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Catholic Apologetics for the Secular World: Contemporary Gender Ideology

Catholic Apologetics for the Secular World: Contemporary Gender Ideology

See initial articles
1. Alberta Education Guidelines for Best Practices: Creating Learning Environments that Respect Diverse Sexual Orientations, Gender Identities, and Gender Expressions
https://education.alberta.ca/media/1626737/91383-attachment-1-guidelines-final.pdf

2. A Commentary by the Rebel Media
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7n_F38nKUPI
(Note: This is not an endorsement of fear-mongering via anecdotal rape incidents)

Response to New Government Policy: It is a violation of this document to affirm a child’s dignity and self as a beloved child of God, if indeed that child has instead chosen to embrace or label themselves according to any label befitting of the advancement of contemporary gender theory.

It systemically discriminates against Christianity (because it will be of nil effect on Islamic schools) and it forces gender ideology as a forced belief system, while undermining parental right to be involved in the formation of their child’s self-concept in this fashion.

Comment from reader: “…and it forces gender ideology as a forced belief system”
as opposed to Catholic Schools forcing binary gender ideology as a belief system? I agree with your point about Muslim schools though, they are more likely to protest and refuse complying, so I hope all religious schools are held up to the same standard (Including Jewish ones).

Response: Catholic schools do not “force” a binary gender ideology. “Binary Gender” is a phrase fabricated by a world that cannot handle (and chooses to suppress) the language of the Church. The reality is that the Church invites people to lift themselves OFF of the gender ideology identity-spectrum altogether… while recognizing XX and XY to be distinct, as they are recognized to be distinct in any Biology class. If you are suggesting that XX and XY are matters of ideologies being forced, then all biology classes need to be removed from the curriculum as well. Meaning, if the Church is accused of advancing a “binary gender theory” on account of upholding the biological reality that XX and XY (aside from certain aberrations) are how we are structurally created, then those who reject the Church have to reject the biological sciences as well. Note that XX and XY, which is what the Church speaks towards, is about sex, and not gender, so to suggest the Church forces a binary gender theory despite the Church speaking towards sex, reveals a non-understanding of the language of the Church at the very forefront. The Church also does speak towards gender, however, with it being specifically interwoven with a person’s sex, and his is not the same concept as one’s “perceived gender” which is what is driving the policies of today.
Comment: Nobody is saying XX and XY are matters of ideologies. The issue at hand is does XX necessitate a female gender as much as it necessitates a vagina. Some people say no, some say yes

Even if you can define transgenderism as psychosis, which you might have grounds for, I think we usually treat mental illnesses only if they make the person dangerous to themselves or their surroundings…
Being convinced you’re a woman when you have a penis is no more out of touch with physical reality than being convinced there is a god when you cannot present one.

No one has yet to present biological or physical evidence of heaven or hell, and people have no trouble spending money to make accommodation for those realities.

If you want to tie our policies to physical, self-evident, facts, no problem! but it goes both ways then, if we have to treat transgender persons as if they aren’t in touch with reality, we must do the same for all worshipers.

Response: The Christian/Islamic Heaven are external to our universe. You are approaching things through the lens of “our universe is all” which is simply not the case. To apply an intra-universal understanding of logic to the extra-universal domain is a flaw, and it taints your entire reasoning.

Comment: That may be, but heaven and hell being external to our universe is still your opinion, not grounded in the physical world

Response: Until the extra-universal domain becomes a part of your frame of reference, nothing that you speak of with regards to “Heaven” (or the counter “location” of “Hell”) can even be taken to be remotely evident of anything other than a faith statement in itself.

The probability of our universe being static in size approaches zero percent. Our universe either expands into, or contracts out of some external domain. Without this foundation… there is no possible way to grasp the Christian or Islamic understanding of Heaven

And yes, according to the Intra-universal Law of Non-Contradiction, this is true, and it can be expressed beyond the matter of opinion using mathematics.

Comment: That law only states the universe is more than we see, doesn’t state anything about the state of things that we don’t see. For example, even if there are things external to our universe, you cannot be sure of their nature

Response: The Law of Non-Contradiction points to an extra-universal domain, AND that the extra-universal domain is being responsible for the Law of Non-Contradiction to remain in place as is. The configuration of order in our universe remaining consistent from one increment of time to the next has a probability of occurrence of approaching zero.

With regards to things beyond our universe… you are correct, we cannot have perfect certainty as to their existence or nature, unless it is revealed in some fashion, in which it would be a matter of faith. However, the existence of the external domain is not a matter of faith but rather a matter of necessity based on the mathematics that exist of this world.

Comment: “The configuration of order in our universe remaining consistent from one increment of time to the next, has a probability of occurrence of approaching zero”

Any configuration of the universe has a probability approaching zero, since there are infinitely many configuration (not all support life, but they exist)

“…we cannot have perfect certainty as to their existence or nature, unless it is revealed in some fashion, in which it would be a matter of faith”

Similarly, nobody is questioning the existence of gender, only its nature and its linkage to our sex chromosomes

Response: Point being: This extra-universal domain matters. If our universe had a beginning, then this extra-universal domain pre-existed it. If our universe did not have a beginning and somehow always was, then it is the extra universal domain that still is responsible for the maintenance of the law of non-contradiction that we see within our universe (for the law itself dictates a probability of existence of approaching zero percent).

 

The point is that you made a claim about Heaven and Hell being akin to gender, when they are two different things. The “Heavenly” realm as Christians would say it, DOES exist, in that it is the domain external to our universe. That is beyond the shadow of opinion, and is supported by the law of non-contradiction.

The only reason I bring this up is because you linked transgenderism and God as being equitable in their treatment, philosophically, which is an erroneous claim, based on pure mathematics alone.

Comment: and similarly gender DOES exist, but may not be what we assume it is

Response: sex, gender and sexuality are all different things.  Gender perception and gender are different things

Comment: yes

Response: When someone’s perception does not match the physiological reality… that is the matter of concern that has been raised by this issue

Comment: Right, but if you say that sex, gender and sexuality are different, then what is the physiological reality of a person’s gender if not their genitalia?

Response: XX vs XY

Comment: … so you’re saying gender is related to having XX or XY, but penises and vaginas are not?

Response: Maleness and femaleness are not the same as masculine and feminine – the latter being influenced by our perception of that which is masculine or feminine, while the former is attached to chromosomes

Comment: So we should send people to washrooms based on their chromosomes? You do know there are XXY and XYY individuals out there, right? You know there XY individuals with an inactive Y chromosome such that they develop fully as female?

Response:
Sex -> XX, XY, XXY, etc…
Gender –> Associated with cultural norms and expectations
Perceived Gender –> What someone perceives of themselves, relative to their understanding of cultural norms and expectations

Comment: ok so I’m a bit lost
A person comes to you with a penis, they say “I feel I am a female”, how do you measure which washroom they should go to?

Response: Yes, I am aware of the people who have that, and who embody a particular gender more than another. That can’t be used as an argument to throw out the reality that sex and gender are distinct.

Comment: I don’t even need to answer that question. It is anchored on the idea that someone’s perception of themselves should trump the physiological reality of their situation. XX and XY human beings grow differently, there are differences in brain responses to similar stimuli, and there are unique needs for peer interaction that can be met by the different sexes in different ways.

Gender ideology has said
“We ignore neuroscience in which it has been revealed that XX and XY brains function differently”

“We ignore physiological and hormonal differences in which it has been revealed that XX and XY bodies grow to different densities of bone and muscle”

“We ignore best educational practices which call for homogeneous groupings of students for certain activities… which will be completely undone with the implementation of rules that frown upon sex segregation for certain activities, whether they be for play or for academic growth”

Comment: yeah, you can go on and answer my question

Response: Ultimately, what do you want a child to anchor their identity on? Maybe you could answer the question for me. Should it be their perceived gender? Or their actual sex? Or perhaps something aside from either?

Comment: Anchoring the identity based on chromosomes creates problems for XYs with inactive Y chromosomes. Anchoring it based on genitals creates a problem for hermaphrodites (you could say that can be solved with surgery, but that’s cheating). Really, their perceived gender is the only option that is consistent to everyone. More importantly, what’s the problem with people choosing their own gender identity? We let people choose their own religion…

Response: Do you want an answer from a religious perspective or a secular perspective?

Again you compared gender identity (internal) to religion (external). Not a reasonable comparison. This also reveals you consider religion to be some matter of opinion, as opposed to being a collection of objective truths being commonly upheld.

Comment: Religion is as internal as it comes. It’s more internal than political affiliation

Response: Religion is a set of beliefs. A set of beliefs that is based upon perception of external truths. You embrace it within your heart. That is internal. But the truths or “truths” are external.

Comment: “Religion is a set of beliefs.” The truths are external, your interpretation of them is internal

Response: …. based on objective truths.
Example: I believe 2+ 3 = 5. My religion is to uphold the law of non-contradiction. Nothing upheld by my religion is opinion, if the only thing I believe is the law of non-contradiction.

A gender identity label does not reflect the fullness of a person, nor the cycle of their existence in the human realm. It is too small. It is also anchored on the self, who is finite. It puts people towards a journey towards fulfillment that only serves to satisfy their perception of reality, which is influenced by how they see themselves. This is true for any person.

It sets people along a trajectory of pursuing fulfillment within an identity anchored on the finite.

Response: and that’s a problem because…?

Comment: However, since the domain beyond our universe is beyond infinite, because it is beyond the parameters of our universe…

Response: What on earth is “beyond infinite”? “infinite SSJ3”?

Comment: One has the choice to anchor their identity on that extra-universal domain, which is infinite, and thus enter a journey towards fulfillment along that trajectory, which is anchored on the “beyond infinite”. What, is greater? The finite or the infinite? That is the point I am trying to make. What could give you more? The finite or the infinite?

If a person is truly seeking the greatest degree of fulfillment within any perceived identity, would it make sense for them to anchor their journey on the finite (by wholeheartedly embracing a gender-ideology style way of self-identifying and defining themselves) or would it make better sense for them to anchor their journey on the infinite – by wholeheartedly relinquishing a perceived identity anchored only on the finite, and instead wholeheartedly embrace an identity anchored on the infinite?

That is the point I am trying to make. Nothing wrong with anyone being honest with themselves about where they are or what they are experiencing… nothing wrong with that at all. But why anchor your heart on the finite world via defining yourself according to your finite self (actually only one facet of one’s being) when instead they could anchor their hearts on the infinite extra-universal domain?

What can provide a greater degree of fulfillment? The finite or the infinite?

 

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Dear Brandon: How I Found Peace

Dear Brandon: How I Found Peace

Dear Brandon, I have been reading your Facebook posts and can feel your pain – in fact it is something we share. The only difference now is that I have found peace in my heart – a true peace, which is not the same as mere self-acceptance.

I realize this might not be what you want to hear right now, but you know I love you like a brother, and I hope you consider reading this and know that I am typing this with genuine love. I want you to find peace as well. In saying that, your posts have increased my awareness of the joy that I have found since fully surrendering to Christ. I am grateful beyond all measure, and only wish you might open your heart to taste the joy that today I now experience. It is Christ who fills our hearts and who shines brightly through the cracks in our weak human foundations. He chooses us, even if we don’t choose Him. Brennan, please I hope and pray that you will read the rest of this letter.

We are very much the same – surrounded by people who thought they could do good by talking at us. But I needed to know Christ’s love in my heart. And I came to know of Christ’s love, mostly not because of what was said by churchy people, but because of hitting a rock bottom (for the fourth or fifth time) and finding out that Christ still had not abandoned me. In my darkest hour, in desperation I looked to Him, and He was there waiting for me with open arms. It was a time where I thought that no one… and I mean NO ONE… could ever love a sinner like me.

Look at the crucifix, Brandon. I know you are from a Protestant family, but please look to the Catholic crucifix and the bloody and beaten body of Christ. Be reminded of His suffering endured for us. The rock-bottoms of life are an opportunity for us to unite our sufferings to His, and in doing that, He DOES carry the burden, and relieve our souls of the weight that only Satan wants us to suffocate under.

Brandon, through the Resurrection of Christ, which only came after His suffering, we can partake in the joyful song of Heaven, and can now offer our lives to help others find peace as well.

Brandon, I came to love Christ. Because He loved me first. And His is an infinite and perfect Love. Despite that, I still experience same-sex attractions, just like you and countless others. The thing is, we don’t have to pretend that God has abandoned us – he truly hasn’t. He permits us experiences so that we can further glorify Him, if we so choose. The Catholic Church doesn’t teach that we should ever have the objective to change our attractions from gay to straight – because the Catholic Church draws us far beyond those types of labels to begin with, because the Church sees us as MORE. But it starts with being honest with ourselves, and I am so glad you are already on that journey.

Brandon, you are a wonderful, loving, and genuinely amazing person. Please know we walk together in dealing with our attractions. Please please please I implore you to invite Christ further into your life, and to fully surrender to Him. Let His love fill your heart. Whatever your attractions, just allow yourself to be held in Jesus’ arms. Let Him hug you. let Him hold you. Let Him be your source of love.

Forget what the world is saying about who you must be… and this poisonously false notion that the Church could never love you. Brandon, please, I love you as a brother, and I’d never forgive myself if I didn’t share the love of Christ with you, and the freedom and peace He has brought me, in honoring His call to live a chaste life striving for holiness.

I know your heart is hurting… but please, let us carry this cross together, and follow Him.

It’s a journey that has brought me joy beyond all measure…

Come and see.

Do The World A Favor… Go Flick A Booger

Letter

Boom Boom Boom Version 2

BOOM. BOOM. BOOM.

That is not the sound of the world winning an argument against Christians about how gay marriage should be supported. Rather, it is the sound of my head makes when I bang it against a wall after reading the substance of this flowchart.

ABC

I could try writing about fish without having a clue about water, and my position would be seriously flawed. I could write about birds without having a clue about air, and my position would be seriously flawed. How is it then that people can write about how the Church is “right” or “wrong” without having a clue about what the Church upholds as true, or why?

It doesn’t make any sense…. but we should be used to that by now. So instead of getting your feathers ruffled, let us respond with a better strategy: an elevated approach.

HUH?

It’s easy. All you have to do is gain a few nuggets of understanding about the Church, and you will be ready to go.

With that in mind, let’s look at the image… If your friends tried shoving this in your face, instead of getting into an argument about civil rights, genetic cause, equality, and so forth, simply ELEVATE the conversation to be about the matter of identity. Yep, good ol’ identity politics, as it is now being called…. probably so that people will not want to talk about it. Very clever of the world to make the topic of identity to seem negative… very verrrrry clever!  But you and I and every other person who understands what is going on, can see right past it. Identity is the very core of the matter that we need to focus on. Why? Because there is often a difference between our Created Identity (as males and females) and Embraced Identity (which is who we perceive ourselves to be).

How a Focus on Identity Destroys This Graphic
This graphic seems to assume that people “are gay” or “are straight” (or are somewhere in between). By the wording used, it is very apparent that the author believes people should identify as gay or straight (etc…) because those types of identities form the very basis of his or her position. Nowhere does the author distinguish that maybe, just maybe, he might be seeing attractions experienced (not-specifically chosen) as distinct from embraced identity (specifically chosen).  If that is the case, then the creator of this graphic lacks the foundational understanding of the human person, as it would be seen through the lens of the Catholic Church. Again I ask of you – how then can this flow chart, or it’s author be taken seriously? Well, the answer is that it can be taken seriously, as long as the general population is kept in the dark about life beyond what is called “contemporary gender ideology.” However, for as long as people embrace “contemporary gender theory” (which is the way of thinking that enshrines both the gay and straight identities to the point where people come to whole-heartedly embrace those [false] identities to be who they are), this graphic will be taken seriously.

However, hopefully you can see past it.

See, it’s not about fighting a “pro-gay movement.” Rather, this is about elevating the conversation to be one that shines a light on the anti-Catholic movement of contemporary gender ideology itself. One cannot wholeheartedly believe that we should maintain earthly identities as a means of defining ourselves (whether it be LGBTQ or Straight), while at the same time believe that we should strive to die to ourselves (and let go of this way of defining ourselves) for the sake of the Kingdom of God in a radical form of dying to ourselves.

“One cannot love both God and Mammon.” I remember reading that in the Bible when I was younger (it’s somewhere in the back, right?) and I had no idea what it meant. Today, with contemporary gender ideology in full-swing around the world, I finally get it. Here is what I mean: People want to define themselves as gay (or straight) and Christians, are supporting them in that decision to place themselves above God in how they truly see themselves. Ouch. Warning: May cause ruffled feathers. But here is why this matters… the only people pursuing same-sex relationships as a means of fulfillment are people who have first come to define themselves as gay. And of those people (and I was one of them), I can guarantee there are many who have never been given the opportunity to see themselves in any other way (way to go, Gay-Straight-Alliances, way to go). And the reason they have never been given the opportunity to see beyond that is because the language to express the true reality that attractions don’t define us unless we choose that to be the case, simply hasn’t worked it’s way into the general population. That’s where you come in. That is why separating attractions experienced from embraced identity is your number one go-to strategy.

The Church brings us that truth. Why? It is because the Church upholds objective truth (and does not “invent it” as many people think). It is objectively true that something we do not specifically choose (attractions) and something we DO specifically choose (embraced identity) are not the same thing. As well, it is the Church who boldly upholds the truth that we are more than any particular facet of our being such as our sexuality (which we can say while still acknowledging the gift that it is). Ultimately the Church invites us to reflect the greatest degree of self-honesty of who we truly are by inviting (not forcing) us to find our identity in Christ, which does not replace but rather overarches and completely encompasses all of our worldly traits for Christ is greater than our universe. The Church, in Her desire that we may experience the greater joy of being more completely honest with ourselves with regards to type of identity we embrace as our own, invites us to express our identity in those overarching terms, whilst still wanting us to be honest with ourselves about the attractions we experience.

Does it seem to you that the creator of this graphic has even a remote grasp on this reality? Not to me. For me, nothing more needs to be said beyond this, aside from the fact that the tone seems rather condescending and geared towards shaming one particular group (which is called bullying).

Anyway, I am sick of being bullied and I hope you are too. The answer to the bullying is not more bullying, but again ELEVATING the conversation so that those who are watching it all go down might be enlightened of what is going on… especially on the following things, some of which have been spoken about above:

  1. Attractions experienced are not the same thing as embraced identity.
  2. The Church does not affirm anyone into the gay OR STRAIGHT identity.
  3. Embraced identity influences what we perceive to be fulfilling.
  4. The only people pursuing gay marriage are people who have already first come to self-identify and define themselves as gay to some degree. AND THIS IS WHY IDENTITY MATTERS.
  5. The Church does not endorse “heterosexual” marriage either. That is, if people are self-identifying and defining themselves in that way, the Church cannot support that type of union as is, because the parties involved are pursuing fulfillment within their particularly-held gender identity, as opposed to being open to dying to self and to grow in that overarching identity of being first and foremost a beloved child of God. The Church, in effect, if just as “heterophobic” as it is “homophobic” in this way, if those types of accusations ever start rolling around. In saying that, the opposite-sex couple does have the potential to reflect the physical complimentarity of the human being, while the same-sex couple does not – and that is why I specified “as is” in the earlier statement. The couple defining themselves as heterosexuals, may choose to one day die to those embraced worldly identities and instead humble themselves to embrace wholeheartedly, their identity rooted first and foremost in Christ. Because their relationship respects the structural creation authored by God, it may become holy (virtuous) and therefore something that can be supported if and when that time comes. However, because a same-sex relationship is counter to our structural design, it cannot become holy, for as long as there are activities that are counter to that structural design, and or behaviours leading a person to become more intertwined within that type of self-identifying, whether there be sexual activity or not (for this may simply lead a person into further activity with another person of the same-sex down the road). Because of this, a same-sex sexual or romantic relationship cannot become holy. It can become “less unholy” as people choose to become disengaged from that type of relationship (which ultimately takes time and an interior conviction of heart).

Please remember: If anyone tries to shame you on account of bringing up “identity politics” just remind them of the reality that it is our embraced identity that drives us into seeking fulfillment in the way we do. As they grimace at the truth of the matter, inquisitive minds who are watching it all go down, will have something to chew on. Plant the seed. At this time and place, that might be all we can do.

One last thing to note: When you elevate the conversation, make sure to elevate it to be about all people… which means… elevate it to be about dying to ourselves to the point of letting go of all types of earthly labels, for the sake of embracing a label anchored first and foremost on Christ.

A little dying to ourselves can go a long way… just as Jesus Christ and 11 of His apostles. Shouldn’t we be open to doing the same thing?

The next time a friend sends you that graphic, remind them that it cannot even be taken seriously because it is so devoid of understanding of the Christian faith, right from the get go. The world seems content with the idea that they can attack the Church while only having a very limited (and skewed) understanding of it. So, let’s take up our own crosses right now, and help people see beyond their paradigm.

And then invite your friends to walk with you into a deeper understanding. The acceptance or rejection of that invitation… will truly reveal who is the closed-minded one. Be silent and let people reveal their true colors on their own – they won’t need any help from you in that department.

Now pray that you might be able to approach the potential of this interaction with the confidence and humility of the Lord. And then pray some more. Those who are called to handle this topic, need all the prayers they can get. At this rate, it’s one might think it is gonna get worse before it gets better… but if you have the faith of a mustard seed, and know that God equips the called, you will have nothing to fear.

Be smart. Be bold. Be the reason why this world has it’s paradigm of reality completely shattered.

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Catholic Editing Process When Writing About Homosexuality

A Guide for Developing Catholic Resources Aimed at Elevating the Conversation.
Note: These may or may not be pastoral in nature. Pastoral resources may have a different tone and language choice that may be more befitting to the circumstance.

 

1. Begin with the pure and raw objective truth. Ensure this is stated in terms reflective of the law of non-contradiction. Example: non-specific choice is not the same thing as specific choice

2. Couch that objective truth in the form of a personal narrative.
Example: In my journey, I came to realize that non-specific choice was not the same thing as specific choice. Note: It is not enough to simply say non-choice verses choice, as that rules out the reality that along our journeys choices are made that influence our future relationships and comfort zones.

3. Transform the voice to make it inclusive.
Example:
MOVE FROM SAYING: This is true.
MOVE TO SAYING: Many of us have come to realize this truth.

4. Transform voice to be invitational as opposed to authoritative.
Example:
MOVE FROM SAYING: All people should practice chastity.
MOVE TO SAYING: All people are invited to practice chastity.

5. Transform voice to be elevational so that any concept applies to all persons and not any singular group
Example:
MOVE FROM SAYING: People who experience same-sex attractions are invited to practice chastity.
MOVE TO SAYING: All people are invited to practice chastity.

6. Transform voice to be disarming by removing all assumptions about what might be on someone’s heart or how they might be living.
MOVE FROM SAYING:
a. Homosexuality is caused by a father wound
b. Homosexuality is an affliction
c. People suffer from same-sex attractions
d. All gay people live a ‘gay lifestyle’
MOVE TO SAYING:
a. There origins of homosexuality are complex and we know that early relational development and environment is an important factor with regards to where we feel safe to place ourselves as we grow
b. Same-sex attractions are something that many people experience, and some consider it an affliction while others don’t
c. Experiencing same-sex attractions brings about a unique set of issues to be faced per each person, and some may perceive that they suffer on account of those unique issues.
d. The ‘gay lifestyle’ is not something that people automatically become a part of once they acknowledge that they experience same-sex attractions, or (for some) “come out” as gay – though “coming out” within that type of identity does influence one’s pursuit of fulfillment which may cause them to enter that type of environment looking for love or other types of satisfaction.

7. Introduce spectrums wherever possible, to increase accuracy and prevent misinterpretation.
a. People will do this –> people are likely to do this –> people in our shoes may be likely to do this
b. So that we can be honest with ourselves –> So that we can be more completely honest with ourselves.
c. people think –> many people think
Note: Each of these examples reflects how the spectrum of human behaviour nulifies one’s justification to throw out the statement as a blanket-absolute.

8. Remove potentially misleading nuances, especially by purging from your use, any misleading word, or word that serves to inhibit people from being able to understand more clearly the Catholic faith.
a. Remove the use of SSA (as the acronym): removes the non-disarming nuance of “clinicalization” which some people take to mean that the Church sees “straight” people above “gay” people
b. Remove the use of the word “have”. That is, change “have” same-sex attractions to “experience” same-sex attractions. This removes the nuance of permanence.
c. Remove nuance of ownership:
Instead of saying “regardless of our attractions,” say “regardless of the attractions that we experience”
d. Remove the nuance of “change therapy” by not using the word therapy alone, but instead connecting it with a specific task so that it is not mistaken to be about change therapy. Example, instead of saying “therapy,” say “therapy to address several underlying matters.”
e. Remove the nuance of change (which is often perceived to be about sexual orientation change therapy) by using the word “transform” instead of the word “change.” For example, instead of saying “God changes us” say “God transforms out hearts”

9. Remove and clarify misnomers and other linguistic concerns
a. “Gay marriage” technically needs quotes because it means something to one group, while is an oxymoron to another – who believes that a marriage is not possible when the human species cannot be completed in the conjugal act
b. “Coming out” means different things to different people, so best to use quotes around that to reflect that you are referring to one person’s understanding of it.
c. “I disagree with homosexuality” is a phrase that embeds misnomer because one cannot disagree with the matter of an attraction merely existing. However, one can disagree with the way in which a person chooses to self-identify. Best to neither agree with or disagree with homosexuality, for in doing that, clarity of meaning is lost as that misnomer is further entrenched.

10. Finally, ask yourself if what you have just written could be shared with the person you love the most, if they were one who experienced same-sex attractions and or self-identified as gay. If you think that you wouldn’t have the ability to lovingly share it with them over a coffee and a chat, then revisit your entire tone and voice.

This article is a work in progress, and actually counters point 10 (and probably other points) at this time. However, in being a work in progress, and for the audience of this site, it will stand for now.

11. Ask yourself if what you wrote prepares the learner for the concept, before the concept is introduced. Aim for this to be a yes. For example, adding numbers with the place values lined up properly would not make any sense to someone who had not yet come to see (and embrace as their own truth) the idea that place values matter.

12. Ask yourself if your item is aimed at the heart while being supported by logic. Aim for this to be a yes. Ask if your item is aimed at intellect and then supported by logic. Aim for this to be a no, if you are presenting to an audience that has been taught to follow their heart. Aim for it to be a yes if you are presenting to an audience that has been taught to follow their intellect.

13. Ask yourself whether or not your item relies on Scripture, Tradition, or Magisterium. If yes, then know that it may be thrown out by anyone who has come to believe that the Church is a form of false authority. If it utilizes any of those three, as a comparison to what someone has already embraced as their own truth, there may be a benefit to that – if it is appropriate to have these references at all (which depends on the audience).

14. Does it have an overarching call for us to enter a journey towards greater self-honesty? AIM FOR A YES. Why? Because people will honor their journey towards greater self-honesty, above most other things. This is because our culture has made it a deeply entrenched value that one should be most completely honest with themselves. We can use that to our advantage by framing the objective truths (offered in an invitational narrative) in a way that respects one’s journey towards embracing a greater degree of self-honesty – to be embraced on their own accord.

End of list for now.

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Boom Boom Boom Goes The Argument

BOOM. BOOM. BOOM.

 

That is not the sound of the world winning an argument against Christians about how gay marriage should be supported. Rather, it is the sound of my head makes when I bang it against a wall after reading the substance of this flowchart.

ABC

I could try writing about fish without having a clue about water, and my position would be seriously flawed. I could write about birds without having a clue about air, and my position would be seriously flawed. How is it then that people can write about how the Church is “right” or “wrong” without having a clue about what the Church upholds as true, or why?

 

It doesn’t make any sense…. but we should be used to that by now. So instead of getting your feathers ruffled, let us respond with a better strategy: an elevated approach.

 

HUH?

 

It’s easy. All you have to do is gain a few nuggets of understanding about the Church, and you will be ready to go.

 

With that in mind, let’s look at the image… If your friends tried shoving this in your face, instead of getting into an argument about civil rights, genetic cause, equality, and so forth, simply ELEVATE the conversation to be about the matter of identity. Yep, good ol’ identity politics, as it is now being called…. probably so that people will not want to talk about it. Very clever of the world to make the topic of identity to seem negative… very verrrrry clever!  But you and I and every other person who understands what is going on, can see right past it. Identity is the very core of the matter that we need to focus on.

 

Here is why:
This graphic seems to assume that people are all gay or straight (or somewhere in between). If that is the case, then the creator of this graphic lacks the foundational understanding of the human person, as it would be seen through the lens of the Catholic Church, who upholds the truth boldly that we are not to be reduced to any particular facet of our being, such as our sexuality (while still acknowledging the gift that it is). In other words, the Church invites all of us to see ourselves as more. Ultimately the Church invites us to find our identity in Christ – and to express ourselves with that truth being apparent.

 

For the creator of the graphic to think that they should be some authority on how Christians should respond, is absurd, because they reveal they are missing the most basic and fundamental piece of Christianity.

Nothing more needs to be said beyond this, aside from the fact that the tone seems rather condescending and geared towards shaming one particular group (which is called bullying).

 

Anyway, I am sick of being bullied and I hope you are too. The answer to the bullying is not more bullying, but again ELEVATING the conversation so that those who are watching it all go down might be enlightened of what is going on… especially on the following things:

 

 

  1. Attractions experienced are not the same thing as embraced identity.
  2. The Church does not affirm anyone into the gay OR STRAIGHT identity.
  3. Embraced identity influences what we perceive to be fulfilling.
  4. The only people pursuing gay marriage are people who have already first come to self-identify and define themselves as gay to some degree. AND THIS IS WHY IDENTITY MATTERS.
  5. The Church does not endorse “heterosexual” marriage either – if people are self-identifying and defining themselves in that way either. The Church, in effect, if just as “heterophobic” as it is homophobic in this way, if those accusations ever start rolling around. In saying that, the opposite-sex couple does have the potential to reflect the physical complimentarity of the human being, while the same-sex couple does not – hey don’t shoot the messenger, that is simple biology.

 

Note: If anyone tries to shame you on account of bringing up “identity politics” just remind them of the reality that it is our embraced identity that drives us into seeking fulfillment in the way we do. As they grimace at the truth of the matter, inquisitive minds who are watching it all go down, will have something to chew on. Plant the seed. At this time and place, that might be all we can do.

 

One last thing to note: When you elevate the conversation, make sure to elevate it to be about all people… which means… elevate it to be about dying to ourselves to the point of letting go of all types of earthly labels, for the sake of embracing a label anchored first and foremost on Christ.

 

A little dying to ourselves can go a long way… just as Jesus Christ and 11 of His apostles. Shouldn’t we be open to doing the same thing?

 

The next time a friend sends you that graphic, remind them that it cannot even be taken seriously because it is so devoid of understanding of the Christian faith, right from the get go.

 

And then invite your friend to walk with you into a deeper understanding. The acceptance or rejection of that invitation… will truly reveal who is the closed-minded one. Be silent and let people reveal their true colors on their own – they won’t need any help from you in that department.

 

Now pray that you might be able to approach the potential of this interaction with the confidence and humility of the Lord. And then pray some more. Those who are called to handle this topic, need all the prayers they can get. At this rate, it’s gonna get worse before it gets better. 🙂

 

 

 

Protected: Celibacy for gays seminar protested (Sept 25, 2013)

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