Whenever a pastor or minister makes the argument that marriage was “created and defined by God”, you know that his argument is invalid and even unconstitutional. That is the argument being made by Reverend Kurt Nagel of Holy Family Parish in Washington State. He is planning on allowing his church to be used to gather signatures on Referendum 74, which would reverse same-sex marriage in that state.
Nagel said “It is very rare that the Catholic Church allows such political activity on her property (you may remember a similar process some years ago regarding an initiative on abortion). It only happens when the political issue touches upon a clear and important teaching of the church.”
Which is a lie, of course. As much as Nagel wants to claim that this is going to be about religious freedom, it is actually about opposing religious tyranny.
Nagel also stated that those who oppose legal civil marriage for same-sex couples ““are being called ‘bigots’ by some,” but he maintains that they are “two completely different ways of looking at the issue. The Catholic Church does not believe that people with same sex attraction are inferior. It is sometimes said to support the charge of bigotry that the Catholic Church teaches that homosexual persons are ‘disordered’. That is not true.”
He went on to say “It is true that the sexual DESIRES for persons of the same sex are disordered. That is, such desires are not ORDERED, or aimed, at the right end or goal. But we all have disordered desires — in terms of sex, food, power, money, etc. That is because, although made in the image and likeness of God, we are also fallen creatures.”
Here in is where he mistakes what bigotry is about. When you call the natural actions and desires of someone disordered, you call the individual disordered. That is bigotry. It is no different than calling Catholics evil because they practice ritualized cannibalism, and that has no basis in natural actions or desires, but religious beliefs.
According to SeattlePi.com:
Nagel argued that “homosexual persons” already have “the legal benefits of marriage” — thanks to the Domestic Partnership law enacted when Washington voters approved Referendum 71 in 2009.
“So our opposition to redefining marriage is not now a matter of denying anyone legal rights,” Nagel told parishoners.
He acknowledged that the Washington State Catholic Conference opposed the 2009 Domestic Partnership law, as “obviously” a step toward legalizing marriage and “in part because we don’t believe such sexual relationships encourage the best lives and greatest happiness for homosexual persons.”
“The Catholic Church believes that creating this new legal and social institution of domestic partnerships is, on balance, not wise,” Nagel said. “But it is doable. The Catholic Church, on the other hand, believes that Gay MARRIAGE is simply not possible.”
“Like the Resurrected Body of Jesus, so the definition of marriage as necessarily between a man and a woman, is an objective fact: part of the reality of the universe, whether we believe it or not.”
“Marriage is not a man-made institution, as domestic partnerships are. Marriage was created and defined by God. It’s not changeable in this way, even if human law says that it is.”
Actually, marriage is a man-made institution, and has been practiced in some form among almost every single culture on the face of the planet, and long before Christianity even sought to define marriage some 500 years after the birth of Christ. There were those among the early founders of Christianity who argued that marriage was sinful and should be abolished. In the United States, it was not until the founding of the nation that Catholics could get married since British law prevented non-Anglicans from marrying anywhere other than in the Anglican Church, and that meant converting to Anglicanism, which many Catholics would not do.
Almost every attempt to define marriage has come with this attempt to limit it to Christianity. This is a very ethnocentric view of marriage, and is completely incorrect.