By Father Joseph Krastel, C.S.s.R.
Hours after President Obama endorsed marriage between homosexual partners, MSNBC’s Chris Matthews interviewed a gay politician from each party. Then Chris summed up a campaign strategy for the November election: Insist that those who oppose same-sex marriage are homophobes and bigots.
From now until November, people who uphold traditional marriage and family life will be shamed by being identified as prejudiced against homosexuals and opponents of “equal rights.” How should Christians who believe in one man-one woman marriages handle that?
Where questions of public shame echo in their consciences, people sometimes back away and even try to prove that they are not biased by quietly supporting something they doubt. “I’m not really involved,” they will tell themselves. “It’s none of my business; maybe I should go along with the trends of the time.” According to some Democrat strategists, this could work, especially among young voters.
Yet, it would be a big mistake to allow ourselves to be overwhelmed with shame and backed into supporting homosexual marriage. After all, 80 percent of the world’s population insists that genuine marriage can only exist between a man and a woman. Moreover, most of them favor traditional marriage without any reference to the Bible.
They believe that traditional marriage rests on the natural law, which lurks in the hearts of all people, apart from the Bible. Muslims, Hindus and most Confucians favor traditional marriage. Along with traditional Christians, they make up 80 percent of the world’s population. As Vinod Bansai of India’s Vishwa Hindu Parishad group commented, legalizing same-sex marriages “cannot be endorsed anywhere in the world … neither is it beneficial in any way to society as a whole.”
Over the centuries, biblical spirituality has offered strong support for the sacrament of matrimony. Couples solidified and grew in their love through the teachings of Christ and St. Paul. But without having biblical revelation, millions of people throughout the world recognize as marriage only the union of a person with male sexual organs with a person with female sexual organs. So the natural law insists, and cannot be changed by the fads and trends of today.
So, when you are called a bigot or an outdated Christian because you do not support same-sex-marriage, do not cower. Follow the natural law: treat everyone with respect; support those who try to eliminate “bullying” among young people; give a good example and your wisdom to family members and, especially, to those who have some trouble in their marriages. Be confident of yourself and the millions who support only traditional marriage; after all, it is not wise to try to fool “mother nature.”
Father Joseph Krastel, C.S.s.R., is associate pastor of St. Mary Church in Annapolis.
Copyright (c) May 30, 2012 CatholicReview.org