Question

Hello,
I have a question to ask you.
You write that God personally creates the soul, therefore it is God’s responsibility to choose where this ends up. I’ll explain. If a person is born into a family of violent, depraved, ignorant, rapists, surrogate mothers, etc., God is responsible for it because He knows the conditions under which a person is born.  Moreover, if this person becomes one of them himself because of the violence, trauma and environment in which he grew up, he is justified in his actions up to a certain age in the eyes of God, because he was the contributing cause.
So, the question is, why does God allow these births?
I am looking forward your response.
Thank you.


Answer from the priest

Dear writer,

1. It cannot be denied that there are cultural and historical influences that can negatively influence a person’s moral life. The influences include ideologies and propaganda that incite violence, the rejection of those who think differently, moral relativism that is closed to transcendence.  It would be the individual who decides what is good and what is evil and the structures of sin that force one to live in a climate of generalized immorality.

2. John Paul II in Veritatis Splendor does not deny that there are psychological and social conditioning which can weigh on the exercise of human freedom (cf. VS 33).  In Reconciliatio et Paenitentia, he recalls “..the undeniable environmental and historical conditioning and influences which act upon man” (RP 18).  But, after affirming that “man can be conditioned by not a few or slight external and internal factors” he remembers that “it is a truth of faith, also confirmed by our experience and reason, that the human person is free.  This truth cannot be disregarded in order to place the blame for individuals’ sins on external factors such as structures, systems, or others people. Above all, this would be to deny the person’s dignity and freedom, which are manifested – even though in a negative and disastrous way – also in this responsibility for sin committed. Hence, there is nothing so personal and untransferable in each individual as merit for virtue or responsibility for sin” (RP 16).

3. Sacred Scripture rejects the fatalistic excuses that men make to excuse their misconduct, “Do not say, ‘It was God’s doing that I fell away’, for what he hates he does not do…If you choose, you can keep the commandments; loyalty is doing the will of God” (Sir 15:11).  Likewise, “No one experiencing temptation should say, ‘I am being tempted by God,’ for God is not subject to temptation to evil, and he himself tempts no one. Rather, each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire” (Jas 1: 13-14).

4. Therefore, one can become a saint even if one comes from criminal parents. God gives each person an almighty weapon, freedom. Because of freedom, one can become a criminal even if one comes from holy parents.  And conversely, one can become a saint while coming from criminal parents.  Moreover, in aid of freedom, God also gives the supernatural aids of grace.

5. If, in some cases, the responsibility of the individual can be greatly reduced or even eliminated, the fault is evidently not of God, but of the men who generated the him (here God was almost forced to create the soul by reason of conception implemented by parents). Or, the men who generated him were poorly educated. Or, the fault is of those who have created or maintained unfair structures.
I wish you well, I bless you, and I remember you in prayer.
Father Angelo

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