Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Catholic Church and Same-Sex Attraction

It's easy enough to understand where people might get the impression that the Catholic Church is stuck hopelessly in the taboos and prejudices of the past, and simply "hates" people who are attracted to the same sex. In fact, it is becoming routine  for a Catholic to be written off as a "hater" for simply affirming human realities such as the unique nature of the relationship between a man and a woman in terms of bringing new life into the world.

Still, the real confusion of people who strongly identify as Catholic and yet also strongly same-sex attracted needs to be taken seriously. I've had a long standing admiration for the ministry of Courage, which helps people with same-sex attraction find the support they need in appreciating the beauty of the Church's authentic teaching--and not just appreciating it in a theoretical way, but in taking the steps necessary in living lives that are not obsessed with the avoidance of sin, but focused on joyfully following Jesus. Some members of this movement know that the help they find in living chastely is what keeps them alive despite some self-destructive compusions.

Here is an interview with the former Marine who is now the spiritual director of Courage; he puts Church teaching on same-sex attraction in context with the (equally rejected) Church teachings on living together and on birth control--all ways in which the fundamental beauty of the call to mirror the Trinity in creation is compromised. All important areas for evangelization and conversion.

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