"That is part of God's beauty. That is a beauty in itself."
Also incorporated into the symposium were opportunities for prayer and evangelization. These included daily Mass and Adoration, a healing service led by the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, and an evening of Nightfever.
"We need to hear what people are saying," Fr. Sherbrooke said, explaining the reason for incorporating evangelization into this conference. "We need to hear how people are living their lives, however unsettling it may be for us.
"We can't just talk amongst ourselves," he stressed, "because a). we're not being true to the Gospel, and b). we're not trusting in the Holy Spirit."
The Symposium also included a series of workshops aimed at showing how Theology of the Body can be practically applied to everyday life.
Several of the workshops dealt with issues related to fertility, and how attempts to artificially control it – such as through IVF or contraception – can have serious implications for women in terms of health and self-worth.
Theology of the Body helps to "answer to the many reproductive questions that we have today," said Ira Winter, manager of the Life Fertility Care clinic in the UK, which offers Natural Procreative (NaPro) technology to treat couples struggling with infertility.
"God is the author of all new life," she said. "Therefore, we need to involve him when we are discerning how we live this out."
NaPro Technology is a method of addressing infertility by diagnosing and treating underlying problems. Unlike IVF, which relies on invasive procedures, NaPro takes a holistic approach in addressing the core causes of infertility.
"NaPro technology is really going back to trying to find out what is the underlying cause of problems, and trying to come up with solutions that are not eradicating the woman's cycle, but actually leading to some healing," Winter explained.
"In the end couples will turn away from IVF when they understand God placed the co-creative gift right at the heart of their marital communion," she said.
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"Theology of the Body helps couples understand why this gift is simply too precious to abdicate to a laboratory," Winter said, adding that it "excites couples as to the value of their marriage."
Another theme addressed during the workshop sessions regarded the implications of so-called "gender theory."
A speaker from the Warsaw-based Center for the Thought of John Paul II illustrated the characteristics and dangers of gender ideology with reference to the suffering endured by individuals affected by gender identity disorder and gender dysphoria.
In light of demands for "gender-affirming" treatments and procedures that aim to override an individual's biological sex, the speaker encouraged participants to affirm reality and to reflect on the importance and meaning of sexual difference and of the human body as such.
The talking points of the workshop were based on fragments of Benedict XVI's 2012 Christmas address to the Roman Curia, and a 2004 Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Collaboration of Men and Women in the Church, signed by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger as Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
Drawing on John Paul II's reflections on woundedness and Redemption and on parts from Pope Francis' newest book "The Name of God is Mercy," participants were invited to respond with mercy to those affected.