Thursday, July 7, 2016

Normal or Not

People will tell you that the Catholic Church does not condemn homosexual people.  This is true at a certain level.  It is what the Catechism tries hard to say.  But when you look more closely at the way the Catechism is formulated, you realize that, despite itself, it still condemns homosexual persons because it recognizes them as not normal.
More precisely the Catechism sees their homosexuality as a burden they have to carry.  More explicitly we enhanced males are seen as having an urge to mansex which can never be fulfilled.  So we are still condemned by the Catechism not only to being abnormal in our urges but also to a life of hard-to-bear suffering because of our abnormality.  This is hardly to say that the Church does not condemn homosexual persons.

The Catechism thus has two parts to its treatment of homosexuality.  The first is that homosexual persons should not be discriminated against.  The second is that homosexual acts (not specified more than that) can never be approved.  The Pope has recently spoken in serious support of the first part of the Catechism.  All discrimination must be avoided.  He has not ventured into the second part about homosexual acts.  You might say that he has tiptoed in that direction because he has said, “Who am I to judge?”  Normally you judge a person on his acts, not on whatever has been built into him as a person.  
For the Pope to not judge homosexual acts is, in fact, venturing far closer to not condemning homosexual acts than most Christians are prepared to go.  
So I thank God for Pope Francis’ lead.  Unfortunately, however, the Pope’s vocabulary does not stretch to appreciating homosexuality as a valid alternative sexual orientation.  He speaks of people who “have this condition.”  Now, a condition is something outside of normal; we use the word of illnesses and disorders.  So that the Pope’s lead on not discriminating against homosexuals runs into a bit of self-contradiction as long as he continues to regard homosexuality as a "condition".  He needs to discover the language of Enhanced Masculinity!