The Silencing of Sister Jane

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Sister Jane Silenced

Sister Jane Dominic Laurel was tossed under the bus so frequently last week that I hope she will be able to get the tread marks out of her habit.  A vibrant teacher of Catholic orthodoxy on sexual morality based on Pope John Paul II’s Theology of the Body, she had given lectures around the country with no controversy until she gave a presentation at the hilariously misnamed Catholic High School in Charlotte, North Carolina, and some parents and their spoiled brats decided to stage a massive hissy fit.  Go here to read all about it.

The diocese of Charlotte wasted no time in cowardly apologizing for the presentation of Sister Jane.  Go here to read all about it.

Now, her own order and Aquinas College are sending her under the bus:

From Sister Mary Sarah, O.P., President of Aquinas College:

The events around the recent talk by Sister Jane Dominic Laurel, O.P. in Charlotte, NC have produced a great deal of speculation from many sides. Among the commentators, there are few who were actually present to hear the talk, which was not recorded.

It is the firm belief of Aquinas College that all men and women are created in God’s image and likeness and are made with a capacity to love and be loved. The College supports the Catholic Church’s teachings which are open to the diverse needs and desires of all, which must be considered in light of eternal truths.

We support and affirm that every man and woman, regardless of his or her state in life, deserves respect, and that the health of any culture is gauged according to the capacity of its members to uphold their own beliefs while respecting the beliefs of others. The College’s patron, St. Thomas Aquinas, was known for his ability to thoughtfully consider all things and retain what is true, regardless of the source of that truth.

We believe it is our privilege to bring the best aspects of our faith tradition to bear on the moral and cultural questions of the present age. In her presentation, Sister Jane Dominic spoke clearly on matters of faith and morals. Her deviation into realms of sociology and anthropology was beyond the scope of her expertise. Sister is a trained theologian from a Pontifical University and has the credentials to contribute to scholarly bodies of work. This she has done in the past with distinction. The unfortunate events at Charlotte Catholic High School are not representative of the quality of Sister’s academic contributions or the positive influence that she has had on her students. The students at Charlotte Catholic were unprepared, as were their parents, for the topic that Sister was asked to deliver. The consequence was a complete misrepresentation of the school’s intention to bring a message that would enlighten and bring freedom and peace.

There are no words that are able to reverse the harm that has been caused by these comments. The community of Aquinas College is saddened by this extreme outcome and wishes to reiterate that this is not something the College condones or desires to create. There is division where there should be unity. The events and discussions that have transpired over the last two weeks reflect that there is something in this that surpasses an ordinary high school assembly.

Sister Jane Dominic has cancelled her speaking engagements and, at her request, is preparing to begin a sabbatical from teaching at Aquinas College. It is our sincere hope that the community of Charlotte Catholic High School will soon begin a process of healing and renewal, and that all who have been affected by this event will be drawn into profound reconciliation as we approach this great season that commemorates the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The message from this fiasco is quite crystal clear: if you speak up in defense of traditional Catholic morality, and those who hate that morality take offense at what you say, you are on your own Jack and Jane.

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  1. “It is the firm belief of Aquinas College that all men and women are created in God’s image and likeness and are made with a capacity to love and be loved. The College supports the Catholic Church’s teachings which are open to the diverse needs and desires of all, which must be considered in light of eternal truths.
    We support and affirm that every man and woman, regardless of his or her state in life, deserves respect, and that the health of any culture is gauged according to the capacity of its members to uphold their own beliefs while respecting the beliefs of others.”
    “…while respecting the beliefs of others.” “Others” are respected. Not so of their beliefs. Others are respected as sovereign persons, even when their sovereignty over themselves is disrupted by irrational beliefs.
    Consider the atheist. Religion is man’s relationship with his Creator in every freedom enumerated in the our founding principles. “Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship,…” Thomas Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptist Church. Religion is man response to God’s gift of Faith. Worship is man’s expression in response. Whereas, the atheist disposes himself not to worship or Faith, but using his God-given free will chooses to deny his Creator, his rational, immortal human soul, his very existence as a human being.
    I do not respect the atheist’s belief, for the atheist is corrupting our constitutional posterity, denying to all men perfect Justice, the Justice that only God, an infinite God gives.
    The virtue of freedom must remain absolute, so that when the atheist acknowledges his rational, immortal human soul he may be welcomed.The beliefs of the atheist are anathema in a court of law. The atheist was told by the Supreme Court (I believe that was in Engel v. Vitelli) that “she may go her own way” until she learns better.
    The common culture has permeated the souls of our Catholic Universities and nonsense and more nonsense issues forth. The dragon spewed water from its mouth.

  2. I emailed Sr. Jane’s superior, Sr. Mary Sarah ( of Aquinas College, yesterday (Saturday) in support of Sr. Jane. To my surprise, I received a reply:

    “Sister Jane Dominic has only tried to spread the good news of Jesus Christ to a world in need of healing. The Dominican Sisters and the Aquinas College community are in complete support of Sister Jane Dominic. We have concerns for Sister’s personal safety at this time. Please keep this intention in your prayers.”

    It truly is a shame that the April 4th statement by Sr. Mary Sarah was released and is still posted. The Charlotte Diocese has not done her or Fr. Kauth any favors either.

    I anticipate that we will see no further movement on this as the institutional Church quietly lets this pass and focuses on the ritual celebrations with the Easter season. In my opinion, this is more cowardice and only further confuses people due to the lack of any firm resolution. The “Progressive” can feel like they gained the upper hand by their crucifixion of Sr. Jane and the savaging of Fr. Kauth at the “parents” meeting. The Church has thrown the Progressives their bone.

  3. “There are no words that are able to reverse the harm that has been caused by these comments” –
    “harm” indeed. Like holy water on the devil.

  4. From St. Thomas; “Obviously sins of passion are due to an excessive love for self. A man commits sins of passion because he has an excessive desire to acquire good things for himself. His excessive desire for the good things of this world shows that he loves himself more than he loves God.”
    -from the beginners, The Summa Simplified for Everyone.

    Question. Why couldn’t Sisters own order grow a spine and quote St. Thomas since the goal is to save souls, not “be nice.”
    Jesus is allowing Sister a taste of His passion.

  5. For Sr. Jane. “Blessed are they that suffer persecution for justice’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
    Matt. V 3-10

  6. lol… yes, the Nashville Dominicans, well-known for their cowardice and heterodoxy…

    Guys, this order is the complete opposite, as those at all familiar with them are well aware; there’s more going on here that meets the eye. And no, we in the blogosphere don’t have a right or a need to know what it is. Cf. St. Thomas, Summa Theologiae, Secunda Secundae, Q. 167 on the vice of curiosity.

  7. The shameful response of the institutional RC Church to this incident has been sad and harmful. It is a stain on orthodoxy and conservative and traditional values.

    To date, the controversy has focused on the clash between conservative/orthodox values and “Progressive” “values” as well as the disastrous response by the institutional Church. However, we may be missing a bigger issue.

    I am currently reading/studying “Acts of Apostles.” This morning I read Chapter 15 (i.e., “The Council of Jerusalem”) – which appears to correlate with the current situation. I strongly recommend that everyone read and contemplate Ch 15 before proceeding in further discussion. Perhaps this Word will help frame a more positive context for moving forward.

    First, let me assure you that I am a firm proponent of the traditional family and sexual mores as well as the RC Church’s position on homosexuality and the like. Leaving aside whatever Sr. Jane may have said, could it be that orthodox, conservative RCs are taking the role of Pharisees in this debate? It seems clear that the Progressive view the orthodox/conservatives as strict advocates of a plethora of rituals and rules not dissimilar to the “law of Moses.”

    To the Jewish Christians of that time (and also, just the Jews), the idea of admitting uncircumcised Gentiles to the Church was anathema. Granted, the RC church already has reasonable position on the participation of non-practicing homosexuals (and divorced Catholics, etc).

    Nonetheless, perhaps it would be appropriate to rethink what our purpose is as well as the role of Christ. Acts 15:10-11 appear to be key, especially the issue of salvation: “We believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus” [Acts 15:11]. Thus, the issue is faith versus works. We need to figure out how we can be unified enough to be a light to the world for the glory of God.

    I suspect that the Pope’s suggestion about shifting priorities was intended to move us towards the message of the salvation through the grace of God’s Christ and away from the pride of our works. The question is do we trust God to work his grace in us and others or do we focus on the minutia of works. There must be a middle ground. The miscommunication about this middle ground of the grace of Christ is where the leadership of the Church has fallen.

    Holy Spirit guide your Church as you guided the apostles in Jerusalem. Through debate and discernment direct our Church leaders toward decisions that express your will. Fill us with faith, courage, grace and strength to be the kind of people you desire. Amen.

  8. “And no, we in the blogosphere don’t have a right or a need to know what it is.”

    Rubbish. We have every right as faithful Catholics to know what it is. Hear no evil, see no evil and speak no evil as a mantra has been productive of much evil within the Church over the past several decades. I rather suspect there is no great mystery here however. Bishop Peter “Missing-In-Action” Jugis probably complained loudly to Aquinas College and Sister Jane’s superiors about her talk and she is being silenced as a result. Amazing the consequences of clerical cowardice.

  9. Jesus was pretty clear about how we are to go about fraternal correction, and opining publicly prior to having complete possession of the facts was not part of the process.

  10. Nor was timidity in the face of opposition to the Gospel part of the message of Christ, Chris. Besides, you indicated that we are not entitled to know the whole story, assuming, which I doubt, that there is more going on here other than clerical cowardice, so I guess we get to hold our tongues forever as yet another voice of Catholic orthodoxy is silenced? That is a losing game and I am not going to play it.

  11. Two disgusting aspects of this: the people going out of their way to frag this woman and the people going out of their way to excuse the bishop.

  12. ” We have concerns for Sister’s personal safety at this time.”
    Now finally I understand the Sabbatical. She must have received a very explicit and anonymous death threat and feels that she puts her sister nuns in jeopardy. She looks Chinese. Chinese women do not fear death for themselves ordinarily ( my wife’s name is Jinxing…the stories I could tell would make hard men tremble). North Carolina Catholicism loses her in perpetuity now. If her order needs a non order safe house /(armed protection) furnished apartment ( huge cherry desk with bookcase front…light turquoise carpet, white monkish walls throughout) We got ya back Sisters…say the word. Broadway and Museums a ferry away….duck filled park nearby. Take a break.

  13. fRED.

    I have done what you asked.
    I do appreciate your spirit. Unity.

    I do take comfort from verse 18; “To the Lord was his own work know from the beginning of the world.”

    However the following verse speaks of “openly speaking.” The acceptance of Gentiles.

    Are we to be silent in the face of Grave matter? Should we quiet ourselves as our neighbors risk the loss of their souls?

    Unity yes…but in union with Truth Life and Christ.

  14. I am absolutely disgusted with the Diocese of Charlotte where I live. Yes, Sister Jane’s words on sexual morality are very difficult to accept. So were the words of St. Paul. So were the words of Jesus Christ. Yes, it is true that we all are guilty of some sort of sexual immorality. Thank God for the Sacrament of Confession and Reconciliation. But just because we have failed the Lord and the Lord is Love does not mean that we should be confirmed in our failure! That is the opposite of love. Yes, there is controversy over what she is alleged to have said – that masturbation, pornography, divorce and single parenting “cause” homosexuality. More likely, however, what was expressed is that one form of sin or its consequences increases the susceptibility to another form of sin or its consequences. Sacred Scripture itself is replete with examples of that. I hope therefore God has mercy on our souls and brings all of us to repentance. Surely that was the Sister’s message. Her You Tube videos are certainly consistent with that theme. And it is that very message against which these oh so enlightened parents – whether Democrat or Libertarian – object. It is this message that strikes the hearts of the spoiled brats that are their children, and gives them the pangs of conscience that they would rather not face. We too have not been guiltless. But our guilt is no reason to justify us in sin so that we go to hell. Sister Jane and Father Kauth understand that. Rotten parents and spoiled brats and a weak, kneed, yellow-bellied, cowardly Episcopacy obviously refuse to. Deus miserere nobis!

  15. Paul,

    Your words were fitting for me back in 2004 when John FARC Kerry was running for President. As everyone knows, Kerry married the widow of John Heinz. Teresa Kerry is a crackpot, to say the least. She inherited an estate near Pittsburgh, among other things, from her late husband. Kerry showed up for Communion in a Pittsburgh area Mass and received. Then Bishop Wuerl fully supported Kerry receiving Communion, his outspoken support for abortion notwithstanding.

    There are some good bishops here in the US and elsewhere but the weak ones try to tear down everything the good bishops build up.

    I am a Catholic because Jesus founded this Church and Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. Weak clergy make me angry at them but they do not discourage me from being Catholic.

  16. For Sister Jane:
    “And David said unto Solomon his son, Be strong and of good courage, and do it: fear not, nor be dismayed: for the Lord God, even my God, will be with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee, until thou hast finished all the work for the service of the house of the Lord.: (1 Chronicles 28:20).

  17. The clear but unfortunate Message here is…..Today, the Church is more interested in Relativity than Martyrdom.

  18. Don, I agree with your response to me, but in this particular instance… it’s the Nashville Dominicans we’re talking about… they are among the lionesses of the Church in our country, they are a rock-solid community, fervently & vocally orthodox that’s busting at the seams with vocations and requests to send their sisters around the country & the world, and they’re doing so in the heart of the bible belt in full Dominican habits. There is no more courageous community of women religious, and hence there is absolutely no way that they are throwing Sr. Jane under the bus or silencing her because of her orthodoxy.

  19. Two things strike me in the statement from Aquinas College

    “Among the commentators, there are few who were actually present to hear the talk, which was not recorded.” From the first, I considered the failure to ensure the availability of an authentic text was a great lapse of judgment, for which the school must bear a measure of responsibility

    “Her deviation into realms of sociology and anthropology was beyond the scope of her expertise…” Sutor ne ultra crepidam (cobbler, stick to your last) is a sound maxim, especially on questions where experts disagree.

    Let us hope her community gives her the opportunity for a period of prayerful discernment.

  20. No, it did not “strike” you, Michael, because you’ve been trafficking in the same trivia. That the college makes use of the same excuses you cook up does not make them any less spurious.

  21. “I came to cast fire on the earth, and would that it were already kindled! I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how great is my distress until it is accomplished! Do you think that I have come to give peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. For from now on in one house there will be five divided, three against two and two against three. They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”

    Luke 12:49-53

    Bring the fire, Sister!

  22. I am not sure why pulling in articles from Linacre Quarterly, a “reputable journal” and data from the CMA is a problem in order to explain why divorce (or homosexuality or whatever it was she said) is not a good thing. (Now, if Sister was quoting Playboy, that might be an issue.) I have often pulled up random articles on Google in order to help explain why contraception isn’t a good thing (hormones get into the water, damages amphibious and aquatic life, etc).
    But to me, as an outsider, yes, it seems as if Sister Jane is in fact being thrown under the bus. Maybe she is, and maybe she is not, but that is what it seems to me. And what influence does that have on me as the mother of three boys? At one time, I very much wanted to have my eldest be a priest. No longer. There are articles about loneliness, about accusations about child molestation (some true, some not true.) And I’ve seen (and read articles) how good, orthodox priests are not supported by their superiors. The statement by Sister Mary of the college seems just a tad too conciliatory to those who made a fuss.

  23. DJ Hesselius,
    As an administrator, I think Sr. Jane’s superior went straight to the catechism after perhaps hearing from the Bishop and saw the sentence that said SSA’ genesis is largely unexplained:

    2357 Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained.Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity,141 tradition has always declared that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.”142 They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved. (2333)

    Romans chapter one talks very different but perhaps about normal people who become SSA through non sexual sins mainly around the issue of worshipping that which is other than God. Sr. Jane may have been oriented toward Romans chapter one ( hence her comments revolved around choices that bring on SSA) while the catechism writer may have been aware of the genetic literature as in the problem of the chimeric individual who can be really a composite of fraternal twin brother/ sister eggs which fused into one cell mass resulting in one birth but of a person who is partly of both genders.

    Romans chapter one and the catechism are not at odds but they are talking about two groups of people….Romans about those who bring on their SSA by sinful choices and the Catechism talking about the
    group who have SSA from genetic origins. Sr. Jane is more Romans one ( and thus offended those oriented toward genetics as source) while her superior probably felt safest checking the catechism which certainly does not address what Romans chapter one does ON the aspect of origin.

  24. Full damage control and I get the reasons – money is at stake here. I’m sure there is fear among the bishops that teaching the truth about human sexuality will make the vast majority of American Catholics uncomfortable and affect the bottom line. But the time for wishy washy teaching is over. I’d like to see an announcement at every mass that says if you’re contracepting, self-abusing, engaging in sodomy, watching heterosexual sodomite pornography, etc. you are not to come to communion. Let the chips fall where they may.

  25. Folks,

    I just read thru the comments again and still find it incredible that this happened not at a liberal progressive Diocese in California, New York or New England, but in the supposedly orthodox Diocese of North Carolina. If the orthodox fail us, then what hope is there? Sorry for being so pessimistic, but I am disgusted.

  26. All Catholics are obliged to adhere to everything within the “CATECHISM of the CATHOLIC CHURCH, Second Edition”. Bishops, Priests and Nuns are no exception.
    Regarding homosexuality please see: CCC # 2357, 2358, 2359, and 2396. In the footnotes please see the following Bible passages referenced –
    Rom 1:24-27; 1 Cor 6:9-10; 1 Tim 1:9-10.
    On the Vatican web site, please see Pope Benedict’s: “LETTER TO THE BISHOPS OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH
    ON THE PASTORAL CARE OF HOMOSEXUAL PERSONS” which includes: “15. We encourage the Bishops, then, to provide pastoral care in full accord with the teaching of the Church for homosexual persons of their dioceses. No authentic pastoral programme will include organizations in which homosexual persons associate with each other without clearly stating that homosexual activity is immoral. A truly pastoral approach will appreciate the need for homosexual persons to avoid the near occasions of sin.”
    Any violations must be reported to the Diocese Bishop. If that does not work, report it to the Vatican.
    Code of Canon Law: ” Can. 808 Even if it is in fact Catholic, no university is to bear the title or name of Catholic university without the consent of competent ecclesiastical authority.”
    ” Can. 812 Those who teach theological disciplines in any institutes of higher studies whatsoever must have a mandate from the competent ecclesiastical authority.”
    “Article 5 § 2. Each Bishop has a responsibility to promote the welfare of the Catholic Universities in his diocese and has the right and duty to watch over the preservation and strengthening of their Catholic character. If problems should arise concerning this Catholic character, the local Bishop is to take the initiatives necessary to resolve the matter, working with the competent university authorities in accordance with established procedures(52) and, if necessary, with the help of the Holy See.
    Everyone should contact the office of the appropriate Diocese Bishop, and if that does not work, contact the Vatican.

  27. Tom M- yep, it’s all about the money. And the damage control to keep it flowing in. Don’t upset the fly-by Catholic with deep pockets because the admin department might not be able to afford their Belgium chocolate biscuits at morning tea.

    It’s clear that the religious education at this College is poor to begin with. Because a Catholic student, does not get a shock, when hearing the correct Catholic Doctrine in human sexuality if they have good formation.

    The Church should strip this college of its “Catholic” title and give the needed funding to a college that actually follows the teaching of the institute it belongs to.

  28. First, I hope that Sister Jane and the Dominicans will be safe, sound, and strong in the practice of their faith. I believe the Lord will help His people because He knows them.

    This situation of blowback reaction and disparagement of the teaching, the evidence of anger from those associated with Catholic High School students, and the lack of a firm voice referencing for all the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Bible to be able to avail themselves of further study combine to allow so much confusion.

    The young adults may learn to discern the sounds and messages of love and hate, mercy and intolerance through this experience as they develop their reason with these perspectives on the world they enter. It is a sorrow that they cannot have higher minded ideas to be considering when defining good and bad or right and wrong.

  29. Art Deco – tip o’ the hat to your ability to accurately put in a few brief lines the crux of the issue and probable cause.

  30. @ Bill Bannon:
    I have the CCC, 2nd edition. It notes that the copyright for the Latin edition was 1994–20 years ago. And the CCC was most likely in the works for many years before it was finally copyrighted. Ergo when the CCC says that SSA’s “psychological genesis remains largely unexplained,” the CCC may have been accurate at the time that portion was written, but more recent science may very well point to SSA coming fro, or at least being highly influenced by, a broken family/broken culture situation. (My personal thought it is that SSA is a mental disorder that arises from a combination of genetics and social environment–some people can be helped overcome it through psychotherapy and counseling, but others will not.)
    But I don’t know what Sister Jane said, and I don’t know what articles she referred to in the Linacre Quarterly, or CMA data or whatever. All I can say, is that from where I sit, it looks like she has been thrown under the bus. She may not have been, but that is my impression based on what I’ve read on this blog, news articles elsewhere, and my own personal experience trying to defend the Church’s (God’s really) position on contraception.

  31. DJ Hesselius,
    I think there are entirely two distinct groups. Romans chapter one is from God and is not to be ignored or repealed and it says that in some cases, sodomitical activity is the result of God withdrawing from those who worshipped something other than him. With them, SSA is their fault due to ignoring God too long.
    Group two are those who have SSA as the result of all these enumerated multiple possibilities….chimerism, divorce, abuse, genetics etc. The catechism stressed group two origins and only referred readers to Rom.1.
    What the percentages are of the two groups…70/30…50/50….90/10??? Who knows? What they have in common is that they cannot follow the inclination just as I cannot look with desire at any woman but one.
    But I think Romans one is totally relevant to modern man and his new idols that replace God and so I suspect group one is larger than most people think. Romans one is partly about the severity of God and His withdrawal of grace…which is a tough subject even for Christians who like to think it over with Christ…but it’s not over as the epistles make clear.
    Romans 11:22
    ” See then the goodness and the severity of God: towards them indeed that are fallen, the severity; but towards thee, the goodness of God, if thou abide in goodness, otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.”

  32. Yes, clearly the Diocese Bishop is weak. You would think that the Church should appoint Bishops and Cardinals with sound management skills, just like corporations appoint managers with good management skills.

    To clear the situation, why doesn’t the Bishop investigate the situation. Firstly, ask Sister Jane what exactly she spoke about- a transcript perhaps.

    If all she did was reiterate aspects of the CCC then he should then hold a meeting with the parents of the students and explain that they send their children to a Catholic school and should therefore expect their children to be taught correct Church Teaching- and if they have an issue they should consider sending their children to a non-religious school.

    This could all be done peacefully and with maturity.

    If Sister Jane, did in fact add in her own scientific data regarding the causes of SSA and divorce, then its ok if she was reprimanded for it. The good Sister will tell the truth about the situation and she will also accept with humility some guidance for future speeches made.

    The Bishop could easily take control of the situation instead of allowing the gossip and innuendo to continue, especially when it is being fuelled by rebellious and immature high school kids and their parents-who are being told second hand accounts of the speech by high schoolers, which I wouldnt be surprised, are probably exaggerated and taken out of context.

  33. If Sister Jane, did in fact add in her own scientific data regarding the causes of SSA and divorce, then its ok if she was reprimanded for it.

    She would be quoting an academic or professional journal, so it’s not ‘her’ data. And no it’s not OK.

  34. The silencing of sister Jane is the silencing of many others too. Esp those who have something to lose.

  35. The letter reads
    ” There is division where there should be unity.”

    and yet Jesus says

    Luke 12

    Do you think that I have come to establish peace on the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division.


    From now on a household of five will be divided, three against two and two against three;


    a father will be divided against his son and a son against his father, a mother against her daughter and a daughter against her mother, a mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.”

    The truth will create division as Christ said.

  36. It does make you wonder what these students have heard in their religion classes, if this is all new to them. Seems like Sr Jane Dominic’s talk should have been a recap. Catholic Church teachings on family and human sexuality should not have been a surprise in a Catholic High School. I count about 12 religion teachers on the faculty website. What have they been teaching???

  37. Hmm… division or unity?
    While the Scriptures clearly call for unity among the brethren, it also clearly has a place for division:
    1 Cor 11:19
    “No doubt there have to be differences among you to show which of you has God’s approval. ”
    Between Sister J and her critics, I know where I’m putting my money on who has God’s approval.

  38. I truly hope this behavior is not a surprise to many. Try defending your marriage against your spouse’s adultery and the full support of the Catholic Church for adultery, in practice while not in words. Then, try asking for the local ordinary to work to help restore that valid, sacrament, as I have in the neighboring Diocese of Raleigh under Bishop Burbidge! You are ignored as if you did not exist.

    If, by now, people have not come to terms with how bad things truly are in the Catholic Church, then those same people are simply a part of the darkness.

    For anyone to think that “following the proper channels” is a workable circumstance in the Catholic Church I suggest finding a competant professional for help and, perhaps, medication for your delusion(s)!

  39. In his Prophetical Office, Bl John Henry Newman cautions, “What we need at present for our Church’s well-being, is not invention, nor originality, nor sagacity, nor even learning in our divines, at least in the first place, though all gifts of God are in a measure needed, and never can be unseasonable, when used religiously; but we need peculiarly a sound judgment, patient thought, discrimination, a comprehensive mind, an abstinence from all private fancies and caprices and personal tastes,—in a word, Divine wisdom.”

    Concerning this Divine wisdom, St James teaches us that “The wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle and easy to be intreated” – Small wonder that the Reformers were for banishing his epistle from the Canon.

  40. Hopefully today’s first reading at Mass does not apply to the bishop:

    “They suppressed their consciences;
    they would not allow their eyes to look to heaven,
    and did not keep in mind just judgments.”

  41. Bill Bannon

    In Romans 1, St Paul would appear to be referring to cultic sodomy.

    To his audience, his words would have recalled how king Asa, “put away the qdeshim [male temple prostitutes] out of the land,” how Jehosaphat put away out of the land …the remnant of the qedeshim that remained in the days of his father Asa”; and how Josiah, among his reforms, “broke down the houses or booths of the qedeshim.”

    This is the obvious link between idolatry and sodomy, which, otherwise, is far from obvious.

  42. Michael PS,
    So God in Romans one…makes irrelevant asides to all future Christians through the human writer just for the sake of showing His knowledge of ancient history or Paul’s irrelevant knowledge of history? So God is a pedant talking through another pedant? The other possible is that I am correct….that idolatry can happen in modern man in modern forms and can cause SSA in modern man. That would make Romans one a perenially relevant passage by God rather than an irrelevant historical, pedantic comment by God.

  43. “She would be quoting an academic or professional journal, so it’s not ‘her’ data. And no it’s not OK.”

    Thanks for stating the obvious.

    Its data she compiled from scientific studies she has chosen to quote. So yes it is “her” selected data. And no it’s not ok for her to quote it because the Church has not endorsed any scientific data that explains SSA or divorce.

    And yes it is ok for her to be questioned on any information that stems beyond the mandatory CCC.

  44. 11/28/2005: The Vatican newspaper said that homosexuality risked “destabilizing people and society”, had no social or moral value and could never match the importance of the relationship between a man and a woman.

    “Blessed are they that suffer persecution for justice’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Matt. 5:10

    Among the sins that OT Book Leviticus define as defiling the land: 18.26: Sins listed in 18.6-26 (including homosexuality). Also, “Giving” (to be consumed in fire) first born infants to Molech, wich was a fertility cult.

    I had never read, heard, or imagined there were pagan sodomy cults. From my schooling, many pagan idolatries surrounded fertility, i.e., crops, animal husbandry, children. Temple prostitution was meant to imitate the gods acts and to foster fertility . . . I thought the ancients recognized that sodomy is sterile, unnatural, and unproductive. [sigh]

  45. What we see here is what Christopher Ferrara might call ‘2d generation neo-Catholic’, the 1st generation assenting to liturgical disasters and oecumenical wheel-spinning but maintaining doctrinal and moral teaching. In response to obnoxious dissent from the teaching of the Church, the 2d generation responds with a series of “look squirrel” complaints about ancillary characteristics of defenses of Church teaching (Oh, and if we knew more it would all be good; and its the fault of the chancery staff; and stop name-calling.).

  46. And no it’s not ok for her to quote it because the Church has not endorsed any scientific data that explains SSA or divorce.

    Ez, it is a secondary school. There are no academic specialists on site. Were your complaint followed to the letter, nothing could be taught by any of the faculty.

    Nothing she said on sociological questions should be all that controversial.

    That aside, you’re stating a standard of conduct whereby defenders of tradition have to follow an elaborate set of p’s and q’s in discussions in their own institutions while the opposition is permitted to do the most stupefying things (e.g. inviting an obnoxious sex columnist to address a conference of high school yearbook and newspaper staff and berate the evangelicals in attendance).

    No, I cannot take you seriously. Neither do I believe you, or MPS, or Petrik have offered these criticisms in good faith.

  47. Karl,
    [br] Sorry to learn of your struggle with your diocese in support of your marriage. Unfortunately, this is nothing new. I experienced similar responses 14 years ago (!) when my then wife filed for divorce. It is impossible for the RC Church to be a light to the world when it has major problems with its credibility; it does not walk its talk.[/br]

    [br]The lack of support that I encountered from the church during my “marriage” was the straw the broke the camels back for me. Coupled with the Terri Schiavo case, its positions on various wars, how it hedges its bet with birth control via NFP, capital punishment, immigration, etc. has caused me to wonder where I belong. The witness of the “Church” that I have observed convinced me that I am better off on my own than with the so called shepherds. I realize that flies in the face of conventional RC wisdom but I decided I would rather throw myself at the mercy of God rather than risk the “protection” in the fold watched over by so many to-faced shepherds. The debacle with Sr. Jane is not reassuring and is certainly not a reason for me to return to “the church”. [/br]

    [br]Yes, I have abandoned the institutional church but I am still engaged with the spiritual church. I am still seeking God but it is clear to me that God is not present in (many) RC Churches.[/br]

  48. Mariadevotee, a former Religion teacher at Charlotte Catholic who gives her name as Patricia Burns, signed the petition against Sister Jane Dominic. The rather long comment is still on the petition page, but from this :

    “The winds of change in the Charlotte Diocese have been blowing for some time. It is sad to know that the speaker said what she did and ignored the truth that she was directing a hate filled message to young people”

    You can see what the students at Charlotte Catholic have been exposed to. No wonder they lashed out as they did, they are ignorant, being taught nothing, nothing of the Catholic catechism.

  49. From the din I am hearing in this series of responses, I would say I was wrong to fear that we would be SILENCED because of this kind of manipulation and jurisdiction from our institutions.
    Now we attack the leaders of our institutions; now we attack each other. We run the risk of losing our coherence, and becoming sound and fury signifying… you know the rest. Word bombs on each other don’t help.
    All of these approaches, the very scholarly and the more visceral are important tools for us. But most of all let’s realize we are on the same team.

  50. Often, Truth is countered by the Crypto-Fascism of the time, using today’s Mushy Word of The Day, “Tolerance.”

    In Sister Jane’s Case, by speaking Catholic Truth through Doctrine , she frightened Today’s Pharisees , who live comfortably through the Rule of Fear to cause rejection by the Group , some of whom stand to materially benefit from the preaching of False but Comfortable Sounding Diatribes. The “Group” are NOT Leaders in any sense. They are Utter Submissive Types, who seek “Pats on their Backs”, for pushing their “Vanilla Thoughts” on the rest of The Compliant Mass of Humanity.

  51. Why the Cowardice of The Bishops of the Roman Rite? Watered Down Catechisis is the Case here.

    And I wonder why I often head to the Byzantine Rite Catholic Church of The Ukrainians to actually hear sound preaching about Sin and the Consequences of Sin. In the Byzantine Rite Catholic Divine Liturgy of St John Chrysostom, one is truly sent the message about Catholic Doctrine and Sin.

  52. Bill Bannon

    Every Christian, from St Paul’s time, down to our own day would be familiar with Deuteronomy 23:17, “ No Israelite man or woman is to become a shrine prostitute” and with the institution of the qedeshim, the name itself deriving from the tri-consonantal root QDS-H, meaning “set apart” or “sacred.” They would also, one assumes, have read 1 & 2 Kings

    What could be more natural for any Jew or Christian, hearing an association between idolatry and sodomy than to recall passages, such as “For they also built for themselves high places and sacred pillars and Asherim on every high hill and beneath every luxuriant tree. There were also male cult prostitutes in the land. They did according to all the abominations of the nations which the LORD dispossessed before the sons of Israel” (1 Kings 14:23-24), where, again, we have a clear link between idolatry and sodomy. Then, we have Josiah demolishing “the rooms of the qedeshim that were in the Temple of the Lord, where the women would weave curtains for the Asherah (Mother Goddess)” (2 Kings 23:7) – Again, a clear linking of idolatry and sodomy.

    After all, scripture is the best interpreter of scripture.

    Likewise, St Paul’s gentile converts would have known of the widespread cult of Cybele, whose priests, eunuchs in women’s dress, engaged in ritual sodomy with the worshippers and of other similar cults, too numerous to name, making the reference, not only historical, but topical, too.

  53. The remarks of one “Patricia Burns” are here in full.

    Patricia Burns CHARLOTTE, NC 13 days ago Liked 75

    Mr. Joseph Warwick: Are you serious?? I bet you believe Hitler was right, too. I pray one day a child of yours doesn’t come home and say, “mom, I think I’m homosexual” because you would not respond in love and would turn away from your child. It’s interesting that most of your statistics are cited from “research” done in the 70’s and 80’s with the most “up to date” citation being 1994. Wow. Just wow.

    Patricia Burns CHARLOTTE, NC 13 days ago Liked 30

    As a former Religion teacher at Charlotte Catholic, I can’t say I’m surprised by the assembly and speaker. The winds of change in the Charlotte Diocese have been blowing for some time. It is sad to know that the speaker said what she did and ignored the truth that she was directing a hate filled message to young people…some of whom are gay and had to listen to her words. I felt privileged to teach such wonderful young people, and I am so very proud that you have taken this route to voice your disapproval at what transpired last Friday. The message was not of God, of that you must be sure. We are an Easter people…filled with hope. Jesus’ victory over death was for EVERYONE…and His message is one of compassion, mercy, forgiveness, love, kindness, humility, joy, hope, freedom of oppression, inclusiveness (which is above tolerance!) etc. Let’s not forget that we are ALL made in THE IMAGE AND LIKENESS OF GOD…and that image is Love. We are to be Love to one another. Fight the fight, Emma, but know that you will meet resistance and it may be harsh. Should that happen, remember Jesus’ words: “if they persecute me, they’ll persecute you.” And remember, too, that He is with you as you live out your discipleship…promoting justice and love. The shortest sentence in the New Testament is: “Jesus wept.” I bet he wept on Friday as He listened to the message being delivered in His name; but I believe He rejoices as you take the steps to right this wrong. Do the work in His Spirit, with His kindness, love, and mercy. I am proud of you.

    If you wished to put the most congenial construction on matters, you would speculate she is a ‘former religion teacher’ because the headmaster fired her for cause.

  54. Michael PS,
    ROFLOL. Every Christian for the past 20 centuries is familiar with the institution of the qedeshin…is the most incomprehensible claim I’ve seen on the internet. I didn’t read the rest. Something is making you want to suppress the idea that SSA is the responsibility of some SSA people but scripture is clearly saying it is and context as to the origin in temple prostitutes has no effect on that message…here it is again:

    Romans 1:
    24 Therefore, God handed them over to impurity through the lusts of their hearts* for the mutual degradation of their bodies.
    They exchanged the truth of God for a lie and revered and worshiped the creature rather than the creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.
    Therefore, God handed them over to degrading passions. Their females exchanged natural relations for unnatural,
    and the males likewise gave up natural relations with females and burned with lust for one another. Males did shameful things with males and thus received in their own persons the due penalty for their perversity.

    Context does not remove what is being said in those lines at all.

  55. A remark on “Rate My Teachers” about quondam religion teacher Burns (who was on the faculty as late as 2012 (comment dated 2008):

    mrs. burns seems to know few people take religion seriously as an academic class, so she doesn’t base it on academics, but rather on real life and improving yourself. she just gets it. she’s great.

    The principal of Charlotte Catholic, who has been employed there since 1971, in administrative positions since a point in time prior to 1980, and the principal since 2003, is on leave. He was placed on leave by the chancery about a month ago pending the completion of an audit. As Dale Price says, the one message you hear from the chancery loud and clear is “Don’t screw with the money”.

  56. Bill Bannon

    Do you take “Their females exchanged natural relations for unnatural” to refer to SSA?

    Surely, in the context, St Paul is recalling Leviticus 18:22-23, which form a doublet, with the first forbidding Mishkav Zachor (lying with men) and the second Mishkav Behema (Beastiality). “A woman must not present herself to an animal to have sexual relations with it; that is a perversion.” This, one could argue is what St Paul means by “exchanged natural relations for unnatural.”

    It would link up with verse 23 ” and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles,” much as 2 Kings 23:7 makes a link with the women making curtains for the Asherim in the boots of the male temple prostitutes.

    The whole context is cultic.

  57. This seems remarkably similar to the way Father Michael Rodriguez was treated in the Archdiocese of El Paso, TX. where after taking on the Archbishop there he was literally railroaded to the “outbacks” of Texas. I wonder where the good Sister will be sent? Lord Help Us!

  58. Michael PS
    You selectively left out “males likewise gave up natural relations with females and burned with lust for one another.”. Yes that means therefore they had SSA as a result of not worshipping God in their case ( not in all cases as evidenced by Hugh Hefner, owner of Playboy).
    And you left it out ( and mentioned the woman only) because you wanted to equate this mentioned sin with bestiality where there is no attraction to animals….that way you could eliminate SSA. But “burned with lust for one another” stops you so you hoped readers wouldn’t notice? You’ll notice Romans is saying the males burned with lust for one another whereas in bestiality, the person is lusting after orgasm and not after the animal. So Romans 1:27 is clearly saying SSA itself is present along with the acts. Could the person have repented with having the SSA but prior to the act of sodomy? Yes but they didn’t.

  59. This has been a horrendous moment not simply in the Charlotte Catholic HS or in SIster’s or Father’s lives, but in the Church in the United States. While probably never coming close in scale to the 2002 Sex abuse crisis, it reveals all sorts of weak points within the Church that need to be dealt with.

    First, of course is the teaching of the truths of the Catholic Faith. They need to be taught forthrightly, clearly and positively [no harangues-however that does not mean no ‘thou shalt nots’] and age appropriately. [This is what I believe to be the major problem with Sister’s lecture: no parental notification ahead of time; content would have been fine (sociology etc) in a college plus setting but not at HS level-at that level keep to simple Church teaching-theology of the body, Catechism.]

    As to the Church’s teaching on homosexuality. It needs to be said clearly. The Scriptures do not condemn ‘only’ ‘temple prostitution’. They are condemning homosexual actions. One caveat is needed however. The Scriptures had no way of differentiating SSA and homosexual actions, this would be totally foreign to their ‘culture’. The Church realizes this and carefully distinguishes SSA and homosexual actions which are sins. It also states that SSA’s “psychological genesis remains largely unexplained”. The Church does not go beyond this.

    The mission of Catholic education-at all levels is to bring forward the Catholic Church’s teaching ‘in season and out of season’ in an age appropriate manner. There are no excuses and no apologies. Someone wants something else there are certainly other venues.

    I do not believe all the parents voicing displeasure at Sister’s talk were against Church teaching. Some were genuinely concerned about not being notified and then trying to play catch up with an emotional adolescent on their hands or hearing them talking about it. That being said, there obviously was a sizable group of parents who strongly disagreed with Sister’s address even on what the Catholic Church teaches. While they are local they represent a sizable portion of Catholics in America who dissent from the Church’s teachings on any number of fundamental moral issues, but underlying this is a hazy grasp of Who Jesus Christ is Himself [this might shock people-whether He is really the Son of God, whether He died for our sins (why if we can just walk into heaven), or whether He really rose from the dead]. It is not ALL due to poor catechesis (although that is a big issue). These people have come to their own Cartesian position and ‘because they think it is, it is”: they have substituted ideology for faith. Here the ‘progressive Catholic’ fault line has had a field day, crucifying Sister, Father and any who disagree with them

    Another element that has revealed itself in the response to this terrible series of events are ultratraditionalists [not all traditionalists are ‘ultratraditionalists’] who use this to boost their own suspicions, mistrust of the Church and seek to distance themselves and others from the Church-blaming it all on the post-Vatican II Church etc, as if the so called ‘pre-Vatican II Church was perfect and had no difficulties. Thus there have been tremors along this fault line, crucifying any who even question some of the non-Church teaching positions that Sister conveyed to a HS assembly [not a post-graduate degree course] or her wisdom for doing so.

    Then we have the bureaucracy of the Church [the Church is an embodied entity and will always need an institutional element to her. She is not an invisible communion or a community in which ‘love’ is always lived out. However, what I call bureaucracy-speak rises in almost every occasion rather than listening to the Spirit of Christ. Bureaucracy manages rather than leads. Each bureaucracy takes on its own culture, language etc and will not accept people in the bureaucracy not speaking ‘the company line’. This sadly was evident in both the diocese’s responses and in the College’s. Distance the bureaucracy from the mess to save the bureaucracy. The problem is however this is not the same as ‘saving the Church’ or furthering Her Mission.

    The Church in America [I will stick with our own country] needs a great deal of re-evangelization, conversion, reconciliation, healing and deepening of faith, hope and charity, growing in and not lessening our full communion with the Catholic Church in teaching, sacraments and government of the Church.

  60. Bill Bannon

    I have already equated male sodomy in Rom 1:27 with passage after passage in the OT, all linking idolatry with sodomy.

    Search any concordance and you will see that each time the word sodomite or sodomites occurs in the OT, it refers to a cult prostitute. Apart from those I have already given, there is only one other, Job 36:14.

    In other words, like St Paul in Romans, the OT links sodomy to idolatry, every time it mentions it; sodomy and idolatry are two sides of the same coin.

  61. It is foolish to circle the wagons in defense of marriage in response to homosexual claims to marriage. The defense of marriage must start with marriage as intended and sanctioned by God and it must go retrograde back to when annulments started the whole scale undermining of the permanent perception of marriage, in the Catholic understanding of marriage, somewhere, whenever it was, that the ground(s) for nullity grew from an inch to a mile.

    There will be no credibility for a Catholic position in the defense of marriage until the errors of the past 30 to 40 years are addressed. Until annulments are not seen(and they certainly are) as divorce by another name, this game is lost. I do not see a solution forthcoming.
    It simply will not work to try to “educate” the false nullities away, even in a sea of legitimate ones. I will not be silenced by the Catholic Church unless they kill me and there are manyin addition to me. I have little doubt that many annulments are legitimate but many are not and these must be comprehensively addressed. This injustice has been devastating to both the reality and the perception of marriage as a life long institution. There can be no defense of marriage without justice. Expedience seems the way of the current Church leadership and it is destroying the Church. To cite the promise of Christ to remain with the Church, but to refuse to operate justly, is doomed to failure. This spits in the face of Jesus on the Cross and He will not countenance it. Sister Jane is experiencing the backlash of the past few generations of corruption in the Catholic Church, throughout the hierarchy. This is not simple sin. It is entrenched, intentional, institutionalized, systemic disobedience. It is not a sin of passion. It is a determined undermining of truth, not a reaction to pain or misplaced compassion, although both of those are exploited to enlist support.

    May God have mercy on us.

    Lest this nightmare be misrepresentd as the fruit of the homosexual proponents, alone, let those of us who contributed to the assault on marriage through our selfishness accept our parts but let not the Catholic Church simply accept that and move on! No!

    Let the Bride of Christ call her divorced children to holiness, in public. Let her reexamine all the circumstances of the millions of unjust divorces in her annulment records and let her tell each and every of those who divorced unjustly, who are among the living, to repent or let her issue formal excommunications for each that are living, who continue to call/identify themselves as Catholic but who refuse to repent and to begin to heal the marriages they have abandoned. Monumental, indeed, but so is the damage that has been done.

    Either do things earnestly and as comprehensively as possible or watch the Catholic Church implode. God expects no less. There is no forgiveness for refusal to repent, no heaven for unrepentant adulterers, no salvation for Churchmen who facilitate the destruction of marriages!

    Charlotte is a symptom of a deeply invasive disease much worse than any of us perceive.

  62. Michael PS,
    I think you are subtly defending either modern sodomy or modern SSA. The latter is an unfortunate disordered cross and can be a punishment as it is in the Rom.1 case but is what Aquinas called the first movements of sin which are not sin itself because they are prior to choice in some cases; the former, sodomy, cannot be done well even though the person avoids all persons but one for a lifetime. It is wrong outside your cultic context and is mentioned in the Bible outside your cultic context…Lev.18:22 “You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; such a thing is an abomination.”
    It doesn’t matter if Molech is mentioned in verse 21. Molech is not mentioned in 22 and were it, it is still irrelevant to whether the act is evil for all times in the future. That’s why the verse makes it clear by describing the action rather than using the word sodomy so that future scholars would not be able to game the verse.

  63. Michael PS

    Adultery is linked with idolatry in the Prophets as well, but that does not mean adultery was committed only in pagan temples. Both adultery and sodomy are means by which a person idolizes another person [the creature] over and against the Creator [conversio ab Deo: conversion away from God]

  64. Botolph

    Yes, Adultery is linked with idolatry in the Prophets as well and adultery is often used figuratively for idolatry. Adultery also has a wide connotation: in Tanah Divi R’ Yishmoel, we read, “Why does the verse say Tinuf (you should not commit adulteries) which is in plural form? It comes to include those who spill seed.” (cf Motzi zera l’vatalah – Wasting seed) The later sages use adultery to include sodomy.

    My point is that the only references to sodomy in the OT are in connection with idolatrous cultic or ritual practices, if we except the original Sodom story in Genesis. Its occurrence in the Holiness Code of Leviticus may, or may not, have to do with its association with idolatrous worship.

    Now, against that background, St Paul is following an existing OT theme in linking the two. Compare what he says with,“For they also built for themselves high places and sacred pillars and Asherim on every high hill and beneath every luxuriant tree. There were also male cult prostitutes in the land. They did according to all the abominations of the nations which the LORD dispossessed before the sons of Israel” (1 Kings 14:23-24) Notice,too, that the last sentence mirrors Lev 18.24, “Do not defile yourselves in any of these ways, because this is how the nations that I am going to drive out before you became defiled…” The parallel is impressive and it is hard to believe it is coincidental.

    Also, Leviticus 18:22 calls sodomy “toevah,” a term also used of the rules of kashrut (Deut 14:3), in other words, with a ritual or cultic connotation. Of course, it is a question whether the usage is the same in the two books, but there it is, for what it is worth.

  65. Mr. Paterson-Seymour,

    I’m afraid we are not following your argument. Cultic sodomy is strictly prohibited, this much is true; but are you saying that sodomy, otherwise, is of no concern for Christian men and women?

    Or are you merely suggesting that because of the wounds of nature unredeemed, Bill Bannon’s suggestion that same sex attraction as a sign of mortal turpitude in some cases cannot be right? Maybe I am not understanding Bill’s argument either: I cannot fathom how he separates the reprobates (The Romans 1 crowd in his words) from those he considers merely disordered by biology.

    That being said, I lean towards Botolph’s answer that there is something, one could say, “cultic” about all sexual relations. It is why reactions to the Sister are so vituperative and adamant? I find Rene Girard very instructive on these matters of desires and cultural cohesion.

    As for the sister, there have been many saints who have been in similar situations.

  66. Hmmmm,
    I don’t need to separate actual people into two SSA groups…one innocent and one guilty because ” Who am I to judge” humans…but we can all judge abstract principles in order to e.g. hope for the best in the intimate case of our relatives ( I have one) who may have SSA. Or we can pray harder for those we discern intimately …brought SSA on themselves.

  67. Michael PS,
    I Cor.6:9. “Know you not that the unjust shall not possess the kingdom of God? Do not err: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, 10Nor the effeminate, nor liers with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor railers, nor extortioners, shall possess the kingdom of God. 11And such some of you were; but you are washed, but you are sanctified, but you are justified in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the Spirit of our God.”
    Vulgate for “liers with mankind”… neque masculorum concubitores.

    Do your thing. Show us how this really does not prohibit modern sodomy.

  68. There is a certain ‘school’ of biblical exegetes who espoused the sodomy is only cultic prostitution that gave rise to so called ‘theological’ positions (I won’t give them the dignity of calling them teachings) in which basically everything that had traditionally been considered morally wrong in sexual matters-and is still taught as morally wrong by the Catholic Church-were overthrown for a new progressive view of things. In the United States it became enshrined in a so called study (and published as a book) by the Catholic Theological Association of America called “Human Sexuality, New Directions in Catholic Thought: A Study. That book was published in June 1977. While not read by that many, the ideas in that so called study were communicated in all sorts of venues and became the ‘received progressive Catholic view’ of all things concerning sexuality. Let me sum it up what it put forward as “basically everything goes’. We are now reaping the whirlwind.

    To the point, Scripture condemns homosexual acts. Those so called Scripture exegetes who still hold these positions (most have abandoned them) must be smoking cannabis

  69. Her “deviation” into the realms of “sociology and anthropology” was beyond her expertise? Specious logic since the human person is an integrated whole. Since when is she not allowed to use such information provided proper credit is given to the studies mentioned? The Holy Father uses that all the time and doesn’t mention studies and he only has degrees in philosophy and theology. No, this is typical progressivist garbage.

  70. When Jesus presented his listeners with a tough concept – about his body and blood – some of the people walked away because they could not, or would not accept it. Jesus did not change his teaching to satisfy the dissenters. He presented the truth; he did not try to be popular with everyone.

  71. Art Deco,

    She could have quoted a study that suggested that SSA is a result of an absent father within a family. Or she could have quoted a study that said that over-parenting and coddling by both patents could lead to SSA. Both single parents and very involved parents would be offended by both studies. And students will be naturally defensive if they come from these sorts of families, by no choice of their own.

    There is no absolute study which suggests the reason for SSA. And if there were, the Church has not come out in support of a reason.

    Therefore it is better for her to have stated the Church Teaching on human sexuality, and explained the importance of a spiritual life to assist in following Gods Will.

    I think it is an over reaction to suggest that an academic is required onsite to determine what is taught. The School board along with the Diocese should and would be reviewing ALL material taught in the curriculum anyway…you would hope.

    You and I are speculating. We don’t have a transcript of the speech. We don’t know what she said.

    Which makes it all the more important for the Bishop to manage the situation better. Send the Bishops to management school, if they are inept at putting out fires.

  72. Mr.Bannon,

    I’m sorry but I fail to understand why such a distinction matters. We do not discuss the degrees of rakes and cads; we are ask to pray for chastity and continence for all, including ourselves.

  73. Bill Bannon and Botolph

    As I am sure you know, the word used by St Paul is ἀρσενοκοῖται [Arsenokoitai] His is the first recorded use of it and there is a vast literature on its meaning. Exegetes who have devoted their lives to the explication of his writings can arrive at no consensus.
    Obviously, it is a compound formed from two roots or stems – αρσεν (arsen, a male) and κοιτε (koite, a bed, esp a marriage-bed). Some suggest it means a man who sleeps (has intercourse with) men. Perhaps, but try a similar analysis of “lady-killer” – A woman who kills? Someone who kills women? Of course, we know it means neither.
    Unlike Sr Jane, I am not going to dogmatize, where experts differ. In short, I do not know what it means and I very much doubt whether anyone else knows with certainty.
    However, I don’t mind throwing out a mere suggestion. The LXX text of Lev 18:22 has “Και μετά άρσενος ου κοιμηθήση κοίτην γυναικείαν Kai meta arsenos ou koimethese koiten gunaikeian, literally, “and with a man you shall not go to bed in a marriage-bed in feminine manner.” Both αρσεν and κοιτε occur in the sentence and St Paul may have formed the word, drawing on this verse, in which case it means whatever Lev 18:22 means. Once again, we find ourselves in the midst of a vigorous debate among the exegetes.

  74. Botolph,

    The most persuasive arguments that I have across are as follows: The classical world considered what we call homosexuals a third sex, androgynous, “natural eunuchs”, unable to be men. This was different from the relations of men who willingly committed all sorts of lewd and lascivious acts.

    the ante-Nicene Church, in scripture and by the sayings of the Fathers were more concerned with prostitution and pederasty than those of the third sex. Following the Romans, all congress was based on a penetrator-penetrated dichotomy that is foreign to our current understandings. This is why the Fathers write so little about the third sex- they were not men because they couldn’t penetrate.

    The scant writings we have on the subject are mixed. There is a general exhortation against the “naturally constituted eunuchs”, but pastorally it is treated as a lesser sin as long as “men” and “women” are not engaging in such behaviors. A few Christian writers saw no problem whatsoever for those naturally unable to act as men.

    There were many fashions to distinguish them as a third sex, the most popular, if extreme, being castration. They often served as priests of pagan temples or as servants in wealthy households. It was these latter positions that lead to Christians outlawing the the third gender. Not only were they often against the Christian religion early on but many became Supporters of the Arian heresy. Eusebius being the most famous example.

    It was only at the time of the Arian conflict that the Church started to redefine masculinity as not merely a penetrating force but an anatomical state that widened the idea of who was a man while narrowing what it meant to be an eunuch. The homosexual was no longer a “thing” with its own physiology but an action forbidden to all men and women.

    Which to me is the crux of this problem. It is persuasive; not as an argument, but a description of the problem. Are we or are we not dealing with some sort of third sex; and if we are, what are the implications?

    The hetroclitic are as confused on this issue as the general population is. Depending on the source and fashion, homosexuals insist they are the same as heterosexuals; that they are different; that they are born that way; that it is a choice; that it is a non-political movement; that queering the world (and destroying the remnants of patriarchy) is foremost political.

    In other words, it cannot be categorized intellectually because it is an indefinable anything and everything at all times. Such turbidness is like catnip to those whose default position is pantheistic and who implicitly condone the penetrator-penetrated dichotomy of sexual congress. (Which seems to be the default position of men throughout the ages.) By trying to maintain the illusion of the Christian position while reestablishing the third sex one in the homosexual-heterosexual definitions from the 19th century, it seems we have a mess on our hands that will not be easily elucidated.

  75. Michael PS,
    You did an awful lot of scholarship to avoid the obvious word of God in this area….which is…you can’t have sex with your own gender. You tried to nullify every passage God gave you…every single one with either linguistics or association with idolatry. But each passage is plain…He condemns sex with your own gender. The idolatry angle makes no sense because the idolatry component does not relieve any passage of God’s abhorrence of the generative member being in the anal tract. You have an IQ probably of about 140 and you have the moral wisdom of a young thief who says he is only despoiling the insurance company of the homeowner he robbed. The latter is still going to eternal lonliness for circumventing the obvious word of God…unless he repents prior to death. Biblical scholar Fr. Raymond Brown…a liberal of the demythologizing school and on the PBC twice…argues against both your linguistics and idolatry points on pages 529 and 530 of ” Introduction to the New Testament”….and he’s liberal. You envision a never ending linguistics debate on this subject and probably link that to the principle that an uncertain obligation does not bind. But it’s plain as day…you can’t have sex with the same gender. The penis does not belong in the organ of elimination and Raymond Brown brings it back to Christ noting the one flesh role of man and female from the first two people. His scholarship employs thinking of the whole message of God. Your scholarship is a list of data only…accompanied by innuendo that the idolatry connection voids every attempt by God to condemn sodomy…as though the Bible and God can’t talk past the idolatry period of history on sodomy. You’ll be meeting the Creator in the particular judgement soon. How do you think your linguistics arguments are going to work on Him. Remember …He created every language and the stars and the galaxies and the human body. You’re about to tell Him He was not crystal clear about whether one can have sex with one’s own gender. Good luck with that.

  76. Hmmm,
    Christ had degrees of prayer….Lk.22:44…” He fell into an agony and prayed the more fervently”. I believe Christ prayed more fervently for Peter than for John because He saw a difference. The person who has gender confusion from being a chimeric (read about them online) is a more understandably confused person than those of Romans one who started out normal but brought SSA onto themselves. If I had both in my family, I would pray more earnestly for the Romans one type.

  77. While the hysterical overreaction to Sister Jane’s talk — from a Catholic school, no less — is appalling, let’s stop and consider for a moment her alleged claims about the origins of same-sex attraction. If — if — she said that homosexual attraction can be the result of poor bonding with one’s parents, that MAY be, literally, true, and she may have honestly believed it to be relevant information that should be included in her talk. But inevitably many people will hear it as “If your son/daughter is gay you must have been a bad parent” — and we know that is not, cannot be, true in every case.

    The origins of homosexuality, i.e., “why” some people are same-sex attracted, is NOT a matter of Catholic doctrine or morals. What is a matter of faith and morals is what we do about it — treat it as a temptation and combat it by living a chaste life.

    Christ was asked, regarding the man born blind (the Gospel of the Fourth Sunday of Lent) “Who sinned, this man or his parents?” And Jesus did NOT attempt to answer the question of whose fault it was; he simply said that it happened so that God’s glory could one day be manifest in him. Maybe the same could be said of same-sex attraction or many other “thorns in the flesh”; however they got there, they ultimately exist as opportunities to overcome the flesh and manifest God’s grace.

  78. Enough talk about what the Linacre may say. Here is the abstract from what must be the article as it is the only one that discusses psychogenesis of homosexuality:

    “The best-established facts in relation to homosexuality point to developmental-psychological, not genetic or physiological, causation. The efforts of the last few decades to find evidence to support a biological theory have made it more doubtful than ever that such evidence will be found. In contrast, many studies have shown that the most significant factor which correlates with homosexuality is “gender nonconformity” or same-sex peer isolation. Another factor closely associated with homosexuality is an imbalance in parentchild interaction, notably forms of over-influence of the opposite-sex parent in combination with a deficient relationship with the same-sex parent. The third well-established correlation is with inherent, rather than discrimination-produced, “neuroticism” or emotional instability/immaturity.Structured around this pivotal evidence from statistical as well as clinical research, homosexuality is explained here as a character neurosis. Characteristics of this neurotic character syndrome include personality immaturity, self-victimization, and self-centeredness. This syndrome affects not only the emotional but also the moral and spiritual dimensions of the psyche and if indulged leads to generalized personality deterioration. Therapeutically, a holistic approach, simultaneously addressing the emotional, moral, and spiritual components of the psyche, offers the best opportunity for overcoming homosexuality. De-egocentrization and personality maturity, including the development of mature manhood/ womanhood, are the goals of therapy.”

    I have not read it (will read in near future) but it looks like a review article of the current state of research. Thus it presents a summary of the overall state of the literature. In other words, rather strong evidence supporting the good sister’s arguments and valid in making a case in a discussion.

  79. Elaine, Sister Jane is not responsible for the emotional neuralgia to be found among the parents of this school. Neither is the author of the literature review in The Linacre Quarterly. A school of that dimension might have about 30 students for whom latent homosexuality is a problem now or in the future. In a comfortable majority of cases, this will not be an explicit domestic issue in the home of the youth in question and some parents facing domestic problems are able to look at their own doubts and dilemmas and failures without lashing out at third parties. When you’ve got 2000 odd parents, it’s to be expected you’ll find a dozen jerks among them; those dozen should not be allowed a heckler’s veto.

    One thing disgusting about this discussion is the ad hoc articulation of the principle that a clergyman or religious may make no utterance that is not incorporated within the ordinary Magisterium. The Sister is to be taken to task for any asides, even ones on plainly adjacent topics. The other is that the SIster may make no utterance on a subject in which she is not an academic specialist. Get it through your heads people, no Catholic secondary school could operate if these principles were adhered to; secondary school teachers very seldom have any graduate training in any academic or technical subject and often have deficient undergraduate training as well. On other matters, the contrived business of chanceries and the U.S. Catholic Conference is an irritant, but a great deal of extraneous verbiage can be pruned without robbing an ecclesiastic of teaching authority on unsettled questions. (And in merely referring to a literature review, the Sister is not exercising a teaching office).

  80. Michael PS,

    We have a long and good history of interaction on this Blog site, however I have to say that I am stymied by your insistence on very finely tuned linguistic analysis and or scriptural exegesis of a particular school, but which is by no means universal and certainly not universally accepted. Even with my philosophy and theology background I cannot actually figure out what you are attempting to communicate, unless it is that “your” scholarship undermines the Church’s teaching and her traditional interpretation of said texts. Is this really what you are trying to do? You have been engaged by several of us, yet seem to keep avoiding the obvious which homosexual acts are condemned, period. It makes no difference whether it was in a pagan temple within some ‘ritual’ or in a ‘gay bar’ or ‘bathhouse’ [whatever the ancients’ version of that sort of things was in those days.

    Ancient Israel came in contact with a culture that was ‘progressive and tolerant’, which accepted homosexual actions as a way of life when they entered Canaan. It was one of the reasons given for the land of Canaan to become “the Promised Land” [I am sure a certain a demographic winter obviously had taken place]. Obviously homosexual actions were known [and not tolerated] even among the Israelites, but it was in response to Canaan that the strong strictures came in the Torah. The Israelites were called to be a holy, priestly people and ‘sex’ was not secular or neutral but sacred [just look at Leviticus 16] nor was it simply between two consenting adults with a right to privacy [for it effected the whole People]

    The next real encounter with a culture that was tolerant and even promoted homosexual activity was the Hellenistic Empire, after Alexander the Great. They promoted Greek philosophy, education, values and institutionalized and promoted homsexuality in their gymnasiums, one being built right in Jerusalem. Ergo, the Maccabean uprising-which was far more a’culture war’ rather than being simply and independence movement

    While the old Roman Republic was more conservative and Augustus even instituted a strong family values reform, the Greek culture infiltrated the Empire. Rome stopped speaking Latin and began speaking Greek in the first century-and that was not the only thing they imported. While Tiberius was far from a saint, Caligula then Nero, the last of the biological line of Caesar, shows just how depraved humans could get. It is in this cultural milieu that the Letter of Paul to the Romans was written.

    But, now the question remains. Is the traditional Church’s stand on such subjects simply a ‘cultural reaction’ to a more open, progressive and tolerant culture? No. While frequently the reasons for her teaching need to be developed, etc., one can only say that from the beginning of God revealing Himself and His saving will to Israel, homosexual actions (as well as other illicit acts of sex) were condemned. Why, because fundamentally, the People of God ‘intuited’ from Revelation that conjugal love is both unitive and creative, love-giving and life-giving (at least open to life) and homosexual acts by their nature cannot give conjugal love.

    See, folks, when many in the Church began dissenting against Humanae Vitae’s core teaching on conjugal charity-in the name of ‘contraception’ they broke the relationship between the unitive and creative. In radically questioning Church teaching in this area of marital/sexual morality they began to raise questions about other marital/sexual issues. The Word [revelation] of God found in the complementary Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition are a whole. It is that ‘whole’ to which the word “Catholic” refers primarily. One cannot pull and cast aside one real string of that Revelation found now in the teaching of the Catholic Church without real problems. In the 60’s and 70’s with the reaction to Humanae Vitae we sowed the wind; now we are reaping the whirlwind

  81. Botolph wrote, “I cannot actually figure out what you are attempting to communicate, unless it is that “your” scholarship undermines the Church’s teaching and her traditional interpretation of said texts.”

    Not at all. There are two quite separate questions here (1) What did St Paul mean, when he wrote – the interpretation of the text and (2) The application of the text by the believing community of the Church. The first is open to question, the second is as plain as daylight.

    Thus, to take a similar case, for four hundred years at least, dispute has raged over whether John 6 teaches the Real Presence, or, even, whether it refers to the Eucharist at all. Again, the short answer is that we cannot pronounce on the writer’s meaning with any degree of confidence, as demonstrated by the lack of a consensus among exegetes, but we can show that the Fathers constantly apply the text to the Eucharist. As we are not Fundamentalists, we can distinguish between the meaning of a text and its use. If the experience of Eucharistic fellowship led the early Church to read a meaning into the evangelist’s words that were not there for him, we embrace this enrichment of the Church’s self-understanding, confirmed as it is by our own experience of encounter with the Risen Lord in the sacrament. That should not affect our view of the exegetical question.

    That is why I consider the attempt to read St Paul as somehow committing us to a view on the ætiology of SSA, unsupported by the literal sense of the text (which is probably irrecoverable) or by Sacred Tradition.

  82. Sorry, I meant to write, “That is why I consider the attempt to read St Paul as somehow committing us to a view on the ætiology of SSA, unsupported by the literal sense of the text (which is probably irrecoverable) or by Sacred Tradition is misconceived

  83. Michael PS,

    While I am sure this is very clear in your own mind, I am not sure you are recognizing the full implications of what you are saying and especially in the context in which you are writing.

    1) What you are saying (or seem to be saying) is that in many cases the exact meaning of the Scripture author is unatainable-in John 6 in terms of the Eucharist and in Romans 1, 18-20 in terms of homosexuality. Whether this was a private conversation just between the two of us or not, you are stating that there is a chasm between “Scripture’ and Tradition/Church teaching. Do you really intend to say this? if so I cannot protest more strongly.

    2) while in an academic setting etc we could have an hours long discussion on such a subject and not end up particularly thrown by what was said, this is a Catholic blog with all sorts of people steadily on it and peoples coming and hitting it, reading it without any real background to where you are coming from etc. I am not saying that people on this blog are ‘ignorant’ etc but most are not up to snuff being able to respond to your very finely tuned scalpel nor be able to see through your fallacies.

    I strongly urge you to reconsider what you seem to be saying and or work at rewording it-for the sake of us all

  84. If the experience of Eucharistic fellowship led the early Church to read a meaning into the evangelist’s words that were not there for him, we embrace this enrichment of the Church’s self-understanding, confirmed as it is by our own experience of encounter with the Risen Lord in the sacrament.

    If the early Church read something into John’s words that John never intended, then what you call “embrac[ing] this enrichment of the Church’s self-understanding, I call “living a lie.” In which case, I might as well join the Mormons as enter the Church in less than two weeks.

    Or so it seems on first reading.

  85. Botolph and Ernst Schreiber

    From the earliest times, Catholics have acknowledged that Scripture contains layers of meaning, not all of which need have been present to the mind of the inspired writer.

    The Alexandrian Fathers, proceeding from the premise that the Bible is one book, united by one subject, Christ, produced typical and allegorical interpretations of virtually the whole of the OT. In doing so, one believes they enjoyed the guidance of the indwelling Spirit and of the rule of faith: that is, viewed historically and, as it were, externally, the common consciousness and shared experience of the People of God.

    Thus, I affirm with the Holy Fathers that the perpetual virginity of the BVM is taught in Ezekiel 44:2, “Then said the LORD to me; This gate shall be shut, it shall not be opened, and no man shall enter in by it; because the LORD, the God of Israel, has entered in by it, therefore it shall be shut.” Was the prophet aware of this sense? I take leave to doubt it. Would it have any place in a literal exegesis of his text? Obviously not. The Church found in Ezekiel an expression of its faith; that is what I mean by applying the text, not interpreting it.

    Again, during the Arian controversy, the orthodox party made frequent use of the psalm Erucavit (XLIV) “My heart is bringing forth a good word…” to describe the eternal generation of the Word. Again, I believe they were applying the text, not interpreting it and the exegete is perfectly entitled to examine its literal sense in its original historical setting.

    Another example would be the Petrine texts in the NT. Were the gospel writers consciously aware of the doctrine of the primacy and infallibility of the Roman Pontiff as the Church has developed it? Need we believe they were?

  86. My training is in history, not Scripture and/or exegesis, so I’m incapable of arguing at your level, and you seem unwilling to come down to mine, as others here have already pointed out, so this will be my last comment on the subject.

    It seems to me that if the Real Presence isn’t part of the earliest layer of Tradition, and the Evangelist isn’t communicating that Tradition in the Bread of Life Discource, but rather that the Real Presence is something the Church read into the Gospel of John after the fact, then the Mormons have it right, the Church founded by Christ died out after the first generation and they have as much claim to being the “true” church as anyone else.

    Arguing that what the Evangelist meant symbolically, the Church has come to understand literally here strikes me as being as foolhardy as arguing, as Crossan argues, that the Resurrection was a spiritual/symbolic event rather than a physical one. That is, it calls everything into doubt.

    That’s my unsophisticated opinion, at any rate.

  87. Michael PS,

    Since you are writing from Europe and I am in America, your response came in the middle of my night, but do not think for a moment I have lost interest in this ‘discussion’ or that I feel you have answered my points adequately. I really feel badly for Ernst in what he said. I can only say to him this: the more I study the more I see the beauty, unity, truth and goodness within the Catholic Church, her teachings, her sacraments and her apostolic government. I will be praying for you, Ernst in these last days before the Paschal Vigil.

    Michael, I am very happy that you are aware of Patristic exegesis and have used it concerning the Blessed Ever-Virgin Mary, but you have gone straight to the Eucharist claiming that John 6 has little or nothing to do with the Eucharist. The Eucharist as you know is a central tenet of the Catholic faith and sacramental system. The Church does not rely only on John 6 as the foundation for her faith but it certainly is central. I know your background is philosophy. However the exegetes you are depending on for such a statement must be a more radical fringe of the historical critical method, and frankly, using them, especially in this setting not only undermines the faith of many but also fuels the suspicions of the ultratraditionalists concerning Vatican II, Dei Verbum and theology in general.

    In questioning what Paul meant in Romans 1 concerning homosexual activity you first attempted to localize it only in pagan temples. I have seen this type of ‘exegesis’ from so called experts. It is really eisegesis [reading what one wants back into the text, manipulating the text to mean what the exegete wants]. The same exegetes would crucify fundamentalists but have no problem actually doing the same thing-only now from a so called ‘progressive’ ideology. Paul, and other texts in the New testament do indeed condemn homosexual activity, to say otherwise is frankly shocking.

    Now in the important subject of the Eucharist [both a Sacrament and a dogma] and in the text on Romans concerning homosexual actions, you have called into question the biblical foundation of the Church’s Tradition and teaching on doctrine and morals. I cannot leave this here. You need to respond to my points and not obfuscate things.

  88. Ernst,

    You have the whole issue concerning the Eucharist in a nut shell. Way to go! You are in my prayers these next days until the Vigil

  89. Ernst,
    I Cor. 11:29 is actually the strongest on the real prescence:
    ” For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh judgment to himself, not discerning the body of the Lord. ”
    If that’s problematic to anyone, I can’t imagine why….there isn’t even theoretic room for it to be symbolism. It’s screaming…”no poetry here”.

  90. The Church’s faith in the Eucharist does not depend on John 6.
    The early Eucharist, as described in 1 Corinthians, used the institution narrative to serve a consecratory function and it is clear the Eucharist possessed a sacrificial character. “Christ alone had offered or could offer true atoning blood. His disciples merely set forth bread and wine, and without reliance on Christ’s institution to establish the equivalence of their bread and wine with his body and blood, they could not suppose themselves to be doing anything.” (Farrer) The realism of a sacramental presence in the Eucharist depends therefore on a presentation to God (an offering or sacrifice) in heaven and on earth.
    Farrer adds, “Jesus had been present in flesh and blood at Jerusalem in the upper room, he was not so present in the ecclesia at Corinth; and some thing like the common sacrificial situation was bound, therefore, to reconstitute itself. What had they to do, to assure his participation? He had told them – they were to do what he had done in blessing, distributing, partaking; and if they did so, they took it that every eucharist they held was the Supper of the Lord, instinct with the added virtue of Christ’s resurrection.”

    Thus, the Real Presence is found in the very earliest age and it was inevitable that John 6 should be read in the light of that experience. Are we obliged to take a further step and say that John 6 originally referred to the Eucharist. Exegetes are not agreed. Does it matter? No, for we know that the very first Christians believed in the Real Presence and the sacrificial character of the its celebration, in which they were warranted by the words of institution, a word spoken by Him whose word constituted the worlds in being and Himself the Word of which the Begetter and the Begotten is Almighty God.

    Some hold that the Eucharist was a commemoration of the Last Supper. Now that seems to me to be wrong. “Do this for my memorial” means “In commemoration of my redemptive act,” “Christ’s redemptive act was his death and resurrection. The Institution Narrative shows how that act was and can be sacramentally realized. It is scarcely evident that a sacramental memorial of the redemptive act should memorialize the institution of that memorial.” (Farrer again) But some exegetes think otherwise.

  91. Bill Bannon wrote, “I Cor. 11:29 is actually the strongest on the real prescence”:

    I agree with that and would only add that it points to its sacrificial character: “the bread and wine were holy things in a positive and even potentially alarming sense. To become so, they had to be lifted out of the common run and placed in God’s peculiar possession, so that for a man to partake of them was a privilege fenced about with sanctities, so we have again the essential idea of sacrifice.
    In the churches of the early Church, such as the one at Corinth, the sacrificial nature of the Last Supper and the sacrificial act of Christ’s death and resurrection, was seen to be instantiated in such a way that every Eucharist was the Supper of the Lord, not just in a memory of a past event, but in sacramental realism.

    The power or the virtue of Christ’s resurrection was added to the reality of the Eucharist.

    No one is suggesting that John 6 can be read in isolation from all this. The only dispute is about its original meaning, not whether it is rightly used to illustrate the Church’s eucharistic experience.

  92. Michael PS,

    Great got the Eucharist down, Now to your comments about Romans 1 vis a vis homosexual acts. Again it is certainly not the only Scriptural reference etc however there are Scriptures in both the OT and NT which refer to homosexual acts as grievous sin and which are part of the foundation on which the Church’s teaching on the morality (immorality) of homosexual acts is based. Would you please respond to this issue, which you left us with?

    I myself would pose that the Spousal love between God and Israel::Christ and the Churchl [which is a spousal love of an ‘other’] is fundamental to all of the Church’s teaching on morality in the area of sexuality etc. This has been seen as reflected in creation [natural law etc] IN other words, our whole foundation is found in the unitive and creative inseparable aspects of conjugal charity. However, the Scriptures forbidding certain sexual acts is nonetheless part and parcel of both the Scriptures and Church’s Apostolic Tradition which has been passed on in the Sacred Scriptures and Sacred Tradition>>Church teaching.

  93. “Be fruitful and multiply” appears six times in Genesis. In the first case, God blesses living creatures allowing and requiring them to procreate His creation.
    The second time (Genesis 1: 28), the Lord issues the order to mankind. After the flood, God repeats His blessing on animals (8: 17) and twice upon mankind (9: 1 and 9: 7).
    God chooses Jacob for His last such blessing: “I am God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall be of thee, and kings shall come out of thy loins” (Genesis 35: 11).
    Exegesis of Leviticus justifies its condemnation of homosexual acts as relevant to Christians. Despite attempts to dismiss the Old Testament based on some of its Mosaic laws, analysis reveals that few of the laws apply to Christians. The proscription of homosexuality is among them.
    Leviticus distinguishes between two types of laws:
    (1) Laws for the Jewish people
    (2) Laws that prevent “defile the land”
    The first type of laws (like not wearing polyester) apply only to those initiated into the Mosaic covenant.

    The second type of laws are laws that prevent the defilement of the land,. They apply to all people, regardless of whether or not they are initiated into the covenant. Lev. 18:26: “The native-born and the aliens living among you must not do any of these detestable things” lest “the land become defiled.”
    Here is a list of all the “sins which defile the land,” all the Old Testament laws which non-Jews had to obey, or be “cut off from the community.”
    1. Exod 12.19: Do not eat leaven at Passover
    2. Lev 17.8-9: Only offer sacrifice at the Tabernacle door
    3. Lev 17.10-12, 14: Do not eat blood
    4. Lev 18.26: Do not commit sins listed in 18.6-26 (including homosexuality)
    5. Lev 20.2-3: Do not give children for Molech
    Do these laws which Judaism extended to all people also extend to Christians?

    The Council of Jerusalem, which decided to admit Gentiles to the Church, admitted them to the Church on four conditions (Acts 15:29):
    • Do not eat things polluted by idols (#2 & 5 above)
    • Do not commit porneia (sexual immorality) (#4 above)
    • Do not eat whatever has been strangled (#3 above)
    • Do not eat blood (#3 above)*
    In other words, the only condition which the Apostles laid down for Gentiles to enter the Church was that they keep all the laws which the Jewish Law commanded non-Jews to keep.

  94. T Shaw,

    Well done! While not the only sin under the term “porneia” [illicit sexual unions], certainly homosexual actions belong among that which is forbidden by the very first Council of the Church, the Council of Jerusalem, 49 AD, in Acts 15

    There are four sins that cry out to God:

    1) “the blood of Abel” homicide, infanticide (abortion as well), fratricide, patricide, and matricide [see Genesis 4.10]

    2) the sin of the Sodomites: pride, gluttony, negligence of the poor, abuse of children, and homosexual acts [see Genesis 17.20-21

    3) “the cry of the people oppressed in egypt, the cry of the foreigner, the widow, the orphan: slavery and marginalization [see Exodus 2.23]

    4) injustice to the wage earner: taking advantage of and defrauding the worker [see James 5.4]

    Source: Catechism of the Catholic Church 1867

  95. Art Deco,

    Put aside that a nun put forth data about the alleged causes for SSA or single parent families, for example.

    If it was a teacher quoting the same data in class, there would have been the same negative reaction from students.

    The fact is, people are defensive when their lifestyles are criticised, or their upbringing implies their parents are bad parents.

    No one is saying the Sister should not talk about anything outside the CCC, but if she chooses to include data, it should be scientifically absolute, AND adhering to Church Teaching.

    She is a nun first and foremost- that said- her job is to assist in the spiritual and moral formation of her students. And you would think that prudential judgement should be exercised when compiling material for talks.

    Again all here say. I have an idea in my head how the talk played out, which could be completely different to the talk given, and so Im commenting based on my imagined perception of the events.

    That’s the trouble you see.

    Nobody still knows exactly what she said.

    It would help to manage the situation if there were facts available to comment on, rather than conflated speculation.

  96. Nobody still knows exactly what she said.

    Fr. Kauth offered a precis of what she said: some quotations from the Linacre Quarterly. Hardly Fred Phelps. Give it up.

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