Mulling over both John Kerry’s and Andrew Sullivan’s statements in reaction to the Vatican’s document on same sex marriages it just makes me want to understand why people who disagree with many Church teaching also have normally no problem identifying themselves with the Church.
If you start with the belief that homosexual acts are a good then you have a domino effect throughout Catholic Theology. If the teaching on homosexual unions is wrong then so also is the teaching that one of the primary purposes of marriage is reproduction. If sex with no biological possibility of reproduction is okay, then the church’s teachings on contraception, masterbation are also wrong. If reproduction is not necessary in a married act then reproduction can also licitly occur outside of it; thus the belief that reproductive technologies such as cloning and In Virtro Fertilization are wrong should also be discounted. It is really no surprise that those who believe in the starting principal have also historically been associated with dismissing the other Catholic doctrines that I have listed.
Believing in the validity of homosexual unions is an intellectual black hole on other Catholic doctrines. For a Church to teach such doctrines as truths and to guide the faithful into such errors would obviously not be guided by the Holy Spirit. Andrew Sullivan writes passionately about “Leaving the sacraments would be a huge blow to the soul”, but why should he believe that the Churches teaching on sacraments is true. If you can pick up the catechism and not be sure about which doctrines the Church teaches as true then the Gates of Hell have already prevailed on the Church since the time of the Apostles and Church Fathers.
Since I am a convert and did not grow up surrounded by any kind of Catholic culture it is harder for me to understand why those who were seem to know so little about the nature of the Church. Maybe that is not quite true, since I grew up in an extreme atheistic family and culture and later I started to believe in things contrary to that belief system. I did not immediately leave my atheistic beliefs when I started to believe otherwise, yet eventually I had to intellectually leave it. I came into the Church not because I was attracted to it’s rituals and appearance, but because I came to believe that the Church was true. Oh and least I forget – hat tip Holy Spirit.
If I came to believe that one of the items that the Church teaches is grave sin was wrong, I would be outta here. If the church as a whole does not have an infallible teaching authority then it is a headless mystical body rampaging the countryside teaching error. Thankfully I don’t believe that to be true and am confident that until the second coming that the Church will be teaching the same truth regardless of the and how modern people feel.
Andrew Sullivan also writes “the pope just called the love I have for my boyfriend “evil.” While that is strictly not what the document said, the problem is the subjectivity of his statement. Many married people have also talked about the love they had for another person in an adulterous situation. Both cases talk about strong emotional attachments to another person, but it is not love. Love as Thomas Aquinas stated is the willing of good towards another. Neither Homosexual acts or adultery are goods.
I have no desire for Mr. Kerry or Mr. Sullivan to leave the Church, only that they would truly understand what the true nature of the Church is and that they would fall into the arms of Holy Mother Church and her loving teaching authority.