One of the problems facing Catholics in the present moral mess is how to deal with the friends, family members, neighbors and acquaintances who are in, err… irregular relationships.
We’re not supposed to be judgmental and self righteous. “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone” and all that. At the same time, we have a duty to uphold the truth, point out error and protect our children. This is not to assume that all homosexuals are predators. The protection I’m talking about it more subtle than that. We have a duty to protect their moral sense and their developing conscience. They need to know what is normal and acceptable and what is not.
There used to be a system of checks in a moral society through which those who choose to live ‘irregular’ lives are sanctioned by those who live around them.
Ordinary people used to shun those who publicly lived immoral lives. It was a form of social excommunication. The push for total tolerance in all things has eliminated that form of social sanction, and how the only way it happens is for individual families or individual people to cut themselves off from those who live publicly immoral lives lest they cause scandal to others–especially the young.
When a whole community shunned someone no one was individually responsible, and no one was therefore individually judgmental.
Things have changed. The pressure is on all of us to accept all manner of bizarre and immoral ‘alternative’ lifestyles as if they are normal. If we do so, our children will believe them to be normal. What’s to be done?
I guess one has to approach it with care, caution and a sense of humor and sense of proportion. Steer clear of people you do not want to influence your family. When they can’t be avoided explain the situation they are in to your children with tact and a non judgmental attitude, and explain the truth and explain the church’s teachings.
Any other ideas?