Politics/United States

A primer on Church teaching regarding ‘same-sex marriage’

by Dr. Edward Peters

No matter which way the US Supreme Court rules in the “gay marriage” cases before it the international debate over the definition of marriage will continue because that debate is, at root, about matters beyond a civil court’s competence, things like the nature of human beings and the fundamental good of society. Because we Catholics are and will surely remain major participants in such a debate we should be clear among ourselves as to what our Church teaches in this area. I offer as a primer (I stress, primer) toward such better understanding my position on following points.

1. The Catholic Church teaches, though its ordinary magisterium and with infallible certainty, that marriage exists only between one man and one woman. CDF, “Considerations” (2003) passim; CCC 1601-1608; CCEO (1990) 776; 1983 CIC 1055 § 1; Rite of Marriage (1969) n. 2; Vatican II, Gaudium et spes (1965) 48; Pius XI, Casti connubii (1930) 6, 20, 23; Leo XIII, Arcanum (1880) 5, 24; Matthew XIX: 4-6; and Genesis II: 21-24. There is no evidence of ecclesiastical authority ever supporting any other definition of marriage.

1. Note. It is possible that this teaching is proposed as an object of belief (credenda, per Canon 750 § 1, doubt or denial of which assertion would be heresy under Canon 751 and thus sanctionable under Canon 1364 § 1); at a minimum, however, the Church proposes the man-woman assertion as necessarily to be held (tenenda) in order “to safeguard reverently and to expound faithfully the same deposit of faith” (Canon 750 § 2), rendering those who “obstinately reject” the assertion liable to “a just penalty” if, having been duly admonished, they refuse to retract (Canon 1371, 2º).

2. The Catholic Church has the right and duty “always and everywhere to announce moral principles, even about the social order, and to render judgment concerning any human affairs insofar as the fundamental rights of the human person or the salvation of souls requires it.” 1983 CIC 747 § 2; CCC 2246.

3. Catholics who promote “same-sex marriage” act contrary to Canon 209 § 1 and should not approach for holy Communion per Canon 916. Depending on the facts of the case, they also risk having holy Communion withheld from them under Canon 915, being rebuked under Canon 1339 § 2, and/or being sanctioned under Canon 1369 for gravely injuring good morals.

3. Note. The situation of Catholic politicians lending support to “same-sex marriage” is to be assessed as above, with special attention being paid to the heightened responsibility that civil servants have to protect the common good. CDF, “Considerations” (2003) 10; CCC 2235-2237, 2244; 1983 CIC 1326 § 1, 2.

4. The Catholic Church would regard any attempt by persons of the same sex to marry, regardless of their religious affiliation or lack thereof, as null. CCC 1603; 1983 CIC 1055 § 1.

5. Catholics who attempt a “same-sex marriage” act contrary to Canon 209 § 1 and should not approach for holy Communion per Canon 916. Depending on the facts of the case, they also risk having holy Communion withheld from them under Canon 915, being rebuked under Canon 1339 § 2, and/or being sanctioned under Canon 1379 for simulation of a sacrament. Morevoer, Catholics who assist others toward attempting a “same-sex marriage” cooperate in the bad act of those others, which cooperation is liable to moral assessment in accord with the usual principles applicable to cooperation with evil and, under certain facts, according to the canonical principles applying to cooperation in crime per Canon 1329 and/or scandal per Canon 1339 § 2, etc.

5. Note. Catholics who have attempted a “same-sex marriage” or who have assisted another toward a “same-sex marriage” can be reconciled morally under the usual conditions by sacramental Confession (Canon 959) or by a ‘perfect act of contrition’ per CCC 1452; they can be reconciled canonically, if necessary, in accord with applicable law.

{ 0 comments }

A Defense of Single-Issue Voting

by Steve Ray on September 15, 2016

893383c1-f544-4bcd-b177-e18427536f85

A Defense of Single-Issue Voting

Howard Kainz: Without a firm insistence on the right to life, all civil rights are in jeopardy.

Catholics in the United States have traditionally been associated with the Democratic Party. In the 19th and 20th centuries, when so many Catholics were from working-class, immigrant families, often subjected to prejudice (and easily inspired by the social-justice encyclicals of popes Leo XIII, Pius XI, John XXIII, Paul VI and John Paul II), Catholics mostly gravitated to the party that seemed to embody commitment to equality, concern for immigrants and the underprivileged, and against profiteering by bosses and landlords and the capitalist elite.

8db121b8-db82-4145-9a95-172a39180f46Those of us who are pro-life, and bring up the subject of politics to fellow Catholics, will often hear the counter-claim that they are for “social justice” – as if these were two opposed ideologies. And they harbor the stereotype of Republicans as people who show no concern for the poor and disadvantaged, and continually oppose progressive implementation of civil rights. That conservatives give more to charity, for example, is dismissed with a wave of the hand, as if contributions to churches and missionary work, etc., can’t compare with the “charity” of  government ruled by Democrats.

            The strangest misrepresentation of Republicans has to do with civil rights. Historically, every civil rights advance up to the 1964 Civil Rights Act was engineered by Republicans – the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments to the Constitution, the Civil Rights Act of 1866, the Reconstruction Act of 1867, anti-lynching bills, anti-poll-tax bills, desegregation of public schools, final implementation of President Truman’s desegregation of the military, and the establishment of the 1958 Civil Rights Commission. In 1967, President Nixon’s “Philadelphia Plan” applied “affirmative action” to the building trades. And thereafter, it expanded to other economic sectors in which there had been a pattern of discrimination.

How, then, did the stereotype of Republicans as pin-striped, cigar-smoking, elite power-brokers, indifferent to civil rights, get established in the minds of so many, including Catholics? The fact that the Republican Party has offered multi-millionaires or billionaires as candidates for the presidency in the last three elections has not been helpful to the image.

Click here to read the rest of Professor Kainz’ column . . .

{ 0 comments }

Reposting because I think it is important:

Many people know the brilliant British historian Paul Johnson (his official website) who has written massive tomes such as Modern Times, Intellectuals, History of the Jews, A History of Christianity, Civil War in America and many, many more. I remember reading his Modern Times thirty years ago.

The title of this blog was taken from his recent article in Forbes Magazine about our current political climate and presidential race. He is not speaking as an American but as an educated, informed outsider watching our political process as a spectator. I think his words on Trump and the current climate in America is very instructive.

I am writing this blog today not as a “Trump promotion” as I have not made up my mind yet since there is still a lot of water to flow under the bridge in the months ahead. Janet and I do know that we are voting for whoever is “Not Hillary.” Read my article from a month ago entitle “Trump?”. But this blog is to help us think about our situation in America and how far we have fallen and become enslaved and how we need to break loose again.

Below are a few snippets from Paul Johnson’s article entitled When Excess is a Virtue — about Donald Trump, the climate in America and why Trump is important. You decide for yourself, but it is an interesting article. I would read it just for his review of Obama and Obama’s America, if nothing else.

The mental infection known as “political correctness” is one of the most dangerous intellectual afflictions ever to attack mankind. The fact that we began by laughing at it–and to some extent, still do–doesn’t diminish its venom one bit. … Nowhere has PC been more triumphant than in the U.S. This is remarkable, because America has traditionally been the home of vigorous, outspoken, raw and raucous speech. … Now the U.S. has been inundated with PC inquisitors, and PC poison is spreading worldwide in the Anglo zone. …

For these reasons it’s good news that Donald Trump is doing so well in the American political primaries. He is vulgar, abusive, nasty, rude, boorish and outrageous. He is also saying what he thinks and, more important, teaching Americans how to think for themselves again….”

For the whole Forbes Magazine article, click here.

{ 2 comments }

Free Market Economy or Socialism?

September 2, 2016

I was recently asked: “Between a Socialist system of economics or a Free market Capitalist system, which is more Moral? Which system best represents a Christian view? My short response: The Catechism reflects the teaching of the Church by stating that a society should protect the right to private property and to free enterprise (CCC […]

Read the full article →

Politics and Religion

August 31, 2016

I am often criticized for speaking out on politics, especially at this point in history with the end of the disasterous “reign” of Obama. New choices now loom and we Catholics and other Christians need to be in the middle of it all salting our culture with the life of the Gospel and good common […]

Read the full article →

California Court Declares It’s Illegal for Pastors to Advise Minors About Gay, Transgender Feeling

August 29, 2016

by CHRISS W. STREET, 23 Aug 2016, Newport Beach, CA101 The infamous and often-overridden Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld state legislation making it illegal for pastors to counsel minors who are struggling with their sexuality and gender, according to Pacific Justice Institute. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in San Francisco on […]

Read the full article →

Any of These Traitors in our Country?

August 26, 2016

“A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the […]

Read the full article →

ISIS Disagrees with the Pope and his Comments on Islam

August 4, 2016

BY STEVE SKOJEC ON AUGUST 2, 2016 “In the most recent issue of Dabiq, the propaganda magazine of the Islamic State, ISIS criticizes Pope Francis for his naïveté in clinging to the conviction that Muslims want peace and that acts of Islamic terror are economically motivated. “This is a divinely-warranted war between the Muslim nation […]

Read the full article →

10 Reasons Catholics Should Vote For Trump – and why we certainly will

July 31, 2016

I know this will cause a lot of heavy breathing and stomping of feet but I think Colleen McCrum of Christendom College has written a worthy piece and made good arguments. These should be seriously considered because a lot is at stake. I could brush it all off and say, “I am almost 62 years […]

Read the full article →

No More Political Correctness: After Nice France, let’s stop the nonsense and be honest

July 16, 2016

“A terrific and important piece. If only it were heeded. But the political and media elites are immovable, and will keep repeating their empty gestures after every new jihad attack. “Immovable of themselves — they will have to be moved by free people: replaced by saner, stronger people who are willing to defend free nations […]

Read the full article →

What Every Young Black Male Should Hear!

July 10, 2016

Why don’t these young people hear this? They should have fathers who stay home and teach their boys these things. 

Read the full article →

Is Hillary a Liar? You Decide

July 7, 2016
Read the full article →

FBI: “Hillary not Guilty”

July 5, 2016

FBI says Hillary is not guilty of e-mail crimes? R U kidding? Others imprisoned for less. I suspect the system is rigged (understatement).  We just celebrated July 4th as we watch our country being transformed into something that would cause our dismayed Founding Fathers to roll over in their graves.  I love this country and […]

Read the full article →

I Think My Dog is a Democrat :-)

July 4, 2016

If you don’t like this, keep it to yourself. I like it.

Read the full article →

A President who Understood our Country and the Need for God and Morality in the USA

July 4, 2016

Listen to this and weep for our country. Let’s pray that somehow, some way, we can return to these days. Happy 4th of July. Though I love my country, I do not love what it is becoming. Fulton Sheen’s address on America and Patriotism – click here.

Read the full article →

Are Catholics to Blame for the Orlando Jihad Slaughter?

June 18, 2016

UPDATE: Bishop Lynch rebuked by Archbishop of Miami. Some say “Yes!” including Bishop Robert Lynch, the bishop of St. Petersburg Florida who said, “sadly it is religion, including our own, which targets, mostly verbally, and also often breeds contempt for gays, lesbians and transgender people. (Let’s hope he soon corrects or clarifies his comment.) Attacks […]

Read the full article →