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Unity views on dating and sex

Even if two people love each other and plan to marry later on, sexual intimacy must articulate a unity and gift of one’s entire self that has yet to take place.

Sex is thus the actualization of the marital union, concretizing the mutual gift of self between the partners.

If experienced outside the context of marriage, therefore, it cannot actualize the union, for no union exists.

Out of love God created human beings as male and female, persons of dignity and worthy of respect.

Also out of love, God established marriage as the first communion of persons.

In the New Testament, Jesus began his public ministry with his supportive presence at the wedding feast of Cana, a further indication of the goodness of marriage. The Church affirms, first, its role in creating new human life, sometimes called the procreative dimension of sexuality.

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Such physical union is actualized in sexual intercourse.The nature of this sexual act is itself unitive–two become one flesh.

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Because in marriage spouses are united to one another on the mental, emotional, legal, and perhaps spiritual levels, it is appropriate and good that they also be united on a physical level.Sadly, we know the results: too often women and men have become objects to be used and exploited.The salvation won for us by Jesus Christ began the process of restoring the lost unity of body and soul.This process is partly completed here; full unity will be restored in the next life. Within marriage, it fulfills its purpose as an expression of deep, faithful and exclusive love that is open to new life.Marital sexual relations involve profound openness and receptivity, a complete and mutual self-giving.Outside of the context of marriage, then, sex ultimately reduces the participants to mere instruments serving an incomplete end–be it the desire for emotional intimacy, physical pleasure, or personal security.