The “Fascinating” Sacrifice of Love: Bishop Camisasca’s message to Pride marchers

The “Fascinating” Sacrifice of Love: Bishop Camisasca’s message to Pride marchers August 15, 2018

I thought I’d leave a link to this moving homily by Bishop Massimo Camisasca of the Reggio Emilia-Gustallo diocese in the Italian province of Modena. It was addressed at a prayer vigil against homophobia which was held before the evening of Reggio-Emilia’s Pride parade.

I was surprised by his ability to combine Francis-style compassion with gentle frankness about the Church’s moral teaching in a way that was organic and not forced. Most preachers seem to emphasize compassion over teachings, or viceversa, while some attempt to preach about both, while struggling to convey the interrelatedness of Christian compassion and ethics. It too often comes off sounding like “Jesus wants us to love gay people, BUT (unfortunately) he ALSO wants us to tell them why having sex with people of the same sex is bad.”

Camisasca avoids this pitfall…which is quite inauthentic to the Church’s tradition. Mercy is an ethical problem just as much as chastity…in fact, some would argue that chastity and mercy both emerge from charity.

Anyway, take a look for yourselves (and if you can’t understand Italian, run it through Google translate…it should get the job done).

I’m hoping preachers on both ends of the “spectrum” (the Fr. Martin-types and the Courage-types) will get some ideas from Camisasca’s ingenious synthesis.

At the same time I can not hide that Jesus spoke of himself as the door, the narrow door. Like many of us, how things are in life also means trying and sacrifices, which can often seem inhumane or impossible. But they, with God’s help, seem instead possible and even fascinating. It is nice to love, even if this causes fatigue. On the contrary, we love, we also love the toil for those who love. It is a phrase from Saint Augustine, which I willingly entrust to your reflection.

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