"Are we prepared to promote conditions in which the living contact with God can be reestablished? For our lives today have become godless to the point of complete vacuity. God is no longer with us in the conscious sense of the word. He is denied, ignored, excluded from every claim to have a part in our daily life." - Alfred Delp, S.J.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Just because you may experience attraction to the same sex ...

The Damned, Visconti, 1969

Or experience 'same sex attraction', does not mean you are queer ...

Nor does it mean you are disordered.  The attraction itself is disordered - but that in no way means you are.

Not all people who experience homosexual attraction are gay or queer or disordered?  No way.

Concupiscence: it remains in those that are baptized in order that they may struggle for the victory.

For example, some people are tempted to self pleasuring themselves.  It's a disordered desire - arising from concupiscence.  If they engage in it - it's a sin.  If they don't act upon the attraction or give in to the temptation - there is no sin.  The temptation, the inclination, springs from original sin and incites to sin - it is not formally sin.

In the discussion which followed the publication of the Declaration, however, an overly benign interpretation was given to the homosexual condition itself, some going so far as to call it neutral, or even good. Although the particular inclination of the homosexual person is not a sin, it is a more or less strong tendency ordered toward an intrinsic moral evil; and thus the inclination itself must be seen as an objective disorder. 
Therefore special concern and pastoral attention should be directed toward those who have this condition, lest they be led to believe that the living out of this orientation in homosexual activity is a morally acceptable option. It is not. - Letter to Bishops

Therefore it seems to me the CDF Letter to Bishops on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons is talking about concupiscence when warning that the inclination itself must be seen as an objective disorder.  It is not a sin - it is an inclination to sin.  It is the result of the Fall - original sin.  The CDF letter is a pastoral response to what has turned out to be a cultural change in giving an overly benign interpretation to the condition itself.

I believe that is why Austin Ruse and people like Joseph Sciambra point out the unsavory aspects of homosexual behavior, as Mr. Ruse did in his latest essay for Crisis, Their Sexual Proclivities Are Killing Them.  Ruse's essays have a way of upsetting people simply because they are becoming more graphic, and the cultural attitude has changed completely, as a result of  "an overly benign interpretation was given to the homosexual condition itself, some going so far as to call it neutral or even good.” (CDF 1992 Letter)  As I said in a comment on Crisis, 'reality bites'.  It stings.

Gay activists and gay Christians are always uncomfortable with these discussion and resent the terminology of disorder or objective disorder - which are classic moral, theological terms used by the Church.  It seems to me gay Christians are more determined to use terminology intended to give an overly benign interpretation of the condition itself.  It is very similar to late 19th early 20th century homophile or same sex friendship movements, such as the Uranians and others.  (A synopsis of these can be found here.)  One sees that Austin Ruse's reintroduction of the term 'homophile' is in itself a rather respectful term for the Spiritual Friendship, Gay Christian movement/network.

Without fail every time you write about homosexuality, gay/ssa persons, you get flak. "Not every one is like that" is the most common thread, as well as the claim, "That's a problem from an older generation - no longer applicable to the younger more tolerant generation." Same old same old. Truth be told, the re-education of Western culture has been driven by serious efforts beginning in the 19th century by homophile movements working for gender equality, and the elimination of sexual boundaries. It has been going on for well over a century. So yes - younger people and their parents have a greater openness and acceptance of what was once regarded as deviant culture.

It's interesting how much these movements have influenced modern thought, contemporary culture.  Early on the introduction of pants for women - menswear became acceptable pretty much due to early LGBTQ movements.  (For another synopsis of these, go here.)

Having said all that, and involving myself in this discussion needlessly, I believe this is why people like Melinda Selmys and others get really upset over the fact someone like Austin Ruse is willing to take flak for pointing out aspects of the homosexual underworld they know all about, but would rather not hear repeatedly.  Selmys reacted to Ruse's post in a big way here: Sanctioned Bigotry.  She makes some good points but pretty much trashes Ruse and company... conservative bigots.  I'm not really a conservative, neither am I a bigot.

I began this post as my own sort of response, why?  I'm not sure.  I noted today Melinda has another post listing how and why such posts seen in Crisis Magazine do not work as a deterrent to homosexual behavior, much less attract anyone to the Catholic Church.  While that may be true and I can agree to some extent, the fact is not all are going to be 'saved' or even desire to be religious or Christian.  Nevertheless, Selmys recent post is worth considering, she titled it: Telling the Deep Dark Truth About the Sordid Sin of Sodomy in Love.  A strange oxymoron for a title, sodomy in love.

I'll let them duke it out though.  I think it's called dialogue.  Truth in charity, I guess.

Selmys is crazy smart.  Truth be told, gay people are indeed different.  Being different is just fine.  Did you ever see The Imitation Game?   It wasn't Alan Turing's sexual proclivities which killed him.  Being kind to gay people is not being overly benign to the condition itself... as today's second reading says: Love is kind.

Song for this post here.

1 comment:

  1. No actually Melinda's argument is a sane one...Ruse is not going to turn anyone's hearts with this, quite the opposite, it is very obvious he is writing to a receipting crowd who want to hear this and to feel morally superior to the "other," and nothing more. She has a great point.

    As for Ruse taking flak, it is only from people on combo...so I wouldn't promote him as this martyr. The rest of the world, (normal sane people who are not on Catholic blogs and respond to insane people not the combo's) just think people like this are kind of crazy. I actually think that he and Joseph and the like should post MORE. It shows the "movements," desperation and how truly right wing fringe it has become.If those are the two spokespersons they really have hit the bottom or the barrel.

    However, the problem comes (and I think Selmys thinks this to) in that some traddie mom and dad, home schooling or not, is going to read this hysterical writings and when their kid comes out to them they are not going to deal with it in a level headed compassionate way, they are going to freak out thinking their kid is going to become like Joseph (if that actually was his reality...) or get AIDS and die. And a kid confronted with that is not going to throw himself on the altar and beg for a trip to the nearest Courage chapter. Most likely the kid who is dealing with his own problems is going to cut himself off from his parents. Needless to say, however you feel about the issue, that is not going to help anyone.

    So selfishly I want them to keep posting and get even more crazy and desperate then they are already are..people will look at them as freak show at best...but there is a real issue here with kids of the right wing traddie or rural families who will suffer from this writing.


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