St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-74)

18 Nov

For St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-74) the most grievous of the sins against nature was bestiality, followed by homosexuality, then intercourse in an unnatural position, and last of all masturbation.

Simple fornication was a sin, but since children might well result, it was much less a sin than sodomy or lesbianism; these shameful acts were to be detested and punished whenever they were found.  Fellatio was also condemned, as was all intercourse in which the woman was not underneath the man and which did not involve the insertion of penis in a vagina.

Though the Protestants of the sixteenth century differed from Catholics on many issues, homosexuality was not one. Martin Luther (1483-1524) wrote:

The heinous conduct of the people of Sodom is extraordinary, in as much as they departed from the natural passion and the longing of the male for the female, which was implanted by God, and desired what is altogether contrary to nature. Whence comes this pervesity? Undoubtedly from Satan, who, after people have once turned away from the fear of God, so powerfully suppresses nature that he beats out the natural desire and stirs up a desire that is contrary to nature.

Martin Luther, Lectures on Genesis, in Works, ed. Jarolslav Pelikan and Helmut Lehmann, 55 vols. (Philadelphia and St. Louis: Mullenberg and Concordia, 1955-1967), III, 255.

Vern L. Bullough: Homosexuality A History (New York and Scarborough Ontario, 1979).


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