Catholics and civic issues

I’ve been reading a number of threads (why do they all get locked?) on various debates regarding Catholic advocacy in government. I certainly understand why the Church opposes the birth control mandate, as that has a directive regarding how the Church operates. What I don’t understand is why the Church advocates against things like gay marriage in secular society.

I fully agree with the Church’s teachings regarding homosexuality, but I don’t understand why we spend so much time and energy opposing this evil in our society from a top-down approach. I could understand the opposition if such regulation required Catholic priests to perform such ceremonies, but I don’t understand the opposition to the legality of it outside of religion. It seems to me the Church should bother a little less with trying to keep a secular society in order and focus more on spreading the love of Jesus on a local and personal level. Why are we so wrapped up with how people who aren’t even Catholic live their lives when there is a staggering rate of marriage and family failure right within the Church?

I’m not saying we should capitulate on our own moral grounds, but sans the outside trying to regulate what we believe to be right, what’s the point?

Agreed. My theory on why it’s happening is that Catholics and/or other Christians may feel that if it happens in secular society, its bound to happen within the Church.

It’s because we should fight evil and morality where ever we see it and where ever we come in contact with it. The Church puts a lot of resources into fighting for marriage. That includes work toward helping Catholics make better choices about marriage, saving troubled marriages and giving spouses support to build their marriages. But those efforts don’t get “press” because they aren’t salacious.

But fighting for marriage includes fighting against perversions of the institution, including same-sex attempts at marriage.

Opposing evil IS spreading the love of Jesus. The two are not mutually exclusive.

I agree epiclotus. I love the church, I made a decision to learn more about the church and eventually be welcomed into it. I don’t think its fair to push our ideals on the rest of the society. I live in this U.S and we are the land of free, just as I was to make choices regarding my morals and religious beliefs I feel everyone should have that same right as its covered in the first amendment.

The Church, and all of us as members of Christ’s Body, have the responsibility of admonishing one another, correcting the sinner, and preaching the Truth. That’s one reason.

The Church also has a duty to work for the betterment of ALL, especially the weakest members of society (like children, for example).

Another reason is that, once sin becomes “legally” accepted, as in the case of same-sex unions, then the Church is at risk of not being able to preach against the sinful nature of same-sex carnal unions…because same-sex carnal unions then enjoy a legally protected status. In other words, it’s not the Church forcing beliefs on anyone…its that the government then forces the acceptance (or tolerance) of sin onto the Church. And it’s not some fairy-tale notion…it’s a reality. (See items 4 and 5 in the link below)

osv.com/tabid/7621/itemid/10339/Rebuttals-to-arguments-for-samesex-marriage.aspx

epiclotus #1 23/6/13 3:31 pm Re: Catholics and civic issues
don’t understand why we spend so much time and energy opposing this evil in our society from a top-down approach
Why are we so wrapped up with how people who aren’t even Catholic live their lives when there is a staggering rate of marriage and family failure right within the Church?
Miss_Felicity #4
I don’t think its fair to push our ideals on the rest of the society.

The errors here are that we are commanded by God the Son to “Go and teach all nations whatsoever I have commanded you.” This command to the Apostles is for All of us. “Am I my brother’s keeper?” said the wicked Cain to the Lord and God punished him for his wicked deed against Abel. [Gen 4:9-15].

So the evils in society are due to Original Sin and the poor formation in faith and morals, which Catholics have been commanded to strive to combat each according to his abilities and formation.

Real Catholics don’t “push our ideals on the rest of society”. They combat the multitudinous evils by striving to offer the truth as Christ commanded and acting whenever and wherever they can to show the Way, the Truth and the Life. Societies are plumbing the depths of evil because “when bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle.” (Edmund Burke).

The Year of Faith exists for formation and evangelisation – and what a need there is for reevangelisation.

I didn’t say we shouldn’t combat these evils. I specifically asked why we should be trying to get involved at the legislative level (top-down) when the community level (bottom-up) is often more poignant and effective.

Jesus went from town to town preaching his message, helping people, and showing them through example how to live. He didn’t spend his time in the halls of Herod trying to change the laws of the land, or in the Senate of Rome trying to sway the Empire. In fact, when he had the opportunity to really lay everything out in front of Pilate, Jesus was mostly silent and very much to the point when he did speak. Therefore, my point is, why do we spend as much time and energy as an organization trying to change legislative thought?

Also, my point about problems in the Church regarding marriage and families was really a reference to Jesus’ command to take the plank out our own eye before trying to remove the one from our brother’s eye. Divorce, infidelity, birth control are all major issues in the Church today, and it seems we should be more worried about cleaning house before (not in place of) taking on the massive task of legislative involvement in issues like gay marriage.

Ah but you see these things DO impact what happens in a Catholic Church.

If gay “marriage” is legal, then by definition it is discrimination to limit marriage to one man and one woman. If a gay couple would want to be “married” in a Catholic Church, then the church would be forced to unless it wanted to face penalties.

And what better way to spread the love of Jesus by publicly supporting the truth of what marriage is, rather than by not spreading the word about how sinful relationships and acts destroy solidarity and the building blocks of society?

We should be doing both. And we are.

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