Decree of the Holy Office
On March 21, 1931, the Holy Office (now the Sacred Congregation for the
Doctrine of the Faith) issued a Decree. The Holy Office
had proposed to it for solution a question pertaining to
sex-education and Pope Pius XI's encyclical, Divini Illius
Magistri, on the Christian education of youth. The Decree's
question and answer about sex-education read:
May the method called "sex-education" or even "sex
initiation" be approved?
No. In the education of youth the method to be followed is that
hitherto observed by the Church and the Saints as recommended by His
Holiness the Pope in the encyclical dealing with the Christian
education of youth, promulgated on December 31, 1929. The first
place is to be given to the full, sound and continuous instruction in
religion of both sexes. Esteem, desire and love of the angelic
virtue must be instilled into their minds and hearts. They must be
made fully alive to the necessity of constant prayer, and assiduous
frequenting of the Sacraments of Penance and the Holy Eucharist; they
must be directed to foster a filial devotion to the Blessed Virgin as
Mother of holy purity, to whose protection they must entirely commit
themselves. Precautions must be taken to see that they avoid
dangerous reading, indecent shows, conversations of the wicked, and
all other occasions of sin.
Hence no approbation whatever can be given to the advocacy of the new method
even as taken up recently by some Catholic authors and set before the
public in printed publications.
The above Decree is an Act of the Apostolic See (Acta
Apostolicae Sedes), bearing the number AAS 23 (1931).
It is an official act of the ordinary magisterium of the Holy
Catholic Church, binding in conscience and mind.
For more information about classroom sex-education and how to
protect children from it, contact the National
Coalition of Clergy and Laity
621 Jordan Circle
Whitehall, PA 18052-7119 USA
tel 610/435-2634 610/435-2734 fax