The Church and same-sex marriage09 Nov 2015, by Sacraments in
Some of my parishioners have asked me severally if the Catholic Church has accepted same-sex marriage. When they asked this question, I listened to the words of their mouth and the meditations of their heart. Yes, don’t get me wrong; I am not God to listen to the meditations of your heart; I am only trying to express what I observed in those who asked this question. They look so surprised, angry, tensed, confused, and disappointed. As I listened to them, I just imagined the heaviness of their hearts and the echo that comes from it; O! My great Church, what is happening?
The Catholic Church has not accepted same-sex marriage, and I don’t see the Church accepting it. In my opinion, I feel so many Catholics are expressing the fear that the Church may accept same-sex marriage because Pope Francis seems to be on the side of mercy. There is nothing wrong in being on the side of mercy; that is where we are called to be as Christians. To be on the side of mercy is not to be doctrinal destructive. To be merciful is not to be so soft-hearted to let evil prevail, and I don’t see the Church doing that.
Same-sex marriage may have been accepted by some societies and cultures worldwide, but it stands against the culture of God and remains evil. Jesus insists on how it was from the beginning, But from the beginning of creation, God made them male and female. For this reason, a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one. (Mk. 10:6-8). In his wisdom, God created them male and female, not male and male or female and female. In instituting the marriage between male and female, God planned to continue his work of creation through their procreation (Gen. 1:28). Even after the great flood with which God whipped the face of the earth, the institution of marriage remained a blessing that was never washed away in flood. The Catholic Church believes this fact, and it is reflected in her celebration of the sacrament of holy matrimony. During the Nuptial Blessing, the Church says; O God, by whom woman is joined to man and the companionship they had in the beginning is endowed with the one blessing not forfeited by original sin nor washed away by the flood. In her celebration of holy matrimony, the Church has never talked about a woman joined to a woman or a man joined to man. It is always woman been joined to man.
In recent times the media has focused so much attention on Pope Francis and his compassionate moves towards same-sex marriage. Many are insinuating that the Pope is gradually making room for accepting same-sex marriage in the Catholic Church. They may have their reasons for insinuating that, but I don’t see it happening.
I stand by the Pope not in accepting same-sex marriage but in showing compassion. The doors of the Church must not be closed against these erring members of our Church. They are our brothers and sisters, they are our friends and relations, and they need to be helped. In our rejection of their acts, their souls should be saved.
In the bible, we see those rejected because of their erring attitude; they were judged and condemned as sinners. To them all, Jesus came close not in acceptance of their sins but to save their souls. Jesus was considered a friend of sinners. He was close to prostitutes and welcomed the rejected to save them. That is what I see in Pope Francis’s actions, and I pray the Holy Spirit to remain with him.
These people may not necessarily be welcome back to the sacraments immediately, but they should be given a chance to come close to the Church. With prayers, counseling, and with the help of the word of God, they may repent and be delivered.