Illinois bishop faces challenging audience at talk on same-sex marriage

Let’s try this again with a newspaper article instead of a blog post about the article…

“Illinois bishop faces challenging audience at talk on same-sex marriage”
by Michael Clancy

Bishop Thomas Paprocki of Springfield, Ill., walked into a beehive when he agreed to speak about same-sex marriage before a small audience in Phoenix over the weekend. But at least the bishop was there, taking the stings.

Paprocki joined Sr. Jeannine Gramick, a longtime advocate for gay and lesbian people, on the stage Friday in front of about 150 people at Shadow Rock United Church of Christ.

The presentation, organized by Robert Blair Kaiser and his group, Jesuit Alumni in Arizona, featured opening remarks from Paprocki and Gramick, then questions from the audience.

Paprocki understood he would be facing a challenging, if not hostile, audience. Recent public opinion polls have shown the majority of Catholics now support same-sex marriage.

Paprocki told the audience that the murder of his former church secretary, Mary Stachowicz, whose killer was a gay man, got little media attention compared to the 1998 homicide of Matthew Shepard, a gay Wyoming teen killed in a hate crime. Paprocki said the power of the gay lobby and favorable media reaction accounted for the difference.

He said the “gay activist lobby” forced the issue on the church and put the church in a defensive position. Still, he said, the church has one position, and it does not change.

"This event was billed as ‘Two Catholic Views of Gay Marriage,’ " he said. “But there is only one view that is authentically Catholic. The other view is dissenting.”

He quoted from Pope John Paul II’s letters and teachings and added that marriage is defined by “the potential to bring forth human life.”

As Paprocki was speaking, one audience member, Anne Gray of Scottsdale, Ariz., shouted, “That’s insulting.” Paprocki ignored her.

He said if same-sex marriage is allowed, sadomasochism or other practices should be, too.

“If there is no moral truth, only alternatives, then everything should be OK,” he said.

Gramick reflected on changes in her own attitudes, attitudes of the public and attitudes of the church hierarchy. She said more and more church leaders are moving toward support of at least civil unions.

Referring to Paprocki’s remark that morality cannot be based on polls, she said, “We may not legislate on the basis of polls, but they tell us what people are thinking.”

She said polls show Catholics’ opinions have moved from opposition to same-sex marriage to approval in a short time because nearly everyone has a gay friend, family member or business associate.

Then the questions started, and the bees started to sting.

The first person to speak, Brian Dugan of Green Valley, near the Mexico border, said Paprocki, who holds degrees in canon and civil law, sounded legalistic while Gramick sounded compassionate.

Paprocki said Gramick presented her case from an emotional position while he said the church’s stance comes from the position of faith and reason.

“My position is not a question of anecdotal stories,” he said.

In response to a question from Kaiser, Paprocki said the church would love to welcome gay people but is forced into a defensive position by “activists pushing an agenda.” That set off Gray, who has a gay son, again.

“Here I am,” she said. “The big scary gay agenda.”

Paprocki said he could accept some legal protections for same-sex couples, but that same-sex marriage is “inimical to the common good” and civil unions often are marriage masquerading under another name.

Gray, an attorney, finally got her chance to address Paprocki directly.

“It is all about anecdotal stories,” she said. “My son is a perfect human being. There is nothing intrinsically disordered about him. I know because I am his mother.”

She said if bishops wanted to argue for traditional marriage because the sexes are complementary, then the bishops ought to invite women to their deliberations.

“You need to listen to mothers,” she said.

By this time, not a single question was addressed to Gramick, and none would be.

One audience member asked the bishop how he viewed King David’s relationship with two wives if marriage has not changed through history. Paprocki said that was a long time before the Catholic church and said the questioner was arguing for polygamy.

Another audience member asked about marriage between elderly people who would never have children. Paprocki recommended reading the biblical story of Abraham’s wife, Sarah, who got pregnant at an old age.

One of the youngest people in the room said she was a devout Catholic, but when her aunt and sister told her they were gay, she was put on the spot. She asked Paprocki if she could remain a good Catholic and still support her family members in their desires to form lifelong relationships.

“It is a struggle to be a good Catholic while supporting gay marriage,” the bishop said. “It strains your relationship with the church.”

He said those who oppose the church on the issue should become Protestants. “They do a lot of good things too,” he said.

Two issues did not come up: the Boy Scouts’ recent policy change allowing gay scouts and Paprocki’s role on the three-bishop panel overseeing Vatican-imposed changes to the Leadership Conference of Women Religious.

The gathering broke up after two and a half hours, even though people were lined up to talk to Paprocki.

[Michael Clancy is a reporter for The Arizona Republic.]

**What I mean is… how is our population being engineered to produce assent to attitudes and policies which formerly would have been understood in the opposite way?

I submit that there is a conscious, well thought out, decades in the making, process being conducted by Hollywood. If you look at series such as “The New Normal” - I don’t, because I don’t own a television, and others from which I’ve seen clips, then you can’t mistake the pushing of the agenda. The agenda is directed at the host culture in this country; that’s us, the basically Christian, heretofore, culture.

Sheep can be led by Christ and his teachings, but the process of watering down and doubt has been in place for nearly 50 years. Nothing is happening by accident.

No culture can hold its own, or have the strength of sustenance over the long term, when it is beset by multiculturalism, and demoralization. There are examples of cultures which have withstood this assault. Who is in charge in Hollywood? Who is in control in Washington, DC? Who are the dual citizens? Where is their loyalty? Does their attitude agree with the population in the audience in Phoenix? Or, is their inner attitude and loyalty to a belief *diametrically OPPOSED to the beliefs successfully inculcated *into the audiences across the country just like the one in Phoenix? . . . . . .

I submit that we are held in thrall until more of us stop being lazy physically, mentally, and spiritually. It may be necessary to reach starvation on a physical level before certain spiritual values are resurrected, in the United States. I mean specifically, if you call yourself Catholic, submitting 100% to the truth, without condemnation of anyone, being upheld by that bishop, and the magisterium of the Catholic Church - the same truth transmitted right from before 1960, through to the present. If you chose to hold to it, you can easily see it. If you submit to the cultural flow, you are a victim of indoctrination. Period.

In our defense, very very powerful forces are arrayed against the United States, not by any means excluding elements in our own government, and tremendous amounts of money. When you have people like George Soros against you, you are facing a strong opponent.

Soros’ attitude about our country is as follows: This quote may be easily verified online - it’s from a book he wrote. I want it more widely known: “The biggest obstacle to a stable and just world order is the United States.” Soros’ funds serve his strong point of view, funding think tanks working 24-7 to come up with a way to counter any possible resistance…and there are others in his financial bracket who believe as he does and are working for, by funding it, the destruction through demoralization, of the many many gullible and weak minded among us, to the end that a culture with any kind of moral standard cannot be resurrected, ever.

There are many uninformed, and naive people in the United States. It is very sad, but the modifications scientifically being made ‘morally’ appeal to people’s kindness, their desire to be kind and accepting of others. Thus, we get an audience reduced to defending nothing other than live and let live.

As we go that route, anything goes, anything at all.**

Love the sinner, hate the sin.

Same sex marriage is an abomination in so many ways it is impossible to elaborate in this venue. Same sex relationships (sexual relationships) demonstrate, in and of themselves (if one knows enough people who engage in them) as extremely destructive, enormously emotionally and psychologically dysfunctional, and (as such) the result of some sort of mental/behavioral/biological abnormality.

I don’t understand why a bishop would put himself into this situation but I applaud his efforts. It’s rather like meeting the lions in the Coliseum, n’est-ce pas?

Is there a video of this talk?

NCR online’s tone is as if implying Bishop Paprocki is somehow in the wrong.

The Catholic / Christian argument is not going to appeal to these people so I think you have to serve it up as logic:

Equality is the formula for sameness on either side of short, horizontal, parallel lines. It is, by
itself, a formula that creates the same solution regardless of the direction of the calculation across
it, and has its own Value apart from the things that are being equated.
Equality, however, can only be achieved. It cannot be given or granted. Something is either
equal to another or it can become equal to another. Something or someone cannot make
something else its equal, nor does such a declaration make it so. Equal treatment can be
attempted, but it cannot be exempt from bias, for this too is a request to be made equa…
Equality is, by argument, however, taken in whole-parts, and the push-back is 100%.
Thereby, when the question of equality is raised, and the one side not found to be wholly equal
(equal in all parts), then the ‘unequal’ party is rejected as wholly unequal [2].
Take for example the case of equality in terms and treatment of homosexual union and
marriage. For these to be equated [equitable] marriage has to become, or is “asked” to become,
equal to homosexual union. This is proven to be true when viewing the arrow [direction] of
logical conclusion. There is an unequal agenda among groups of individuals to make
homosexual unions equal to marriage. It cannot be equated in the other direction. There is no
similar agenda to have marriage equated to homosexual unions. This is because marriage is a
thing that is defined and valued unto itself, devoid of external compromise without degradation
of societal agreement.
Again, equal treatment can be asked for, yet it cannot be exempt from the bias of personal
definition of equality. Inversely, inequality does not stem from marriage, or from the parties that
enter into it. Inequality is not a projected state.
Marriage, as an example, is extremely unique in its absolute nature of the substance of its
shared Value. Regardless of where the nature of that value is rooted; it is undeniable that
heterosexual marriage is a multiply-compounding force in the furtherance of society and the
notion of tomorrow. It does so in both confining combative members of society to a mutual pair,
creating and prolonging by definition the stability of other similar pairs. It too is a foundation, in
the byproduct of its pairing, of the creation of other causes for tomorrow (new members of
society), and the societies that further the bridging towards it.
Marriage then, or the ability to “Marry”, as Termed by Society, is not a state that is
withheld from the other parties. The parties to homosexual union are equally entitled to take part
in the valued thing that is marriage; and, if the circumstances are equal than the Term applies [3]

[TERMS, J.M.Thomas R., 2012]

From a previous post in a different string:

There is a mass of human history, without reference to any Divine intelligence, that has placed a value on heterosexual relations and man-and-woman marriage. There is no opposing counter-part, OR WE WOULD BE ARGUING THE OTHER WAY. No one, N O O N E, is requesting equality for heterosexual relations, BECAUSE THAT IS SOMETHING THAT HAS IT’S OWN BUILT-IN INTRINSIC VALUE IN SOCIETAL AGREEMENT… Inequality IS NOT a projected state (TERMS, J.M. Thomas R., 2012).

I am hard pressed, including after reading the “pro-gay-‘marriage’” quotes in this article, to find such supporters able to muster anything except the fallacy of argumentum ad passiones (appeal to emotion). And I think that should be pointed out when someone makes such a flawed argument.

God bless the Bishop for standing firm in the faith!:thumbsup:

May God richly Bless Bishop Paprocki. The dissenters will continue this course, until they repent, but our Priests and Bishops must have the courage to proclaim the Truth. Pray for our Bishops, Priests and Religious that they all will stand up and continue to proclaim the truth. And pray for a laity that will stand up also.

Lol, are you not familiar with NCReporter?

God bless Bishop Paprocki! We need more bishops like him who are willing to stand up for the Truth even if it means being hated by the masses. In our fallen world, showing love for our neighbor very often requires us to be hated by our neighbor. That said, these are the types of talks where the seeds of conversion can be planted!

Based on my understanding, I would have perhaps phrased this one rebuttal slightly differently.

The Church allows marriages between heterosexuals in the case of natural infertility because the sexual act of such a couple can still be open to the possibility of life. Marriage is the sanctification of the sexual act, and as long as the sexual act does nothing to the preclude the possibility of life then this satisfies the Church’s requirements for a licit union (it is irrelevant whether something unrelated to the sexual act is preventing conception, just as long as the sexual act itself has nothing to do with it).

This is why the Church recognizes impotency as being an obstacle to marriage but not natural infertility.

I’m amazed this Bishop compares and complains about the different amount of media attention of these two murders, and chalks up the difference to “the power of the gay lobby.”

Matthew Shepard’s murder was specifically a hate crime–a different caliber of crime than murder–he was targeted because of his sexual orientation and his case affected hate crime legislation at both state and federal levels.
This is why it drew so much attention.

The murder of Mary Stachowicz happened after the two co-workers got into an argument together (she pressed the young man about his sexual orientation, asking him “why do you sleep with boys?”).
This awful crime was, indeed, covered in major newspapers as any murder would have been–the Chicago Sun-Times, Washington Times, National Review, etc.
But she was not targeted for a specific reason, as Matthew was.

This is not a race to see which murder gets the most media attention.

Had Matthew been Catholic (was he?) and had his two assailants targeted him specifically because of that…then it would have also been a hate crime and the murder would have gotten more attention.


Regardless of specific claims, does anyone here think universal gay marriage is anything but inevitable at this point?

Oh, boy. I agree, DaddyGirl – but beware of those lurking who will challenge the claim that Shepard’s death was a hate crime. :rolleyes:

that would be me,and it wasn’t .it was drug deal between deviants

deviant |ˈdēvēənt|adjectivedeparting from usual or accepted standards, esp. in social or sexual behavior

gone bad ,and Mary Stachowicz’s was a hate crime.

I respect Bishop Paprocki for putting himself in a situation he had to know was going to be hostile towards him.

I know that’s what many want us to think. They want us to resign ourselves to the inevitability in order to drain our desire to fight. Nothing is inevitable.

I agree. It needs to be pointed out so that those attending will be able to pick up on it.

I’m not talking about resignation. I’m just guessing at practical realities.

Universal gay “marriage” is definitely not inevitable.
Why on earth do you think that it is inevitable?

If it is or if it is not inevitable, we are called to say something and stand for the truth and the best interest of the familial foundation vital to a stable society. I think part of the apologetic is to point out the impoverished, emotion-charged basis for this cause.

There are even atheists who recognize that this movement is founded on a certain pedigree of “bullying” that you must accept their dogma or face ridicule and impunity. See the article: agenda

That should also be pointed out. The entire movement is built on a house of emotional straw. Whether the matter becomes “legal” or not, our defense of truth and marriage should remain.

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