Unless I’m mistaken, the Catholic Church has not, before this synod on the family, officially affirmed homosexuality as something to be valued. Perhaps the wording of the Relatio has been poorly translated, but as it’s now expressed, the report indicates radically new thinking on the part of the bishops about the Church’s response to homosexuality and same-sex unions.
After noting that homosexuals have gifts and qualities to offer the Christian community, the synod report implies that their sexual orientation should be accepted and valued and that their partnerships are real unions. The synod report isn’t calling these unions marriages, as such unions are not ordered toward procreation, but it acknowledges that gay and lesbian couples enter into real, meaningful partnerships and establish a real kind of bond between one another. They’re real, valuable unions, not fake or pretend ones. The words of this report offer a basis for their legal recognition. I’m not at all surprised at the negative reaction the report has received.
Rorate Caeli says the synod report has created a new gospel. Voice of the Family calls it a betrayal and “one of the worst official documents drafted in Church history.” Here at Patheos, Fr. Dwight Longenecker fears the is ill thought out, sentimentalist, wishy washy, secularist nonsense.