Catholic couples – only the heterosexual ones, I suppose – are being urged to recite the “Prayer Before Making Love” before – well, before making love.
It’s supposed to purify the couple’s intentions so that a good shag should not be about hedonism – you know, actually enjoying it.
You can just imagine the pair of them on the sofa, eating each other’s face, just dying for it, breathing heavily, hands all over the place, deciding to go upstairs, then, “Oh, hang on a mo, darling, first we ought to say the ‘Prayer Before Making Love’. Pass the prayer book, will you?”
It’s obvious to anyone but a Catholic God botherer that hedonism is what it’s about, even though, as humans, we can and do often, but not always, add several layers of other meaning to the act.
As far as I can work out, natural selection is at work, because those who enjoy it tend to do it, and some of those couplings will lead to procreation (which is not to say that sex was somehow “meant” for procreation – that’s teleological thinking).
If there were no hedonism – i.e. no pursuit of pleasure – then most people wouldn’t be hoping for and seeking out a bit of rumpy-pumpy, whether it’s with their long-term partner or a one-night stand.
But I guess I’m preaching to the converted here.
The Daily Mail story cited above says of the 64-page book, produced by the Catholic Truth Society:
The prayer, which appears in the Prayer Book for Spouses, implores God “to place within us love that truly gives, tenderness that truly unites, self-offering that tells the truth and does not deceive, forgiveness that truly receives, loving physical union that welcomes”.
It adds: “Open our hearts to you, to each other and to the goodness of your will.
“Cover our poverty in the richness of your mercy and forgiveness. Clothe us in true dignity and take to yourself our shared aspirations, for your glory, for ever and ever. Now get yer kit off and let’s get down to it.”
Actually, I made that last bit up.