Saturday, June 27, 2015

For every Catholic who supports the gay "marriage" decision....

Below is the mind of the Church on the SCOTUS decision. It's from the US Bishops, and there is no nuance or mincing of words. If you are sort of okay with, or even celebrating, the decision that legalizes gay "marriage" in our nation, you are at odds with the mind of your Church. If you consider the bishops' strong words to be "hateful", you are at odds with the Catholic faith that you claim to profess. It is a dangerous place to be, spiritually, particularly if you are in any way publicly expressing pleasure at the decision, which can promote confusion and even cause scandal. 

The full statement from the US Bishops, emphases mine:

Regardless of what a narrow majority of the Supreme Court may declare at this moment in history, the nature of the human person and marriage remains unchanged and unchangeable. Just as Roe v. Wade did not settle the question of abortion over forty years ago, Obergefell v. Hodges does not settle the question of marriage today. Neither decision is rooted in the truth, and as a result, both will eventually fail. Today the Court is wrong again. It is profoundly immoral and unjust for the government to declare that two people of the same sex can constitute a marriage.

The unique meaning of marriage as the union of one man and one woman is inscribed in our bodies as male and female. The protection of this meaning is a critical dimension of the “integral ecology” that Pope Francis has called us to promote. Mandating marriage redefinition across the country is a tragic error that harms the common good and most vulnerable among us, especially children. The law has a duty to support every child’s basic right to be raised, where possible, by his or her married mother and father in a stable home.

Jesus Christ, with great love, taught unambiguously that from the beginning marriage is the lifelong union of one man and one woman. As Catholic bishops, we follow our Lord and will continue to teach and to act according to this truth.

I encourage Catholics to move forward with faith, hope, and love: faith in the unchanging truth about marriage, rooted in the immutable nature of the human person and confirmed by divine revelation; hope that these truths will once again prevail in our society, not only by their logic, but by their great beauty and manifest service to the common good; and love for all our neighbors, even those who hate us or would punish us for our faith and moral convictions.

Lastly, I call upon all people of good will to join us in proclaiming the goodness, truth, and beauty of marriage as rightly understood for millennia, and I ask all in positions of power and authority to respect the God-given freedom to seek, live by, and bear witness to the truth.

For easy-to-understand answers to questions about gay "marriage", go here.


  1. The purpose of marriage is threefold:
    1. fides
    2. proles
    3. sacramentum

    bonum prolis should be put before all other considerations.

  2. As I read and re-read your post yesterday and today, I just keep hearing Jesus say, "Give Caesar what is Caesar's, give God what is God's." Marriage is a sacrament, a covenant between a man, woman, and God, not a right. Unions are a right...two individuals united by law. God governs marriage in spite of American courts. Courts govern unions. American government can call these unions whatever they want, but when it concerns a sacrament, the only majority rule is God's. The devout look to God for loving justice and judgment.

    First, concerning the division of church and state in our constitution, allowing the use of the word marriage in any governmental document was the first mistake. Second, Christians have abused the sacrament of marriage through the high rate of divorce. If those who believe in the covenant hold it in such low esteem, we cannot ask those who don't to respect it or its meaning. Finally, regardless of what the courts have to say, I will continue to strive and teach my children to love the sinner hate the sin (as we are all sinners), to love my enemies (even when it is difficult and the enemy is related to me :), to save judgement for our Lord (extremely hard to do), and to look to Heaven for guidance. As misguided as our country is, we (at least at the moment) have the freedom to attend mass, spread the Truth, and to teach our children our faith. What an opportunity to pray for God's grace and His Will to be done. I always tell my children, God will use your goodness or your evil ways to ensure His Will will come to pass...which way will you be used?

  3. " Marriage is a sacrament, a covenant between a man, woman, and God, not a right. Unions are a right...two individuals united by law. God governs marriage in spite of American courts. Courts govern unions. American government can call these unions whatever they want, but when it concerns a sacrament, the only majority rule is God's."

    This is a point I"ve tried to make many times and why I don't understand the outrage. Marriage is a word that the government chose to refer to a specific legal contract--it is not a redefinition of the entire historical institution and has nothing to do with the sacrament.

    A couple of questions. Catholics have never recognized the legal unions of divorced individuals as true marriages and they don't allow divorced people to marry in the church (am I right about that?). And I'm not aware that the Church has ever been forced to marry divorced people even though divorced people have the legal right to marry. So why would it be different with same sex couples? Why the worry? I don't think any church is forced to marry anyone in their congregation against their will--Catholic or not. As long as SS couples have access to the Justice of the Peace I don't see why there's anything to worry about.

    A while back I was listening to a Catholic radio show hosted by a priest (I believe he was a conservative Catholic from what he said--not sure though). A young woman called in to say that she and her fiancé were to be married in a couple of weeks in the Catholic church and that they didn't plan to get a civil (legal) marriage because they assumed that in the eyes of God the only thing that mattered for them to be truly marriage was the sacrament. She asked the priest's advice and he replied that she was correct--all she needed to be married in the eyes of God and the Church was to be married in the church, but that it was recommended from a practical standpoint to get a marriage license. If this is true, again, I don't understand why it matters so much if a civil union is available to same sex couples (for Catholics) as long as a civil union has nothing to do with "true" marriage.

    Sorry if I'm not clear. Thanks.

  4. Johanne, I cannot speak for Sissybee and the quote from her is not how I would have explained it. Marriage is a natural law issue, not just a contract. Even when it's sanctioned by the state. It's about something deeper than a contract, as it's rooted in our very bodies/biology and it's spanned the entire depth and breadth of human history. Natural law. So, even when a civil marriage is undertaken, the Church assumes it to be valid and even sacramental (in the case of baptized Protestants). Only Catholics are required to take that higher step and get married in the Church with witnesses of the Church.

    Why does any culture elevate marriage above other relationships (even romantic relationships)? Because it's the only union that can produce children. Children have a right to be born to their biological mother and father, who are married and who provide a home for that child. This is what the world has always understood. Children are born to their married mothers and fathers, and that is GOOD for society. It's why even atheists in Communist nations believe in marriage. Not gay "marriage".

    So, if we strip that meaning away from a society (which we have been doing for decades, but this takes the cake), then we all suffer. And, ontologically, all those male/female marriages that are not sanctioned by the Church, or are not recognized by the Church, have the potential to be real marriage.. Most can be rehabilitated or made right in one way or another. NEVER can this be with two men. NEVER can this be with two women. Those can never be marriage, because the "stuff" of marriage is one man and one woman, who come together in a conjugal union. For a society to cast that off (and it's never been done before) is a great error.

    Let's watch the decades unfold. Heck, let's just see ten years into the future now, with Canada:

  5. Thank you, Leila. What about the last question. Why are Catholics afraid of being forced to perform gay weddings when they have never been forced to marry other couples that shouldn't be married in the Catholic Church?

  6. Johanne,

    Classification of relationships is HUGE. Marriage is not a word that the government uses to classify merely “contract” relationships. Paternity is pre-supposed. You know what we’ll have now? Merely a rolodex of relationships, without any differentiation between them, so … might as well do away with that word “marriage”, now. See the logic here?

    This is why the logical brain in our heads begins to melt with this repeated mantra of “marriage equality”. It completely and utterly tramples the rights of any children brought into these situations because there is no safety net of presumed paternity.
    The failure to properly compartmentalize and differentiate these relationships will only damage children’s rights. It confuses things very badly when consent needs to be obtained from biological parents, as far as “true” parentage goes. And it harms the child to wonder, “Who is my real mom and who is my real dad, and why is there so much confusion?” And further, “Why am I not allowed to show pain if I am missing a ‘dad’ or ‘mom’?”

    That’s the logical question to be asked – “what is a marriage?” - not this prop of, “Marriage equality for all! If you don’t agree then you must be against equality! Hateful! Bigot!”. This has nothing to do with suppressing any group. Marriage law was never concerned with sexual preference; it was always only concerned with true paternity (debt and land as well) for the safety and security of the child and his/her rights.

    Look at the label of marriage now, and what do you see logically?

  7. Johanne,

    Keep an eye out for the arm twisting yet to come.

  8. Just to clarify, I am in no way supporting the blasphemy that is going on in our country. I dreaded the conversation that I had to have with two of my four minor children about what this means to society as a whole as well as their little Catholic bubble. But I had to not only provide them with hope of a better future with prayer and God's help, but a glimmer of hope for myself. Governments will do what the majority wants or what they convince the majority they need. But in the end God will win the day and we should be of God - not of this world.

  9. So in conclusion, I cling to the steadfast Catholic Church and her teachings. That these people may be able to strong arm the American people/government, but they will not persuade God and his Truth.

    1. Sissybee, you are absolutely right, and I know you are firmly and strongly on the side of Truth and Christ here. Thank you!! Keep up the good fight!

  10. "it was always only concerned with true paternity (debt and land as well) for the safety and security of the child and his/her rights. "

    Nubby can you elaborate. What do you mean by true paternity?


  11. "Why are Catholics afraid of being forced to perform gay weddings when they have never been forced to marry other couples that shouldn't be married in the Catholic Church?"

    Johanne, because those other couples were not part of a "protected class". There was no legal way to scream "discrimination!" Once something is a Constitutional "right", anyone denying those rights on the basis of "discrimination" (remember, gays are a protected class) will be afoul of the law. We will watch and wait. Let's see what happens....

  12. Hi Leila - the letter issued by the USCCB is a "day late, and a dollar short." The Bishops and their predecessors are responsible for the implosion of the Faith and the subsequent consequences. All you have to read is Father Dariusz Oko's article "With the Pope against the Homoheresy."

    We need to pray that as Catholics we remain faithful during these very troubled times.

  13. True parents, CS. The true mom and the true dad. And all of the natural protections afforded to the child under this dynamic. See now?

  14. Gotcha Nubby.

    Im pretty apathetic about gay marriage I didn't vote for it. I understand the church's opinion but I think the disconnect which cannot be resolved is, who is marriage for?

    You're belief ( or the belief of your church or whoever) is that marriage is primarily for children

    Their belief and frankly what marriage has evolved into is that marriage is for two people being married

    The two sides will continue to talk past each other because they have fundamentally views on who should benefit from marriage


  15. The disconnect isn’t with that question (“Who is marriage for?”), CS. The real question is “What is a marriage?” Compartmentalizing, defining, separating —these are more important than anything because they directly relate to implementation and now rewrite of marriage law.

    That question you gave has always answered plainly- and not even by the Church, but by society, undergirded by marriage laws that placed protections on the children.
    Marriage has always tied children securely to a mother and father and gave them legal protections under the law within this specific family unit.

    Now up-tick the number of parents involved by a factor of 2 or 3 or 4 or more, as the case may be when multiple surrogates are brought in to any ‘marriage’ under the law.

    The law in various states requires consent of the adults to be considered the parent. And if there's no consent, then what? Further, what difference does consent even make when there is exponentially now an increase in the number of adults that will ever- and on some level, always- be involved in this child's reality and this child’s future?

    There is fundamentally no more protection for the child because the natural dynamic (father and mother) that protects them under the law is gone. The grounds are gone to even secure the child.

    It’s not just a matter of, “Well, God says it’s wrong.” CS, it’s about adults changing a constitution to reflect protection for their sexual preference. Sexual preference now confuses the written law, and demands rewrites of it (see birth certificate and marriage license changes). Sexual preference now creates a web of confusion, legal costs, legal battles, and emotional pain for kids, when children are brought into the picture.

    Guess what all of this does to the value of mothers, fathers, and marriages? And guess what happens to society, in general, when the value of all of those things drops? What becomes of the structure? I hear a loud speaker in my ear, do you?

    Try not to be too apathetic about anything, CS. Apathy leads to intellectual death. Rather learn and encourage others to formulate a coherent, logical philosophy of life grounded in Truth and Justice for all, right?

  16. Again, I'm not arguing for or against Gay marriage. It seemed inevitable and now its hear

    I'm just saying you proved my point, you mentioned several reasons gay marriage is problematic for children and creates all kinds of legal issues regarding children. I don't negate that. I simply meant the two sides will continue to talk past each other because they prioritize two separate groups of people ( similarly to the abortion debate). Gay marriage advocates weren't advocating gay marriage for children, the benefit of gay marriage is supporsed to be the gay people getting married. You fundamentally think marriage is for children not for the people involved in it, so the two sides will always argue different advantages/disadvantages


  17. So thankful to hear our priest read the USCCB's statement on the ruling plus our own Bishop's response. And he reiterated a few times that the Church is not changing and will never change. The congregation clapped after he finished. So so thankful to have moved to a community that is full of faithful Catholics. God is good!

  18. A Emily. "You fundamentally think marriage is for children not for the people involved in it, so the two sides will always argue different advantages/disadvantages"

    This is true, as so many heterosexual couples who can't have children (too old, infertile) are granted civil marriage, they are obviously not marrying for the sake or children, and so marriage is obviously not fundamentally for children (though it may benefit them if a couple does have children).

  19. I’m talking strictly to this lack of logic:
    Mandating and constituting new marriage law under a banner of “marriage equality” new changes to the law which are

    1) non-logical to the whole marriage law as we knew it because children have a right to know their biological parents, and this has obliterated that right

    2) inconsistent to the idea of ‘equality’, because equality presupposes that both groups will march under the same law in place, the same foundation of those laws. If they are saying they value “marriage” (enough so that they wanted law to changed to include their unions) then they need to uphold the very ‘equal legal footing’ of that foundation and those foundational laws that have always been there long before they joined in.

    See? Not obliterate it. But that’s impossible because they are not like unions, they are completely different types. (See: algebra).
    The whole point is that children are involved in these unions.

    And to the idea of “prioritizing people”, CS, we don’t “prioritize two separate groups of people” (ie., gay vs. straight), we categorize relationships differently on purpose to better implicate the general laws of the judicial code that serve as a foundation of fundamental protections and we surely don’t (before the ruling, anyway) categorize in order to demean, deride, or suppress, or give special advantage to any married couple.

    The whole point is that now the very foundational protections given by marriage law relating to something as simple as circumstances surrounding paternity are gone. Gone.

    That’s Constitutional Law 101.

    Marriage is about children, because that is what marriage law protects for. Until the ruling. Have you seen a glimpse of the mountains of laws that are being re-written because the reality of same sex ‘marriage’ is a real thing that needs to be accommodated in every juridical sense?

    Let’s take this to the next logical discussion point: that of tax loopholes.

  20. Nubby,

    I mean we can say marriage was designed to be about children, we can say it should be about children, but it is just false to say it is currently about children.

    Marriage is about the two people who want to be married. They marry when they want. They divorce when they want. They marry someone else later if they want. This isn't a defense of that behavior, we can sat that behavior isn't "true marriage" but its the marriage we have now. That is the marriage the gays now have. The marriage we created before them.

    The two sides are debating marriage as it is and as it should be. No gay marriage people are taking about gay marriage denying true paternity because marriage doesn't grant true paternity and it hasn't for a while.


  21. I have no idea what your ultimate point is, CS, but ok.

    And, correction: marriage always includes true paternity, it is presumed by law, even if the marriage was deficient somehow; and in various states it requires consent. Where do you get the idea that it now is no longer implemented…?

    When I comment here, I talk to the logic of the decision that was handed down and I rebut it all based on marriage law, established paternity, tyranny of the majority, predicated matrimonial laws, modern family law, and American jurisprudence.
    We don’t even need to look at the moral aspects.

    Overall, when I read proponents’ reactions online, it reflects a dismal lack of understanding of our judicial process and no awareness of pre-existing lawful premises of modern family law, never mind the illogical ‘rebuttals’ to the moral aspects. They just cheer loudly for tyranny of the majority and decisions handed down based on feelings of the judges.

    Are you okay with the logic of the decision?

  22. How does the decision not respect our judicial processes? It went though our judicial processes. And it " does not respect our preexisting lawful premise of modern family law" Why should it? Merely changing something, like family law, doesn't tell us if the change is good or bad"


  23. CS,
    Have you read the judicial opinions on this decision? Have you read Justice Kennedy’s opinion and his reasoning for how he exercised the government’s power? You will learn what he thinks about due process and equal protection. Look at how he weighs, or rather dismisses, morality from being a licit and proper government affair.

    Read those, then we can chat intelligently.

    Predicates of law are there for a reason. They are foundational to legal decisions.

    Where would you like to steer the ship, here?

    Legal decisions don’t outright = correct. See: Dred Scott and RvW.

  24. I'm usually here to remind the bubble about haughtyness and a proud spirit. I don't have time today, you'll need to recognize and work on that personally this time, bigger fish to fry. A lot of people are saying that this won't burden the Church, but I have already seen comments from gays on Facebook, that detail what the Church will and won't have to do, now that gays are recognized under the 14th. What this means is that we have one set of rights in conflict with the other ( 1st vs. 14th) my question is why do we even have to change if we're protected under the 1st? If we do (legally) what's the president? I think they were saying any public Catholic sponsored business is now under the gun to recognize gay lifestyle as an integral and moral equivalent . Why don't gays have to recognize the Catholic faith as a socially inergral equivalent to their lifestyle choice? Why the one sidedness?

  25. Trying to lighten my mood, I told friends that now I can claim an extra exemption on my tax return, since my dog and I have a loving relationship. Neighbors say he acts just like a human, and talk about committed --- he never leaves the house!

    But looking at the matter seriously, all of the above comments reflect opinions and faith felt in this country. As far as opinions go, however, I like the summary in Peggy Noonan's column in today's WSJ.


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