“Getting It Straight” on Same-Gender Attraction…And Rick Santorum

Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum (right) los...
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I have not hidden the fact that, as a person with SSA (same-sex attractions) I support Senator Rick Santorum and his stance regarding the traditional family and the societal need to support it. I am sure my “conservatism” mystifies many.  So be it. Perhaps, however on this my milestone 100th post, I can some how, some way, make it more clear once for all. First please watch this short video clip where Piers Morgan of CNN (and other more dubious fame) attempts to rip Rick to shreds. Then please read my brief comments on the topic and watch the other video from FOX News, also interviewing the distinguished Senator on the same topic. Santorum answers nearly identically, but the tone of the interviews, as set by the ones conducting it, are clearly very opposite.  Here is Piers and CNN:

THIS IS PRECISELY why I prefer the term “same-sex attraction” or better and more precisely yet, “same-gender attraction.” You do NOT choose your attractions.  You do choose your consensual activities. The Catholic Church does not teach that homosexuality, in the sense of orientation, inclinations or feelings, is sinful. It does not. The Church does teach that homosexual ACTIVITY is sinful. And, by the way, the majority of Protestant Churches teach this also in one form or another. Even the “liberal” Episcopal faith community does not allow same gender marriages, although they do allow openly gay bishops and clergy. Schizophrenia anyone??? And I agree with the Church as a whole in any case. When I was Assemblies of God or even United Methodist I was taught exactly the same thing–that the activities were sinful but the orientation was not. However they did try to “cure” a person through prayer, casting out demons, and the like, which is actually far more damaging than the Catholic approach which does not teach this as a necessity at all. But somehow Catholicism is constantly being vilified more for her teachings on the topic even though more clear and concise about it than most other Christian groups, and in reality more “tolerant” in the truest sense of the word.

The reasons Rick Santorum gives here about why he is concerned about gay marriage are precisely the same reasons I left LGBT activism in the first place. We, in our society, are losing the battle for traditional marriage, not only in this area but also in the general change in attitude and behavior towards marriage overall. I can remember a time when divorce was rare, and only happened after very serious conflicts and truly irreconcilable differences.  Now divorce is more common than marriage, or at least equal with it. Most couples–the majority– live together first before marriage or just never get married at all. And single parents, who of course should be supported, are actually encouraged in many circles rather than tolerated with kindness. It is the norm to have a child whether single or not, or just as normal to simply abort it.  Either are okay in our world today.   We have flip-flopped from wrong and judging  attitudes in one direction to the exact opposite view, which is celebrating the, dare I say it, immorality all around us. 30 years ago most Democrats would have agreed with Santorum rather than the ever-surly Piers Morgan during this discussion.  Now Senator Santorum is the villain for his views, even by “fellow Catholic” Morgan, and even called essentially a bigot as a result of his honesty.

Last point–NO ONE knows–I repeat NO ONE–whether being homosexual is actually in-born or if it starts at a very young age due to other reasons such as environment, or if both are involved in tandem with one another. Science has not proven this either way and it is a misconstruing of the facts to suggest otherwise.  THAT is the fact as we currently can prove it scientifically.

The problem is that people cannot seem to separate behavior from desires. They are two different things.  We do not choose our desires. None of us do.  That much is something we can agree upon. However we all can choose our behavior. That too we at least should be able to agree upon. But the pertinent question here is whether being “gay” is defined by one or both of these–the inclination or the behavior?  I would contend it is defined by activity, not attraction.  So I am same-gender attracted. I own it.  I accept it about myself.  I do not have self-hatred having those desires and I am not a second-class Christian or man as a result. Internal homophobia is not healthy and not part of my vocabulary. I love myself as God loves me through Christ.

And I am  living for God as best I know how to do. My calling is celibacy but I judge no one who disagrees with me. However I, as Rick shares here, have made a choice to follow the teachings of what I believe my own Catholic Church has historically taught and still teaches, and has taught not only since the beginning of Christianity but also within Judaism which Christianity derives from. Added together that is one VERY long Tradition. I am repressing nothing.  I feel what I feel. But those feelings make me “same gender attracted.”  They do not make me actively LGBT or “gay.”  I refuse to be pigeon-holed into such definitions. I am simply a man serving God as a Catholic Christian. That is who I am.  Gay is not.

Just how hard is that to understand?

Now for the FOX interview…

Finally let me say that I support Santorum because I held the same views long before I knew of his.  I took great care to understand where he was coming from, especially due to the horrible publicity (aka “smear campaigns”) as a result of Dan Savage and other LGBT activists, and would never knowingly support anyone who I believed hated or looked down upon my precious LGBT sisters and brothers.  For that is what we all are. However I am convinced that Rick Santorum, much like VP Joe Biden, is a plain-spoken “everyman” type of guy, also from Pennsylvania, and at times therefore gets into difficulty by just being who he is in that regard. That is not the same thing as being bigoted or mean-spirited. It is time we grow up enough to realize that not all will speak with silver tongues, nor does that even mean anything if they do.  He has my respect, and hopefully my vote in November.

Piers Morgan at CES 2011.
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36 thoughts on ““Getting It Straight” on Same-Gender Attraction…And Rick Santorum

  1. Pingback: CELIBATE BUT NOT CHASTE??? CHASTE BUT NOT CELIBATE??? A Quick Catholic “Snapshot” of SSA Theology | catholicboyrichard (Stephen Francis)

  2. Srdc

    Thanks Richard. It’s important to let people know that the Catholic debate is not about the origins of homosexuality, as much as about how our desires have to be reconciled with the love of God, to love as God loves. This is true if one is married or single.

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    1. catholicboyrichard

      Srdc–I appreciate your good words of support. I think we make a mistake at times by trying to place “SSA lust” in some totally different category than “OSA” lust. While some dynamics are different, the corruption within our hearts is the same. I always find it ironic when Christians (and usually this is males but not always) feel free to gawk and whistle at a “hot looking chick” but if I did the same to them I would be beaten to a pulp. Somehow one is less evil in their eyes because it is “natural” while the other is “perverted.” Newsflash–all lust is perverted. Second newsflash–it is an uphill battle to stay pure. Thanks again and post anytime.

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  3. Telemachus

    God bless you in your struggles, Richard. I’m joining the Dominicans soon, and I’m looking forward to living the celibate life as a priest of the Catholic Church. And yet, I will always struggle with my natural sexual impulses. I will not be taking on celibacy because I hate my God-given sexuality, but because He is greater!

    Our struggles are not different. We are brothers! I will be praying for you and all of those who struggle with same-sex attraction.

    One thing I will add to the conversation is a comment on your statement: “We do not choose our desires. None of us do.” I agree with this, but I will say that in striving to achieve better control over my desires I have noticed that I am not tempted as I used to be. As one gains self-mastery, one becomes more immune to affliction because we often invite temptation, perversely enough. Breaking the habit of self-temptation is a HUGE step towards gaining greater control over our temptations.

    God bless,
    Tele

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    1. catholicboyrichard

      Very good word future “Father” Tele! One saint among many who I ask for intercession from is Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati. In this day and era when ageism is actually more prevalent (a whole other topic I might add, and actually do have a post on!), I think many youth think Blessed Pier is “theirs.” Well I have got news, I get him too hehe. And he is an example of that discipline and purity you speak of. Plus a lay Dominican, which is something I still am seriously considering in my upper middle years as we speak.

      So we have much in common. And your commments about self-temptation are well taken. I perhaps should have included that point in the article, but then again that is why we have a “comments” section! Your dialogue has added a needed point here which I neglected to clarify. Furthering it I might add that, at times in my life where I have had a very close male friend, my temptations have diminished rather than increased. So to my “straight as an arrow” brothers in Christ, do not be afraid to embrace (physically but more importantly spiritually and emotionally) the man with SSA who is in your midst. I have had many who “admire” my stand and story but will not be my friends on a personal level. It is almost as if they are afraid of “catching” my SSA if they become too close to me. Yet they geniunely do admire the stand God has allowed me to take so they are conflicted, and the “guy thing” with conflict too often is just to hide and walk away from it. Sadly this happens even in Church settings. And it leaves many of us alone and more lonely, feeling not part of any world, LGBT or straight, and it is then the temptations come. I know the pattern well.

      Lust for any of us is generally about feeling good, secure, and loved. And while self-control is only mastered by each individual just as you rightly share, it can help immensely to have others who are going through it with you. And they do not need to be only those with the same wounds you have. The best friends I tend to have are almost always straight brothers, and it is always amazing how alike we turn out to be. It seems you understand that Tele, and I thank you for your good insights. God bless–comment anytime please. And know you and all Dominicans are in my prayers!

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  4. Brave and awesome. I hunger for more thoughtful insight on this topic, as someone who just gives lip service to many of the ideals which our Faith outlines. I give my assent, I understand, and I can cooperate. But I need the info from people who endure the trenches and have solution. I need your words! Peace Brother.

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    1. catholicboyrichard

      I can only say, brawkalicious, your encouragement means so very much to me. Please write anytime. And I pray I can encourage you back too. God bless!

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  5. jacqui

    Thanks for the wonderful insight….In very simple terms i believe we all have received a thorn in the flesh be it anger,lust. ssa/sga,greed, lying … whatever may be our particular weakness. But as we seek God’s righteousness and humility ,God’s grace is sufficient for us and His power is made perfect in our weakness (2Cor 12:9) for it is He God who works in us to will and to act according to His good purpose (Phil2:13)…as we work out our salvation with fear and trembling
    We have to submit our will to His and take up our cross daily and follow him.

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    1. catholicboyrichard

      Jacqui–and thanks for your comments too, a good reminder for me. I would be the last to say I am “there” just yet…but we aim for heaven and do so through Calvary–there is not another option. Blessings to you.

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  6. Pingback: I have same-sex attraction. I can't help it. But I choose not to be "gay" anymore,... - Christian Forums

  7. Not-Osee

    “Last point–NO ONE knows–I repeat NO ONE–whether being homosexual is actually in-born or if it starts at a very young age due to other reasons such as environment, or if both are involved in tandem with one another. Science has not proven this either way and it is a misconstruing of the facts to suggest otherwise. THAT is the fact as we currently can prove it scientifically.”

    I completely disagree, I repeat, disagree. There were multiple studies by scientists proving that 98% of those with this disorder were from nurturing. The current science is to not study this anymore because the new scientists wont accept that it is a disorder. Not a study has proven this point, it was forced by first physichatrists, who “voted” this so, and they were 70% SSA. Not a “fact” in it.

    No solid scientific evidence exists proving people are born homosexual Beginning in the late 1990s, several scientists who typically search for genetic proof of homosexuality provided evidence to the contrary. They stated that homosexuality is treatable. Here is a little background: In 1973, Dr. Robert Spitzer—an influential psychiatrist—successfully spearheaded an effort to remove homosexuality from the American Psychiatric Association’s (APA) list of mental disorders. He asserted that homosexuality could not be changed and, therefore, should not be treated by therapy. To the amazement of many, 28 years later, on May 9, 2001, Dr. Spitzer altered his stance and presented his findings (to the chagrin of many gay activists and pro-gay proponents in the APA) at the annual meeting of the APA in New Orleans. He now acknowledges that some homosexuals can make a substantial shift toward heterosexuality.12

    While many gay-rights activists have questioned the validity and credibility of Dr. Spitzer and his survey, one cannot write off his research. Social commentator and lesbian Camille Paglia says of the psychiatrist’s findings, “[The fact] that Spitzer helped to persuade the American Psychiatric Association to drop the classification of homosexuality as a mental disorder in 1973 makes his current study harder to dismiss.”13
    1 L. Hatterer, Changing Homosexuality in the Male: Treatment for Men Troubled by Homosexuality (New York:McGraw-Hill, 1970).
    2 Starla Allen, “Roots of Lesbianism,” presented at the 21st Exodus International North American Conference,Seattle, WA, July, 1995 (audiotape).
    3 Janelle Hallman, “The Condition of Female Homosexuality,” presented at the Love Won Out conference,Philadelphia, PA, April 21, 2000 (audiotape).
    4 Joe Dallas, “Is Homosexuality Inborn? What Current Science Really Says” (Seattle, WA: Exodus International-North America, 1998), 2.
    5 Michael J. Bailey and Richard C. Pillard, “A Genetic Study of Male Sexual Orientation,” Archives of General Psychiatry,vol. 48, December 1991, 1089-1096.
    6 Bailey and Pillard, 1089-1096.
    7 “Sexual Behavior of Men in the United States,” Family Planning Perspectives, vol. 25, no. 2, March/April 1993, 52-56.
    8 Michael J. Bailey and D.S. Benishay, “Familial Aggregation of Female Sexual Orientation,” American Journal of Psychiatry, 150: 272-277.
    9 Dennis McFadden and Edward G. Pasanen, “Comparison of the Auditory Systems of Heterosexuals and Homosexuals,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, vol. 95, March 3, 1998, 2709-2713.
    10 Williams, T.J., Pepitone, M.E., Christensen, S.E., Cooke, B.M., Huberman, A.D., Breedlove, N.J., Breedlove, T.J., Jordon, C.L. & Breedlove, S.M. (2000): Nature 404, 455-456.
    11 Neil Whitehead, Ph.D., National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality, “The New Finger-Length Study on Lesbians” http://www.narth.com/docs/newstudy2.html.
    12 “Life-Changing Study: Report Concludes Homosexuality Changeable,” Citizen Issues Alert, May 9, 2001,vol. 4, no. 28.
    13 Camille Paglia, “The Energy Mess and Fascist Gays,” Salon, May 23, 2001,www.salon.com/people/col/pagl/2001/05/23/oil/.
    14 Joseph Nicolosi, Ph.D., “The Condition of Male Homosexuality,” presented at the Love Won Out conference, Dallas, TX, May 6, 2000 (audiotape).
    15 Joe Dallas, “Is Homosexuality Inborn? What Current Science Really Says” (Seattle, WA: Exodus International-North America, 1998), 11.
    16 Janelle Hallman, “The Condition of Female Homosexuality,” presented at the Love Won Out conference,Philadelphia, PA, April 21, 2000 (audiotape).
    17 Janelle Hallman, “The Condition of Female Homosexuality,” presented at the Love Won Out conference,Philadelphia, PA, April 21, 2000 (audiotape).
    18 Anne M. Paulk, “A Study on the Roots, Causes and Treatment of Lesbianism,” Colorado Springs, CO, 2001.
    19 Anne M. Paulk
    20 Anne M. Paulk
    21 Anne M. Paulk
    22 Ontario Human Rights Commission, Toward a Commission on Gender Identity, October 1999.
    23 R. Stoller, “The Sense of Maleness,” Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 34: 207-218.
    24 Janelle Hallman, “The Condition of Female Homosexuality,” presented at the Love Won Out conference,Philadelphia, PA, April 21, 2000 (audiotape).
    25 Hallman.
    26 Patricia Graham, Love in Action Training Program Series (San Rafael, CA, 1989), (Love in Action is a residential program assisting men and women seeking to overcome homosexuality through Christ).
    27 Anne M. Paulk, “Defensive Detachment,” presented at the Exodus Northeast regional conference, Manchester,NH, 1996 (audiotape).
    28 Janelle Hallman, “The Condition of Female Homosexuality,” presented at the Love Won Out conference, Philadelphia, PA, April 21, 2000 (audiotape).
    29 Hallman.
    30 Hallman.
    31 Hallman.
    32 Anne M. Paulk, “A Study on the Roots, Causes and Treatment of Lesbianism,” Colorado Springs, CO, 2001.
    33 Janelle Hallman, “The Condition of Female Homosexuality,” presented at the Love Won Out conference,Philadelphia, PA, April 21, 2000 (audiotape).
    34 Hallman.
    35 Hallman.
    36 Hallman.
    37 Hallman.
    38 Janelle Hallman, “The Condition of Female Homosexuality,” presented at the Love Won Out conference,Philadelphia, PA, April 21, 2000 (audiotape).
    39 Hallman.
    40 Hallman.
    41 Linda Nicolosi, “Historic Gay Advocate Now Believes Change Is Possible,” NARTH Bulletin, August 2001, volume 10, no. 2, 1.
    42 Irving Bieber, M.D., Homosexuality: A Psychoanalytic Study (New York: Basic Books, 1962), 318-319.

    You probably got the “no one” idea from your own experiences/community that threw all this under the rug. When God made everything, he found it was very good. He did not prescribe the word “abomination” to what he created, but to the evil choice some people made. Now you have made the right choice, but now you have to really understand what a wonderful choice you have made to be natural, and everyone knows what is natural, I repeat, everyone.

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    1. catholicboyrichard

      Hi Not-Osee and thank you for your post. Obviously you have the right to disagree with my beliefs on this, but I would assure you I too have studied many of the same sources you mentioned during the 15 years I was an LGBT activist and also after becoming Catholic and celibate again. I had much contact in the past as well with the “ex=gay’ theories and ministries and my biggest concern with them is that they often very simply do not work. Then, the person in question becomes extremely discouraged and slips back into the lifestyle or worse, gives up–sometimes to the point of suicide. I have seen this kind of thing so many times I cannot count. Therefore I cannot in good conscience support Nicolosi and his crowd as I do not believe they are the only authorities out there.

      Here are two points to consider–our own Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC), a Magisterial document by the way, does not presume to identify the origins of same gender attraction. It simply tells us, whatever the origin, to live celibately and work on becoming chaste in heart and mind. That is the Catholic teaching–no more and no less. And that is the only “healing” promised within the Church. In paragraph 2357, on the topic of homosexuality and chastity, it simply states that “its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained.” I do not think that point has significantly changed since the 1990s when the CCC was released and signed off by Blessed John Paul II. The Church-approved group COURAGE allows members to pursue the somewhat controversial “reparative therapies” that you mention, but does not in any way require us to do so, nor chide us when we do not.

      I pointed this out originally really for two reasons: one is that nearly everyone these days seems to think it has been scientifically established that we who have SSA are “born that way.” I am refuting that point actually so I totally agree with you that it is not proven. There is not proof of this at all in fact. The only things that are truly provable scientiically is that it (SSA) begins usually very early. Most of us in fact do not remember feeling any other way. Some do, but I am saying most of us. Secondly, even if somehow a “gay gene” were discovered tomorrow, and I do not think it will be, it would not change the Church teaching to remain celibate, any more than those who are predisposed to alcholism are somehow excused from working on that issue in their lives. We all are fallen beings, and have various areas of temptation. That does not make any of us “abominations.”

      As to abominations, all sin is an abominiation to God in reality. Not just mine–or yours. That is why Jesus had to actually die a horrific death for every single sin ever committed, even the most seemingly venial ones on to the thief on the Cross who repented at that last moment with perfect contrition. He paid for it all. All to Him I owe, as the song says. Those who single out homosexuality for this word are not reading either the Sacred Scriptures or the Church teachings carefully.

      So that was my point. There is indeed research being done, and has been in the past. You have clearly documented much of it in your post, and I have never suggested otherwise. But it takes a consensus of science to “prove” it–and that was all I was and am saying here. And the “proof” is yet forthcoming. That was all I was and am saying. And it would really change nothing if I found out I was wrong one day. I would still be expected to live as a single, celibate, Catholic Christian. And that is my aim. Thanks again for the post and taking the time to share.

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      1. Srdc

        Richard,

        Thank you for sharing you story. It’s true that the Catholic view of human sexuality is not going to change based on the discovery of a gay gene.

        It’s a religion that reconciles sexual love with the love of God . Eros with agape.

        This causes sexual love to ascend higher. This higher is manifested through permanence, fidelity and openness to life.

        This is only possible in the life-long bond between a man and a woman known as marriage.

        For those not called to marriage. This sexual love linked to the love of God can also help us to love like God does, but in a different, yet equally valid way.

        Saint Mechtilde, a German mystic of the 13th century, echoed the same idea when he wrote that Christ’s “noble nuptial bed was the very hard wood of the Cross on which he leaped with more joy and ardor then a delighted bridegroom” (cited by Blaise Arminjon in The Cantata of Love)

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      2. catholicboyrichard

        Srdc–it sounds like you have a profound understanding of the Faith, and of the Theology of the Body–which is by far the most “reparative” of all. Loving Jesus in the Eucharist, and what He did in the first place which caused the Eucharist to make Him manifest–and that is the Cross–this is what keeps me going personally. I think this is why daily Mass and Rosary are essential for those with SSA. And not a bad idea for us all. I also find a monthly meeting with a trained priest who is a spiritual director is ideal as well. And these are something all of the therapies in the world cannot replace or begin to compete with. To be sure I am not against valid therapy–as long as it is scientifically valid and with strongly proven results. I just suggest care and caution with that which is proven by some and denounced by others in the same scientific community. But even any therapy or group work done must hinge upon the “therapy” of the wood of His Cross and Resurrection. Our sufferings poured into His. Thanks, Srdc!

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  8. I’m a straight catholic woman who has a hard time agreeing with the teaching of the Church on this subject. Please allow me a simple question: You say that you are repressing nothing…don’t you have sexual impulses? Did you ever desire to share your life with a loving partner? I can accept that marriage should be between a man and a woman, but how can the Church label as sinful those SSA who have the same human impulses that straight people have and ask them to behave like priests? Not everyone is able to give up sex and love for “the sake of the kingdom”!

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    1. catholicboyrichard

      Hi Antonella–and thank you for reading my post, even though you view it differently. I have definitely been on all sides of the issue over the years, so I “get” where you are coming from. What I would only say is, if the Church is not right, then who is. There are hundreds of interpretations of Sacred Scripture out there, all with vaious degrees of disagreement on this and many other issues. As a person who returned to the Church after 35 years away I have certainly studied many of those other views in depth. What it came down to for me was one thing–who gave us the Bible in the first place? And the answer is that it was passed down through the successors of the Apostles. They determined which books ended up in both the Catholic and eventually the Protestant versions of the New Testament. God gave that gift to them. If He did not, then there is no reason at all to believe in Christianity. When I had that authority issue firmly grasped within me, then and only then could I really consider that celibacy was needful for all unmarried people, whether SSA or heterosexual. No one put a gun to my head to come to this conclusion. I do not condemn those who, like you, have different views. But that is why I have the view I do. Thanks for posting.

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  9. Larry

    Richard you are doing a great seervice for your brothers and sisters with sga/ssa. You hit the nail on the head the fact that we do not choose our attractions; but, we do choose our actions. Your statements regarding science are also correct as we stand today. What we learn in the future may help us understand better. As for now it is necessary that as a society we move in the direction of Christian love as Jesus taught it for as brothers and sisters we are all human beings and God’s greatest material creation allowing flesh to become divinized through His Son Jesus.

    Peace and all good,

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  10. I just stumbled upon your blog. I’m sure you know how frightening you are to LGBT activists, since they’re can’t imagine anyone following through with “natural feelings.” I bet that many, in the face of a counter-example like yourself, simply refuse to admit you into their club post-facto, and instead call you a fake gay person or whatnot in an effort to distinguish what you felt (and still feel) from what they feel.

    And I share your frustration about the limit of saying someone is “gay.” It’s come to mean “practicing gay,” which I don’t think it should, because it then excludes those who still attracted the same way.

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    1. catholicboyrichard

      Actually Michael I have had very few LGBT activists who had brushed me aside. Some, yes. I think that some do, of course, for the same reason as do some straight folks who think I am rejecting some “part of myself–” and in a way I suppose that I am.

      I say that in this context, though. The priest rejects his ability to procreate and marry for the greater good of serving the Christian community. The married couple rejects (in most cases at least) an “open marriage” because it is not authentic. I reject, as a single person, the opportunities I may have to “play the field” or enter a non-married sexual relationship with either gender. But as I have told many through the years I do not feel cheated particularly. I am blessed to have the family of God and the Lord in the Eucharist and in the greater body of Christ. Life is not perfect and there are days and nights when i wish I had someone near and dear to me, but those moments are fleeting. The gift of God is eternal.

      Thanks so much for your encouragement and comment! God bless.

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  11. Gary

    Sir, a brilliant, pertinent and corageous post; I would agree with every word, but for your suggestion that the term “gender” is a better and more accurate word, in the context of SSA, than “sex”. My understanding is that this term is used (apart from when used for the sake of prudishness or, more legitimately, to avoid confusion over what sense the word “sex” is being used in) as a politically correct repudiation of the idea that someone’s sex is limited to being either male or female, according to their physical sex. It seems to me that this idea is perfectly sound, both ideologically and scientifically. But I stand open to correction! Please could clarify why you prefer the term “gender”? Thank you so much!

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    1. catholicboyrichard

      Hi Gary and thanks for the kind words…when I think of “sex” I think of, well, SEX…so saying I have same-sex attraction (at least to me) sounds like all I desire is a sexual encounter with someone of my own gender. That is a long, long ways from how those from homosexual backgrounds or inclinations generally feel. Most of us wish for love, just like all people, but the love we tend to be most attracted to is from those of our own, not the opposite, gender. That would be my reason for preferring it. However will my thinking catch on? Probably not. It is just a personal preference. I was not even thinking in terms of transsexuals, who consider themselves one gender but are the other. However I can see why it might have seemed that way. Truthfully there is simply no perfect term without its flaws. Bottom line we are all just people. God bless and thanks for your words.

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  12. tpdcath

    It is a subtle, but important, distinction, between homosexuality and homosexual behavior, having an inclination or desire, and behavior or activity. Homosexual behavior and activity is gravely disordered. Concupiscence is the the tendency or inclination to sin, and with respect to the seven deadly sins, we all struggle with these inclinations. The disorder or sinfulness comes from the “doing,” not in the internal struggle against disordered or sinful inclinations.

    The Catechism of the Catholic Church succinctly teaches about homosexuality in paragraphs 2357 to 2359 and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has issued a pamphlet, Ministry to Persons with a Homosexual Inclination: Guidelines for Pastoral Care (Publication No. 5-788, 2006).

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    1. catholicboyrichard

      Thanks for the comment, tpdcath!!! I agree totally with what you are saying. Those paragraphs in the CCC are ones I have read dozens of times as I began to sort this issue out for myself in fact. The balance between “love and license” is indeed there within Church teaching if we look for it. Also that particular USCCB pamphlet you mention is well written. The Vatican website has some well spoken guidelines too.

      In any case your good comments verify mine, I believe, and give folks references for further study. I have also written far more extensively on this topic on this site, so I would invite readers to do a search here on “same-sex attraction” and you will find much more on the topic than what I have covered in this post. Thanks again for sharing.

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    1. catholicboyrichard

      Coming from you especially that means a lot Tony! God bless you and again thank you so much. Now may I live up to it daily. By God’s grace of course.

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  13. I also must admit that until coming across your blog I did not have a proper understanding of Catholic teaching on homosexuality. I have had an understanding of what the Bible teaches, and this past year I got to meet some people with SSA, such as Christopher Yuan who wrote a book about his journey. I can now see that it all lines up perfectly. It is nice, as well, finding a balanced blog to read about many things!

    Rick Santorum has indeed earned my respect in recent weeks, and these two interviews only helped to solidify that. Thanks for sharing the videos and your thoughts!

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    1. catholicboyrichard

      Dan you are such a blessing to share with!!! I appreciate your comments–as well as your blog too. Again you are far from “simple” in my book:). God bless.

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  14. Matt Honstain

    Thank you so much for a thoughtful, candid and unique perspective on this issue! I love that you distinguish between attraction and behavior, and that you refuse to allow attraction to dictate identity. I wish more people (on both sides of “gay rights” issues) would share your de-emphasis on attraction / sexuality as the decisive component of who we are in preference to our adoption as sons and daughters of God almighty.

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    1. catholicboyrichard

      First of all, thank you brother in Christ for sharing your encouragement. And welcome to the blog! Please stay with it if you like, and share anytime. I checked yours out a bit too, and hope to read much more of it in the future. Blessings on you and your family, and of course your ministry. We are all in this together.

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