Thursday, October 11, 2007

Circumcision?

Q - What is the Catholic view on circumcision?

A - Thanks for the question. The official view of the Catholic Church on male circumcision is basically one of middle ground. While some older Church documents spoke against it, they were saying it was not to ever be done as a religious rite or practice. It certainly isn't required, because the Mosaic law that governed circumcision of males a sign of the covenant with God has passed away through Christ. But, it certainly isn't prohibited (for social or medical reasons) as some may claim.

For the most part it is done as a societal, not religious, practice in the USA. But, there is a growing movement against it. Some see it as unnecessary mutilation. But, the Church has never taught this, the persons who advocate this position are doing so on inference from Church documents.

Now, there are some doctors who recommend it in certain medical cases, as is the case with a boy in my family. In this case, there is a good medical reason to circumcise. Otherwise, it is the prudential decision of the parents that would govern if it should be done. Some parents do it for social reasons and this has not been condemned by the Church either.

Interestingly enough this subject does cause quite a stir of emotions for some people. I would say that this is a matter of conscience until the Church (or undisputed scientific evidence) answer the question one way or the other. So, we should not try to bind anothers' conscience in this area.

As long as it is not for a religious purpose - this is an decision of prudence.
For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love. - Gal 5:6

2 comments:

TLC Tugger said...

By Papal edict and by specific catechism articles, mutilation of the genitals is "against the moral law" for Catholics.

Christian Circumcision FAQ

Marcel said...

As I said in the post above, I do not believe your interpretation of the texts is correct. I stand by my post.