On encyclical's 50th anniversary, USCCB president praises 'the beautiful truth' of Humanae Vitae

The Office of Public Affairs of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops issued the following statement this morning: 

President of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Statement Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Humanae Vitae

July 25, 2018

WASHINGTON — In honor of the 50th Anniversary of Blessed Paul VI’s papal encyclical, Humanae Vitae, Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston and President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), has issued the following statement. Originally published in 1968, Blessed Paul VI's letter promotes the whole human person in the context of marital love that respects both the spiritual and physical dimensions of man and woman, which is faithful, generous, and life-giving.

Cardinal DiNardo’s full statement follows:

“Fifty years ago, today, Blessed Paul VI issued the Encyclical Humanae Vitae. In it, he reaffirmed the beautiful truth that a husband and wife are called to give themselves completely to each other. Marriage reflects the love of God, which is faithful, generous, and life-giving. Through their vocation, spouses cooperate with God by being open to new human life.

Blessed Paul VI, who bore the criticism of Humanae Vitae with charity and patience, courageously affirmed that when we love as God designed, we experience true freedom and joy. He has also been proven correct in his warnings about the consequences of ignoring the true meaning of married love.

On this anniversary, I encourage all to read and prayerfully reflect upon this Encyclical, and be open to the gift of its timeless truths.

We wait in joyful anticipation for the canonization of Paul VI in October.”

For more information and resources on Humanae Vitae, please visit www.usccb.org/HV50.


In May NCR began multipart series by mapping the influence of Humanae Vitae, the impact this teaching on birth control has had in the Catholic community and where it might be pointing us in the future. We called the series 'Humanae Vitae': The maturing of church teaching.

You can also listen to NCR columnist and books editor Jamie Manson and Creighton University theology professor Todd Salzman discuss Humanae Vitae in an esposide in our podcast, NCR in Conversation. 

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