By: Caitlin Bootsma
“At stake is the identity and survival of the family: father, mother and children. At stake are the lives of many children who will be discriminated against in advance, and deprived of their human development given by a father and a mother and willed by God. At stake is the total rejection of God’s law engraved in our hearts.”
(Pope Francis, formerly Cardinal Bergoglio, on homosexual marriage in Argentina)
The debate over homosexual marriage is everywhere right now – in the Supreme Court, on Facebook, and over coffee at work. Yet, sometimes it seems like it is not even a debate anymore; the rhetoric has changed. I hear excitement over “marriage equality” and “the civil rights movement of our time,” but little reasoned defense or advocacy for traditional marriage, an institution that is thousands of years old and reflects the natural law.
Perhaps you, like me, are worried about being offensive. I don’t want to seem mean-spirited, or lacking in compassion for people with same-sex attraction. I feel uncomfortable with being labeled a ‘bigot’ by family and friends, knowing that I’m not.
I do not hate people who identify as homosexual nor think that they have less dignity than anyone else. I do accept that homosexual acts (like a myriad of other sexual sins) are against God’s plan for our marriage and our happiness, a plan that is inscribed into the very nature of our bodies. You may have seen slogans asking you to “fight for love” and support gay marriage. And yet, I know that a loving action is not to create something that a. is against natural law and b. will have harmful effects on society, our religious freedom, on children and, in fact, on the homosexual couples themselves.
This is a lot to articulate on social media or over a cup of coffee, and I often find myself at a loss for words. But now is the time to speak up. The Supreme Court is hearing two cases on homosexual marriage this week. We could be fighting for the true definition of marriage for the next 40 years, just as we’ve been fighting against Roe v. Wade.
Now is the time to defend the institution of marriage. If you find that you don’t have the words to enter into discussions, I encourage you to read the following interview with Archbishop Cordileone (Archbishop of San Francisco). He lays out the reasons we should maintain a traditional definition of marriage and the ways in which homosexual marriage would hurt society and individuals. Archbishop Cordileone says,
“To legalize marriage between two people of the same sex would enshrine in the law the principle that mothers and fathers are interchangeable or irrelevant, and that marriage is essentially an institution about adults, not children; marriage would mean nothing more t than giving adults recognition and benefits in their most significant relationship.”
We have a responsibility as Catholics who have been given the gift of faith and as citizens who are part of a democracy to search for the truth and to fight for it. Complacency over this issue is not an option for those who take to heart Christ’s call to be salt of the earth and light to the world.
Find more resources at: Marriage, Unique for a Reason