Homosexuality and the Church


#1

I Have a close friend who has been in battle with his sexuality for a long time. He is catholic and attends church every week, never missing a week. His Father has been a Catholic his whole life, and follows the bible very closely. He has always been against Homosexuality, and taught my friend to be too. My friend however is getting to the point where he is having a lot of trouble controlling it, He’s always known there was something different about him and he slowly learned what it was as he got older. He doesn’t want to give into it because of his beliefs. He grew up in a family that has no homosexuals to be found on either side, and The First time he met a homosexual that he knew of was years after he started to get these feelings. I see no way he could have simply been influenced to be the way he is.

My question is a tough one, If he’s always felt different like this and has known since childhood, why then is it like this. Was he not born under God too? If God does not approve why then does he do nothing to help him, he’s prayed and attends church, but gets no close to overcoming it.

I am also Catholic and attend church Every Sunday.


#2

The trick isn’t necessarily in “overcoming” the attractions, but learning to live life accepting that they’ll happen but choosing God INSTEAD of them. His attractions to other men are in no way sinful, and yes, he was created by God, just as we all are. Sometimes God allows people to suffer temptation, and many times these sufferings are blessings in disguise! It sounds like your friend has taken it very well, choosing God over them throughout :). Let him proceed as is comfortable for him, though he obviously must always refrain from same-sex behavior or indulging in his attractions. But if he feels like he can’t change his attractions, let him know that it isn’t necessary for him to, and that he can still be a faithful, practicing Catholic even while having same-sex attractions, as long as he doesn’t give in to them.


#3

Your friend has my sympathies and my prayers, I know too well the road he travels. I have been fighting my homosexual desires for 10 years without telling a soul. My cultural background is very similar to your friend’s and throw in being part of a traditional east Asian family in the deep south makes it all the more fun. To be frank, it’s tough and a completely undesirable position to be in, especially since the culture of modern times encourages everyone with these tendencies to act on them.

As it stands, I don’t completely understand why I was given these attractions if they don’t comply with natural law. But in my day to day workings with the sick patients at the hospital, I figured we could ask why about just about every undeserved affliction in the world, but will never get a complete answer. But I noticed one thing however, there are some folks out there who take the cross of their illness with such grace, it really brings everyone they come in contact with closer to God whether they know it or not. And really isn’t that the whole purpose of the crucifixion to begin with? Carrying the cross sucks especially if you have to carry it all your life, but all suffering has a purpose and we can let our cross conquer us or we can carry it with grace.

My advice (as cheap as it is) for your friend is if he hasn’t done so already, find himself a trusted spiritual director he can confide in. And always be there to remind him that he’s not a mistake, God made him perfectly imperfect and able to receive love and to give love in it’s many different forms. I hope this helps and let him know he has my prayers.
-Michael


#4

:thumbsup:

These feelings will happen. I agree, more important for your friend is to choose God first. Focus on God and not give in to the temptations of the flesh. I have heard of homosexual Catholics taking a vow of chastity in order to avoid the sin of homosexual acts. Perhaps your friend could use some guidance and help with other Catholics who share in the same struggle.

Also, your friend must not lose faith in God despite praying hard to “overcome” his same sex attraction. God isn’t abandoning nor ignoring him. God has set him on this path as one is set in front of a fork in the road and left to choose which direction to go. As long as your friend trusts in God and uses this situation to continue to grow his faith, then all will be well in the end.

I will pray for your friend so that he will continue to trust in God as he learns to deal with his feelings.

:blessyou:


#5

It’s a struggle, just as it’s a struggle for those of us that are heterosexual, single and not supposed to engage in sexual affairs.

You can pray your butt off, but if you’re still thinking about it, you will still be afflicted by it.

Matthew 5:28
But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman
with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart.

I’d find either a nice statue or pic of Jesus, and practice visualizing him.
Why? Why is it easier to see a dream when we are sleeping? It’s like in order
to see another reality we got to be sleeping, but for some oddball reason we
can’t control what we want to see in our dreams, we usually dream about stuff that is symbolic to the stimuli in our daily lives. But in waking conditions, we are affected by the things we see, and the thoughts that follow them as well.

Well, I try to bring the dream to the waking state, by forcing myself to seeing the image of Jesus behind closed eyelids by every now and then refocusing on his image. Instead of being affected by Temptation thru the sight of “it” and all the thoughts that accompany it, I train my mind to see what I want it to see, thru my visualization method. This brings the mind under better control and sin will not enter my heart. This is not a one-time cure all method. It has to be practiced daily.


#6

We all have different crosses to bear in life. There are groups in the Church that are specifically for Catholics with homosexual tendencies - I don’t know the names but they do exists perhaps someone else on the board knows an authentic Catholic one because there are some that are not in line with Church teaching too, just be careful. This is a tough cross to bear, and my heart goes out to those who suffer from same sex attraction. Homosexuals are not the only ones facing hardships with chastity, pornography addiction is a huge problem for a large number of men and some women right now. As long has your friend doesn’t act on his homosexual tendencies or entertain any lustful thoughts it isn’t a sin to be attracted to the same sex and not the opposite sex you just have to have control over your thoughts more and keep push down sinful thoughts. Thomas Aquinas eventually masted this. We live in incredibly unchaste times right now. We all need to pray for ourselves to become more modest and chaste and for those around us too.


#7

Some resources for your friend:

couragerc.net

thecatholicspirit.com/special-sections/marriage/living-with-same-sex-attraction/

I will keep you both on my prayers…


#8

Enbell’s right. Courage is a great ministry for those with SSA. Also, it sounds like to me you guys have some misconceived notions about sexuality and Chasity. I recommend watching some videos by Jason Evert. He’s really good at Chasity talks.

Also one huge thing

Being gay isn’t sinful

Homosexual acts are.

(but what are homosexual acts, you say?)

Key word: Sexual. I hope that’s clear enough for you.

Also know that when it comes to impure thoughts, there’s a difference between a bird flying over your head and it making a nest in your hair.

I’ll be praying for you both :slight_smile:


#9

I pray your friend finds the strength and courage to do whats right in the eyes of God. We all need help doing the right thing. I personally struggle with temptation to do wrongs of every kind ever second of everyday. If I had a nickle for everytime I’ve asked God to forgive me I’d be a wealthy man. Many people have vowed a life of chastity so its obviously not impossible. Not easy but possible.


#10

People with same sex attraction face far greater challenges in their lives than heterosexuals. This is especially true with those who are trying to follow the Catholic faith. I pray his family doesn’t ostracize him and that some pious crank doesn’t drive him out of the Church with hateful self-righteous invective.

God’s jobs is to judge - ours is to love.


#11

Just the use of the word homosexual in your post, OP, is a [perhaps inadvertent] objectification and stigma. First of all, sexual interest is not the essential characteristic of a human being so I find it just conceding to modernity to call someone a homosexual, heterosexual, bisexual, etc. I think the fact that these terms are exclusively Western terms are indicative of their social fabrication. Second, I find it grievous and discouraging to classify someone by a inclination to a fault - I don’t think anyone would want to be classified “big-mouth” as opposed to a person, nor “chronic masturbator” or “dishonest.” It seems to be a petty observation, but imagine you’re trying to better yourself and every time someone wants to refer to you, instead of calling you a man/woman they refer to an inclination of flaw.

Anyway, people always make too big a deal out of things. Why does anything need to be done about it? Your friend should just pray and continue to live. We cannot live our lives holding our breath because we might fall into sin - instead because of God we have been empowered to pray that we have the strength to fight sin in whatever form we encounter, and if we fall may we be forgiven and not fall into the same sin twice. However, I think referring to a person as a “homosexual” like one refers to a dog by a specific breed makes me shudder - it is the sex obsession of the Latin Church.


#12

:thumbsup::thumbsup: We all struggle with temptations. Some will struggle with attraction to a married woman, some will struggle with premarital sex, we will struggle with masrurbation and some will struggle with SSA. Those are all temptation we all suffer due yo our fallen nature. The key is choosing God over the temptation, fighting the temptation with constant prayer, daily rosary, fasting, self sacrife and mortification and make a conscious decision to not act on it.


#13

This, also SMGS127 has personal experience on this topic.


#14

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