Question 131



Taken from: Coming Home
Dr. Gerard M. Nadal: Science in Service of the Pro-Life Movement

Today in the calendar of the Church we celebrate the Solemnity of The Most Holy Trinity. It is a great feast day for the pro-life movement.

In our understanding of the Trinity, the Father gives Himself totally to the Son, and the Son gives Himself totally to the Father. In this reciprocal act of radical self-donation made in Love, the Holy Spirit of God is generated. The Church holds out sacramental marriage as an icon, a window, into the inner life of the Trinity.

The mutual submission of husbands and wives to one another of which Saint Paul speaks is not the servile condition that radical feminism would have us believe. It is rather the same total emptying of self, the same radical self-donation as characterizes the inner life of God. In that complete giving and receiving of self between spouses, there can be no barriers. In that self-donation, new life is generated as the product of spousal love.

The Church teaches contraception as an intrinsic evil precisely because it is an assault on our imitation of the inner life of the Trinity, because it is an assault on our fertility, of our capacity to generate new life as the expression of our love. It is a barrier that is out of sync with the natural rhythms of human fertility and its cycles. Natural Family Planning takes into view those cycles and does not erect such barriers as to make of marital union a mere plaything devoid of openness and responsibility.

Sterile marriages, marriages that are parsimonious in their approach to love and its fullest expressions beyond the bedroom, that are even hostile to life, are marriages that reject the paradigm of the inner life of the Trinity. The four Gospels are nothing, if they are not one long revelation into the inner life of the Trinity. As Jesus said, “As the Father has loved me {completely}, so I have loved you {completely}.” and “Love one another as I have loved you,” which is to say, completely and selflessly.

So God gives us marriage that we might have a vehicle through which we learn to love, mirroring the example set by the inner Life of the Trinity. God is truly three persons in one entity because that oneness comes about through radical, mutual self-donation. That’s how the two become one in marriage: two persons, one in mind and heart, and even almost in being. And in those best of marriages where self-donation comes closest to perfection, we have reflected for us the inner life of the Trinity.

This is what Jesus was getting at in His prayer to the Father in John 17:20 ″My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: 23 I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. 24 ″Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world. 25 ″Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. 26 I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”

This model of the Trinity in our lives works when we ask the Holy Spirit of God to move in us, in our marriages. It works when we ask the Spirit to teach us wisdom and love, when we are prepared to abandon sin and empty our lives of all impediments that lead us to parsimony, rather than openness.
Especially openness to Life.


Dr. Nadal holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology with a minor in Philosophy, Master of Science in Cellular and Molecular Biology, Master of Philosophy in Biology, and Ph.D. in Molecular Microbiology from Saint John’s University, New York City. Between his B.A. and M.S. studies, Dr. Nadal studied for a year in Seminary and then Post-baccalaureate Science for three years at Columbia University, New York City.
Recently, Dr Nadal has joined the Center for Morality in Public Life as Editor and columnist, as well as columnist for Headline Bistro, an online news and opinion source for Roman Catholics published by the Knights of Columbus.

He has a very good website: