Celibacy doesn't just mean not having sex; it's a different way of loving. It's not a higher level of loving, just a different one. Celibacy is something that one can devote one's life to for the sake of service, relationships and community. Or one can be celibate for a time and then move on. On the other hand, the church needs to finally recognize the profound sacredness of marriage and covenantal partnerships.

Ferder: This discussion must go on. If we can move beyond the church crisis to asking the questions, discussing sexuality and spirituality in an honest, forthright way, we will have taken a big step toward health and healing. John and I are committed to the book's vision. The church needs to take the issue of sexuality and people's experiences and stories around it so much more seriously. It's the issue that will make or break us.

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