Below is an email I got in last week. I’m sharing it with you (with the writer’s permission, of course) because I think it so perfectly captures so much of what those who believe in full Christian acceptance of gays are up against. This woman reflects everything with which the historical Christian church has for so long been inculcating people that they now think it’s natural to their natures. And yet you can see that this woman feels profoundly uncomfortable with the Christian proscription of homosexuality. Her letter evidences the struggle she’s experiencing between her heart and her brain, between her intuitive compassion and her loyalty to what she’s been taught. She’s trying to figure out what’s right. I believe she will.
HA … a “Dear John” letter~! Sorry, you must get that a lot, but I couldn’t resist. I must preface this by saying that I’m not very worldly at all, meaning that I was raised in a strict household, with very little opportunity to socialize with my peers. I point this out because I feel very isolated, unversed and plain uneducated in what’s going on in the world, politics, and the homosexual discussion, in general.
I am a Roman Catholic who came back to the faith after a lifetime of rejecting the church, tried to be “spiritual,” but not adhering to any form of religion. I never seek to enter the above mentioned discussions because in general I have conservative views, and they clash with my friends’ views. To be truthful, at first I believed same sex marriage should not be legalized; but on the other hand, I realize that the issue would not, or might not, have come up in the first place, if the government (I’m in America) recognized their relationship, and extended them the same rights as married heterosexual couples. I think this issue could be resolved if the government would just give them the same rights and benefits.
As a Catholic, however, I firmly believe “marriage” should be defined as between a man and a woman. I have this belief not because it’s written down in black and white, but because I am a part of what is known as a Sacramental Marriage and the belief there, as I’m sure you’re already aware, is that God is present in the marriage; and for this specific conversation, is present in the marriage bed where the couple is to remain open to making a child. Making a child is the closest we, as humans, can come to creating life as God creates life. I know that statement is far from being a good one because we cannot and should not seek to create as God creates, but I leave it in because I don’t have the words to express my thoughts accurately. Creating, loving the children we make, raising them. In doing so, we glorify God.
John, I’ve had both: a marriage that did not have God as a participant, and this one, where God is definitely a participant. Two radically different experiences. I do much prefer this one. My conviction comes from my soul, from knowing this is what is right. Our son was a miracle, and we believe that God placed him in our lives, when we thought having a family would never happen (long story).
Now, I’m not saying that homosexuals are not capable of having committed, meaningful relationships. I do believe that they should be allowed to serve God in the Catholic church as priests if they want to. It’s sad, it’s tragic, it’s majestically unjust that the Church cannot address properly the crisis going on with priest pedophiles and those preying on their flock. It sickens me to know that the Vatican is protecting these criminals. It sickens me that they’re projecting a phobic fear onto the homosexual community. I know this is a tangent off the conversation, but the church should realize this is a sickness, and not in any way related to homosexuality. They are not acknowledging that they dropped the ball when accepting these men into the priesthood.
Incidentally, I am also sickened by our bloody history, but that’s the human element showing itself to be so unreliable, so tainted. How can we really trust anything that comes out of the vatican … whole other tangent.
Getting back to my prior thought that I am not saying that homosexuals are not capable of having committed, meaningful relationships. Before they sought to get married, there were civil unions. My personal belief is that the civil union should be enough — then we go back to the fact that they want to get married, and be Christians. And, as I say, I do think they should be allowed to serve as priests. So I guess I still have so many questions about where I stand on the homosexual issue. I will keep praying to God to give me the right answers to this.