of contraceptives, is one of the most repugnant of modern aberrations, representing a 20th century renewal of pagan bankruptcy."
Dr. Walter A. Maier, Concordia Lutheran Theological
Seminary, St. Louis, Missouri.
The Methodist Church
* "The whole disgusting [birth control] movement rests on the assumption of man's sameness with the brutes. ... Its [the Federal Council of Churches] deliverance on the matter of birth control has no authorization from any churches representing it, and what it has said I regard as most unfortunate, not to use any stronger words. It certainly does not represent the Methodist Church, and I doubt if it represents any other Protestant Church in what it has said on this subject."
Bishop Warren Chandler, Methodist Episcopal Church South,
April 13, 1931.
The Presbyterian Church
* "Its [Federal Council of Churches] recent pronouncement on birth control should be enough reason, if there were no other, to withdraw from support of that body, which declares that it speaks for the Presbyterian and other Protestant churches in ex cathedra pronouncements."
The Presbyterian, April 2, 1931.
The Catholic Church
* "In order that she [the Catholic Church] may preserve the chastity of the nuptial union from being defiled by this foul stain, she raises her voice in token of her divine ambassadorship and through our mouth proclaims anew: any use whatsoever of matrimony exercised in such a way that the act is deliberately frustrated in its natural power to generate life is an offense against the law of God and of nature, and those who indulge in such are branded with the guilt of a grave sin."
Pope Pius XI, Casti Connubii, December 31, 1930, Section 4,
* "Since a week ago last Saturday we can no longer expect them to defend the law of God. These sects will work out the very logic of their ways and in fifty or one hundred years there will be only the Church and paganism. We will be left to fight the battle alone and we will."
Father Fulton J. Sheen of the Catholic University of America.
"Comments ..... and Comments On the Report of The Federal
Council of Churches of Christ in America." The American Birth
Control League's Birth Control Review, Volume XV, Number 4
(April 1931), page 143.
* "Liberal Protestantism is really (so it seems to us and we speak with all respect for the noble solicitude it displays for human welfare, its passion for the building up of a better order of society) a new religion, but it is no longer Protestantism it is pagan humanitarianism, it is the creed of social service built on shifting and unstable experiments, but not on the demonstrated facts of materialistic science."
Editorial from The Commonweal of March 29, 1931. "Comments .....
and Comments on the Report of The Federal Council of Churches
of Christ in America." The American Birth Control League's Birth
Control Review, Volume XV, Number 4 (April 1931), page 142.
The Secular Press
* "Carried to its logical conclusion, the committee's report, if carried into effect, would sound the death-knell of marriage as a holy institution by establishing degrading practices which would encourage indiscriminate immorality. The suggestion that the use of legalized contraceptives would be "careful and restrained" is preposterous."
The Washington Post, March 22, 1931.
The Anglican Bishop's Contrasting 1920 and 1930 Statements on Contraception
Statement of the 1920 Lambeth Conference
-- "We utter an emphatic warning against the use of unnatural means for the avoidance of conception, together with the grave dangers physical, moral, and religious thereby incurred, and against the evils with which the extension of such use threatens the race. In opposition to the teaching which in the name of science and religion encourages married people in the deliberate cultivation of sexual union as an end in itself, we steadfastly uphold what must always be regarded as the governing consideration of Christian marriage. One is the primary purpose for which marriage exists namely, the continuation of the race through the gift and heritage of children; the other is the paramount importance in married life of deliberate and thoughtful self-control."
Resolution 15 of the 1930 Lambeth Conference
-- "Where there is a clearly felt moral obligation to limit or avoid parenthood, the method must be decided on Christian principles. The primary and obvious method is complete abstinence from intercourse (as far as may be necessary) in a life of discipleship and self-control lived in the power of the Holy Spirit. Nevertheless, in those cases where there is such a clearly felt moral obligation to limit or avoid parenthood, and where there is a morally sound reason for avoiding complete abstinence, the Conference agrees that other methods may be used, provided that this is done in the light of the same Christian principles. The Conference records its strong condemnation of the use of any methods of conception-control for motives of selfishness, luxury, or mere convenience."