The trouble with this supposed solution is that a sin is not simply a technical violation which can be repaired by going to confession.The choice of sterilization, like any sin, is a self-determination, an existential self-mutilation more profound than the physical self-mutilation of sterilization; and this self- determination lasts until the person repents. Sadly, a large section of the public, cutting across boundaries of race, economic status, education and creed, are woefully ignorant about the abortifacient quality of Depo-Provera, RU-486, the Intrauterine Device, the "Morning-After Pill," Norplant, the "emergency contraceptive" and in some cases the common "Pill." Therefore, literally millions of persons throughout the world are "silently" aborting, thinking all the while that they are preventing conception when in fact they are unwittingly snuffing out the lives of preborn children. True sorrow, resolute amendment of life and deep awareness of the Truth, inspired by the Holy Spirit Who is the Lord and Giver of Life and the Master of the Truth, are possible.
Direct sterilization--indeed, all contraception--is grave matter, that is, it is intrinsically evil.
(While this assertion may seem overly audacious today, it is to be recalled that before the dawn of the twentieth century, virtually everyone thought contraception of any stripe to be patently immoral--an utter abomination against God's Eternal Law.
But, as Grisez insists, among the purely contraceptive methods, sterilization is the most morally repugnant.
Kippley explains the "types" of sin that are involved in direct sterilization.
One kind is the contraceptive quality and intention of the act of sterilization, in which one deliberately wills not to conceive a child.
Kippley writes: Once a person has voluntarily had himself or herself sterilized for birth control purposes, each act of sexual intercourse is seriously stained; it objectively contradicts the meaning of the marriage act for it is a permanent way of saying, "I take you for pleasure but not for the imagined worse of pregnancy."2 The second sin linked to intentional sterilization is that of mutilation (whether actual or attempted) of a healthy organ that has as its divinely-preordained purpose to participate and cooperate with God in the begetting of a new human life. The "good" of human procreation as created by the Almighty is not respected when one purposely rejects the reproductive capacity of the human body and willingly alters the body with contraception in view.
There immediately appears to be a substantial and ongoing problem.
How can this couple show their genuine sorrow since the effect of the direct sterilization continues unabated?
Thus, the intention of choosing sterilization is contraceptive, and the sterilizing act is at best a bad means to a good ulterior end.
Moreover, because sterilization involved bodily mutilation and is usually irreversible, it is, other things being equal, more seriously wrong than other methods of contraception.1 One here recalls the unfortunate circumstance of our era in which methods that actually kill an already conceived and developing child are cavalierly dismissed as "just another kind of birth control." Certainly, abortifacient means are more sinful than any contraception, including sterilization, because the former extinguishes a life now begun, while the latter prevents a life from being started.
However, imagine a married couple who have done something permanent in order to prevent conception.