Category Archives: Pansexuality

Same sex adoption


-by Trent Horn

“On Thursday 6/17/2021, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the city of Philadelphia engaged in discrimination when it refused to contract with Catholic Social Services (CSS) to place children in adoptive homes. The city claimed that it would not work with organizations that refuse to place children with same-sex couples. The Court rules that the city was not justified in preventing CSS from carrying out its free exercise of religion and this exercise did not sufficiently burden the city to justify its decision.

I won’t get into the legal specifics of this case. Instead, I want to focus on the broader arguments it raises when people hear about it. The biggest is the claim that Catholic adoption agencies engage in unjust discrimination when they refuse to place children with same-sex couples. How should Christians respond to this claim?

It’s not wise to use phrases like “children need a mother and a father.” Some people will think you’re equating having opposite-sex parents with a biological need like food or shelter. They might point to studies or anecdotal accounts of children raised by same-sex couples who “turned out just fine.”

In some contexts, you might find it helpful to point out the flaws in studies that purport to prove that same-sex households are just as good as, if not superior to, opposite-sex couples. Some of the flaws include the fact that respondents (usually only a handful of them) volunteered for these studies, so the more obviously dysfunctional same-sex couples didn’t bother applying in the first place. However, this approach can get you off the main moral principle too quickly and muddy the waters into debates about whether certain groups constitute “good parents.”

In fact, some parents who experience unintended pregnancies will probably be worse at parenting than a saintly, infertile opposite-sex couple. But it doesn’t follow that we should place a child with those parents because some study says they’d probably be better. Instead, we should follow principles or justice rather than the dictates of social scientists. In doing that, we should shift from saying “children need a mother and a father,” which is an empirical claim about well-being, and say “children have a right to their mother and father.”

This is why we don’t remove children from their biological parents unless the parents are deemed unfit. Even if the child would do better in another home, the child has a right to his parents. In fact, the Catechism says:

‘A child is not something owed to one, but is a gift. The “supreme gift of marriage” is a human person. A child may not be considered a piece of property, an idea to which an alleged “right to a child” would lead. In this area, only the child possesses genuine rights: the right “to be the fruit of the specific act of the conjugal love of his parents,” and “the right to be respected as a person from the moment of his conception” (CCC 2378).’

So what do we do with a child who has a right to his parents but can’t be raised by them—because they have died, for example, or are unable to care for him? In that case, justice demands that we replicate what he has lost as best as we can. Part of that includes the irreplaceable and unique elements that fatherhood and motherhood give to a child.

This does not mean that all same-sex couples would be prohibited from raising children. For example, an orphaned child might be raised by her grandmother and aunt. In this case, strong familial bonds can substitute for a fatherly presence.

But notice that same-sex couples are not equal to opposite-sex couples. While it’s not politically correct to say this, it is still correct: Catholic adoption agencies should not deliberately place children in homes with disordered sexual behavior. I am not claiming people with same-sex attraction are more likely to abuse a child. My point is instead that Catholic adoption agencies are committed to helping children grow up in healthy families. And while our culture defines healthy families without any regard for the harms associated with no-fault divorce, fornication, and sodomy, the Church does not, and its institutions should be free to practice their faith in accord with this (correct) view of the family.

One final objection would be that it is hypocritical for Catholics to be so firmly against abortion and yet be opposed to same-sex couples adopting children. Would they prefer that the child be aborted instead?

First, even if the lack of same-sex adoptions led to increased rates of abortion, that wouldn’t mean Catholics would be morally responsible for those children’s deaths. That culpability lies with the child’s parents—and especially the abortionist himself—because they are choosing to end the child’s life. Banning crimes like prostitution could have the unintended consequence of increases in sex-trafficking, but that would not mean that it is wrong to try to rid society of the scourge of prostitution.

Second, this objection is based on a false dilemma. It makes it seem as if either Catholics can choose either abortion or adoption by a same-sex couple. But the vast majority of children waiting to be adopted in this country are older children in the foster care system. Many of these children were wanted by their parents, who lost custody of them due to criminal behavior or being deemed unfit to care for their children. Some of them can’t even be adopted because their parents have not lost their legal parental rights.

However, newborn children are an entirely different story. Prospective adoptive parents can wait for years to adopt a newborn, and some sources indicate that there are two million couples waiting to adopt. Therefore, it isn’t the case that a child from an unintended pregnancy must either be adopted by a same-sex couple or be aborted. There are many opposite-sex couples waiting to adopt these children. They should be commended for their heroism. If Catholic adoption agencies choose to work with them, the State should not punish them for carrying out what they know to be in the best interests of the children they serve.”

Love & truth,
Matthew

Ontology. What is the definition/meaning of being? What is our identity? God decides. NOT us.

God determines our identity.  We respond in grace and free will; either correctly or incorrectly, either in good or evil, either in obedience or disobedience, as God defines them and us.  We do not decide.  God does.  THY WILL be done.  Thy Kingdom come, on earth, as it is in heaven.


-by Fr. Christopher Pietraszko, Ignitum, Fr. Christopher serves in the Diocese of London, Ontario.

“Philosophically there is much attention to the concept of identity. In sacred scripture the same is the case. What constitutes our identity?

In the philosophy that examines “being” or ontology, our identity is rooted in our “whatness.” What you are, determined who you are. This whatness is not merely your essence, but it’s tied intrinsically to your “why-ness” that is a pre-determined purpose that is imposed upon you by your existence. To some this seems oppressive, to others it’s a matter of discovery and humility. In this category one does not determine their own purpose. Psychologically that would be absurd since one is drawing from their nature to determine a preferential purpose, thus at least latently basing their existential self first in their own nature. This is where the notion of dignity stems from, and since it is rooted in our being, personal choices do not dissolve this dignity, nor do states of development.

The second type of identity is sometimes called “moral character.” This, while of itself springs from our nature, nonetheless does carry with it existential notions of self-creation. Here, we are not creating “being” or “what/why we are” but “how” we are. For the Christian, this is what, in part, determines our our salvation, in conjunction with or without our cooperation with grace. We are responsible here for our moral character, and sometimes this is how people identity.

Today, sexual relativism defines identity around sexual attractions, or affective states. The primary focus is not on one’s ontology as a human (male or female), but rather the sexual inclinations and affective-guided self concept. Sexual attraction is often conflated with the tautology “love is love.” Love is not initially defined as to will the good of the other here, otherwise further phrases such as “you don’t choose who you love” would not accompany the movement. This is about desire, since in disinterested friendships love can be chosen and should be as such.

Since Christ, our identity has been rooted in His choice to adopt us as His children, not in one’s sexual disposition, or affective desires in any particular regard, including pleasure, wealth, money or power. In baptism the Church teaches that one is changed “ontologically.” Thus the identity in whatness and whyness has also changed. God extends this call to be changed by His love, which transcends mere sexual desires, but pertains to a concern primarily for the good of the other.

Knowing these distinctions is important as it will help people navigate chronic shame, and be rooted in not something ultimately hedonistic or defined primarily by affective desires, but rather rooted in the Creator Who defines us by the relationship He freely and universally extends to all, that some may be saved.”

Love & truth,
Matthew

Pansexuality



-by Trent Horn

“Pansexuality is the logical conclusion of a sexual philosophy that says we merely have bodies, not that we are bodies.

Most people have heard of terms like gay, lesbian, and bisexual. Pansexual is less familiar. However, it’s growing in popularity as a sexual identity label. I was asked to include the topic in a presentation I gave to a “sex and gender studies class” at a Catholic university, and one school district that prohibited parents from removing their students from sexual education classes included material on LGBT issues as well as topics like genderqueer and pansexuality.

So what is pansexuality? Teen Vogue magazine describes it this way: “Pansexuality means being attracted to all people regardless of gender identity or sex. The prefix pan is the Greek word for all. Pansexuality is a noun, and pansexual can be used as a noun or an adjective to describe a person who is pansexual.” In an interview with Vanity Fair magazine, pop star Miley Cyrus described her pansexuality this way: “What I preach is: People fall in love with people, not gender, not looks, not whatever.”

Even though the Greek root pan means “all,” pansexuals are not sexually attracted to every single person they meet. Rather, a pansexual person is someone who claims to be capable of being sexually attracted to anyone, regardless of that person’s biological or gender identity.

This kind of attraction is similar to the B in the LGBT acronym, which stands for “bisexuality” and traditionally refers to being attracted to both men and women. So what’s the difference between being bisexual and pansexual?

For some people, not much. One article in Rolling Stone Magazine puts it this way:

The bisexual community doesn’t even agree on what it means to be bisexual. The term pansexual was birthed out of the confusion, and to create a definitive and more inclusive label. This has led to in-fighting between members of the community, who are upset that their bisexual identity is being replaced by another label.

One split among people who take on the “LGBT” identity over this word relates to the concept of the gender or sexual binary. Some see pansexual as preferable to bisexual because it leaves open the possibility that there are other genders besides “man” and “woman” for a person to be attracted to.

As much as we might direct our ridicule toward the label of and ideology behind pansexuality, we should remember to direct our compassion toward those who experience so many conflicting sexual desires. We all struggle with sinful desires that distort our understanding of reality and ourselves. The Church calls this concupiscence, and it refers to our natural inclination to evil thoughts and deeds that flows from the corruption to human nature caused by original sin (Catechism of the Catholic Church 405). But pansexuality looks like one of the last stops on a cultural journey toward complete sexual anarchy (with final stops at bizarre places like robot factories), and it needs to be treated as such.

So what specifically is wrong with pansexuality?

When Miley Cyrus says, “People fall in love with people, not gender, not looks, not whatever,” she confuses persons with personalities. Human beings are not “asexual souls” or ghosts who have no intrinsic connection to our bodies. In our romantic relationships, we don’t fall in love with minds or spirits; we fall in love with people, and a person is a unity of body and soul.

We are incomplete without our bodies, which is why St. Paul noted how unnatural it is to be separated from our bodies at death and how joyful it will be when our souls are reunited with our resurrected bodies at the end of the world (2 Cor. 5:1-5). Since our body is essential to our human identity, it is not possible for a “female soul” to be trapped in a male body, or vice versa (as transgender advocates claim). It also isn’t possible to have a healthy sexual attraction only to a person’s mind, since sexual desires are ordered toward bodily union.

Pansexuality is the logical conclusion of a sexual philosophy that says we merely have bodies, not that we are bodies. If people think the body is just some vehicle my “person” drives around from inside my brain, then it shouldn’t matter where I end up “parking.” And while exclusive same-sex attraction at least tries to ape the marital act (even though it can never achieve a true union), pansexuality thumbs its nose at the entire concept of the marital act. Instead, the only good in a relationship is the compatibility between personalities—and if they enjoy acts of mutual masturbation, then all the better for them.

That’s why, along with severing the natural link between sexual attraction and the human body, pansexuality threatens to undermine other goods like platonic friendship. Human beings find comfort in friendships that do not have a natural inclination to sexual desire. It’s why we usually seek friendships with people of the same sex and recognize that if you repeatedly have to say you and another person are “just friends,” then there’s probably a good chance you share a stronger bond than friendship.

But if people adopt pansexual ideology on a wide scale and come to believe that sexual desire naturally proceeds from any healthy psychological or social relationship between persons, then this will make all intimate friendships suspect and destroy a unique good that exists among human beings.

What this means for all of us, regardless of our innate sexual desires, is that God will not abandon us to them. The Catechism’s advice for those with same-sex attractions also applies to those who struggle with disordered desires and temptations that spring even from natural attractions: “[they] are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection” (2359).”

Love, unity of body & soul, as God creates/intends. His will is perfect. His will be done, His kingdom come!!!
Matthew