Thursday, June 27, 2013

Is the Church Insincere in Her Stand Against SSM while Promoting the Best Interest of Children?

That appears to be one stance amongst promoters of keeping religion out of the “marriage business”.  I say “appears” because I had to tie a couple statements together to draw that conclusion.  At any rate, Catholics should be prepared to logically and intelligibly talk about this when it comes up, so here are the paraphrased statements, with my own remarks to each:

-Gay couples can already adopt, so opposing SSM doesn’t affect how children are raised.  If the Church wants to make a stand against something that will affect children, it should be standing against divorce.  Regardless, the Church should not claim moral authority on the well-being of children.

First of all, just because a same-sex couple CAN adopt and WANTS to adopt does not logicaly mean that this is what's BEST for children...and science does not support any such notion (source below).  Secondly, the Church DOES stand against divorce.  In fact, in its 2,000 year history, the Catholic Church is one of very few religious groups that have NEVER CHANGED its stance on divorce.  Thirdly, I’m not certain what was meant by “should not claim moral authority on the well-being of children”, but the question needs to be asked then, “should the Church be concerned about the well-being of children?”  Regardless of whether there should be a moral authority, or whether the Church should be it, the fact is that the Church is concerned about the well-being of children.  Anyone arguing against this must necessarily explain why the Church should not be…and then be prepared to accept the logical consequences of their position and concede that they have zero basis upon which to complain about the next point…clerical abuse.

(Source  , see item 7)

-If the Church cared about children, they’d be excommunicating pederast Priests instead of moving them around and quietly retiring them.

First, this betrays a misunderstanding of what an excommunication is.  Excommunication is not punishment, per se, but a warning and act of mercy to get a person back into communion with Christ’s Church.  Secondly, while the Church was moving accused Priests around for treatment at the time these things were taking place (30 years ago) it was doing exactly what psychological science was saying was best.  The Church does now, in fact, realize that this wasn’t good science and has not only handed Priests over to authorities, but has even changed its own Canon Law to make it easier to punish them, even in cases where evidence is not sufficient for civil prosecution.  Now, with the Church’s zero-tolerance policy, every accused Priest is immediately removed from duty and reported to authorities.  The Church has trained children how to recognize and report abuse, trained adults to recognize abuse, installed Victim Assistance Coordinators, cooperated in the John Jay Report, initiated its own independent compliance monitoring, and has instituted review boards of psychologists and other experts to examine all abuse cases brought forward.  No other organization has come close to protecting children in the way the Church has done recently…and all this in light of the fact that public schools are 100 times more likely to have abuse cases, and the fact that there are still 225 cases of admitted sexual abuses in New York alone that were never reported to authorities.  (Source: )

But let’s get back to Same Sex “marriage” (SSM).  The focal point I drew from the argument is this:  In the argument against homosexual "marriage", The Church is insincere in claiming to protect a child's best interest because it needs to first defend Marriage and protect children from abuse.” 

Let's break it down and point out the facts:

The Church is insincere because the Church should be focusing more on divorce...except the Church DOES speak out against divorce...for the past 2,000 years. In fact, the Catholic Church is one of very few religious groups that has NEVER CHANGED its stance on divorce. 

The Church is insincere because some Priests abused children and it needs to focus on protection of childrenand in order to make a logical argument out of this, one would have to presume that therefore the Church supports abusive behavior...except the Church does NOT support such behavior, has spoken out against it, has opened itself up to scrutiny on the matter so that ith can be rooted out, and has even changed its own Canon Law to make it easier to prosecute the accused.  The Church has done more than any other organization, religious or otherwise, to protect children from abuse. 

(And to go to the ridiculous, but only logical, conclusion of the point:  if the Church is insincere because of the actions of some Priests...then humanity as a whole, in arguing for protecting the lives of children, is insincere because some humans have killed children. )

The Church has always supported Marriage and stands alone (or nearly so) in its unchanging teaching against divorce.  The Church is interested in the best interest of children and has done more than any organization in the world to stamp out abuse, despite the fact that abuse is more rampant outside the Church.  So, how exactly is the Church insincere in wanting what is best for children??

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