THE SERVANT GENERAL
RECOGNITION OF SAME-SEX UNIONS - 3
January 10, 2015
Dutch, Belgian, German bishops, and now an American bishop.
What do they have in common? They all speak well of same-sex
unions. What else do they have in common? They are all in
Bp Lynch says, “I do not wish to lend our voice to notions
which might suggest that same-sex couples are a threat incapable
of sharing relationships marked by love and holiness and,
thus, incapable of contributing to the edification of both
the Church and the wider society.”
What are the errors in the above statement? First, same-sex
relationships may be marked by human love but not true Christian
love, because true Christian love is never apart from righteousness.
Second, same-sex relationships cannot be marked by holiness,
because by its very nature it is unnatural, aberrant, ungodly,
and an abomination. Third, same-sex unions have nothing to
contribute to the edification of both the Church and the wider
society. How can the Church or right-thinking society be edified
with wrongdoing, with evil, with something that at its core
is diabolical? How can society benefit from the destruction
of true marriage and traditional family life? Fourth, indeed
same-sex unions are a threat, and a direct assault, on faith,
family and life.
So, as Bp Lynch says is necessary, what “pastoral response
faithful to Church teaching and marked by respect and sensitivity
might be appropriate for same-sex couples”? To be faithful
to Church teaching is to reject same-sex unions or same-sex
marriage. To be pastoral and caring to those in such unions
is to tell them the truth. They are in sin and their souls
are in danger. It is not helpful to them for the Church to
make them comfortable in their sin.
If we truly respected the human person as a child of God,
saved by Jesus on the cross, then we would speak the truth
to them, with the hope that they would repent of sin and amend
their lives. If we are to be sensitive, let us not be sensitive
just to feelings, not wanting to hurt the emotions of people.
The truth hurts! What we must be sensitive about is the eternal
situation of people, whom God wants to be with Him eternally
Florida bishop suggests same-sex relationships
can be ‘marked by holiness’
Two Florida bishops offered starkly diverging responses this
week after their state judiciary redefined marriage.
While Miami Archbishop Thomas Wenski reminded diocesan employees
they could face termination if they publicly suggest support
for same-sex “marriage,” St. Petersburg Bishop
Robert Lynch suggested in a January 6 Tampa Bay Times column
that homosexual relationships
present no risk to the Church, and in fact can be Godly and
elevate society and the Church.
“I do not wish to lend our voice to notions which might
suggest that same-sex couples are a threat incapable of sharing
relationships marked by love and holiness and, thus, incapable
of contributing to the edification of both the Church and
the wider society,” Lynch wrote.
He cited last fall’s controversial Extraordinary Synod
on the Family, saying the Church must respond to a suggestion
made at the synod to discern
what “pastoral response faithful to Church teaching
and marked by respect and sensitivity might be appropriate
for same-sex couples.”
opened the column by recounting Church teaching on marriage:
that it consists of one man and one woman, and is sacramental,
indissoluble, and open to life. He then shifted to emphasizing
the need to “recognize that the reality of the family
today, in all its complexities presents the Church with pastoral
challenges as the Church strives to accept people in the specific
circumstances of their lives and support and encourage them
in their search for God and their desire to be members of
Archbishop Wenski’s letter to employees reminded them
about the about the archdiocese’s employment policy,
which requires employees to witness to Catholic moral teaching
in their personal life.
“Whatever the role in which you serve within the archdiocese,
you publicly represent the Catholic Church and the archdiocese
in everything you do and say,” he wrote. “Therefore
it is important that you understand the Church’s position
and are well informed.”
News media, activists, and bloggers noted the disparate messages
offered by Wenski and Lynch.
“There's controversy brewing within the Catholic Church
over the legalizing of same-sex marriage,” noted a WTSP
Tampa Bay report . And the homosexual activist group Human
Rights Campaign published a piece with the headline, Which
of These Catholic Voices Represents the Church’s Stance
on Gay Couples?
New Ways Ministry, a dissident group claiming to advocate
for homosexual Catholics, praised Lynch’s column. “Another
bishop … has commented on the legalization of same-gender
marriage in Florida, but this time he is seeking to calm the
fear and hysteria fomented by the state’s other Catholic
leaders,” their blog post read.