"Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters". Benjamin Franklin
Once again I am out of step with the popular culture. The ninth circuit court of appeals upheld the overturning of Proposition 8 in California, something I thoroughly expected them to do in light of past decisions, the political climate of the day and the powers that be du jour (how's that for a nifty turn of phrase?). And, unlike many Catholics, I do not see this as one more example of how Satan has gotten our society on the ropes; rather, I see it as a natural outgrowth of the idea that no one can claim to know Truth, that everything is fluid in terms of beliefs and norms and there is no such thing as reasonable anymore. To my way of thinking, this particular battle is lost. Marriage will be redefined as a contract between consenting adults. The word will be dumbed down for everyone except those who know Truth - that Marriage is a Covenant between God and two people - a man and a woman - and that it is a Sacrament. It is not a contract. It is not about quid pro quo or property rights or inheritance. Sure that is a PART of it, but it is not the foundation of the term.
At any rate, my concern is shifting more firmly to how an eventual legalization of 'marriage' between people of the same sex or multiple persons is going to affect our priests and (ultimately) our Church. I am concerned about people like Sean and others - people so frosted with hatred that they are now hell bent (yes, I said it) on destroying anything Christian. I have no doubt there will be homosexual couples showing up at Catholic Churches demanding to be 'married' - and when our priests say, 'No', we will be sued.
I believe there is a way out of this; I believe we could easily separate the secular from the religious by allowing for all couples to register with the government, much like it is done in Europe, and then take that piece of paper to whatever religious denomination they wish and request the Sacrament of Matrimony. The government can require its citizens to register with them, thereby taking care of all their tracking needs for taxation and property rights etc. The Church and all other religious institutions can administer the Sacrament of Matrimony.
Well, I have said it before this - I do not believe the government has the right to license a Sacrament so calling that piece of paper a Marriage License is ridiculous. But that's me. There are people who believe religions do not have the sole right to the word 'marriage' - well of course they don't as you can talk about the marriage of concepts, the marriage of rights, the marriage of countries, etc. BUT when it comes to PEOPLE, the word has never been used EVER outside the concept of a religious ceremony, Christian or Non-Christian, Ancient or Modern.
However, reason seems to have fled the area. We are all so hell bent (yup, I said it again) on each other's destruction and bettering the other in fights that we have forgotten what it is like to stand firm and yet acknowledge other people's rights to behave however they wish. Those people who do want to behave however they want, without consequence, now see that desire as a civil rights issue and rage against those of us who say, "Go ahead - but it is not right and I do not recognize what you are doing as a Sacrament".
It will be at least another year or so before Homosexuals are allowed to get married in California. Who knows what will happen? What I know is I can pray for their conversion and pray for the healing of their hearts because I know how horrible it feels to be unwanted or be disdained. What I would hope all people know is that Jesus
Christ and His Church does not reject or disdain, it guides and it protects. We love all.
No matter what they think of us.