25 Dec

Pope signals inter-faith alliance against gay marriage

Pope: Gay Marriage Destroys the Essence of Being Human

Pope: Gay Marriage Destroys the Essence of Being Human

The McGlynn: Barely reported on by the U.S. press


The Pope has used his Christmas address to the Vatican bureaucracy to… you  guessed it, hate on gays. This time he’s decided that gay people entering into  marriage is against nature in such a fundamental way that it could spell the  end of humankind.

“There is no denying the crisis that threatens it [the family] to its  foundations — especially in the Western world,” the Pope is quoted as saying. “When such commitment is repudiated, the key figures of human existence likewise  vanish: father, mother, child — essential elements of the experience of being  human are lost.”

Utter nonsense of course, as some gay people marrying does not by extension  delete the mother, the father or the child, and to infer that it does is beyond  childish, it’s belittling to all intelligent conversation. It also infers what  the Pope has previously offered: that people in same-sex relationships  are somehow not human.

Indeed, the Pope seems to have jettisoned all measured response on this  issue, going on to say that people are somehow manipulating their identities  against nature and destroying the “essence of the human creature.”

Quotes the Independent:

“People dispute the idea that they have a nature,  given to them by their bodily identity, that serves as a defining element of the  human being,” he said. “They deny their nature and decide that it is not  something previously given to them, but that they make it for themselves. The  manipulation of nature, which we deplore today where our environment is  concerned, now becomes man’s fundamental choice where he himself is  concerned.”

Oh Pope, you’re festive disposition is just too much.

Earlier in the week, the Vatican released a full front-page editorial  that appears to claim same-sex couples exist in some sort of  different reality because they cannot conceive children together, and that  marriage equality is questing after an “unachievable utopia.”

The Vatican’s anti-gay rhetoric has increased over recent years as nations  like Portugal and Argentina, and more recently the United States and Britain,  have moved, with increasing support, to offer marriage equality.

However, the Pope’s yuletide address wasn’t completely devoid of seasonal  goodwill. In bashing marriage equality, Pope Benedict decided to quote, and  quite liberally, Chief Rabbi of France Gilles Bernheim, signalling the Pope  might be angling for the formation of a broad coalition of anti-gay marriage  faith leaders — a Frock Force,  if you will.

The Pope, with this latest speech, seemed to have exceeded even his own  strident past statements, disclosing what by any standard appears to be a  theocratic show of displeasure at the autonomy to define one’s own meaning and  purpose, saying:

“Man and woman as created realities, as the  nature of the human being, no longer exist. Man calls his own nature into  question. From now on he is merely spirit and will. […] When freedom to be  creative becomes the freedom to create oneself, then necessarily the Maker  himself is denied and ultimately man too is stripped of his dignity as a  creature of God.”

From this bumper Christmas address, it seems we are meant to infer that the  Vatican has decided that all nicety toward gay people — for whom the Vatican has  in recent years maintained a condescending sympathy — is to come to an end.

That the gloves were well and truly doffed was said most definitively when  the Pope, earlier this month, chose to bless Ugandan parliamentary speaker Rebecca Kadaga, who is  now the chief proponent of Uganda’s Kill the Gays bill. The bill missed its  Christmas deadline but could and most likely will be taken up in the new  year.

Pope signals inter-faith alliance against gay marriage

Fri, Dec 21 2012

By Philip Pullella

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Benedict on Friday signaled the Vatican was ready to forge alliances with other religions against gay marriage, saying the family was threatened “to its foundations” by attempts to change its “true structure”.

The pope’s latest denunciation of gay marriage came in a Christmas address to Vatican officials in which he blended religion, philosophy, anthropology and sociology to illustrate the position of the Roman Catholic Church.

The Vatican has gone on the offensive in response to gains for gay marriage in the United States and Europe, using every possible opportunity to denounce it through papal speeches or editorials in its newspaper or on its radio station.

Throwing the full weight of his office behind a study by France’s chief rabbi on the effects the legalization of gay marriage would have on children and society, he said:

“There is no denying the crisis that threatens it (the family) to its foundations – especially in the Western world.”

The family had to be protected because it was “the authentic setting in which to hand on the blueprint of human existence”, he added.

Speaking in the frescoed Clementine Hall of the Vatican’s Apostolic Palace, the 85-year-old pope said the family was being threatened by “a false understanding of freedom” and a repudiation of life-long commitment in heterosexual marriage.

“When such commitment is repudiated, the key figures of human existence likewise vanish: father, mother, child – essential elements of the experience of being human are lost,” the leader of the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics said.

In the speech, one of the most important the pope gives every year, he said people could not “dispute the idea that they have a nature, given by their bodily identity, that serves as a defining element of the human being”.

The “pre-ordained duality of man and woman” had to be respected, he said, if families and children were not to lose their place and dignity.

People could not become what he called “abstract human beings” choosing for themselves what their nature would be, added.


In some countries, the Catholic Church has already joined forces with Jews, Muslims and members of other religions to oppose the legalization of gay marriage, in some cases presenting arguments based on legal, social and anthropological analyses rather than religious teachings.

Significantly, the pope specifically praised as “profoundly moving” a study by Gilles Bernheim, France’s chief rabbi, which has become the subject of heated debate in that country.

Bernheim, also a philosopher, argues that homosexual rights groups “will use gay marriage as a Trojan Horse” in a wider campaign to “deny sexual identity and erase sexual differences” and “undermine the heterosexual fundamentals of our society”.

His study, “Gay Marriage, Parenthood and Adoption: What We Often Forget To Say”, argues that plans to legalize gay marriage are being made for “the exclusive profit of a tiny minority” and are often supported because of political correctness.

In his own speech on Friday, the pope repeated some of the concepts in the Bernheim study, including an assertion that children raised by gay couples would be more “objects” than individuals.

Franco Grillini, a leader of Italy’s gay community, called the pope’s words “great foolishness,” saying: “Where gay marriage has been approved, there has been no consequence on heterosexual marriage”.

Last month, voters in the U.S. states of Maryland, Maine and Washington state approved same-sex marriage, the first time marriage rights have been extended to same-sex couples by popular vote.

Same-sex unions have been legalized in six states and the District of Columbia by lawmakers or courts.

In November, Spain’s highest court also upheld a gay marriage law, and in France the socialist government has unveiled a draft law that would allow gay marriage.

(Additional reporting by Tom Heneghan; Editing by Alison Williams and Andrew Osborn)


Related Reading:

Pope Decides Gay People Aren’t Fully Developed  Humans

“Act of God” Interrupts Pope Benedict’s Anti-Gay  Speech

Pope: Gay Marriage Threatens “Humanity  Itself”

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