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14 October 2014

Marriage in today's society

With all due respect, please don't call me a bigot because I don't agree with your definition of marriage, sexual activity, relationships, life issues, and a whole host of other contemporary views.  According to Merriam-Webster a bigot is "a person who is obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially : one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance."  I happen believe in a Supreme God who established rules of right and wrong over 6,000 years ago, who has defined a complementary way of looking at marriage, who reminds us that licentious sex is wrong, and who loves all of His creation equally well.  I do not hesitate to point out that I have a son, a sister, a nephew, and a former student who have declared their same sex attraction for others.  My sister is married to her longstanding partner.  I wish for my son, nephew, and former student to find someone whom they can love as much as I have loved my wife of 44 years.  However, I happen to believe in Saint JPII's Theology of the Body and the church's interpretation of sexuality.  Just because I don't believe, as many do, that "what feels good" is also "what is right" doesn't make me a bigot!  We are talking about basic morality here, what is right and wrong, according to about a 4000 year old philosophy.  I do not condemn those who believe differently from me; on the contrary, I love them, as I do my son, sister, and nephew.  But, that does not mean that I have to accept their actions with regard to morals and values.  Mine  are different - and that does not make me a bigot!

I recognize that modern society has co-opted the 4000 year old meaning of marriage.  Modern society can, of course, say what it wants, but that doesn't make it necessarily right.  Modern society says that it's OK for the rich to get richer and companies to put as much money into politics as they want,  but that doesn't make it right.  I suggest that the current re-definition of marriage by civil society does not accurately reflect on the concept of marriage as it was first envisioned - not in who can be married, the sacredness of marriage, and the overall importance of a family composed of a man, a woman, and children.  In our system of government, civil society can not tell the Church and its adherents how do define "marriage" especially when we take the point of view of a 4000 year old faith based moral code.  What civil society should do is to claim a different word to sanction the civil union between two people who wish to receive all of the rights that civil society offers.   I do not argue that civil society cannot legislate the benefits of two people joining together in a contractual arrangement can receive.  I do argue that civil society does not have the right in our system of government to tell our Church how it must define this contract when the secular definition is completely contrary to our 4000 year old definition which, we believe is based upon the moral principles given to us by our Creator (GOD).
So, because civil society has co-opted the true meaning of "marriage", I suggest that the church  should consider that political reality and take steps to correct the errors of this new definition.   Consequently, the church, considering marriage as a Sacrament, should define marriage as "consecrated marriage" and simply insist that those who wish to marry in the church must adhere to its tenets to obtain the consecrated blessing of the church, e.g. no cohabitation before marriage, taking  intense courses in marriage and married life, understanding and accepting the church's positions on sex, children, long term commitment and so on.   If people don't want to do that, fine, but then they can not have a consecrated marriage in the church.  If one wants to espouse the modernist philosophy of sex, contraception, abortion, and, loose commitments, then join together using the civil society option.  The church has the right to expect those who marry under its auspices should accept and adhere to a set of beliefs that are consistent with its longstanding philosophy.  Like the consecrated single life, the virgin sisters, and celibate priests, the consecrated marriage has certain boundaries that must be lived within.  

To suggest that this moral position is the same as those who  espoused slavery and the superior position of whites over coloreds in the last century is a blatant misunderstanding of the church and a gross misrepresentation of its values.   Such  positions are so set in their view that the morals of modern society must be accepted at face value that the demonize anyone who take a different view.  I would sugget that they tend to treat those who do not subscribe to their view with hatred and intolerence.   One wonders who the  bigots really are? 

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