The Experiences of Homosexual Trads
#21
I would like to say to all those who struggle with SSA and are in their twenties, you will find that you get stronger over time. You will come to recognize your masculinity and independence, it just takes time. But the more you battle, the more you see yourself as a man. I'm about to hit my 33rd year, and I feel like I have found my feet. It gets better!
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#22
Thank you, Papist. You probably have a healthy vision of vocation, faith, human dignity, and the grace of God, however. I'm not so sure many "gays" do.

As I see it, there are two sorts of SSA-sufferers when it comes to a vocation: those who slither into the priesthood, and those who remain outside in loneliness and purposelessness all their lives. We can become altar servers, sacristans, artists, writers, and a million other things... but we can never be the ones who offer the sacrifice, nor baptize, nor confirm, nor do anything that literally brings grace to souls. This burns me, personally. Even husband and wife are instrumental in getting their child baptized, and so act as co-priests, co-deliverers of grace, in a very distant but still very intimate fashion.

What exactly is the point of life without marriage or ordination? This is the big question of many Catholics who suffer SSA, I think. Some answer it by despair and do nothing, some answer it by abandoning their faith and entering a relationship with another man, some answer it by demanding "gay marriage", some answer it by sneaking into the priesthood, some answer it by finding a wife and pretending they're straight... and some just commit suicide.

I can't see any purpose to my life if it is lived in useless lonesomeness. Maybe I am even angry at God, without realizing it? Having SSA is hard enough, but crippling anxiety, OCD, and depression make life hell. I can't really even provide for myself, because of the emotional and spiritual pain. "Philosophy doctorate? Please! What use does God have for someone who isn't married, a priest, or straight?" I don't mean to put you down, Papist, but I believe this is the dilemma that goes through the heads of many who want to be faithful Catholics. Somehow, painting churches, writing stories, composing religious poems, debating philosophy, and going to Mass... it just doesn't seem like it's the full life of grace that celibate men can and should be participating in.

Anyway, sorry...
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#23
(02-26-2014, 10:57 PM)A Catholic Thinker Wrote:
(02-26-2014, 09:49 PM)Melkite Wrote: For crying out loud people!  There is NO SUCH THING as an objective mortal sin!  All mortal sin is subjective.

Objective grave matter then - a sin that, if committed with consent of the will and knowledge, is mortal. 

This is just semantics.

It's not just semantics, it's a very important distinction.  Objective grave matter, objective serious sin is fine.  As you said, mortal sin requires will, knowledge and consent.  That is something only a person's confessor can determine, and that point deserves the strongest attention.  Too many people throw around the term 'mortal sin' as if any old serious sin is mortal.  By saying a sin is generally mortal, you cas into hell untold numbers of people whom you don't know and of whose circumstances you are not aware.  It is a very serious scandal to presume to determine another person is cut off from God if it is not your vocation to do so.  I respectfully encourage you to consider this during this Lent.
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#24
(02-26-2014, 11:36 PM)Heorot Wrote: Thank you, Papist. You probably have a healthy vision of vocation, faith, human dignity, and the grace of God, however. I'm not so sure many "gays" do.
God is good.
(02-26-2014, 11:36 PM)Heorot Wrote: As I see it, there are two sorts of SSA-sufferers when it comes to a vocation: those who slither into the priesthood, and those who remain outside in loneliness and purposelessness all their lives. We can become altar servers, sacristans, artists, writers, and a million other things... but we can never be the ones who offer the sacrifice, nor baptize, nor confirm, nor do anything that literally brings grace to souls. This burns me, personally. Even husband and wife are instrumental in getting their child baptized, and so act as co-priests, co-deliverers of grace, in a very distant but still very intimate fashion.
Does it really have to be this way? Is it slithering into the priesthood or a life of loneliness? In my darker moments I have felt the same way. But one thing I have learned is that when we joyfully embrace the cross God has given us, we learn to live a life a joy. Sure, neither you nor I will get married or become priests. But that doesn't mean that God will not use us as instruments of grace in other ways. For example, I am a God father to one of my nephews, and I take that job very seriously. My brothers and sisters also look to me for spiritual guidance, and I take that responsibility very seriously.
(02-26-2014, 11:36 PM)Heorot Wrote: What exactly is the point of life without marriage or ordination? This is the big question of many Catholics who suffer SSA, I think. Some answer it by despair and do nothing, some answer it by abandoning their faith and entering a relationship with another man, some answer it by demanding "gay marriage", some answer it by sneaking into the priesthood, some answer it by finding a wife and pretending they're straight... and some just commit suicide.
The point of life is to know, love, and serve God. There is nothing more joyful.
(02-26-2014, 11:36 PM)Heorot Wrote: I can't see any purpose to my life if it is lived in useless lonesomeness. Maybe I am even angry at God, without realizing it? Having SSA is hard enough, but crippling anxiety, OCD, and depression make life hell. I can't really even provide for myself, because of the emotional and spiritual pain. "Philosophy doctorate? Please! What use does God have for someone who isn't married, a priest, or straight?" I don't mean to put you down, Papist, but I believe this is the dilemma that goes through the heads of many who want to be faithful Catholics. Somehow, painting churches, writing stories, composing religious poems, debating philosophy, and going to Mass... it just doesn't seem like it's the full life of grace that celibate men can and should be participating in.

Anyway, sorry...
Well, as Vox points out, my degrees in philosophy will eventually lead to possibilities like forming future priests and faithful Catholics. I love teaching, because it is true giving in the Christian sense. You will have to find what it is that you have to offer the world, and what it is that God has planned for you. Don't spend so much time in the darkness; otherwise you might miss out on what light God has in store for you.
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#25
(02-26-2014, 09:25 PM)A Catholic Thinker Wrote: Vox, why don't you use clearer, unambiguous terminology such as Catholics "suffering from same-sex attraction"?  (Following the lead of, say, LifeSiteNews and other orthodox, but typically *non*-traditional Catholic sources.)

Such a phrase emphasizes that all homosexual behavior is disordered and mortally sinful.

The moniker "homosexual" implies nothing about whether or not that person is engaging in the objective mortal sin of homosexual acts, or not.  It plays into the disordered, modern view of SSA which completely ignores the most critical distinction between orientation and *behavior*.

(Note: I read the first post but not the entire thread.)

I'm with Papist here. I've actually heard people say "homosexuals don't exist" -- and mean it. And think they're making some great, relevant point about "essences" and such. But I think that all that's just pedantry, muddying the waters, a manifestation of not communicating in order to truly "dialogue" (I hate that word now) but to "show off" in some way, etc. "Homosexual" means -- has as its definition -- someone who's attracted to the same ("homo") sex. It's a perfectly clear term, and folks who leap to conclusions that every homosexual is an active homosexual need to get their minds out of the gutter and do the Catholic thing of assuming the best about another.

Because of the definition of the word, I don't think that using it "plays into the disordered, modern view of SSA which completely ignores the most critical distinction between orientation and *behavior*." There is homosexuality, a mental orientation; and there are homosexual acts. Simple!

The folks who actually, seriously say "homosexuals don't exist" wouldn't say that "bipolars don't exist" or "schizophrenics don't exist" or "blonds are a mere figment of the imagination" because manic depression, schizophrenia, and blondness don't go to anyone's "essence." But when it comes to homosexuality, people get all what I consider goofy.

PLEASE know that I SO don't mean to imply that your post was goofy or that you are goofy! I don't think that for a minute! I've heard the arguments for doing such as you advise (or are at least asking about) and know that there are a number of smart Catholics disagree with me, and agree with you. But I really think that it doesn't further the cause of understanding.

An aside -- but an important one:  You wrote of the "objective mortal sin of homosexual acts." This raises the question, "What constitutes a homosexual act?" Now I could be accused of being pedantic for asking that question, but quite seriously -- extremely seriously given that Uganda wants to criminalize "homosexual acts" and imprison for life folks who commit them -- where are the lines? One thing any Catholic can (or at least should!) agree on is that any two homosexuals who put themselves in near occasions of sin with regard to each other are sinning by that fact alone -- but what of things that that might look bad to the nosy-types, but which are, in fact, innocent? For ex., two homosexuals who are not attracted to each other sexually and, therefore, for whom cohabiting is not an occasion of sin, who decide to live together for whatever cause (because of the economy, because they get along famously and are great friends and don't want to live alone, etc.).  What about kissing? What sort of kissing? (Italian males kiss each other on the cheek without anyone freaking out). What about hand-holding? (I hold my daughter's and my best girlfriend's hands all the time and, obviously (to anyone who knows I'm as straight as they come) don't mean anything sexual by it.

My take would be -- off the top of my head and thinking aloud -- that if anything is an occasion of sin for the person or people involved, it's wrong. If something is (truly) scandalous (as opposed to merely causing indignation in folks who like to stick their noses into other people's business), it's wrong. If it involves genital sexual feeling or anything that causes a desire to commit a sin of the flesh (pardon the tautology), it's wrong.

I dunno.. I think it's an interesting question, especially given that, as Loggats has correctly pointed out, lots of folks talk about "sodomy," by which they mean anal sex, wrongly assume every active homosexual engages in that, and totally ignore the fact that lots of heterosexuals engage "go there." From the Huffington Post: A report" titled 'Sexual Behavior, Sexual Attraction and Sexual Identity in the United States,' which reportedly polled thousands of people between the ages of 15 and 44 from 2006 through 2008, found that 44 percent of straight men and 36 percent of straight women admitted to having had anal sex at least once in their lives."  I find this really interesting. Homosexual anal sex is generally and naturally perceived by most straight men as "disgusting" (any sort of sexual intimacy with another man would be seen that way by them, and that's OK; it's normal. They're not gay -- duh!). They have a normal visceral reaction against anal sex between two men. But the idea of their doing the same thing to some hot chick is not only not "disgusting" to them, but is often a positive turn-on, something they'd love to be doing tonight, at least something for their "bucket list." However, if that survey is to be believed (always an "if"), while almost half of straight men and over a third of straight women engage in anal sex, there's this sentiment:


So is it "sodomy" (as commonly defined nowadays as "anal sex") that the alleged 90% would find repulsive -- or just "sodomy" between two men -- or any desire for physical closeness and intimacy that might involve genital arousal between two men? If both the survey and that preacher-man's words were true, there's a disconnect somewhere. To clarify:  any sort of sexual intimacy between two men would likely and naturally be seen by most straight men as "ewwwwwwwww!" (which is probably (?) the way homosexual men would feel about sex with a woman).  But the words they often use to talk about their disgust ("That's not what a rectum is for!") don't seem to apply if the recipient of the penetration is a cute little blonde with plastic breastesses (and, of course, no pubic hair, making her look like a really weird-looking 11-year old). Here's a quote, for ex, from a message board I came across while Googling the phrase "homosexuality is disgusting":

Not So Charming Person at Some (VERY VILE Message Board Wrote:It is none of my business what people do in the privacy of their own home. If you think that sticking your peter in another guy's hairy ass is cool then so be it.

It is pretty f****** nasty, though. I'm not sure that just because you enjoy ass raping other men that that qualifies you to wed one another.

I'd bet good money that that very same guy would insert his member into the rectum of some 23-year old girl who looks like a young Heather Locklear.

I guess what I'm getting at with all this is trying to understand the real root cause of the malice some have toward homosexuals -- especially active homosexuals (though, unfortunately, the unimaginative lump all homosexuals together) -- and figuring out how and exactly where secular and Christian people draw "their lines" as to what is OK and what is not, what is "disgusting" and what is not, etc.(and, in the case of Christians, what is sinful or not).  It's all very fascinating.


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#26
(02-26-2014, 11:41 PM)Melkite Wrote:
(02-26-2014, 10:57 PM)A Catholic Thinker Wrote:
(02-26-2014, 09:49 PM)Melkite Wrote: For crying out loud people!  There is NO SUCH THING as an objective mortal sin!  All mortal sin is subjective.

Objective grave matter then - a sin that, if committed with consent of the will and knowledge, is mortal. 

This is just semantics.

It's not just semantics, it's a very important distinction.  Objective grave matter, objective serious sin is fine.  As you said, mortal sin requires will, knowledge and consent.  That is something only a person's confessor can determine, and that point deserves the strongest attention.  Too many people throw around the term 'mortal sin' as if any old serious sin is mortal.  By saying a sin is generally mortal, you cas into hell untold numbers of people whom you don't know and of whose circumstances you are not aware.  It is a very serious scandal to presume to determine another person is cut off from God if it is not your vocation to do so.  I respectfully encourage you to consider this during this Lent.

No, actually, it IS semantic.  Since I qualified "mortal sin" with "objective", I clearly did *not* accuse anyone of any spiritual state - much less "cast them into Hell"!

I respectfully encourage you to cease your subjective judgement of Catholics who simply use the terminology the Church typically has.

And perhaps to consider, for a change, the rights of God, instead of those of man, to loosely paraphrase Pius IX.
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#27
But that was my whole point.  There is no such thing as an 'objective mortal sin', such a thing is logically impossible.  You qualified sodomy as an objective mortal sin.  If this were the case, it would be impossible for sodomy in any individual circumstance to ever be venial.  It is not possible to determine mortality without looking at individual circumstances, so it is logically impossible to make a general statement of mortality about any one sin.

You are not using the terminology the Church uses.  The Church defines sodomy as a serious sin, and the desire for it as an objective disorder.  The Church never defines sins as objectively mortal.
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#28
(02-27-2014, 12:11 AM)Melkite Wrote: But that was my whole point.  There is no such thing as an 'objective mortal sin', such a thing is logically impossible.  You qualified sodomy as an objective mortal sin.  If this were the case, it would be impossible for sodomy in any individual circumstance to ever be venial.  It is not possible to determine mortality without looking at individual circumstances, so it is logically impossible to make a general statement of mortality about any one sin.

You are not using the terminology the Church uses.  The Church defines sodomy as a serious sin, and the desire for it as an objective disorder.  The Church never defines sins as objectively mortal.

If you google the phrase "objective mortal sin" you will see that all kinds of Catholics use it.  Here is one example:

http://www.catholicplanet.net/forum/show...php?t=2400

I already acknowledged that, yes, I agree it is a misnomer, given that the qualifier "mortal" more or less implies the subjective - so to include "objective" in the same qualifier list is not sensible.

But, it is, as I said, a semantic issue, and not one that you or anyone else needs to use to draw subjective conclusions about somebody who used it.
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#29
(02-27-2014, 12:44 AM)A Catholic Thinker Wrote: If you google the phrase "objective mortal sin" you will see that all kinds of Catholics use it.  Here is one example:

http://www.catholicplanet.net/forum/show...php?t=2400

I already acknowledged that, yes, I agree it is a misnomer, given that the qualifier "mortal" more or less implies the subjective - so to include "objective" in the same qualifier list is not sensible.

But, it is, as I said, a semantic issue, and not one that you or anyone else needs to use to draw subjective conclusions about somebody who used it.

I appreciate your agreement that its use is technically not sensible.  However, its use by all kinds of Catholics does not mean it is merely semantics; rather, it means all kinds of Catholics are ignorant of their own theology.
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#30
This is an awesome thread!

I'm not gay but I can feel for persons with SSA. I mean here you are, denied ever being able to experience love with a partner, and further having to be told that your attractions are "disordered." It's not hard to think why many don't choose a Catholic lifestyle! And although it is absolutely true that SSA is a disordered attraction, how do we make people with SSA feel welcome? It's so tragic that so many men and women have to go through this struggle alone. I can't imagine how tough that is! Perhaps some tight knit networking is needed. A hybrid between a monastery and secular life, where folks called to a single life can continue working in the world but still somehow support each other. It's a difficult topic to address needless to say, but certainly Trad attitudes need to change.

Anyway, back to my corner watching this unfold
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