The Experiences of Homosexual Trads
#51
Though you say wise things, I don't know about that "identity" bit, loggats...

Do you think St. Paul was referring to those who have - and act on - homosexual desires, in the second half of Romans 1? He says that they were given up not only to the acts, but to the lust itself, due to their perverted image of God (paganism). Is this related to use today, or is it strictly a pre-Christian pagan fact? I don't think the latter is even a possibility.

To form our very identity around a desire for a certain sexual object is not healthy. There cannot be 'a gay person', because there cannot be 'a murdering person' or 'a thieving person', etc.! We don't identify human persons by how they act or do not act, but based on what they are. On the basis of pure quiddity, my "whatness", my "essence" is not "a gay person", but "a human person".

I'd find it very scary if we start believing SSA is an identity of itself. We might as well say thieves have an identity imprinted in their very humanity: Thieving Nature, the Essence of Thievery, and such. I know that's a hyperbole, but I think it's accurate.
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#52
(02-27-2014, 11:44 AM)loggats Wrote: At a tangent: "passing" is part of the problem, the internalized sense of shame, and partly why people with SSA leave the Church in such numbers. If an individual is not heterosexual, there should be no compunction to treat orientation as a role to be played. Actively seeking to pass is, I think, somewhat sinful behaviour in so far as it's lying - pure and simple.

BTW I know this is misdirected in so far as you (Ptochos) may not be working towards passing (by carefully controlling your identity performance in public... what a tiring and self-destructive exercise that can be) but people just "assume." That assumption is what I take issue with too though. It's part of the culture of hiding that keeps people with SSA from finding viable role models in the Catholic Church, and flourishing in their spiritual lives as part of the community. Because no matter what some may believe, SSA is not simply about sexual acts. It's an issue of identity too, and that shouldn't be a scary thing to admit.


I don't know
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#53
(02-27-2014, 12:00 PM)Ptochos Wrote:
(02-27-2014, 11:44 AM)loggats Wrote: At a tangent: "passing" is part of the problem, the internalized sense of shame, and partly why people with SSA leave the Church in such numbers. If an individual is not heterosexual, there should be no compunction to treat orientation as a role to be played. Actively seeking to pass is, I think, somewhat sinful behaviour in so far as it's lying - pure and simple.

BTW I know this is misdirected in so far as you (Ptochos) may not be working towards passing (by carefully controlling your identity performance in public... what a tiring and self-destructive exercise that can be) but people just "assume." That assumption is what I take issue with too though. It's part of the culture of hiding that keeps people with SSA from finding viable role models in the Catholic Church, and flourishing in their spiritual lives as part of the community. Because no matter what some may believe, SSA is not simply about sexual acts. It's an issue of identity too, and that shouldn't be a scary thing to admit.


I don't know how old you are or where you live but keep in mind that for some of us, "passing" is a matter of survival. This is less of an issue today, at least in the U.S., but was a very big issue in my formative years. I was the object of violence and threats on an ongoing basis for the first 30 years or so of my life. I hardly think developing the ability to hide this orientation is "lying pure and simple." I don't believe it qualifies as a lie since it is made under direct threat of violence and in any case, it is anything but "lying pure and simple."

I apologise for coming across as patronizing. I can't imagine what it must have been like, though I think a lot of SSA individuals in the Church today feel the need to "pass" even without the threat of physical violence. Indeed, I can believe that passing back then was a matter of life and death in some cases. This is a cause for celebration (yes we're allowed to celebrate some things about our contemporary culture) - a SSA individual is no longer under constant threat of physical violence and/or death today in the West. That's why it weighs so heavily on my heart when people who profess Christianity celebrate the legislation being passed in Uganda, and want to see it replicated elsewhere.
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#54
(02-27-2014, 11:57 AM)Heorot Wrote: Though you say wise things, I don't know about that "identity" bit, loggats...

Do you think St. Paul was referring to those who have - and act on - homosexual desires, in the second half of Romans 1? He says that they were given up not only to the acts, but to the lust itself, due to their perverted image of God (paganism). Is this related to use today, or is it strictly a pre-Christian pagan fact? I don't think the latter is even a possibility.

To form our very identity around a desire for a certain sexual object is not healthy. There cannot be 'a gay person', because there cannot be 'a murdering person' or 'a thieving person', etc.! We don't identify human persons by how they act or do not act, but based on what they are. On the basis of pure quiddity, my "whatness", my "essence" is not "a gay person", but "a human person".

I'd find it very scary if we start believing SSA is an identity of itself. We might as well say thieves have an identity imprinted in their very humanity: Thieving Nature, the Essence of Thievery, and such. I know that's a hyperbole, but I think it's accurate.

I oppose this kind of perspective, re. murdering person or a thieving person. I think it's dangerous and cruel to believe that and I wish you wouldn't. However I am not trying to say that there is an ontological "gayness" (I said it's an issue of identity not an identity in itself) - identity as a performative value, involved in the way we see the world and are seen by the world, is necessarily coloured by our sexual orientation. SSA is an issue of identity because it informs the way we identify with and are identified by the world. It isn't the last word, it may not even be the most important, but it's a fact. Ignoring that, or entirely demonizing it, or reducing it to a sequence of mere actions, is just as unhealthy as giving oneself up to sin.
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#55
(02-27-2014, 12:13 PM)loggats Wrote:
(02-27-2014, 12:00 PM)Ptochos Wrote:
(02-27-2014, 11:44 AM)loggats Wrote: At a tangent: "passing" is part of the problem, the internalized sense of shame, and partly why people with SSA leave the Church in such numbers. If an individual is not heterosexual, there should be no compunction to treat orientation as a role to be played. Actively seeking to pass is, I think, somewhat sinful behaviour in so far as it's lying - pure and simple.

BTW I know this is misdirected in so far as you (Ptochos) may not be working towards passing (by carefully controlling your identity performance in public... what a tiring and self-destructive exercise that can be) but people just "assume." That assumption is what I take issue with too though. It's part of the culture of hiding that keeps people with SSA from finding viable role models in the Catholic Church, and flourishing in their spiritual lives as part of the community. Because no matter what some may believe, SSA is not simply about sexual acts. It's an issue of identity too, and that shouldn't be a scary thing to admit.

I apologise for coming across as patronizing. I can't imagine what it must have been like, though I think a lot of SSA individuals in the Church today feel the need to "pass" even without the threat of physical violence. Indeed, I can believe that passing back then was a matter of life and death in some cases. This is a cause for celebration (yes we're allowed to celebrate some things about our contemporary culture) - a SSA individual is no longer under constant threat of physical violence and/or death today in the West. That's why it weights so heavily on my heart when people who profess Christianity celebrate the legislation being passed in Uganda, and want to see it replicated elsewhere.
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#56
(02-27-2014, 12:33 PM)Ptochos Wrote:
(02-27-2014, 12:13 PM)loggats Wrote:
(02-27-2014, 12:00 PM)Ptochos Wrote:
(02-27-2014, 11:44 AM)loggats Wrote: At a tangent: "passing" is part of the problem, the internalized sense of shame, and partly why people with SSA leave the Church in such numbers. If an individual is not heterosexual, there should be no compunction to treat orientation as a role to be played. Actively seeking to pass is, I think, somewhat sinful behaviour in so far as it's lying - pure and simple.

BTW I know this is misdirected in so far as you (Ptochos) may not be working towards passing (by carefully controlling your identity performance in public... what a tiring and self-destructive exercise that can be) but people just "assume." That assumption is what I take issue with too though. It's part of the culture of hiding that keeps people with SSA from finding viable role models in the Catholic Church, and flourishing in their spiritual lives as part of the community. Because no matter what some may believe, SSA is not simply about sexual acts. It's an issue of identity too, and that shouldn't be a scary thing to admit.


I don't know how old you are or where you live but keep in mind that for some of us, "passing" is a matter of survival. This is less of an issue today, at least in the U.S., but was a very big issue in my formative years. I was the object of violence and threats on an ongoing basis for the first 30 years or so of my life. I hardly think developing the ability to hide this orientation is "lying pure and simple." I don't believe it qualifies as a lie since it is made under direct threat of violence and in any case, it is anything but "lying pure and simple."

I apologise for coming across as patronizing. I can't imagine what it must have been like, though I think a lot of SSA individuals in the Church today feel the need to "pass" even without the threat of physical violence. Indeed, I can believe that passing back then was a matter of life and death in some cases. This is a cause for celebration (yes we're allowed to celebrate some things about our contemporary culture) - a SSA individual is no longer under constant threat of physical violence and/or death today in the West. That's why it weights so heavily on my heart when people who profess Christianity celebrate the legislation being passed in Uganda, and want to see it replicated elsewhere.

Apology accepted and no hard feelings.

But going back my original post where I describe what happened when I was perceived as homosexual in the TLM group 9 years ago, what do you say to that?

I see 3 options:

1) I try to "pass" with that group and hope to make some friends, who once they get to know me won't hold it against me when they find out the truth;

2) Ignore the fact that - as happened 9 years in the same parish - I may become a persona non grata once people figure it out. In this case, do I continue to attend Mass where no one acknowledges my existence - looks the other way, never recognizes that I exist.

3) Go to the most reverent NO parish I can find.

If I were you I'd go to the TLM, make no effort to hide the reality of the situation, and witness to those people by my presence. You may even provide a valuable example to young SSA people there undergoing whatever indoctrination leads to supposed Catholics "holding it against you." A homosexual living his faith in a holy life - a scandal to the homophobe, and a stumbling block to the trads. ;)

Alternatively, since that would be quite an undertaking, option 3 seems like it would be great too. We all need a welcoming community who'll know and love us for ourselves.
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#57
It's really sad that we must see the Novus Ordo as the "welcoming", or even "pro-gay" Catholics, and the Trads as the "rejecting" and "anti-gay" Catholics. There's a strange dichotomy to what should just be unified Catholicism. I myself would not recommend going to a NO, because the theology behind that Mass, and the attitudes that have been formed around the whole procedure, have become liberal. Of course, I've never been to what I'd consider a reverent NO Mass, so perhaps I am not really one to speak here.

As for witnessing to trads, it is a good idea. Most of them would probably find the openness repugnant, however: "why should you even tell us that?" and "we don't want to know, okay?". It really is a private struggle, like those who struggle with porn or impurity or shoplifting. We don't need to say "I'm gay", just "I'm a sinner and I'm Catholic, thanks be to God". This is for trads as well as novus ordo! I don't understand people very well, though...

loggats, thank you for the charitable and patient feedback as well. I get what you're talking about.
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#58
(02-27-2014, 12:46 PM)Heorot Wrote: As for witnessing to trads, it is a good idea. Most of them would probably find the openness repugnant, however: "why should you even tell us that?" and "we don't want to know, okay?". It really is a private struggle, like those who struggle with porn or impurity or shoplifting. We don't need to say "I'm gay", just "I'm a sinner and I'm Catholic, thanks be to God". This is for trads as well as novus ordo! I don't understand people very well, though...

A lot of the time, people don't need to be told to know, unless we're making an effort to pass or just happen to be more "acceptable" to heteronormative sensibilities in our presentation. I wouldn't suggest walking up to anyone and launching into a conversation about sexuality - and it's odd when people ask about it too. However if they do, you're either going to have to be honest, lie, or go into a "that's private" spiel (which people interpret as a tacit concession anyway). Again though, it's not like porn or masturbation or shoplifting. This is where you and I disagree about the SSA experience most fundamentally I think, Heorot. I believe that it is, while not essential to our being, a mediating factor in our participation in the world. I would go so far as to say that a SSA man has a different kind of love for Christ than a man who is not SSA.

Being an SSA individual is not the same as being a sinner.
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#59
(02-27-2014, 01:01 PM)loggats Wrote: I believe that it is, while not essential to our being, a mediating factor in our participation in the world. I would go so far as to say that a SSA man has a different kind of love for Christ than a man who is not SSA.

Actually, I agree with you 100% here. It is not essential to our being, but in most of us it is so deeply ingrained that it is (for better or for worse) the mode by which we participate in the world, emotionally and spiritually. This is a good point of departure.

You are probably correct about the different sorts of love for Christ. I would never look at Christ in the same way a straight man would. Straight men with impurity problems have sometimes told me of temptations with regards to the Blessed Virgin. I know this as well, but with the Lord instead. Quite apart from struggles with impurity, however, there is deep a longing for His loving embrace which, perhaps, a heterosexual might not have: to receive His strength and to hear Him say "no, you are not disgusting and worthless in my sight; look, I mounted the Cross for your sake. What more of a sign do you need?"

Generally, images that are more calm and paternal appeal to me, and bring me to a much greater love of Christ than those images which are more "manly" in the sense of judgment, war, etc. - Look at these eyes, and see the compassion and love and mercy of the incarnate God, who disdains the honest plea of no sinner!

[Image: iconpantocrator.jpg]
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#60
(02-27-2014, 01:01 PM)loggats Wrote:
(02-27-2014, 12:46 PM)Heorot Wrote: As for witnessing to trads, it is a good idea. Most of them would probably find the openness repugnant, however: "why should you even tell us that?" and "we don't want to know, okay?". It really is a private struggle, like those who struggle with porn or impurity or shoplifting. We don't need to say "I'm gay", just "I'm a sinner and I'm Catholic, thanks be to God". This is for trads as well as novus ordo! I don't understand people very well, though...

A lot of the time, people don't need to be told to know, unless we're making an effort to pass or just happen to be more "acceptable" to heteronormative sensibilities in our presentation. I wouldn't suggest walking up to anyone and launching into a conversation about sexuality - and it's odd when people ask about it too. However if they do, you're either going to have to be honest, lie, or go into a "that's private" spiel (which people interpret as a tacit concession anyway). Again though, it's not like porn or masturbation or shoplifting. This is where you and I disagree about the SSA experience most fundamentally I think, Heorot. I believe that it is, while not essential to our being, a mediating factor in our participation in the world. I would go so far as to say that a SSA man has a different kind of love for Christ than a man who is not SSA.

Being an SSA individual is not the same as being a sinner.

Even if we are
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