God’s Word is an expression of His mercy
Last week, we addressed the wide-spread errors and outright prevarication (lies) that have been spread by LGBT activists, that veritably contradict the scientific facts regarding the unfortunate mental confusion brought on by a condition entitled “gender dysphoria.” While, perhaps, not a pleasant subject to consider, I draw our attention to it because of the great moral implications that have ensued, and continue to amplify with each passing week. School books for children feature and praise this condition, along with the same-sex life-style, as being worthy ways of life. And sadly, these books are already in the schools, transgender dolls are in the toy stores, and the TV and movie industries are generating more and more shows promoting the same-sex life style as healthy, desirable, and moral.
This well engineered mind-changing campaign has hit our country, and most all of the Western world, like a sudden tsunami, putting a positive spin on what had been, from time immemorial, the most sinful of behaviors. This amazingly effective “campaign” is a virtual echo of the campaign that powerfully placed activists used with great success (from a tremendously small minority position) to influence our Supreme Court to approve abortion on demand and so-called same-sex marriage. You and I, all Catholics, and all Christians need to stop this “run-away” propaganda campaign in its tracks. We need to cut through the falsely manufactured rhetoric that is already making headway in convincing Americans to buy into yet another “evil” as being “good!” Confusion, bewilderment, and invitations to experiment, are already prolific in our society regarding embracing a same-sex lifestyle. Prominent Toronto psychiatrist, Dr. Joseph Berger, cites that when this condition is studied from a medical and scientific perspective, the conclusion drawn is… “that there is no such thing as a ’transgendered’ person”. Rather, he maintains, these people are suffering from a mental illness or unhappiness (or both), and this is most often a temporary state.
I restate what I mentioned last week, that these objectively disordered inclinations are for most, a difficult trial, and we must always accept them with empathic respect, sensitivity and compassion, truly loving the person as a valued child of God, avoiding any indication of unjust discrimination. However, what has not been heard enough (at least not enough to ward off the escalating acceptance of the serious mortal sin that is involved) is that loving the sinner must not evolve into ‘loving’ or accepting the sin. Mercy never calls us to that. But, sadly, a great many Catholics have been drawn down into the deceitful call for “tolerance” and to be “politically correct” as regards the shameless sin of “sodomy.” And that is exactly what the “newly coined” phrase, “gender expression” connotes. So let us recall, and not be ashamed of, what the Gospel tells us in this regard.
Archbishop Chaput of Philadelphia wrote this week on this very subject, citing that: “God’s Word is an expression of His Mercy, and…that Word always speaks the Truth…which in turn, makes us free. And this is why Christians must never be ashamed of God’s Word…even when it is inconvenient.” The Archbishop then presented this Bible quote from Romans 1:21-27 where St Paul wrote, regarding the men and women of His time: “who by their wickedness suppress the truth… or although they knew God they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking and their senseless minds were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools…Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen. For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. Their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural, and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in their own persons the due penalty for their error.”
If reading that passage makes us uneasy, it should. Many of Paul’s Roman listeners had the same response. Jesus didn’t come to affirm us in our sins and destructive behaviors – whatever they might be — but to redeem us. Paul’s message was as resented in some quarters then…as it is today. In an age of sexual confusion and disorder, calls to chastity are not just unwelcome…they are despised. But that doesn’t diminish the truth of the words Paul wrote, or their urgency for our own time. What we do with our bodies, does matter. Sex is linked intimately to human identity and purpose. If our lives have no higher meaning than what we invent for ourselves, then sex is just another kind of modeling clay. We can shape it any way we please. But if our lives do have a higher purpose – and as Christians, we find that purpose in the Word of God — then so does our sexuality. Acting in ways that violate that purpose becomes a form of self -abuse; and not just self-abuse, but a source of confusion and suffering for the wider culture. The fact that an individual’s body might incline him or her to one sort of damaging sexual behavior, or to another very different sort, doesn’t change this. This can be a difficult teaching. It’s easy to see why so many people try to finesse or soften or ignore Paul’s words. In a culture of conflict, accommodation is always the least painful path. But it leads nowhere. It inspires no one. “Fitting in” to a society of deeply dysfunctional sexuality results in the ruin that we see in so many other dying Christian communities. “Love the sinner, hate the sin! Pray and make sacrifices for the sinner, but do not ignore or become accepting of the shameless sins that have become rampant. That, my brothers and sisters, has to be our faithful stance and response. Don’t let anyone tell you that this would be unmerciful or judgmental…it is not.
Oh Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you!