Melbourne archbishop: LGBT conversion therapy law silences ministers, parents, and doctors

Archbishop Peter Comensoli of Melbourne told The Pillar that the new legislation passed yesterday in the state of Victoria making it a crime to “engage in a practice” directed towards changing or suppressing a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity, infringes on religious freedom and sound medical practice.
Too little too late Archbishop!

At the point where the legislation has been passed, the discussion has been had and the Church has demonstrably failed in making its case.

I really do think the Church has made such a mess of this whole issue. It continues to send mixed messages and consistently fails to teach appropriately. If we believe what the Church teaches it is essential that we are consistent and coherent and (someone has to) take that argument into the public sphere. 

The archbishop wrote that the law “includes ill-conceived concepts of faith and conversation, vague definitions, and scientifically and medically flawed approaches. It places arbitrary limitations on parents, families and people of faith.” But seriously, the Church has all but lost this argument in the public sphere. 

Why? Well, mainly because there are very few who, like this Archbishop, are prepared to take it out into public and talk about it. But there are also a number of other reasons. The fact that so many priests are overtly homosexual is definitely one element. A clear example of why this is such an issue is demonstrated in the contrast between LGBT fan boy Fr. James Martin and Scottish Cardinal Keith O'Brien.

O'Brien was famously dogmatic in his condemnation of homosexuality. His strident opposition to same-sex marriage in 2012 earned him the title “Bigot of the Year” by Stonewall, the LGBT campaign group. This was because he stridently spoke out about homosexuality publicly. A bit too stridently, because it upset one of his boyfriends who then shopped him to the Vatican. Under Pope Francis, this would likely have landed him a cushy little number in Rome running the Vatican finances, but under Pope Benedict XVI, Church teaching and transgression such as this actually resulted in sanctions and the Cardinal was retired into ignominy.

So, just to reiterate, there are two reasons there, 1. A lot of clergy are gay and pushing the agenda and 2. Clergy who speak out about homosexuality and are gay themselves end up looking like massive hypocrites.

Another reason is that the Church has historically dealt with this by fostering hatred and condemnation of homosexual people. Fathers and Mothers who's children turn out to be same sex attracted are then forced to choose between the Church and their children. I don't think this should be a choice any parent is forced to make...This would be a great topic for a synod to address!! Certainly more relevant and appropriate than a synod on synodality (I still can't quite believe that if the pope's idea of evangelising priority!).

There is another way of dealing with this, and it is very simple: teach what the Church teaches! Love and compassion for every human person made in image and likeness of God. Consistent sexual ethic based on Sacred Scripture. This means parity: the same sexual ethic as consistent and appropriate for heterosexually inclined individuals as it is for homosexually inclined ones. This is being taught by some but when was the last time you heard it from anywhere nearly as accessible as the pulpit?

If we do not engage with the culture on a daily basis, we leave the culture to evangelise the people and the people will recognise the fundamental opposition between what the Church teaches, what Jesus teaches, and what the world teaches, and, absent of any intelligible alternative explanation, absent of any nuance, absent of any context, they will leave, because the secular culture is presenting them with a false narrative. A parody of what Christ and His Church teaches.

Sometimes you hear it said about Jesus:

But this is totally fallacious. He does have a lot to say and I would implore you to watch this exposition of some of this teaching from a non-Catholic preacher who takes an academic approach to Sacred Scripture which helps to unlock with great clarity the clear message of Jesus on these issues. Mackie is not a priest or a bishop, he is an evangelical lay preacher and a scholar but his love of Jesus and his biblical knowledge flows from the screen in this where he talks about what Jesus teaches about our human sexuality in a very gentle, very accessible way.


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