Gay Family Member Issues



Need some help with this. My sister-in-law sent my wife and I the following from the Dignity website and I’m not sure if I responded appopriately.

Dignity website: "9. Can someone be involved in a lesbian or gay relationship and still be a faithful Catholic?

Certainly yes, not as a matter of public Church teaching but only as a matter of conscience, only as a matter of personal application of the whole of Catholic teaching to their particular case. In 1975 the Vatican published a Declaration on Certain Questions Concerning Sexual Ethics. One of those questions was homosexuality. A principal author of that document was Fr. Jan Visser, C.Ss.R. In an interview published in the January 30, 1976, edition of L’Europa, he said: “When one is dealing with people who are so deeply homosexual that they will be in serious personal and perhaps social trouble unless they attain a steady partnership within their homosexual lives, one can recommend them to seek such a partnership, and one accepts this relationship as the best they can do in their present situation.” One of the very men who formulated the Vatican teaching that homogenital acts are wrong allows that in certain individual cases one may not only permit but even recommend a homosexual relationship."

My response is to say something like: “That is interesting. I’m not sure how to react to it initially, as I don’t know the context or anything. I would guess that, if this is legitimate, in order to have it recommended, a person would have to receive pastoral counseling on the matter. I’m not sure if it would be something that could be determined by the individual conscience as the answer suggests. Please don’t take that as simple fundamentalist Catholicism. I just want to get it straight from the horse’s mouth if you know what I mean. Interview transcripts are certainly not anything official and hence, I wouldn’t want to assume anything.”

Any thoughts on this Dignity quote? My sister-in-law is in a relationship and I need to respond in a loving, but truthful way.


Here is the truth. Your responsibility is sharing the truth in charity.

2357 Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, 141 tradition has always declared that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.” 142 They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.

Why does the Church teach this? Because the bible does.

141 Cf. Gen 19:1-29; Rom 1:24-27; I Cor 6:10; I Tim 1:10.


Rom 1:

22] Claiming to be wise, they became fools,
23] and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man or birds or animals or reptiles.
24] Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves,
25] because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed for ever! Amen.
26] For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. Their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural,
27] and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in their own persons the due penalty for their error.
28] And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a base mind and to improper conduct.
29] They were filled with all manner of wickedness, evil, covetousness, malice. Full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malignity, they are gossips,
30] slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents,
31] foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless.
32] Though they know God’s decree that those who do such things deserve to die, they not only do them but approve those who practice them.



Need some help with this. My sister-in-law sent my wife and I the following from the Dignity website and I’m not sure if I responded appopriately.



I would be extremely skeptical of the quote from the Dignity website. I googled it and the Dignity website was the only relevant link I could find. If your relatives can find you a copy of the magazine itself and show you the interview and the quote in it, then I would start worrying about having to take it seriously. It is my experience, however, that our brethren on the moral and theological left have a casual disregard for the truth.

If you do have to start taking it seriously, well, other responders have mentioned the official teaching of the Church as found in the Catechism. One man’s opinion does not a doctrine make, even if that man is relatively influential.

  • Liberian


Here is a link to Courage, which is faithful to the Magisterium. I also always recommend the book Beyond Gay and the work of Fr. John Hardon.

I would consider the source when pertaining to info from Dignity, it’s my understanding they have some pretty heterodox views.


Because of its lack of submission to the authority of the Magisterium, Dignity is NOT a place I would trust for information on the topic of homosexuality. The relevant magesterial documents are the Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraphs 2357 through 2359 (read the WHOLE thing) and a pastoral letter issued by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith that was signed by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger (now His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI) called “Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons.”

Take a look at both of those documents for YOURSELF and you’ll be well informed as to what the CHURCH really says and not what peoples’ opinions are.


Thanks a bunch folks. I’m familiar with a lot of those resources. I loved David Morrison’s book. I just needed a little feedback on whether or not that was reliable and I appreciate your assistance with that. She’s a wonderful person that I care about and I just want to handle the matter lovingly and truthfully.



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