June 17, 2011
Separating The Sin From The Sinner - Part 2
Yes, God loves gay people, He certainly does, but He does not like their immoral sexual behavior, just as He does not like the immoral sexual behavior of men and women living together without being married, or the immoral sexual behavior of spouses who cheat on their wives.
He loves the gay person, He loves the cohabitators, and He loves the adulterers, but He does not like their illicit behavior.
For those who don't believe in God, this topic can be considered from the angle of natural law instead. Here is a series of recent articles that may be helpful. What Does it Mean to be a 'Political Animal'?, Moral Absolutes and the Humpty Dumpty Fallacy, and Who’s Afraid of Metaphysics?
Every now and then, I hear statements about Catholics discriminating against homosexuals. When that happens, I take the opportunity to clarify things. This is what I wrote recently:
"...you mentioned to 'discriminate against homosexuals in the confines of your religion is your right.' If you meant to use the word discriminate, pejoratively, you have it wrong, from the perspective of the religion anyhow. Catholicism does not discriminate against homosexuals. Catholicism believes homosexual behavior is immoral, and therefore, does not condone the behavior. The persons are welcome, just like anyone else. The behavior is not, just like any other behavior that is considered immoral in the religion's eyes, e.g. lying, stealing, gossiping, adultery, etc. All people are welcome, all sins are not. Some behaviors are considered venial sins; some are considered grave. All can be reconciled with confession and true contrition. I will say, though, that Catholic individuals themselves are human, and do discriminate against homosexuals perjoratively, that's for sure, but again, it's a love the sinner, hate the sin kind of thing. All sinners are welcome. Thank God there is the Sacrament of Reconciliation, i.e. Confession, to help people try to get back on track."
Like all other humans, Catholics err when it comes to this, but I doubt it is any more than teachers in public schools, athletic coaches, parents, prisoners, etc. The bottom line is that we try to get back on track when we sin in this area, and in every other area, at least those who seek spiritual direction or go to Confession regularly.
It is unfortunate that people misinterpret applying consequences for immoral behavior as discrimination against a person. If that were the case, all parents would be guilty of discriminating against their children, since they must point out and not allow their immoral/bad behavior.
Separate the sin from the sinner. Hate the sin, love the sinner. These are the proper attitudes and behaviors for not only Catholics, but for everyone. As mentioned in Part 1, how to live these concepts out is not always easy, but we must start with it as our intention, and hold steadfast to love.
Some gay people believe it too, as they realize heterosexuals are human and deserving of love, despite any errors on their part. >>>
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