"I'm a Catholic, but I've used birth control. And not just the rhythm method," the New Jersey governor told a crowd
at a town hall at Blake's Restaurant & Creamery in Manchester, New Hampshire.
"My church has a teaching against birth control. Does that make me an awful Catholic, because I believed and practiced that function during part of my life?" he asked. "I don't think so, but I'm only going to find out when it's my time to be judged."
Christie's stance is consistent with most Catholics around the world. A 2014 poll
by Univision reported that 79% of Catholics around the world support the use of contraception.
In 1968, Pope Paul VI emphasized the Church's constant teaching against birth control
in the landmark encyclical letter Humanae Vitae.
The letter says contraception is "any action which, either in anticipation of the conjugal act [sexual intercourse], or in its accomplishment, or in the development of its natural consequences, proposes, whether as an end or as a means, to render procreation impossible."
Birth control includes anti-pregnancy pills, sterilization, condoms, spermicides, the withdrawal method and other attempts to prevent pregnancy.
Socially conservative stances have received greater emphasis from 2016 presidential hopefuls following June's Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage and the current controversy
surrounding Planned Parenthood.
Christie on Sunday told CNN's Jake Tapper on "State of the Union" that he supports calls to pull federal funding from Planned Parenthood over its providing of abortion services.