First Published in ‘The Catholic Voice’, Ireland, July 2015
Holiness is the Solution to all of Our Problems
There is one, and only one, simple solution to the problems that beset our nation today and that is for each and every one who reads these articles to become saints. I once read a definition of intelligence, I cannot remember where, which defined it as the ability to separate out into categories. At first I did not understand what it meant and therefore I was not sure if I agreed with it as a statement or not. But as I look and listen to the world around me, and particularly to the arguments on both sides of the recent referendum debate, I realise that the statement is true. For example, many people are no longer able to differentiate between simple and easy. Becoming a saint is simple, but it is far from easy.
Know Your Faith
Now in order to become a saint one has to know intimately and in depth the Catholic faith and try one’s best to put in into practice. I refrained from commenting directly in these articles in the run up to the marriage referendum as I had set myself on a certain course and I did not want to be deflected from it. I was also convinced from very early on in the campaign that the ‘Yes’ side would win by a comfortable majority. But in looking at the solutions to our current situation there is another very grave problem that I have not heard anyone else address in the public square. This problem needs to be identified and called out into the open. The problem to which I refer, concerns the actions of prominent Catholics who, to all intents and purposes, controlled the debate on the ‘No’ side of the referendum.
Errant Quotes made by Prominent Catholics
What follows are some quotes, made in public, by some of these prominent Catholics in the run up to the referendum. I wish to keep with my previous policy of not naming names as I am not looking to judge individuals but to identify this very dangerous problem that is losing us the battle for unborn life and has also, I believe, been largely responsible for losing us the battle for marriage.
Here are the quotes.
First quote, commenting on civil partnership legislation for homosexuals,
“I very much support, although I was a critic of aspects of the way it was brought in and some of the things that were left out of it but I support the principle…” “I always supported the principle of legal recognition for peoples relationships”
“Although it does not chime with my personal beliefs, I don’t have a difficulty with civil unions, because they redress certain injustices. Neither do I object to gay adoption, when the only alternative is to spend life in a loveless orphanage.”
“Now I’m a supporter of gay equality, I want to support the love that Gerry (a self professed homosexual man) has for his partner. And so, if there is a no vote, I myself am going to be campaigning for constitutional recognition of gay relationships and the love that gay people have for one another.”
“I supported partnership rights for gay people and by the way there was a point at which I supported same sex marriage. Until it dawned on me that actually because of the way article 41 is structured, it comes with a right to have children.”
Fifth quote, responding to the question as to whether some people are born gay and if this is as God intended,
“I believe that some people are born gay yes… Its as God intended I presume”
These statements are contrary to Catholic Church thinking
The difficulty with each and every one of these quotes, made by prominent Catholics and promoted in public, is that each and every one of them is at variance with Catholic teaching and thinking on the matter of same sex unions, and the care of children. The last quote, apart from being contrary to Catholic teaching, is blasphemous in nature, as it makes the claim that God intended certain people to be born with a pre-disposition to a sinful disordered sexuality. Because God is Love, He could never have intended for man to fall, or to sin, or even to die.
The Sorry State of Irish Catholicism
What these statements reveal is the sorry state of Catholicism in this country, although anyone who reads these articles will not be surprised at this. But we can hardly expect a clear understanding of Catholic teaching to emerge in a country where public heretical teaching in the major seminary, from prominent priestly professors, remains uncorrected. Once you allow dissent to have its head in the upper echelons of priestly formation in any country, you poison the well from which the culture receives its sanctification, and you thereby permit dissent and error to permeate throughout the ranks of the faithful.
Catholics using Secular rather than Christocentric arguments
What we were given in the marriage referendum, by Catholics on the ‘No’ side, were secular arguments against same sex marriage based on the perceived damaging effects that this would have on children. It was a marketing campaign designed to win a referendum and had very little, if anything, to do with promoting the Catholic faith and evangelising the people. When Catholics, in arguing against same sex marriage, fail to mention God, fail to mention Jesus Christ, fail to use the word sacrament in relation to marriage, and do not mention the word grace, one is left wondering what exactly they are hoping to achieve. Their primary purpose did not seem to encompass giving glory to God or the salvation of souls.
In another interview with a prominent Catholic, the only pastoral challenges for the family that he mentioned were economic, emotional, social, and cultural. Nothing in the realm of faith and morals which is the primary preserve of the Church. This omission is incredible when one considers that the main reason that marriages fail, is because one, or other, or both of the parties to the marriage, fail in their duties of faith and morals.
Morally Corupt Legislation is an Offence against God
The other thing that strikes me about all of this is that arguments such as these, ignore the fact that legislation for same sex marriage, is first and foremost an offence against almighty God. The rights of God are so far superior to the rights of His creatures, that a comparison cannot truly be made. When Catholics seem to exalt and care more about the rights of men, even if they be helpless children, over and above the rights of almighty God, then it is clear that we have truly lost our way. In the next article I will re-visit the above statements and outline where each of them is at variance with Church teaching and will look at the consequences of such erroneous statements.
© John Lacken 2015
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Author: John Lacken
Founder: Legio Sanctae Familiae – The Legion of the Holy Family