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Same-sex relationships and the church: A very helpful interaction of the kind that is called for by people who… http://t.co/WQcRathgTh
Have you considered (or would you) doing a blog post on the work of the late saintly Fr. John Harvey and the ongoing work of the Courage apostolate he founded in 1980?
This is so powerful (thank you so much). This is the first genuine dialogue I have seen on this issue between Christians with divergent views of understanding how this all works out. I was especially touched by Justin Lee’s story and some of the points he made. The sad reality the church faces today is so many Christians within the many brands of churches would condemn both of these men because they are gay. The church in the future has got go do better than this! Both of these men are trying to figure out how they are to be faithful to the gospel of Jesus despite their sexual orientation. If the church of the future continues to speak truth over love and self-righteousness over wrongness, then the world will probably be more right in seeing the church as irrelevant much less not mirroring the grace and compassion of Jesus to people they find that are different than they are. I typically would not watch a two hour video but this one was definitely worth it. Thanks again.
Can a church allow for both positions in its statement of faith and just agree to disagree if our positions on same-sex relationships are not the be-all-end-all as both men made clear? If so, how could they ever perform church discipline like Paul wished in 1 Cor? Well we’ll do it in some areas of sexuality, but not others? I don’t see how. What about the church membership and leadership question? I also expected more from Justin Lee than “Well, scholars just disagree on the NT passages.” He really seems like he’s looking for someone to agree with his position. All I wanted was for him to make a case.
I also don’t understand why people debating this issue continue to bring up the “Do unto others…” passages as if that meant to treat other people using their own system of morality. Did the Israelites treat the Canaanites with their own morality? No, that passage in the OT and NT meant to fairly apply God’s directives to all people.
With that said, the discussion is great to have.
Thanks! I’ll try to watch this later.
Michael Bradley, I do less and less blogs but I am happy to encourage people to read your link and to consider this very carefully. I also hope that we can “Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace” (Eph. 4:3). I recognize that this issue will divide but this is not a reason for rejecting one another and seeking to find all the common ground that we can. I happen to think we do best when we listen and hear the other’s viewpoint before we insist the view we hold is right. Love does this but love also seeks to preserve truth. This is the hard way we must pursue if we follow Christ prayer in John 17.
Thank you, Dr. Armstrong. I meant more, as you proposed for your ACT 3 readership to view the video you to linked above, despite the possibility of their finding ideas therein to disagree with, whether you might consider proposing their consideration of the work and approach of Fr. John Harvey, whose legacy is a still vibrant apostolate, if a very counter-cultural one, with the same caveat the therein they may find ideas that will challenge their own.
We should seek common ground, as much as possible, and truly challenge ourselves in that regard. I think, though, that it’s not necessarily wrong to recognize immovable boundaries that offer a frame of reference that’s more helpful than not. To take a more doctrinal example: suppose I am dialoguing charitably and openly with a Muslim. I know that at the end of the exchange we will still disagree on, say, the divinity of Christ. If either of us “gave ground” on that point, it would not be common understanding that was achieved, but somehow an exploration of a modified belief system that would not be properly Islamic or Christian. And the point is, that wasn’t the goal of common understanding.
That’s obviously an extreme example, and more inter-religious than ecumenical, but I use it merely to illustrate my point.
From my perspective, according as I’ve been instructed in the Faith (and rightly so), the magisterial teachings of the Catholic Church that homosexual acts are always objectively disordered and grave matter (culpability is a different question), these are not “movable boundaries”. That being said, I think I may still have something to gain by listening to persons of sincere belief who hold that homosexual acts can be reconciled with Christian sexual morality. For one, I can come to better understand their hopes and the thought process by which they reached their conclusions and formed their beliefs. Is that at all along the lines you are encouraging?