“Isabella is the child of Lisa Miller, a former lesbian who left that lifestyle after becoming a Christian.”
I was under the misconception that my tenacious contented gayness would disqualify me from “becoming a Christian” as I continued to be…me. I was wrong. Thank you Victoria. I can’t wait to join the “Christian lifestyle”.
Then why are you waiting?
The devastating inability to recognize sarcasm is a scourge afflicting so many in our world. Won’t you help today with your most generous contribution?
I’m learning *how* to be a Christian. I didn’t realize that I could just snap my fingers and *be* a Christian.
It’s not as easy as a snap of the fingers. I believe the “handbook” says to click your heels three times while repeating “There’s no place like home” or better yet “We’re not in Kansas anymore”
“Just do it.”
This an effort to engage in honost principled discussion:
“TENACIOUS CONTENTED gayness” does disqualify someone from being a Christian. Let me explain the Catholic position. It is important to start by saying the Church’s position regarding the morality of the homosexual ACT (that is as an offense again God for all people) is not exclusively a religious position. It is rooted in right reason. By reason alone we can deduce that there is a God, who is one, and is creator. This has its roots in the great Greek philosophers who came to these conclusions in direct contradiction to the Greek pantheonism of the day. In acknowledging God as creator then the faculties of the human person must be used in accord with their nature, that is for their purpose. We know the purpose of the marital act by the good that results, children. The purpose of the marital act is first procreative and then unitive. By the result of design unity should only come about in accord with the first purpose, to make babies. From this correct perspective the homosexual act is an offense against God, and the inclination to such behavior is a disorder in need of healing.
Now let us address Christianity’s treatment of homosexuality (I recommend a further reading “Pastoral Care of Homosexuals” from the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith” which can be found at http://www.usccb.org/dpp/Ministry.pdf) To have a homosexual inclination would not exclude one from being a Christian. But to be “tenacious” and “contentedly” gay would. To accept the homosexual inclination and act as if it were normal and good is to disregard God as creator.
Furthermore it denies that humans are created in the Image and likeness of God. “So God created man in his own image”¦ male and female he created them. And God blessed them, and said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply.’ ” God has written in our very bodies the glorious image of the Trinity. In the inner life of the Trinity the Father gives Himself to the Son and the Son to the Father. In this complete self-giving they become a third person. So in the marital act the husband gives himself completely to the wife and the wife completely to the husband and they become one. The one they become is a third person. We call it a child. God shows through marriage how love is life giving.
What about those who feel they can not overcome their sexual desires for the same sex? Now enters Christ. He is our power to overcome sin. I myself know all to well how true this is. Most of my early adult life was spent pursuing sin. It was an addiction. I remember wanting to be faithful to girlfriend and unable to. I remember wanting to walk away form pornography and wasn’t able to. Through Jesus and the grace he offers in the sacraments I am able to overcome these sins. Perhaps the homosexual will be like me and have residual effects for the rest of their lives. But with Christ all things are possible. Through Jesus freedom is possible. To say that that’s “just the way someone is” is to deny the power of Jesus Christ. To be “tenaciously and contentedly gay” is to be militantly against the freedom Christ offers. To be against Christ is to not be Christian.
Perhaps you see acting on homosexual desires as freedom. But Why?
Thanks for the links. I’ll read the UCCSB pastoral care document and provide a longer response in the future. In the mean time, you may want to consider the criticism made by DignityUSA which you can find here. I found this paragraph to be pretty compelling:
DignityUSA’s criticism falls in line with Pastor Don Prange’s criticism of a local advertisement funded by an anti-gay religious leader:
I appreciate your sharing of your own story, and I’m glad that Christ helped you to overcome your addictions. My story is very different from yours. I’d urge you to re-examine your own assumptions and to consider whether you yourself are being exploited by “demonic political forces” who embolden you with the so-called “freedom” to question my spiritual journey and my salvation. That’s Scripturally prohibited. Check your Bible.
Thank you for taking my dialogue seriously. I know at times I am a bit wordy and you have shown patience in reading what I wrote. Sorry for posting twice last time. It was an accident. I hope I didn’t cause you too much difficulty.
It is true that in every generation there are poor and even wicked clergy with legitimate authority. This started with Judas Iscariot whom our Lord Himself chose. I would agree that in general the bishops in the US have not adequately ministered to those who struggle with homosexual tendencies and this is to be lamented. But there are movements like “Courage” that do a terrific job. And our separated evangelical brethren in this country are also ministering to those with this need (for example Exodus International). As presented in the document I cited (which was from the Vatican FOR the USCCB not from the USCCB) the offical stance of the Church to those who have same sex attractions is a sensitive and understanding one.
It is also true that many clergy in the past have used the scriptures to support “scientific things” that we now know are not true. It should be noted however that in most these cases while there were bishops who wanted anathemas pronounced against those like Galileo, the Popes refused to let them be censured, saying that in Galileo’s case he may teach his ideas a theory. When there is confusion it is always reassuring to know we can look to the rock upon which Christ founded his Church. While the Church teaches that all scripture is inspired by God and therefore inerrant (see Vatican II’s Dei Verbum, article eleven and footnotes) they are inerrant in whatever was the INTENTION of the author. The passages that condemn the homosexual act are quite straightforward. To compare them to texts that describe the creation in poetic imagery is poor hermeneutics. The authors used particular genres of literature and modes of expression to express things in manners that weren’t always literal. It would be like someone saying I believed in the Ptolemaic understanding of the universe because I used the phrase “sunrise”. The passages that condemn the homosexual act and lifestyle are not part of these genres. Paul gives direct moral instruction. Deuteronomy is “laying down the law”. If one considers the recounting of the destruction of Sodom, even if it is meant in allegorical terms, the very archetype of sin is sodomy. In every case homosexual behavior is seen in sinful terms. If Jesus intended to overturn the Old Testament teaching on the matter, I think He would have done so explicitly, as he does regarding marriage. Or at least Paul would have, as he does regarding the rituals proscribed in Deuteronomy and Leviticus. Condemnation of homosexual behavior/lifestyles is also the constant teaching of the early fathers. So to consider the teaching of the New Testament, there is an unbroken line of teaching for roughly 2000 years. And if Jesus got it wrong, then Christianity must be discounted all together, and no active homosexual should be upset about being excluded from something they don’t believe.
But in considering science: Many in our post-modern world regard science as a new religion. 3 or 4 scientists show up in white robes and come to the same conclusion and it’s received as absolute truth, only to be contradicted a decade later. Science as a tool for discovering truth, while not useless, is not as useful as many think. It has many limitations since it deals only with empirical evidence, and excludes areas where logic alone could lead us. But still, even science has not shown that homosexual behavior is healthy or normal. As an undergraduate I majored in psychology. I can remember the first time a professor presented to our class, that the DSM4 did not define homosexuality a mental disorder. She presented the info with a “challenge me if you dare” attitude. Years later, while preparing for graduate school I took up her challenge and found that there is not a single study that can statistically show that homosexuality is normal or healthy. It was a political decision made when Robert Spitzer conceded to declassify homosexuality from a mental disorder to a anxiety disorder in the DSM3-R. He was basically blind sided by a group of psychologists and psychiatrists who were homosexual activists and who had a surprise meeting with him and demanded that since they were gay and were very competent professionals in their field, homosexuality should not be considered a disorder. The only evidence they had, besides personal testimony, was the Kinsey reports. While Kinsey did come to the conclusion that homosexual behavior was normal and healthy, he said the same thing about sex with children. Should we act on those conclusions? Furthermore, his studies represented such poor science they were never published in a scholarly journal. If we seriously consider the evidence put forth by modern medicine, that includes psychology and psychiatry, homosexuality is unhealthy, maladaptive behavior. The last time I gave blood I had to answer the question “Have you had sex with another man since 1980?” Why is the question asked? Homosexual behavior is regarded as unhealthy by the medical community. My personal approach to the matter is similar to the way I approach alcoholism. While there may be a genetic predisposition (not dictation) it can be overcome even if for some it is a lifelong battle. Those who struggle should be dealt with in compassionate ways. But to call healthy what is unhealthy for fear upsetting someone, would be as loving as a doctor not telling someone that their cholesterol count is 100pts too high for fear they may become overly upset. In religious terms I think the dispositon is a manifestation of the result of original sin that we all deal with.
While you address my statements regarding religion and brought up your own arguments based on science’s contentions with religion, you have neglected my statements based on reason. While religion and divine revelation surpass human reason, it can never contradict it. Can you demonstrate that homosexual inclinations and behavior are intended by God based on reason?
One last personal defense: You insinuate that I have judged you, and been an uncharitable Christian. I don’t think I have. I made a judgment of homosexual behavior and your overt actions in regards to it. Only God knows your culpability, and the state of your immortal soul. What I have done is actually considered a spiritual work of mercy to “exhort the sinner.” I have done what scripture tells us, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. If I were doing something that was offensive to my Lord I would want someone to correct me so that I may become more pleasing to Him whom I love above all things.
When you did say:
I felt that you crossed the line and said something that required loving correction. Your second comment moved your further from the mark.
It’s further off the mark becuase you don’t want to deal with truth. All claims to legitimize the homosexual lifestyle in or out of the Faith are unfounded. What you do is try to avoid the discussion by claiming that I have been “not nice”. When you make claims to redefine the Faith that has existed for almost 2000 years becuase it doesn’t fit your lifestyle, I think I have every right to challenge the basis for what you say. To put it bluntly you’ve lied about what the Faith is. In the process you confuse other people (and perhaps even yourself) who may be freed from sin by Christ. So while I don’t intend to be rude, I don’t mince words either. If I’m wrong please explain why. But don’t hide behind “your not being nice”.