Enemy number one to the chastity of young people is the parked car. With the cloak of darkness and seclusion thrown around them, young couples parked along country roads are deliberately subjecting their virtue to a great and violent strain.
Parked automobiles, scenes of passionate kissing, petting and necking, are truly graveyards in which are buried the innocence and purity of thousands upon thousands of young men and young women. Here so-called love turns out to be lust, the most selfish sin, which seeks impure self-satisfaction at the expense of another’s virtue.
If you are a decent girl, do not drag down a young man into the mire of impurity by consenting to have him park his car, thus giving him a favorable occasion for sin. Even under favorable conditions every young man has to struggle to keep pure.
God said, “He who loves the danger will perish in it.” Therefore avoid the parked automobile as you would a pest house, reeking with germs of fatal maladies.
At the end of the evening’s entertainment, do not let your friend accompany you into your home, but bid good night when you arrive there. This will be a protection for you both. To do otherwise at that time of night, when the other members of the family have retired, is to subject each other to substantially the same danger as that presented by the parked car. Many a pure courtship has been ruined through the failure to heed this caution.
It is not a sin to drink, but it is always a sin to drink too much. If through excessive drinking you lose the use of reason, you commit a mortal sin and thereby descend to a level lower than that of the brute beast.
Even if drinking does not end in drunkenness, its effects on company-keeping are disastrous. Drink adds fuel to concupiscence and increases the force of temptation to impurity; it weakens the powers of the mind and lowers the resistance of the will, thereby leaving one open to sin.
Drink has always been one of the shortest roads to moral corruption and is the greatest contributing factor to the alarming increase of crime. Facts show that liquor figures in seven out of every ten crimes.
Drinking outside the home is usually the beginning of the drinking habit and other bad habits, especially impurity.
Many a young man and young woman who normally would not think of lust have ruined their courtship and destroyed their love through drinking. Do not fall a prey to this habit just to be sociable.
To say that a party without drink lacks good-fellow-ship and sociability is stupid and betrays a low mental status. Among young and intelligent people drink should be in no sense necessary for a good time.
If you really prize your virtue and demand self-respect, do not drink at all. The achievement of true and clean happiness is worth the little act of self-denial involved in abstinence from alcoholic drink.
The fact that about three-fourths of broken homes are the consequence of drinking should be an argument strong enough to make you give up associating with anyone who, having a special liking for alcoholic drink, does not know how to control himself.
Another danger in company-keeping arises from frequenting burlesque theaters, night clubs, road houses, and taverns where salacious floor shows, off color jokes, and expensive drinks are the chief menu.
In these places semi-nude females perform lascivious dances and fill young minds with obscene jokes, plying them with drinks and turning them into sex-crazed maniacs. These are the agencies which poison innocent minds and prevent their normal development into wholesome manhood and womanhood, sending them out as criminals to prey upon society.
In our day perhaps the deadliest misinformant about the ways of true living is the motion picture show. Sometimes the scenes are so vivid that for all practical purposes young people might just as well be acting in the presence of men and women who are disregarding God’s holy laws.
Such indecent attractions offered by the screen lower ideals and distort the standards of young Catholic men and women. It has become all too common for those born and reared in the faith to forget the lessons they have learned: that their thoughts, desires, and acts must be chaste; that all near occasions to sin must be avoided; that the most priceless thing in the soul of a girl is her purity, and the noblest virtue in the young man is preservation of his moral integrity.
Many a boy and girl can testify that he or she was guilty of the first grave lapse from chastity after having witnessed scenes of love-making and lustful seduction created by much publicized movie stars.
Start a fire, inhale the flames of lust, and your soul will die. Let the Legion of Decency be your guide in regard to the choice of pictures. Refrain from seeking pictures that are even partly objectionable.
Immodest Conversation and Speaking
Immodest conversation with the intention of exciting the hearers to lust. Course language which would scandalize and excite the young and innocent.
Immodest conversation which is merely suggestive or slightly objectionable.
Serious conversation about ‘sexual topics is permissible when there is a sufficient reason for it and proper precautions are taken.
To listen to obscene conversation for the sake of the sensual pleasure that it excites.
To listen out of curiosity or to laugh at obscene jokes from human respect. Many people who tell stories with sexy content are not bothered by them, but they have to assume some responsibility for their listeners.
Things like this can easily give scandal, especially in a mature mixed group, and above all when adolescents are present. The mere fun of telling a story is never a sufficient reason for the uncertain danger of temptation which is practically always present.
A smutty story displays your lack of a sense of decency and the state of your soul. It proclaims the meagerness of your sources of entertainment, the coarseness of your ideas of humor, the inadequacy of your means of expression.
It soils the imagination of your hearers, hanging vulgar pictures in the inner chambers of their minds. A dirty story disgusts people of finer sensibilities who care for the clean, wholesome things of life, but hate dirt.
It dishonors your parents, your friends, your God and yourself! Off-color and suggestive stories and jokes may be serious occasions of sin in company-keeping.
They easily arouse passions and lead the way to sin. Make it a point of honor that you will never soil your date with a single dirty story. Say nothing that you would not want your mother to hear.
God sees and hears you. Never take willful pleasure listening to a dirty story. If you are not in a position to silence the Story-teller or change the trend of conversation, or leave, at least refrain from encouraging him by your interest or expression of pleasure and approval.
Let him see from your attitude that you are not interested. Avoid the company of those who tell filthy jokes or stories. If your friend belongs to this class, you have made a very poor choice.
The reading of a very obscene book without sufficient reason. The reading of slightly objectionable books with an evil intention.
The reading of slightly objectionable books out of mere curiosity and without evil intentions, e.g., a novel with too passionate love.
Those who have a serious reason for reading (doctors, nurses, spiritual directors, teachers, young people about to be married who need instruction) do not sin, even though they should be strongly excited, provided that they control their wills. The greater the danger to the virtue of chastity, the greater must be the justifying reason for reading dangerous books.
Even mere entertainment justifies one in ignoring occasional slight motions of passion caused by a few suggestive pictures or passages in books or magazines that are otherwise decent.
But mere entertainment is not usually a complete justification for reading things that one finds strongly stimulating, even in an otherwise decent book or magazine.
One of the great enemies to the moral cleanliness of youth is the avalanche of filth being poured upon them today by smutty magazines, lewd pictures and newspapers which relate the details of sexual crimes and divorce scandals.
Such literature poisons the minds, befouls the imaginations and sullies the hearts of youth. The publishers of these filthy, sex inciting magazines are the arch criminals of our day, the criminals who turn out others by the hundreds.
Make it a point of honor never to read any literature which you know to be in any way objectionable. Refrain from reading cheap books and magazines that will scarcely be an inspiration to you.
Read and promote Catholic books, magazines and pamphlets in order to become a better Catholic and help the cause of truth and virtue. You cannot appreciate anything you know little about.