Living as Brother/Sister


#1

I am a gay man, a Catholic, celibate for a long time, by Christ’s grace, committed to growing in chastity, purity of heart, and charity. Here’s my question: My very best friend and I are the same age. She has never married, obviously I haven’t. What would the Church’s position be on the two of us marrying and living together as brother and sister (seperate rooms, never a thought of anything else, as to experiment would be abusive of her)? We get along famously and are devoted to each other. I can’t imagine my life without her. This is the person I hope is there when I’m old. Our lives would also be better off financially. What would the Church say? Thank you, I realize some people may not be comfortable with this line of questioning. Praise be to Jesus Christ.


#2

hi, altisimus. i’m happy to hear about your journey in the church, and your celibacy. i know that’s difficult (i’m heterosexual, and 33, not married, so celibate, too, until i get married, or for life if i’m called to the priesthood. it’s not easy!)

thanks for your honest question. one factor that plays into answering it is the fact that the church DOES require the marital act for a marriage to be consummated. in other words, the marriage isn’t complete until you’ve ‘known’ one another.

my question to you is this: why would you need to get married? why not just live together in a chaste, brother/sister relationship? i have had female roommates during my lifetime - people that i loved and respected, but had no physical attraction for. it worked out, and all of them are still friends of mine today.

what would ‘getting married’ help in the situation?


#3

I worry about giving scandal. May Christ guide you as you determine whether or not to enter the priesthood! To be even thinking of it must be such a blessing!!!


#4

I would double check this in the Ask the Apologist forum but from what I understand when you enter to marriage you must be open to life. Also I believe it would be unfair to ask your best friend to give up the possiblity of having a marriage of intimacy and bearing children even if the church would technically allow this (which I don’t think is the case). After all once married validly in the church there is no possibilty of divorce. I believe you should ( and only could) marry this women that care deeply for if are able to live as married people (in the sexual sense).


#5

I agree with jeffreedy789. Why not just live together? If you married, it would not be as the Church ordains because you’d never consummate the marriage, which is required of a valid marriage.

A sidenote to Jeff’s comment: I recently divorced (am awaiting the verdict on my annulment application). I didn’t realize how difficult it would be to be sexually abstinent, after having had sex (although not very often in the dysfunctional state our marriage was in) for over 25 years of marriage. I’m not thinking of having an affair, but masturbation would look pretty good to me. I’m offering up my “urges” and praising God that He is ever with me to fight the battles in my spiritual life. I would never win salvation if it was left to me by myself. Frequenting the sacraments and receiving the grace therein is the best idea.


#6

i’m not sure about your community, but i know that it would give far more scandal here for a gay man to marry a woman than it would for them to live as roommates.

thanks for the kind words. contemplating the priesthood is both exciting and terrifying at once. i’ve always wanted to marry and have children, but i grew up protestant, and that was the expectation. now i’m not sure. i’m entering the jesuit novitiate in august of 2005 (God and the Jesuits willing) to find out.

thanks for your prayers. God bless you as you seek His will in this matter.


#7

[quote=rayne89]I would double check this in the Ask the Apologist forum but from what I understand when you enter to marriage you must be open to life. Also I believe it would be unfair to ask your best friend to give up the possiblity of having a marriage of intimacy and bearing children even if the church would technically allow this (which I don’t think is the case). After all once married validly in the church there is no possibilty of divorce. I believe you should ( and only could) marry this women that care deeply for if are able to live as married people (in the sexual sense).
[/quote]

Thank you! I did as you suggested. I failed to mention we’re both middle aged.


#8

[quote=rayne89]I would double check this in the Ask the Apologist forum but from what I understand when you enter to marriage you must be open to life. Also I believe it would be unfair to ask your best friend to give up the possiblity of having a marriage of intimacy and bearing children even if the church would technically allow this (which I don’t think is the case). After all once married validly in the church there is no possibilty of divorce. I believe you should ( and only could) marry this women that care deeply for if are able to live as married people (in the sexual sense).
[/quote]

I totally agree.


#9

[quote=pianoplayingmom] I’m not thinking of having an affair, but masturbation would look pretty good to me. I’m offering up my “urges” and praising God that He is ever with me to fight the battles in my spiritual life. I would never win salvation if it was left to me by myself. Frequenting the sacraments and receiving the grace therein is the best idea.
[/quote]

I heard it said that “the animal you feed is the animal that will grow.” The Sacraments, prayer, meditation on Our Lord…that feeds the good animal.


#10

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.