Saturday, September 24, 2005

Redemption

The catholic church will shortly issue a "clarification" that homosexual men cannot become priests, even if they do not act on their homosexuality.
"Sep 22, 2005 — NEW YORK (Reuters) - Homosexuals, even those who are celibate, will be barred from becoming Roman Catholic priests under stricter rules soon to be released, the New York Times reported on Thursday.

The newspaper quoted a Church official "with authoritative knowledge of the new rules," as saying the question was not "if it will be published, but when," referring to the new ruling about homosexuality in Catholic seminaries."

The question has been asked "How are they going to enforce this?" I mean if a man does not act on his homosexual desires how can they prove he's a homosexual.

The people who ask this question simple don't understand catholicism at all. This unfortunately includes many catholics. I was rasied as a catholic, though I left the church long ago due to various disillusionments. It sticks with you, and honestly I consider myself a better man for it.

So back to the question, how are they going to enforce this? Well, they aren't. It's a matter of conscience, as are many things in the catholic faith.

Homosexuality is a sin according to the church, both in act and in thought, however sinners are allowed to be priests; so long as they repent and recieve absolution. If this were not true, then no-one could be a priest, for we are all sinners.

In the promulgation of this doctrine, they are saying that a homosexual priest can not be in grace with god, and therefore a man who is true to his faith must recuse himself from the priesthood; in fact from the both performance of all the sacraments, and the reciept of all the sacraments except confession (a side note: any catholic may confess to any person in a state of grace with god under extraordinary circumstances; ordination is not required. In fact even extreme unction can be given by any person in a state of grace with god if necessary). Even then they may only recieve absolution with sincere repentence, and renunciation of the sin.

The thing is, current doctrine states that a homosexual man CAN be in a state of grace with god, so long as he repents his homosexual desires, and does not act on them.

I do not agree with this doctrine (as regards priests), because as has been pointed out, it violates a fundamental precept; that of redemption. If one sincerely repents ones sins, and recieves absolution; one should be regarded as in a state of grace with god, and thus not barred from the other sacraments, including holy orders.

They have basically said you can be in gods grace if you are gay, but not if you are gay and a priest; however there is no teaching justifiying this differentiation. Additionally they have said this doctrine only applies to new seminary students, and I can see no justification for THIS differentiation.

I can tell you WHY they did this: there is an association in the public AND the hierarchies mind between homosexuality and pedaerasty. Whether this is true or not is irrelevant to the perception; which is what they are atempting to manage by issuing a message on this doctrine at this time.

Promulgation of a doctrine that condemns the calling of a redeemed man, simply for public relations purposes; is a fundamental rejection of the nature of redemption.

Unfortunately, yet another reason I can no longer consider the catholic church my spiritual home.