The Deacon's Bench

The Deacon's Bench


Archbishop Nienstedt: “You have to be 100% Catholic”

posted by jmcgee

The prelate who’s sparked some controversy lately is explaining himself with this interview:

The Catholic archbishop for the Twin Cities defended his right Monday to speak to fellow Catholics on social issues, and said a shrinking Roman Catholic church is no reason to consider a more liberal stance.

twincityx-large.jpgArchbishop John Nienstedt sat down with The Associated Press after a weekend in which the St. Paul-Minneapolis Archdiocese announced it would close 21 churches to reflect churchgoers’ move from urban areas to suburbia, declines in regular church attendance and an expectation of fewer new priests to replace those who retire or die.

The archbishop, who recently angered some of the area’s 800,000 Catholics with the mailing of an anti-gay marriage DVD, said he believes spiritual leaders have a duty to talk to their flock about issues they see as important — even if some of those views might be unpopular with prospective churchgoers.

“We’re part and parcel of the culture, so it’s important for us to be involved with those discussions and have our say,” Nienstedt said. He said Jesus Christ directed his followers to “either be hot or cold, but if you’re lukewarm, I don’t want that. So we want people who live their faith.”

Nienstedt called the reorganization, which also will involve dozens more churches sharing priests and some staff and resources, “a reconfiguring of resources to meet our needs and mission.” But he said Catholics need not fear a smaller church, and the threat of one is not a reason to abandon core tenets.

“I believe that it’s important that if you’re going to be Catholic, that you have to be 100% Catholic,” Nienstedt said. “That you stand by the church, you believe what the church believes and you pass that on to your sons and daughters and your grandsons and granddaughters.”

Read more at the link.



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Goodguyex

posted October 19, 2010 at 11:01 pm


Yes, there are far too many nominal Catholics /Christians.
“Cultural” Catholics can claim Catholic identity now the same was secular Jews claim to be Jewish but without any hint of religious practice, belief, etc.
They claim that the old practice and pursuit of traditional morality and faith in our time is hopeless if not useless but the Catholic identity has been established long enough (like the Jews) to be able to use the mantle of the name “Catholic” even if there is no trace of anything commonly understood to be Catholic present.
For people of the Evangelical pursuasion, this gives them some credibility to say that “Catholic does not mean Christian”, or as a step further to say “Catholics are not Christian”.
There is also some who call themselves “cultural Protestants” but this probably has less sticking power than for the Catholic “in name only identifiers”.
I would rather that all these Catholic “identifiers” change their name. I am not sure what the criteria should be for calling onself “Catholic” but it has to change in the current cultural matrix.



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Michael

posted October 19, 2010 at 11:18 pm


“There is also some who call themselves “cultural Protestants” but this probably has less sticking power than for the Catholic “in name only identifiers”.”
A very interesting observation, actually. Now, from what I have observed where I live (a decidedly red state in the Bible Belt), my generation of 20 somethings and their parents are full of what I’d describe as cultural Protestants. For example, they state that they are ‘Southern Baptist) or ‘Jesus is my lord and savior’ on facebook, yet they do not make it a habit to go to church every Sunday, or on some regular basis.
Indeed, it is this declaration that, in my experiences with the people that come to mind, really defines who they are as opposed to how they live or worship. This isn’t really to comment on anything except to underscore the existence, and daresay prevalence, of a Protestant version of the ‘cultural Catholic’.



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Mark from PA

posted October 19, 2010 at 11:36 pm


I have read about the Catholic Church in Minnesota sending out all those DVS’s and am absolutely horrified. The money was from anonymous donors. This is so political it is awful. If they have all that money, why not use it to help struggling parishes or the poor? From what I have read Archbishop Nienstedt has a strong dislike for gay people. I suppose if you are a gay Catholic you are not considered 100% Catholic. But I think that it would be good that as an Archbishop, he could represent all the Catholics that he serves, even those that they have disdain for.



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Rick

posted October 19, 2010 at 11:52 pm


From the Catholic perspective, Bishops “teach” the faith passed on from the apostles. They are teachers not represtatives–loving teachers, but teachers nonetheless. While funds were not spent on serving the physically poor, they were spent on serving (through teaching the spiritually poor.



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Louis E.

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:15 am


Mark from PA,
campaigning against drunkenness is a matter of concern,not hatred,for alcoholics.Those who identify as “gay” are in need of pressure away from fulfilling their unhealthy attractions,no matter how much they may prefer acceptance and validation,just as alcoholics want to believe it’s OK to go on drinking and they have no need to sober up.The Archbishop is helping everyone help homosexuals overcome their homosexuality.(Disclaimer:I’m not religious,this is just an issue on which Catholic teaching happens to be entirely correct and the putative arguments of the “gay rights” crowd offensively wrong).



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kenneth

posted October 20, 2010 at 1:52 am


Having a smaller church is probably for the best, but “cafeteria Catholics” are partly the fault of the Church itself. Rome allows no possibility that someone can truly be an “ex-Catholic” in the Church’s eyes. There are many tens of millions of people who are Catholic for life on a technicality (someone splashed water on them), yet who have no desire to follow what the religion teaches. Since they’re stuck anyway, why wouldn’t many people decide to live it on their own terms? If you want a church where members are 100% Catholic, you have to stop pretending that 1.3 billion people are Catholic, you have to make full membership an adult free choice thing, and you have to have an exit door, either for those who want to leave or those who need a push…



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Mark from PA

posted October 20, 2010 at 7:35 am


Louis E, comparing gay people to alcoholics, drunks and worse is just another form of bullying. When adults say things like that it is no wonder that gay teens are bullied. The Archbishop may think that he is helping homosexuals overcome their homosexuality but a person’s sexual orientation is established very early in their life. According to mainstream medical science and psychiatry, homosexuality is not something to be overcome and trying to change a person’s sexual orientation is mostly futile and often harmful. Telling young gay people that their orientation is a sin and that they have to change into a heterosexual often leads them to suicide. As a pro-life person I am very much against reparative therapy because it is dehumanizing and the cost is often the ending of innocent human lives. What is it like to be a young gay Catholic and to be told that you are not 100% Catholic because of the way God made you?



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greg

posted October 20, 2010 at 7:53 am


Louis, you obviously have no idea what you are talking about. The bible clearly states that God did not see a mate for Adam in the garden and caused him to go to sleep,during that sleep He (God) removed a rib and made a WOMAN for Adam so that he would have a mate.We only need to look at the people who have been set free from homosexuality as they come to the saving grace of Christ and are taught that God loves them and he has not made them that way.If you are born a particular race,you learn its way,culture and other habits familiar with it. Same as sin ,if no one teachs you God’s way than you believe what your told.Just because a certain thing becomes popular or acceptable does not mean it is approved or condoned by God.God will always have the final word on right or wrong and thank God for his grace and mercy no single person is out of his reach.



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Deacon Greg Kandra

posted October 20, 2010 at 7:55 am


Mark …
The church does not teach that homosexual orientation is a sin. And I don’t see the bishop saying that. Nor do I see him saying that homosexuals are not 100% Catholic. (I know some who are — including some priests.)
Homosexuality may not be a choice, but living life according to Catholic teaching is. All Catholics are called to live in chastity — gay, straight, married, single, each according to his or her status in life.
Check out the catechism for more.
Blessings,
Dcn. G.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 8:29 am


100% practicing, faithful proud Cafeteria Catholic here. My brain and informed conscience compel me to be, along with the masses. The faithful in the pew are being given more reason every day to think first before blindly assuming Bishops are right and holy.
Bishops are Cafeteria Catholics too through and through. They choose to protect the assets of the Church over children. They choose to hire lawyers to thwart victims’ legal battles for restitution. They choose to announce supposed self excommunication of Sr. McBride who acted to save the life which could be saved (wrong one apparently– the adult mother) whilst her 11 week unviable fetus was heading to heaven regardless. They choose to use a $1 million donation to send a DVD which Catholic families at large did not view when the $1 mil could have purchased 9 ultrasound machines which likely would have prevented some abortions.
Bishops choose to support stealing and usurping resources by protecting illegal immigration. It’s even deemed “welcoming the stranger!” Why? Because they are compassionately sharing your resources? Not quite… because even they realize Hispanic Americans are the only hope for the Catholic Church here, paying for hierarchial wants. But in typical ignorance of reality and living Scripture (can’t serve two masters), they are betting the house that those who steal from society today are going to substantially support the Church tomorrow.
So many hypocrisies and bad ministry examples coming to light daily. Wait till the new Mass is unveiled to the masses. More will leave… who would stay when they and their children now don’t even know what they are praying. Average laypeople certainly will not be taking a course to understand something that upfront makes no sense. A confusing, readily not understandable Mass is a terrible response too given the recent stats (which were known for years) on how a stunning percentage of Catholics do not know or believe we receive the very Body and Blood of Jesus. They can’t even make appropriate changes to the Holy Mass… and have wasted valuable time and resources on this.
Only true holy servants, leaders and teachers such as Cardinal Bernardin will be entrusted and listened to.



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Liz

posted October 20, 2010 at 9:30 am


I left the church over the scandals and their absurd stance on female leadership about 6 months ago after being a very devout, lifelong Catholic. (The kind that goes to daily mass and wouldn’t be caught dead without a rosary in my purse.) If they, the Church leadership, wants the laity to be 100% Catholic, they need to stop pointing the finger at us – when they do, four fingers immediately point right back at them. People aren’t leaving the Church because they are going into suburbia (In fact, most major cities are growing). They are leaving it because the priests and their leadership have LOST MORAL AUTHORITY. I learned one very valuable lesson as a military officer – you must do everything you expect of your troops and do it better than they do it, otherwise, they will never respect you and you will fail as a leader. Perhaps I should send the Church to boot camp, it needs it.



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romancrusader

posted October 20, 2010 at 9:50 am


Ah yes, more people insulting and badmouthing the heirarchy. I just hope that Liz understands the Church for what it is. A hospital of sinners.



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RomCath

posted October 20, 2010 at 9:50 am


“I left the church over the scandals and their absurd stance on female leadership about 6 months ago after being a very devout, lifelong Catholic.”
How sad.



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Katherine

posted October 20, 2010 at 10:07 am


Looking at his church closings, it is less important to this bishop that you be 100% Catholic than you be white and affluent.
Of the 21 parishes beign closed, they mostly come from minority and blue-collar areas. If you are white collar and white skinned, most likely your parish is staying open even if it is declining in membership.
But if you are working class and in a 2,000 member parish, don’t think that saves your church. It does not to this bishop.
Sadly, the Archbishop has decided to put the church resources to the “people who count.” h emight be surprised when he meets St. Peter that his view of the “the people who count” is not shared by Someone.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 10:08 am


Sounds like Liz has that figured out… just who the real recidivists are may be the surprising part. Sinful, cafeteria Catholic Bishops are the ones solely entrusted with the medicine? Who will guard the guards?
Blessings to you, Liz. Many well relate to your faith. We’re committed to disregarding the dirty bath water (hierarchy) but not throwing out the holy baby Jesus and faith of the saints. Now that te majority are very aware of the hypocritical hierarchy, we simply don’t support them monetarily or verbally. We designate our weekly envelopes solely for parish building maintenance, staff salaries or such; we speak with other Catholics about all the wrongs, whatever our informed conscience dictates.
Love the boot camp idea! Can they wear their fancy vestments? We already know they’ll fail at taking orders from the true Boss.



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Mike L

posted October 20, 2010 at 11:29 am


RomanCrusader points out something very important in saying the Church is a hospital for sinners. So even those that sin must be included as members of the Church. Or is it only sins that someone else commits that bar them from being 100% Catholic?



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RomCath

posted October 20, 2010 at 11:31 am


After being a “devout, life long Catholic” I find it strange how anyone could walk out on the church. To disagree with the Church is one thing, to walk away from the Eucharist and the Mass is another. How devout could they have been in the first place?



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romancrusader

posted October 20, 2010 at 11:44 am


The Church is holy, but it doesn’t mean that individual members are holy.



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Frank

posted October 20, 2010 at 11:50 am


greg, anyone who believes that stupid little fairy tail in Genesis is clinically insane and should be locked up for conversion therapy.



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romancrusader

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:01 pm


“greg, anyone who believes that stupid little fairy tail in Genesis is clinically insane and should be locked up for conversion therapy.”
Frank, take your bigotry elsewhere please. It’s insulting to devout Catholics like myself. Perhaps it’s you who need conversion therapy.



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Catholicman

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:08 pm


Archbishop Nienstedt is certainly not saying that one must be perfect to be Catholic. We are all sinners and rely on the grace and mercy of almighty God. Being 100% Catholic simply means what the Archbishop says it means…”that you believe what the Church believes”. Actually believing the teachings of the Church is the key here. To definitively and purposely reject teachings is what they used to call heresy. Now it just seem to be called “progressive” Catholicism.
It all is really just a crisis of faith. If all Catholics actually, really, honestly believed that Jesus gave authority to the apostles and their successors in matters of faith and morals, we wouldn’t be having these issues. It is, with respect to my many good friends who are not Catholic, a very individual, Protestant mindset. The idea that “I know better than the Church” or “I know what Jesus would say” or “the Holy Spirit guides me personally into the Truth”.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:10 pm


Exactly, Roman… that’s the predicted response! If someone left, he were not “well formed” to begin with. In other words, indoctrination did not take root. Blame lax catechesis, which was most probably accomplished by sinful laypeople anyway.
Liz had no right being there anyway since she didn’t stand a prayer of being in 100% compliance as are you and all our Bishops.
That’s interesting, Mike, you might be on to something. First time I read your insight I took it one way but now I took it another.



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jim

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:13 pm


LIZ ,
You are one of many who are leaving the RCC . Jesus said : ” if you continue to follow MY teaching, you are really my disciple. you will know the truth and tha truth will set you free ”
The RCC’S trademark is a denial of sola scriptura and the adding of a host of “MAN- MADE traditions ” and church teachings.
The RCC’S authority : MAGISTERIUM.
Biblical preaching must uphold the truth of GOD and demand that it be heeded.
Truth powerfully proclaimed from the scriptures is the sine qua non of the church.
Any other kind of preaching ( false gospel/ cotton candy messages / ) is not worthy of the church that JESUS CHRIST (the HEAD , THE CHIEF CORNERSTONE ) IS BUILDING.
PAUL SAID :” I AM NOT ASHAMED OF THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST FOR IT IS
THE POWER OF GOD UNTO SALVATION TO EVERYONE WHO BELIEVES .”
The CHURCH is for believers in CHRIST who love his WORD , who joyfully lift HIS name in thankful worship and go out in the highways & byways proclaiming the GOOD NEWS OF JESUS CHRIST. ( THE GREAT COMMISSION !! )



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Frank

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:15 pm


romancrusader, your example as a catholic is the greatest insult to your church. by your example there is no ethical difference between communists who abused psychology to oppress dissidents and Catholics.



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RomCath

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:22 pm


“Exactly, Roman… that’s the predicted response! If someone left, he were not “well formed” to begin with. In other words, indoctrination did not take root.”
Sensus, you call belief in the Real Presence indoctrination? People walked away from Jesus because they couldn’t believe it. When He asked the disciples if they were going to leave too, Peter said “To whom shall we go”.
People throw around the word “devout” in a very cavalier way. No one who is devout walks away.
If you don’t like the Church than have the guts to go too instead of your whining. The cafeteria is closed.



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Frank

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:26 pm


Deacon Greg,
Citing the Catechism doesn’t settle the question. The Catechism says that “unjust” discrimination against gays is to be avoided. But the Church has justified every form of discrimination short of overt murder.
Archbishop Nienstedt has the bodies of gay teenagers killed by suicide stacking up like cord wood on his door step, yet he and local Catholic politicians will not allow them to be specifically defended by the law.
The excuse given is that protecting these innocents from brutality would threaten Catholic marriage.
How can marriage be holy if it cheapens the lives of a group of innocent people and makes them worth less than yours?



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Frank

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:27 pm


RomCath writes
“The cafeteria is closed…” and the slaughter house is open.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:29 pm


Catholicman, the majority believe what the Apostles received directly from Our Lord. The Apostles’ Creed says it all, but somehow doesn’t mention the other stuff which now somehow defines the Church.
Birth control, such as condoms, laypeople don’t believe that is murder in the least. Actually that argument has done more damage to the pro-life movement than you may imagine. We also don’t want AIDS and diseases to proliferate. We recognize that self-control as wonderful as it is is not victorious in most cases, be the person Catholic or not.
Many faithful also find the NFP illogically based and therefore won’t give it the time of day. So marrieds can use their minds to plot against creating but not a physical condom… doesn’t compute. Same intention, different measures. If a seminar with Father or an apologist is needed to convince the masses of something illogical and impractical it will not be taken seriously. And the stats bear this out.
Abortion, yes personally many would not seek it and encourage others not to. Catholics in large measure though do not believe it should be illegal due to rape, incest or mother’s health. Sr. McBride saving the life that could be saved brought to light much of this for even those of us that believed we were pro-life! (But of course we were improperly formed lol).
Living together — which is the case now for many presenting pre-cana couples. Parents have even made their peace with this, and that was the last hope the Church had of fighting the trend. Parents indeed want their children know fully who they are marrying. Certainly they prefer their children just live with the right one and marry but life is a box of chocolates.
The Church’s obsession with sex has done grave damage and the chickens are coming home to roost.



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plavo

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:33 pm


want to talk about cafeteria catholicism?…when is last time we heard anyone in the hierarchy, or Pope, give a teaching on: turn the other cheek, do not offer resistance to injury, do not rattle on in your prayers like the heathen, do not take an oath, the sabbath was made for man, not man for the sabbath, and the Holy Spirit, who proceeds from the Father…????



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:35 pm


Oh sweet Roman, where did I mention anything the Real Presence? He is the reason many still attend Mass solely for the Body and Blood of Jesus. The filthy bath water is what is being discarded.
I’m not whining, those days are past. Now that the majority know many of the company’s dirty secrets, we can be free like the Geico piggy… to “weeeeeee!”



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 12:37 pm


So true, plavo. And that hypocrisy shows the hierarchy are our brothers and sisters in the sin of picking and choosing. Bishops are Cafeteria Catholics too, it is proven.



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Aquamarine

posted October 20, 2010 at 1:10 pm


When the Church is as strident about those who do not follow Christ’s final commandment for us to love God first and one another as we would be loved, I’ll worry about these poltically-driven directives on how we’re not “100% Catholic” if we aren’t against gay marriage.
There is no such thing as a “100% Catholic”. No one gets it right 100% of the time.
The Catholic Church is shooting itself in the foot by harping on sexsexsex and gaygaygay 24/7, like that’s the be all and end all of everything now and forever.
When was the last time a bishop sent out DVDs addressing people who cheat on their taxes, or people who spend too much time online emotionally cheating on their spouses, or about the sin of getting up in other people’s business, or gossiping, or judging based on assumptions and externals?
Show me that DVD, and I’ll listen. But this constant haranguing about gay this and gay that and sexsexsex (for a bunch of guys who aren’t supposed to be having any, they think about sex A LOT — and sex other people are having, which is just creepy beyond belief) just boils down to a whole lotta folks screaming so loudly no one can hear them.



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Mark from PA

posted October 20, 2010 at 1:23 pm


Deacon Greg:
I have read much of the Catechism and I teach Religion at my parish. I am well aware that the Church does not teach that the homosexual orientation is a sin but sadly some Catholics think it is. It would be good if the bishops would speak out against harmful reparative therapies but to the best of my knowledge, they have not. The Catechism says that homosexual persons should be treated with respect, compassion and sensitivity but I don’t see this from a lot of people, including some church leaders. I know that many priests and even bishops are gay and they surely could be role models and give much help to our gay youth but many are afraid to be open about this for fear of punishment.



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Catholicman

posted October 20, 2010 at 1:23 pm


Sensus,
As Catholics, we don’t just believe the things in the Apostle’s Creed. There was that whole part where Jesus promised that the Holy Spirit would guide the Church into all Truth. There are implications based on what Jesus taught that have come to fruition, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, into full teachings.
You state that many lay people think birth control is ok, NFP is illogical, abortion is ok in some circumstances and that living together is ok. I respond…so what? Just because a majority of people have convinced themselves that their personal desires are good and right doesn’t make it objectively so. Truth is truth regardless of its popularity.
In the end, the Catholic Faith is the Catholic Faith. If you believe it and try to live it out, great. If you don’t believe it and are constantly trying to change it, why are you Catholic? Why be part of an organization whose teachings you find stupid, ignorant or disgusting?



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Irish Spectre

posted October 20, 2010 at 1:26 pm


Sensus Fidei,
You accept the Magisterium’s teaching concerning something that entirely defies nature, the Real Presence, and yet you utterly reject its admonition against something that entirely defiles nature, sodomy.
How DO you do that?!!



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Mark from PA

posted October 20, 2010 at 1:27 pm


I feel bad for young Catholics who happen to be closeted gays. What message are they getting from the Church? That they are defective? How do they feel when they find out that many of their fellow Catholics consider them to be disordered and intrinsically evil. What do they feel like when they see their Archbishop refuse to give communion to gay people? That is a heavy burden for any person but especially for a young person.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 1:41 pm


First, all knowing Irish — please define sodomy and where I mentioned it in this thread?
Drumroll… the answer of how the majority of Catholics adore the holy baby Jesus while discarding the filthy bath water
In wonderfully blessed, yet humbly informed conscience. Never enter a Catholic Church without it! We’ve never been encouraged to bring Bibles but they can’t stop us from bringing along this secret weapon (which is actually church approved and we even tell RCIA members all about it so they too won’t go crazy and “become” 100% Catholic!)
Please inform us of how willfully enabling Bishops divested themselves from truth? To say one thing and do another. To lie in depositions? To proclaim concern for victims but lobby day and night for victims to not be able to seek restitution?



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Aquamarine

posted October 20, 2010 at 1:48 pm


Irish Spectre — LOL! I never thought of it that way. Good point.
Catholics are expected to believe in all sorts of “mystical” things: Transubstantiation, a virgin birth, rising from the dead, Paul’s conversion experience, etc., but that two people of the same sex can form a loving, supportive, intimate connection is just completely off limits.
Frankly, I think God messed up big time when He forgot to include Thou Shalt Mind Thine Own Business when He gave Moses the original Commandments.
Why don’t these 100% Catholics work on getting ALL the Church teaches right before they go around sticking their noses into everyone else’s business and wagging their fingers in everyone else’s faces.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 1:59 pm


Understand totally on the “so what” on those issues, very true.
But Catholics aren’t trying to change anything, Catholicman. You’re free as we are to carry on and we’ll exchange the sign of peace as we have been doing. Our hearts and minds are clear on these non-issues. The Church needs to let them die their rightful death. Like annulments — to insist on dragging out a painful episode, the marriage is dead, do the right thing and bury it. You don’t excavate the pain of adultery, abuse or addiction. You don’t deny (that’s how the majority view it, you can use whatever canon law you want to define it) the children that may exist. It’s all ridiculous.
Generations have indeed been severely impacted on sexuality and there is no turning back possible for decades, as the shift is so sharp. Information was key and that unfortunately didn’t work in favor of the Church’s positions.
Bottom line is Catholics will continue to make their own decisions on personal matters for themselves and their families. Ironically, Bp. Nienstedt’s expensive DVD focused upon citizens voting on marriage (wonderful) but guess what… the outcome would not be to his liking.
These issues are dead and to carry on with them brings other things into question and under suspicion. Never again will the hierarhcy be blindly trusted, we know this. Agendas, motives and personal desires of hierarchy will be scrutinized going forward.
Bishops are now exposed as hypocrites and not worthy of obedience. Everything is fair game and they only have themselves to blame. They will answer for leading the sheep astray and not serving them as expected. We’re in the clear by abiding by our informed conscience.
“Mountains go into labor and a silly little mouse is born.”



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greg

posted October 20, 2010 at 2:07 pm


Frank,we do not have the right to pick and chose fact from fiction regarding the Word of God.God’s Word is either all true or all false. As sinners we all need to come to the saving grace of Christ and His forgiveness of our sin. In God’s eyes 1 sin seperates us from Him and God sees sin as a seperating factor between Him and His creation. In Epesians Paul tells us “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God,but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus. So though we may not agree on every theological issue the fact is that no matter what our hang-up is theres room at the cross for us.As christians our goal is to preach the Gospel to all nations and that includes the societal ways that lead to success over the whole nation not just a minority,race,or special interest. When you develop a relationship with a real live God He not only forgives all your sin but He also transform your way of life through His Living Word. be blessed Frank and remember theres room at the cross for you. Try Jesus ,he will change your life.



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Aquamarine

posted October 20, 2010 at 2:13 pm



God’s Word is either all true or all false

Yes, but as interpreted by whom…? ;-)



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romancrusader

posted October 20, 2010 at 2:14 pm


I’m amazed at the amount of blasphemy that is leveled at towards Mother Church!
“Bishops are now exposed as hypocrites and not worthy of obedience.”
In other words you’re saying, “if Bishops and priests weren’t holy, why should we be holy?” Ignorance.
“Generations have indeed been severely impacted on sexuality and there is no turning back possible for decades, as the shift is so sharp. Information was key and that unfortunately didn’t work in favor of the Church’s positions.”
So in otherwords in your language Sensus Fidei, we’re a bunch of animals who can’t control our sexual desires.
“Bottom line is Catholics will continue to make their own decisions on personal matters for themselves and their families. Ironically, Bp. Nienstedt’s expensive DVD focused upon citizens voting on marriage (wonderful) but guess what… the outcome would not be to his liking.”
So in other words Senus Fidei, it’s okay to kill unborn children, that it doesn’t matter what you do as long as you believe in Jesus Christ you’re saved right? That’s the message I’m getting from your post there.
And another thing, the Church’s teachings aren’t debatable.
“These issues are dead and to carry on with them brings other things into question and under suspicion. Never again will the hierarhcy be blindly trusted, we know this. Agendas, motives and personal desires of hierarchy will be scrutinized going forward.”
Sounds like you’re just simply looking for an excuse.
“They will answer for leading the sheep astray and not serving them as expected. We’re in the clear by abiding by our informed conscience.”
So in other words the Catechism and the Bible are just simply opinions? What’s the point in being Catholic? Using your logic our religion must be a mere delusion. And if you think that the Catholic Church’s teachings will change, ain’t happening.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 2:35 pm


“And another thing, the Church’s teachings aren’t debatable.”
That’s it… you slaughtered… we’ll zip up for you. Don’t want to make you cry and try to defend Mother Church in spite of your informed conscience.
Dont’ worry we’ll still exchange the sign of peace with you!
That is heartfelt and beautiful, Greg, I sincerely hope you’ll send it to this 100% Catholic Bishop who would benefit.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 2:41 pm


FYI, in RCIA, we don’t dare confuse or scandalize newbies by inherently linking the Bible and CC (or compendium, or Canon Law, National Directory of Catechesis) as you seem to do. There’s the Bible and………………………………………………………………………………..then far over there…………………………. are the hierarchy favorite feel good documents.



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Conservative

posted October 20, 2010 at 2:53 pm


Sensus,
With your so-called “informed conscience” (ever hear of an erroneous conscience?) why don’t you just leave? You sound like someone who is miserable to be a Catholic.I am sure anyone in your parish would be happy to hold the door open for you.



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Dante

posted October 20, 2010 at 3:03 pm


In order to have a more effective teaching effort among the faithful for the defense and renewal of marriage….did the Archbishop also send out DVDs on the topics of co-habitation, contraception and divorce with remarriage? These are WAY more of an attack against matrimony than homosexuality (which affects such a small percentage of the population).



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Lisa

posted October 20, 2010 at 3:10 pm


What is the point or purpose of calling yourself Catholic if you don’t believe Catholic teachings?



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IC

posted October 20, 2010 at 3:13 pm


Dante, his argument is that gay marriage is on the table for legalization in MN–a different situation than the other issues you listed. Does that make it political? Only in timing. Have you all actually viewed the video? It’s a pretty low-key defense on what marriage as defined –between a man and a woman–is a good thing. That’s about it.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 3:13 pm


Funny you mention that because I actually help other faithful to focus upon the holy baby Jesus and tolerate (via disregarding) the hierarchy.
Sorry to hear you’d be gratified to see the majority of your faithfilled brothers and sisters depart but at this moment (no telling what tomorrow’s Church disastrous PR and mis-ministry headlines will bring) our seat belts are securely fastened. And no worries, I’ll place the oxygen mask over your head before my own no matter what they say. It’s just the polite Christian in me, I’ll risk turning blue before letting you!



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Romulus

posted October 20, 2010 at 3:16 pm


I have read much of the Catechism and I teach Religion at my parish.
Mark, the Catechism teaches that the homosexual condition is intrinsically disordered. Do you teach that, or only the parts you like?



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 3:18 pm


What is the point of a man who exhibits little hands on compassion, concern, respect for brethren and sistesr, and even lies in depositions wearing the finest of vestments and declaring to have speak for God? Welcome to the Cafeteria Catholic club, how may we help you today, Lisa?



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Conservative

posted October 20, 2010 at 3:31 pm


“Sorry to hear you’d be gratified to see the majority of your faithfilled brothers and sisters depart but at this moment (no telling what tomorrow’s Church disastrous PR and mis-ministry headlines will bring) our seat belts are securely fastened.”
Sensus, your silliness is wearing thin. You sound like a fourth grader at best. I think Benedict began his papacy speaking of how the church may become smaller but it will be better. Better because the cancerous cells will be cut out. Leave before you make other people as miserable as yourself.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 3:51 pm


So miserable am I with a healthy sense of humor. It’s the 8th Gift of Holy Spirit, did you know?
I’m very joyful and grateful to be in the middle of the pew, Conservative. Believe me, I’ve been where you are and it was a struggle. You’re only hurting yourself, honest to God, by clinging to that which is dead and needs to be buried. Chances are great that you are isolating or increasing divisions with your loved ones, be it immediate or extended family and friends.
Let others be (as they will anyway) and you’ll feel extremely alive, refreshed and enlived for ministry like never before. You’ll embody and enact your personal values and doctrine, that is not at stake. As your informed conscience dictates, don’t use physical contraceptives, have an abortion, vote for Death Penalty candidates, but “welcome the Stranger” (illegal immigrant as Bishops dictate), and feed, clothe all the other coporal works too from time to time.



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Aquamarine

posted October 20, 2010 at 3:52 pm


Funny how we have, in the same post, one conservative Catholic who claims the Church is a hospital for sinners, and another who gloats that “the cancerous cells will be cut out”.
Just sayin’…
Unfortunately, a quick click-through of the Catholic blogosphere’s more recent attitudes towards struggling Catholics, former Catholics, non-Catholics, and so forth, I would imagine the latter sentiment is the one being put into practice.
Hey, it’s your church — you want it smaller and “better” (by your definition or God’s…?), so be it. Just don’t complain when the parishes close and there’s no money to go around. We get that you’re not a democracy, but the problem with being a tyranny that depends on voluntary financial contributions is that you’re destined to fail in the long run.
And, before anyone else says it, let me: the gates of Hell will not prevail against the real church, the real body of Christ, Christ’s followers.



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Romulus

posted October 20, 2010 at 4:11 pm


Mark, another point: I too teach catechism at my parish. My task and my desire are to deliver what I have received: to teach the elements of the Catholic faith, and not my personal opinions. If I were to find myself unable to do so, I would resign. It wouldn’t be honorable to turn the class into “the way Romulus thinks things ought to be”. Just saying.



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greg

posted October 20, 2010 at 4:31 pm


Aquamarine, on many social issues God’s Word never changes.In Galatians ,Romans +Ephesians to name a few God clearly states the difference between a life pleasing to God and one pleasing itself. They all condone the same things and condemn the same things. The only interpretation left would be personal and that is not acceptable.we have a hard time calling some things sin just because we have allowed society to explain things in a scientific manner. the truth is “sin is sin”. God said it and we can in no way over-ride His judgement. The best we can do is look in the mirror and acknowledge our sinfulness before Him and allow Him to clean us up.Contrary to some theological teachings all have sinned there is none Holy but Christ. We all must come to God through Christ.The Bible is very clear on that.There is one mediator between man and God Christ Jesus.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 5:16 pm


Anybody want to make a team effort and pool percentages? I’ll give my 50% Catholic if another Cafeteria Catholic will add their 50%. Where two or more are gathered, can that be applied?
Fascinates me how with the horrific, evil pedophile/enabling Bishop scandal we hear typically four defenses from a faction determined not to let Mother Church be besmirched. (Instead of categorically deeming evil acts of humans what they are and praying por mi culpa x 3 and then agreeing full restitution should be made, period. Admit, acknolwedge and repent the “winning” PR forumla.)
1. All’s been fixed, clean bill of health! Predators are either dead or defrocked (as a very few were) and all laypeople have been trained. A few sometimes insinuate that victims even seem to come out of the woodwork for a payout. “What else would you have us do” type exasperations. Obviously, it lacks pulpable compassion and outrage at the sins of a few in our institution which is supposed to be the very antithesis of sexual scandal. (Even prisoners have a codified plan for these ill offenders.) “Get over it and it will go away already.”
2. Then they will add that the Church has initiated every protecting God’s children prevention and screening. We’re the gold standard! Ironically, we’re not the heroes for the cause… we caused the reason for the newly enacted measures. Delusional heroe syndrome.
3. “Nah nah nah hah, so and so did it too!” They offer an inappropriate, immature deflection of responsibility by claiming other organizations can match the vast international dimension of our scandal. It often insults other institutions and reveals serious character flaw. We know there are abusers in every facet of society but we are in a category all by ourselves. Blaming others makes us feel less culpable and better, very sick logic.
4. Scripture quotes are often of this variety: “Let he without sin throw the first stone” “do not judge lest you be judged…”
Yet those who use these amazingly non-judgmental Words for this issue do not seem prone to apply it to the non child abusing/ enabling variety of laypeople’s “sins,” such as artificial birth control or consenting adult fornification, which is perhaps less grave.



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Conservative

posted October 20, 2010 at 5:33 pm


“issue do not seem prone to apply it to the non child abusing/ enabling variety of laypeople’s “sins,” such as artificial birth control or consenting adult fornification, which is perhaps less grave.”
Where does it say that those sins are less grave> I must have missed that.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 5:37 pm


Understand completely, Romulus. We too present the lessons accordingly. We pray fervently to the Holy Spirit as we prepare. Our team gets to know our students and specifically prays to relay the beauty of our faith and meet their needs to the best of our abilities. But their certainly is discretion in what is highlighted, that’s unavoidable unless a 100% Catholic is cloned for the purpose of perfect catechetical instruction.
Here’s an “innocuous” example… the other year the sweetest faithful saw her pet suffer a traumatic death. Sister, a team member, was preparing a lesson and I relayed to her our dear friend’s loss. She promised she would not speak this year about pets and no souls or whatever the typical speel on that is. Of course it did come up at some point, as our friend shared her grief with the group and Sister assured her that God who created everything in love and fulfills our hearts desires would see to it she will be reunited with her beloved pet.
Another year we had a 45 year old woman and her husband who were due to be first time parents… guess how much time we spent on IVF!



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 5:44 pm


It was a shock to us too, Conservative to learn via the catechism the varying degrees of grave sin. http://www.vatican.va/archive/catechism/p3s1c1a8.htm
In fact, for a moment we were truly thrown for a loop to read that “who is wronged” is taken into account, as noted below:
“The gravity of sins is more or less great: murder is graver than theft. One must also take into account who is wronged: violence against parents is in itself graver than violence against a stranger.”



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Conservative

posted October 20, 2010 at 6:02 pm


Sensus, all the sins you listed are mortal but it is nice to know that you are teaching in religion that we will be reunited with our pets. Happy to hear that.



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Aquamarine

posted October 20, 2010 at 6:04 pm



violence against parents is in itself graver than violence against a stranger

Darn, someone wrote a very good piece about this on another site, but I just can’t remember where it is…drat.
The upshot was that you can only honor your parents up to the point where honoring them starts to dishonor you — and Christ. I think it was John Shore, but I can’t find the bit at his site. Maybe it was in a combox over there.
Anyway, honor thy father and mother is most likely why violence against parents is considered more grave than violence against a stranger by the Magesterium.
But that’s where the Magesterium is seriously deficient — in the one-on-one pastoral care department.
What priest is honestly going to tell someone who finally punched his abusive father back that his sin was more grave than a rapist who chooses random strangers as his target?
And that’s always going to be the disconnect — this on-a-pedestal Magesterium dictating to the people below who have to actually live this stuff.



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Aquamarine

posted October 20, 2010 at 6:09 pm


Actually, I think it was that you can only honor your parents up to the point where continuing to do so dishonors God. Darn, it was a good quote and I’m mangling it…I wish I could find it.
Anyway, I think that applies to a lot of things, and I think it applies to honoring the Magesterium — you can only do so up to the point where it begins to dishonor God, and for a lot of Catholics, that’s the issue.
It’s not that all these Catholics want to go out and have lots of anonymous, promiscuous sex, or that they want to do all these terrible things — it’s that something deep inside recognizes that the Magesterium, the institution of the Church, sometimes does not honor the God they are instincitvely are called to. Because God’s quiet voice supercedes the Church’s pontificating.
Anyway…for what it’s worth, and I’m sure the more conservative Catholics won’t think it’s worth much. John Shore is always a good read, though, whether you agree with him or not. Hella nice guy, too…



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 6:31 pm


Conservative, I pray you never experience the trauma of seeing your pet run over by a car on your watch. This happened to truly one of the most sensitive, sweetest souls I ever knew. She already bore extreme guilt (prior to becoming Catholic even).
The IVF baby was baptized btw, a glorious heartfelt Sacrament celebration and God’s blessing! IVF is definitely not something I’d personally support or suggest and it actually repels me but it’s not my choice. My conscience would demand adoption.
Aquamarine, you are more fascinating with each post! Would love to read that article too. Excellent insights about discretion, circumstance and how we are compelled to follow our informed conscience above all. (“but it’s improperly formed if you’re not 100% abiding… lol… you can imagine)

Because God’s quiet voice supercedes the Church’s pontificating.” Beautiful.
Although, let’s admit. God Almighty needs the Church to forgive sin, He’s incapable of doing so directly.
There’s actually an experiment that comes to mind but I dare not suggest it fearing a few who might not be able to grasp the point without taking serious offense.
And now the 100% Catholics here have me curious… am I purchasing the wrong RCIA manuals and supplements? Because the focus of these diocesan approved texts is in no way representative of all the attention on abortion, gays, BC, etc… Have such texts been published or will they?



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Conservative

posted October 20, 2010 at 7:06 pm


“Conservative, I pray you never experience the trauma of seeing your pet run over by a car on your watch.”
Well since you have assured me that pets even though they have no immortal souls will be heaven, I take great comfort.



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Mark from PA

posted October 20, 2010 at 7:07 pm


Romulus, what age group do you teach? If you had gay students in your class, would you make sure to tell them that they were intrinsically disordered? How old should gay teens be when they are told that the Church considers them to be intrinsically disordered? I only learned that the Church considers homosexual persons to be intrinsically disordered a few years ago when I was over 40. I had been teaching Religion for several years when I read this. I went to 12 years of Catholic school and never heard it there.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 20, 2010 at 7:17 pm


We never read or saw such hurtful language in RCIA, Mark, thanks be to God. I’m terribly sorry to hear you were faced with it. As you know, that’s by no means the faith of the sensus fidei.
Ironically, it is “good” this aberration is getting press as more Catholics become aware of it, so that it will be rectified, though not in print perhaps, but certainly swifter in deed.



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Mark from PA

posted October 20, 2010 at 7:23 pm


Romulus, let me share with you part of a lesson from the text that was used when I was in 8th Grade. I share this lesson with my students. (to love)”means to have respect and reverence for all human beings because they are human beings, created in God’s image. It means to see all men as our brothers in Christ.” “If we truly love we will think of and treat all people alike.” (no matter their race, religion, sex, sexual orientation or language) “If we are striving to imitate our Lord, we will be careful not to cause pain or embarrassment to others.” “Treat all others as we would like them to treat us.” “We insult Christ when we insult His friends. Above all else, Jesus taught that we must love God and one another. To refuse to love others, to hurt them, to insult them, to discriminate against them always offends God.” This lesson was about Jesus and the Samaritan woman at the well.



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Mark from PA

posted October 20, 2010 at 7:31 pm


Sensus Fidei, in all my years of Catholic school and in over 40 years of weekly and more attendance at Mass I have never heard one word spoken against homosexuality or gay people. I was basically treated with respect when I was in school. I was inspired by some of the nuns that taught me. They were wonderful women for the most part. The priests that taught me Religion in 8th and 11th grades were wonderful men.



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Your NameM

posted October 20, 2010 at 9:01 pm


Mark, the Catechism teaches that the homosexual condition is intrinsically disordered. Do you teach that, or only the parts you like?
It was this intrinsically disordered and truly evil teaching that led me to question the Church on everything, and to realize that it exists only to further the power of the hierarchy. That’s why I left: because the Roman Catholic Church has nothing to do with good or God. Individual Catholics do, certainly, but the institution doesn’t.



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Rick

posted October 20, 2010 at 11:04 pm


The Church does not teach that a person with same sex attraction is intrinsically disordered. The phrase does not refer to people. The phrase refers to acts and to a degree sexual orientation. “Rightly ordered” sex views the male and female sex organs as complimentary–they “fit together” in a procreative and unitive way that sex organs and the mouth do not fit together, the sex organ and the anus do not fit togehter, or the sex organs and a hand do not fit together.
Masturbation to orgasm, oral sex to orgasm, and anal sex to orgasm are all considered intrinsically disordered. Last time I checked straight people can engage in all three activities. When a straight person engages in them, he or she does not become intrinsically disordered, but the act always is instrinsically disordered. The same is true for gay men and women–the acts not the person are intrinsically disordered.



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Panthera

posted October 21, 2010 at 2:08 am


Conservative,
Why should God be limited in how He sets up heaven? What grounds do you have for making the statement that only human souls will be there?
Angels weren’t created as humans and they are in heaven.
Defend your statement that, as animals (in your interpretation – I recall no statement ex cathedra on the matter in the last 2000 years – “have no souls” God can’t have them in heaven.



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Conservative

posted October 21, 2010 at 7:53 am


What grounds do you have for making the statement that only human souls will be there?
Only human beings are made in the “image and likeness of God”. The Catechism addresses animals as part of creation. It is a rather childish thing to think that once we are in the presence of God that we would need to have Fido with us to complete our happiness.
I don’t think the Church spends much time worrying about this so there is no “ex cathedra”.



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Deacon Greg Kandra

posted October 21, 2010 at 8:07 am


Dr. Richard Geraghty addressed this issue over at EWTN’s website:
One principle is that all living things have a soul. Here soul is defined as what makes an organic body live. Now when any living thing dies, its soul is separated from its body. In the case of plants and animals the soul goes out of existence. But in the case of man, the soul remains in existence because it is a spiritual or immaterial thing. Consequently, it differs from the souls of animals in two important respects. First, it is the seat of intelligence or reason. For this reason a man is held responsible for his actions in a way that animals are not. Secondly, the soul is immortal. A thing which has no physical parts cannot fall apart or be poisoned or be crushed or be put out of existence. For this reason the souls of the saved will always be aware of themselves as enjoying the vision of God for all eternity. This enjoyment will be the result of having chosen to act on earth in such a way that one did the will of God rather than one’s own will. And the souls of the damned will be aware of themselves as never attaining this vision of God because they have shown by their lives on earth that they did not wish this vision but instead preferred their own will.
In the light of this essential difference between human beings and animals, it would seem that we would not see the souls of our pets in heaven for the simple reason that they do not have immortal souls and are not responsible for their actions. They do not have the intelligence which allows them to choose either God’s will or their own will. There is, then, an incomparable distance, say, between the soul of the sorriest human being who ever lived and the most noble brute animal that ever walked the earth.
Dcn. G.



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Sensus Fidei

posted October 21, 2010 at 8:41 am


“It is a rather childish thing to think that once we are in the presence of God that we would need to have Fido with us to complete our happiness. ”
I’ll embrace and own ‘childish;’ there’s worse, like cruel or uncompassionate.



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Aquamarine

posted October 21, 2010 at 10:15 am


So, Rick…
Given the difference, naturally designed by God, between male and female arousal/climax, what exactly is “ordered” when it comes to foreplay and the female orgasm? C’mon — we’re all big people — we can talk about this like adults.
If masturbation to orgasm is disordered (or oral sex to orgasm) when part of sex between a husband and wife? Or is she just out of luck if her zero-to-sixty-in-under-a-minute husband gets there first?
This is the problem with making finite claims about human sexuality — especially when celibate men make those claims about female sexuality.
All the Church has managed to do with their human-therefore-flawed “improvements” on God’s design, is turn sex into a chore, a resentment-filled, humiliating chore, for a lot of people.



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Aquamarine

posted October 21, 2010 at 10:20 am



They do not have the intelligence which allows them to choose either God’s will or their own will.

Oh, that’s dangerous…neither do some human beings, but we don’t claim their souls won’t be able to recognize God. Can’t we just say we don’t know? Maybe it’s time for the hierarchy to stop pretending they have the definitive answer for everything — that attitude has never led to anything good.



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Romulus

posted October 21, 2010 at 11:26 am


Sensus Fidei, I love my animals too, but I don’t deceive myself that I’ll see them in heaven. I had a lovely vacation in Colorado recently. Will the delicious Italian dinner I had be in heaven? Will the stunning scenery be there? Who am I to insist on how heaven must be arranged to ensure it’s satisfactory to me? Is it not primitive and limiting to understand heaven as no more than an idealized version of my earthly life?
When my pet-loving catechumens ask about reunion with their animals in heaven, I ask if that includes scooping the cat box, cleaning up the dog vomit, dealing with shedding and the damage from chewing and scratching. Um, they haven’t thought about that. What they long for is the GOOD parts. Well, is not God the source of all good? I don’t doubt there are those capable of saying to God that he’s not enough for them. Those souls will be detained in purgatory for a long time, I fear.



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Romulus

posted October 21, 2010 at 11:39 am


It was this intrinsically disordered and truly evil teaching that led me to question the Church on everything, and to realize that it exists only to further the power of the hierarchy.
Huh? Because the hierarchy includes no men who suffer from intrinsic disorders of one sort or another — including homosexuality?
Mark from PA: I teach adults. It’s not my job to diagnose their personal defects, so I never address the question of any particular person’s sexual attractions. My job is to explain that certain conditions and dispositions are incompatible with God’s will for the human person. Therefore all unchastity is disordered. Substance abuse is disordered. Contraception and IVF are disordered. And yes, homosexuality is disordered because it’s contrary to God’s purpose for us as embodied creatures endowed with sexual faculties.
I too believe in love and reverence for others — which compels me to speak the truth to them, not enable disordered, confused, or bad choices.



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RomCath

posted October 21, 2010 at 11:49 am


“Can’t we just say we don’t know? Maybe it’s time for the hierarchy to stop pretending they have the definitive answer for everything”
Richard Geraghty is not the hierarchy. They have more important issues to deal with. I don’t think we can say “we don’t know”. Geraghty makes a very lucid point.
Heaven is not simply a continuation of life as we know it. If you define a soul as that which animates something then you have a different idea of the soul that is that immortal part of the human person that is made in the image and likeness of God. A human person can make moral decisions not ones made merely by instinct. If heaven is about the beatific vision then I don’t think we will need anything from this life to make us happy.
Too bad we don’t worry as much as about the pre-born human beings that do possess immortal souls than we do about animals.



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Aquamarine

posted October 21, 2010 at 12:06 pm


Yes, but as I pointed out, his point is deeply flawed — some humans are incapable of making an informed choice. Does the mental capacity of the being determine the mortality/immortality of the soul?



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RomCath

posted October 21, 2010 at 12:22 pm


“Does the mental capacity of the being determine the mortality/immortality of the soul? ”
No. How do we know whether at the point of death those who were mentally incapcitated here have the capacity to opt for God? Nor would God deprive those who through no fault of their own could not make a decision to desire heaven. Every human soul is immortal.



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Aquamarine

posted October 21, 2010 at 1:16 pm


Well, then how do we know there aren’t dogs in heaven? :-)
At the end of the day, we really cannot describe God fully, know His heart and mind completely, or even begin to imagine the complexity of the afterlife.
If a lonely, elderly person, whose most steadfast companion — outside God, of course — has been her dog or her cat, and she fully believes that dog or cat will join her in Heaven, I’m not cruel and petty enough to tell her otherwise, especially since I cannot know for sure one way or the other.
Besides, who says God doesn’t send angels in the form of dogs or other animals? Who knows?



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Rick

posted October 21, 2010 at 1:23 pm


You’re right Aquamarine–I was skirting the issue and trying to be indirect. So I will be very clear and hope I do not offend anyone.
I should have written ejaculation instead of orgasm. The Church teaches that male ejaculation should happen in the vagina. Unintentional ejaculation outside of the vagina is not a issue–intentional ejaculation outside of the vagina is an issue. My understanding is that is certainly okay for a man to bring his wife to climax in some other way if he has ejaculated prior to her satisfaction. Mutual mastubation as foreplay or afterplay is okay as long as ejaculation occurs in the vagina.
My reason for bringing up the issue was to clarify that the label “intrinsically disordered” does not refer to a person it refers to an act. A gay man or woman is NOT intrisically disordered. Anal sex to ejaculation, masturbation to ejaculation or oral sex to ejaculation are considered disordered whether done by gays or straights.
I intent is to clarify a misunderstaning of the teaching not to try to convince anyone. The Church does not tell gay men and women that they are intrinsically disordered.
I’m sorry my claims are so finite–a com-box is small and I’m not a moral theologian. If you’re really interested Aquamarine you would probalby be able to find a text that explains things more fully than I am.



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Aquamarine

posted October 21, 2010 at 4:49 pm


Yes, but now you’ve created a logical disconnect when it comes to acts in themselves being disordered — if an act is disordered, it’s disordered, but now you’re saying the act is okay sometimes, depending on the who, when and why.
This is always going to be the disconnect with most of the Church’s teachings re sexuality/intimacy — it can never be logically consistant.
Either ALL acts involving masturbation, oral sex or anal sex are intrinsically disordered, or they’re not.
Either ALL unions involving naturally sterile people are intrinsically disordered, or they’re not.
Either ALL sexual acts entered into with the intention of willfully enjoying the unitive aspect while willfully avoiding the procreative act are intrinsically disordered, or they’re not.
It never works — it never quite comes together.
Generally, we can see that humans weren’t designed for promisuity, that we weren’t designed to deceive, manipulate, use, dehumanize, etc., but that goes for everything, not just sexual intimacy.
It’s when the institution of the Church tries to dictate the details, and dictate them in order to serve the _institution_ rather than God, that the arguments start to fall apart — which is what usually happens when men try to out-do God. Never ends well, ya know?



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Mark from PA

posted October 21, 2010 at 4:53 pm


Rick, your thoughts here are interesting. I get the impression from what I have read that the Church would ideally like a man to maintain continence or purity (no ejaculation at all) until he is married. I wonder how often this occurs.



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Rick

posted October 21, 2010 at 5:53 pm


Mark, you’re right to a degree. The Church asks all people to be continent until marriage (a nocturnal emission is not considered a sin–so reducing the concept to ejaculation is a problem). The Church understands that sexual sin is a common sin, but a sin. What they recommend is the Sacraments of Confession and Eucharist for people who fall into those sins. Over time, with grace, people can–with a struggle–maintain continence and purity.
The Church also understands that gay men and women, like unmarried straight men and women, also struggle with purity and continence. The Sacraments are open to them, just like straight people, so that they too, with grace, and achieve continence and purity.
I think the Church would agree that the majority of people, including Priests, Bishops and Saints, sin and struggle with purity. The frequency at which a sin occurs in a population does not mean that it is no longer a sin according to Apostolic tradition.



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Rick

posted October 21, 2010 at 6:00 pm


Aquamarine, although a lot of people want to say that the Church sees things in black and white, the Church acknowledges a lot of gray areas–especially when they are talking about sin. Very few things are always and everywhere a grave sin, sometimes even serious sexual sin is mitigated by psychological, social and physical factors (for gays and straights). A good orthodox confessor will be compassionate and understanding with sexual sin–gay and straight.
The Church does understand that we a human and that is difficult to do the right thing. There’s still room for compassion, understanding and forgiveness.



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Mark from PA

posted October 21, 2010 at 6:35 pm


Rick, speaking from my experience, when I was a teen I was not pure in a physical sense because I suffered from nocturnal emissions. I felt unclean and like I had a disorder. So when you speak of something being disordered, I know what you mean because of how I felt. I felt somehow defective because of this. I would say that I was pure of heart though. I went to Catholic school and we didn’t have sex ed until health class in 12 grade. Even then we never discussed puberty that I can remember. I didn’t even really know how children were conceived until I was 17 years old. I have to smile though because I remember when I was 18 and went to confession and I think the priest was surprised at how innocent I was. He told me that most guys masturbated and I think that was the first time I ever heard the word. I was embarrassed but I think later it made me feel better. Young people are a lot more knowledgeable today.



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Mark from PA

posted October 21, 2010 at 6:45 pm


Rick, I also idealized priests. Well into my 20′s, I thought that most priests were living in a state of chaste purity. So to me these men lived in a state of continence and didn’t have nocturnal emissions or engage in self-gratification. So I thought that I was an unclean person but the priests were pure. I was aware that some priests left to get married but pretty much thought that 95% + of priests were totally celibate. It has been difficult for me to face the truth of what some priests have done and how some have betrayed their vows and harmed innocent children and teens. I think that the day is not far off when we will have married priests. We already do in some Eastern Rites and also Episcopal or other Protestant clergy who have converted to the Catholic Church and being given dispensation to be a married Catholic priest.



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Aquamarine

posted October 21, 2010 at 7:55 pm


Rick, believe me — the Church is adamantly black-and-white on the sexual issues, LOL!
That’s the problem — there is no need for an absolute power to ever question itself.
And that, for me, is why Catholicism, which has chosen absolute power as its ultimate goal (rather than God), has also ultimately failed.



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Jeff

posted October 25, 2010 at 4:09 pm


I have thought a lot about Bishop Nienstedt comments of late. One does not and should not believe everything that the church teaches. An adult should read, learn and think for ones self. The laity is not called to believe everything that is told us by the church. We have to come to our own faith is Jesus first. Then review what the church teaches and come to our own understanding of what is taught. I have never believed that Mary was ever virgin. To believe that would cause Mary to be unfaithful to her marriage vows. It would also make scripture invalid. James was Jesus’ brother. Jesus has unnamed sister. Mary was a great women and to make her ever virgin is a great error in church teachings. The Body and Blood of Christ is not real body and blood. It is representation of his next days sacrifice on the cross. The pope is important and leads the church. But only Jesus is the rock of the church. Not Peter or any Pope. I am a thinking Catholic who has studied the history and scriptures and I love Jesus as my savior. That is the fundamental truth of Christian and the main teaching of the Catholic Church. The rest of what the church teaches is 99% valid and good. Some items should be revised. Ever virgin Mary, transubstantiation, Celibate priesthood, women’ roll in the church, Homosexual marriage are all ideas that need to rethought and put into the context on the current times we live in. Male bias, homosexual bias, and other teachings are just wrong and need to be removed.



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Apostolic Catholic

posted October 26, 2010 at 12:29 am


I’m quite shocked at most of the comments you all have posted. Have any of you actually read the Catechism of the Catholic Church? Do any of you know what being “Catholic” means? What it requires? Here’s a just a few things:
1. Catholic Dogma: The faithful are obliged to believe to believe the truts or dogmas contained in the divine revelation (Gospels) and defined by the Magisterium (Pope/Cardinals)….. here a a few of the Big ones:
a. Mary is a Ever Virgin
b. Transubstantiation – Real Presence
c. Purgatory
d. confession at least once a year.
e. Papal infallability – Magesterium
f, Assumption of Mary
g. sex outside of the holy covenant of marriage is disordered.
So, this is just a small sampling of Dogma, if you do not believe any ONE of the above, if you have an “informed” conscience and feel above these truths, you are not merely a “cafeteria catholic,” you have completely separated yourself from the Catholic Church…
INCREDULITY: The willful refusal to assent to revealted truth, or even the neglect of this truth.
When a person, or group of persons, identifies their entire being with one psychological attribute, their own identity becomes lost, Thereby, making all their woes, lack self-worth and unfulfillment the blame of others and a causal subject of every one else’s non-acceptance. Most especially those with Same Sex Attraction. The Church first, sees a creation of God. The Church does not see Homosexual men and women but, men and women with homosexual attractions. The Cardinal or the Catholic Church is in no way responsible for any deaths. It is, clearly, the distorted “informed” secular mentality that has one believing that the whole person is “gay” or “homosexual” and wants you to believe the church feels that the whole person is “evil” or a “sin” which is quite ridiculous. This secular argument aimed at the Church is so absurd and off point.



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RomCath

posted October 26, 2010 at 7:23 am


“I am a thinking Catholic who has studied the history and scriptures”
For a Catholic that has to be the most incredibly sad post I have seen here. To deny the perpetual virginity (which is in the Nicene Creed) and to deny the Real Presence makes you guilty of heresy. If you don’t believe in transubstantiation you are guilty of heresy and probably a Protestant.



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JosephW

posted October 28, 2010 at 5:03 pm


“For if you live according to the flesh, you will die, but if by the spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.”
Give up the things that bind you. Through faith in Christ, confession, and praying I was able to overcome my own sexual disorders. Thanks be to God. I also gave up alcohol and a host of other things. “With God all things are possible”. Thankfully my life was restored and I didn’t lose my family.
We have to be willing to let go of the “worldly” things.
Peace be with all of you.



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Obedience

posted October 29, 2010 at 2:11 pm


Quote:
have thought a lot about Bishop Nienstedt comments of late. One does not and should not believe everything that the church teaches. An adult should read, learn and think for ones self. The laity is not called to believe everything that is told us by the church. We have to come to our own faith is Jesus first. Then review what the church teaches and come to our own understanding of what is taught. I have never believed that Mary was ever virgin. To believe that would cause Mary to be unfaithful to her marriage vows. It would also make scripture invalid. James was Jesus’ brother. Jesus has unnamed sister. Mary was a great women and to make her ever virgin is a great error in church teachings. The Body and Blood of Christ is not real body and blood. It is representation of his next days sacrifice on the cross. The pope is important and leads the church. But only Jesus is the rock of the church. Not Peter or any Pope. I am a thinking Catholic who has studied the history and scriptures and I love Jesus as my savior. That is the fundamental truth of Christian and the main teaching of the Catholic Church. The rest of what the church teaches is 99% valid and good. Some items should be revised. Ever virgin Mary, transubstantiation, Celibate priesthood, women’ roll in the church, Homosexual marriage are all ideas that need to rethought and put into the context on the current times we live in. Male bias, homosexual bias, and other teachings are just wrong and need to be removed.
End quote
One word. Condemno.
When you reject the doctrines of the Church, you also reject God. These things were revealed to us through the Holy Ghost.
Sis Anathema.



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Psalm 63

posted October 29, 2010 at 6:02 pm


I have to say I did laugh at many of the comments on here. People who say they are Catholic and yet do not follow the Church, the Church which was founded by Christ via the Apostles, are not only not Catholic, they aren’t following Christ either.
The sad thing is that so many were never taught the faith. They know nothing about its history, nothing about the writings of the early Church Fathers and nothing about the bible. Jesus made it clear on more than one occasion that those who claim to follow Him and do great things in “His Name” may still end up standing outside the door when the end comes.
The really sad thing is that unless one believes in the True Presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist, they gain no benefit by receiving it. It is when one not only believes, but asks the Holy Spirit to bring the Truth into their heart, that it all opens up. God will grace a person beyond anything anyone could imagine. God wants give us everything. Mass is heaven on earth, but one can only see that and experience it by the Grace of God. Humanity has lost its ability to believe in the supernatural gifts of God and therefor, the ability to receive them.
The Sacraments of the Catholic Church are a gift to enable us to grow in holiness.
Those who refuse to follow the Church are saying no to Jesus Christ and the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Those who fight the Church are in reality, fighting God. Those who think that just because they are baptized and believe in Jesus, they are “Saved” are living a fantasy that fits what they want to believe so that they can live life according to THEIR will, not God’s.
If a person does not believe what the Church has believed in and handed down since the beginning, feel free to leave. There are over 30,000 different brands of Christians out there. Shop around. I am sure you can find one that will fit your version of the Truth. Before you do, why don’t you at least read the Didache and Justin Martyr’s apologies. You may be surprised what was being taught by the Apostles.
May God open the hearts of all Christians to the Truth of His creation, His natural and moral laws and to the never ending Love He has for us. In Jesus name I pray.



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Liberal Dissident

posted November 1, 2010 at 8:06 pm


where does a Catholic bishop get the audacity to say that a self-identified Catholic must believe the teachings of the Catholic Church! My goodness, what a backwards medievalist nut he is. What do Catholics need fidelity for anyway right? We see how the well-informed Protestants who used their conscious and disregarded the malicious magisterium ended up-united in Christ. After all, when did Christ ever intend for us to accept certain mysteries and put our un-yielding faith in God? I know I am at peace when I can just have an informed conscious and disregard all those terrible documents of the early Fathers, martyrs, and saints. Who cares if I teach RCIA, I know all about Jesus and I know he loves it when my Gay friend dresses like a woman and gets pounded in the arse repeatedly. I know that I don’t need to rely on a tyrannical Church, after all, we all know how tolerant liberal dissidents like myself are.



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Chris Chin

posted November 8, 2010 at 2:18 pm


“a shrinking Roman Catholic church is no reason to consider a more liberal stance”
Perhaps. But Christ’s commandment to do to others what we would have done to ourselves sure is.



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Chris Chin

posted November 8, 2010 at 2:40 pm


Romulus,
You said, “the Catechism teaches that the homosexual condition is intrinsically disordered”
Please correct me if I’m wrong, but I’ve always been told that
the Catechism teaches that homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered, not the orientation nor the person with it.
There is a fine but clear distinction. (It’s akin to the ‘Love the ‘sinner’ but hate the ‘sin’ dictum. It really is too bad that it’s ALWAYS the ‘sinner’ who gets bashed, eh?)
[CC...The catechism puts it this way: Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that "homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered." They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved. Deacon Greg.]



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Chris Chin

posted November 8, 2010 at 2:53 pm


Romulus,
In one sentence you say, “I too believe in love and reverence for others” and in another you call our innate, God-given sexuality a “personal defect”. Hardly ‘reverential’ or ‘loving’.
Your statement,
“My job is to explain that certain conditions and dispositions are incompatible with God’s will for the human person.” seems at odds with reality sinnce your interpretation of “God’s will” only applies to the heterosexuals God created. Some “human persons” are homosexual.
As does your statement, “homosexuality is disordered because it’s contrary to God’s purpose for us”. This, too, only applies to God’s heterosexual creations. IOW, your “us” is exclusive while God’s love is inclusive. If you believe God has only one “will” for all of humanity, then you worship a pitifully small god.
“which compels me to speak the truth to them, not enable disordered, confused, or bad choices”
I don’t see much “truth” in what you type. God created me homosexual. I did not “choose” it. Nor will I reject it. Let me assure you, I am not in the least “confused”, though you certainly seem to be.
Considering Who it is that does the ‘ordering’ of all creation, I find you post blasphemous. Or, do you know better than God?



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Chris Chin

posted November 8, 2010 at 3:01 pm


Thanks for the affirmation that it is acts that the Chatechism condemns, and not the person, despite the fact that so many here seem to condemn both the orientation AND the person.
I do have difficulty with the following verbage: “Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women”. This is patent nonsense. I am homosexual even when I do NOT “have relations” (i.e. perform ‘the act’). Homosexuality is the trait of being attracted to others of the same sex – whether or not one acts on them.
Also, this “sexual complementarity”. As a gay man, women do not ‘complete’ me, so to speak. For God’s gay children, other people of the same sex are sexually complementary.
We shall have to agree to disagee.



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Romcath

posted November 8, 2010 at 7:33 pm


“Also, this “sexual complementarity”. As a gay man, women do not ‘complete’ me, so to speak. For God’s gay children, other people of the same sex are sexually complementary.”
Always the justification and rationalization. I don’t think the Cathechism was talking about emotional complementarity. It has to do with a more biological understanding.



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Mareczku

posted November 8, 2010 at 9:24 pm


You made excellent comments, Chris Chin. Thanks for sharing your opinions.



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Not as good as YOU, apparently

posted November 9, 2010 at 10:21 am


I’m with Chris Chin.
What the heck does “biological understanding” even mean?
God’s homosexual children are not biologically attracted to others of the opposite sex. Only heterosexuals are.
Even I can “understand” that.
If you want to call any orientation “disordered”, you have to remember Who did the ‘ordering’ in the first place.
Or did God only create roses and not tulips, daffodils, petunias, etc?
Such a limited ‘understanding’ you show, RomCath. Merely being needs neither “justification” nor “rationalization”.



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martin

posted November 11, 2010 at 12:33 pm


nienstedt is a real idiot when he said believe what the catholic church believes and pass it on to your children. It!s not about the catholic church it!s about the written word of god you don!t believe in the catholic church, you believe in Jesus Christ the belivers in Christ are the church When Jesus comes back he is comming for his bride, who are the believers |If you are not a spirit filled born again beliver you will most likely stay behind and being 100|% catholic and a catholic church believer will not help you.



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Grumpy Old Person

posted November 12, 2010 at 12:00 pm


What happened to the OTHER Nienstedt thread – the one about him opening up a Pandora’s box (or some such analogy)?



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Jane

posted January 21, 2011 at 2:29 pm


Thank you, Archbishop, for standing with Christ and His Church. I read a comment that said the person was disappointed in the direction the Church was heading; the Church has been “heading” in this direction since the very beginning. Male and female He created them. Increase and multiply. God told Adam and Eve to increase and multiply. Sodom and Gomorrah. . . we all know what that story is about. Dear Beloved Savior, have mercy on us and on the whole world.



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topsupplementss

posted March 16, 2011 at 9:54 am


Excellent posts I enjoy reading your post
Legal steroids



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