In the Name of Love

It may surprise many of you–especially those who think they know me–to hear that I hate conflict. Oh, I’ll get up on my soap box when I’m preaching to the choir1 but the minute somebody gets upset my shoulders seize up and my stomach starts to churn. I won’t change my mind, but I’ll sure as heck agree to disagree faster than you can say “relativism.”

marriage equalitySo today’s been rather a rough day on Facebook. Everyone’s got their trendy equals signs or their counter-cultural declarations and I’m just trying to get by with a few links and no drama. I can’t even handle Catholic Memes today, and you know that’s usually my fave.

All day, though, I’ve felt like I had to say something. But I don’t just want to start shouting about Romans 1:26-27 and have all my “conservative” groupies back me up.2 And I don’t want to pull out studies or Church Fathers. I don’t want to talk about the constitution or the separation of Church and State or what happens to religious liberty when institutions with religious significance are threatened by the state. I don’t want to talk about homophobia disguising itself as religion or intolerance disguising itself as acceptance. I don’t want to talk politics or sex or any of the other topics that get people all mad.

Today, I just want to talk about peace and love. But ain’t nothing gets people madder than real love working for real peace. And you know who’s getting in the way? Conservatives. And liberals. Progressives and traditionalists. Stay-at-home moms and 12-year-old-kids and me and you and a whole lot of everybody.

If I see one more claim that people who support gay marriage are in favor of love while those who oppose it are in favor of rules, I may scream. Don’t you know that the rules are supposed to help us love better? Don’t you know that we–some of us, anyway–are trying to love you by helping you to understand the rules? You might think I’m wrong, but please understand that my disagreeing with your lifestyle doesn’t in any way change how much I love you.

And you know what–if I see one more mathematical equation that reduces the love of two human beings to the orientation of a set of lines, I may scream louder. How does it help anybody to reduce their love–their family–to a gimmick? How does shouting that it’s not marriage if there aren’t babies or that it’s not a family if there isn’t a mom and a dad speak to a world of infertility and contraception and single-parent households?

Quit calling me a homophobe because my understanding of the nature of marriage doesn’t match yours.

Quit bringing up pedophilia and bestiality like they’re at all the same thing as homosexual unions.

Don’t attack my Church if you don’t know what she teaches.

Don’t attack my friends if you don’t–you know what? Just don’t attack my friends. Or their friends. Or anybody at all. Don’t tell people they can’t be good parents, don’t tell them they don’t know anything about love, and don’t you dare tell them they’re going to hell.

An invitation from a gay Catholic friend of mine to go beyond the rhetoric.

My friends, we’re not getting anywhere. And we’re not going to get anywhere until we shut up and listen. I respect those of you who are actually making points. But if you’re just recycling the rhetoric, try sitting down with someone intelligent and compassionate who disagrees with you and asking them why they think the way they do. Because I don’t think there are a lot of people sporting pink equals signs who are trying to destroy the moral underpinnings of our society or corrupt children. And I haven’t met many who support traditional marriage because of hatred and fear.

There are outliers on both sides and confusion and poor reasoning and unfair attacks but I think we mostly just want people to be free to love.

compassion and convictionsYou may think that a person isn’t free to love unless he’s free to marry whoever he wants. I think that a person isn’t free to love until he’s living in God’s plan for love. But I’m not opposing equality, I’m fighting for love. You’re not opposing morality, you’re fighting for love. And we’re not fighting each other when we oppose each other’s positions. If Twitter is any indication, we’ve lost any ability we once had to disagree without despising. In the name of Jesus–invoked on both sides–we are hating each other in order to pursue love. That’s seriously screwed up.

So as the equals signs proliferate (and the division signs and the addition signs and whatever other craziness there may be), can I implore you to stop before you link, before you share, before you like or comment or tweet or pin and just ask yourself: is this loving? Is it reasonable? Does it attack positions rather than people? And if it’s not for the greater glory of God, delete it.

Living like this may not change any minds,3 but maybe it can change some hearts, can show them that this is about love. Whatever side you’re on, unless you’re a total clown, this is about love. Can we stop hating each other for 5 minutes and respect that we’re all fighting for love here?

  1. Gotta love a mixed metaphor. []
  2. No, I don’t consider myself a conservative. Nor do I think liberal is a bad word. I’ll take a lot of both, thank you, although that’s a post for another time. []
  3. The only minds that matter this week are the nine on the Supreme Court. What the heck difference do we think our caustic social media interactions are going to make?? []

About Meg

I'm a Catholic, madly in love with the Lord, His Word, His Bride the Church, and especially His Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity in the Eucharist. I'm committed to the Church not because I was raised this way but because the Lord has drawn my heart and convicted my reason. After 2 degrees in theology and 5 years in the classroom, I quit my 9-5 to follow Christ more literally. Since May of 2012, I've been a hobo for Christ; I live out of my car and travel the country speaking to youth and adults, giving retreats, blogging, and trying to rock the world for Jesus.
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41 Responses to In the Name of Love

  1. Sarah says:

    If I decide to post anything at all about this whole issue on my FB wall, it will be this blog post, with the quote
    “If Twitter is any indication, we’ve lost any ability we once had to disagree without despising. In the name of Jesus–
    invoked on both sides–we are hating each other in order to pursue love. That’s seriously screwed up.” Thank you
    for this much-needed & charitable addition to all the discourse & discord.

  2. Monica says:

    THANK YOU for this post. I have had to had these giant red equal signs stare me in the face all day and I just didn’t know what to do or think about it at all. You have put into words what I have been thinking all day, and I thank you.

  3. Jordan says:

    You have a wonderful way of wording things.

  4. Andrea says:

    Wonderfully written

  5. Katlyn says:

    I don’t even know you but I love you for this post. You said everything and more that I’ve been screaming in my head!

  6. Esther says:

    This is exactly right, friend. I often don’t agree with every word you write, but I so appreciate you, and I know God means for us to hear each other in love and mutual respect. God doesn’t lead by conflict. God leads by peace.

  7. Joni says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    I have been accused of being a hate-mongering, gay-bashing, intolerant “so and so” over the past couple of years…since I ventured out on Facebook.

    I finally had to post a very long status update that told people, “If you think that, then you don’t really know me.” But I understand why they have that mindset. If all we’re doing is posting links to certain websites, etc., it can come across that all we care about is OUR opinion, and not showing Christ’s love.

    God bless, and keep writing!
    Joni recently posted…Why Rome? (Or, What in the world has happened to Keith and Joni???)My Profile

  8. Adam says:

    Hi Meg,

    Thank you for this post. I found it through a friend and enjoyed reading it. While I agree with your basic premise about love and acceptance, I would argue that many of those in support of marriage equality (myself included) have no interest in denigrating your religion (I work at a Catholic College and have found it to be one of the most accepting and open places I have ever worked).

    I would point out that your argument of “Quit calling me a homophobe because my understanding of the nature of marriage doesn’t match yours” addresses my biggest argument in favor of marriage equality. Your definition of marriage doesn’t match mine. My question is, so what? Isn’t diversity of opinion and thought the cornerstone of our society. My problem with this is that right now, the religious arguments about religion are interfering with what should be a simple civil issue, as our country boasts the separation of church and state. I don’t want a religious marriage, I want a civil marriage and access to the same rights that heterosexual couples have. My right to this should NOT be a “majority” rules type of issue. If that logic worked, we never would have seen advances in the civil rights movements for women, African-Americans, and other minority groups.

    Just my opinion and food for thought. Thank you for your thoughtful post.

    Adam

    • Trevor says:

      Definition of MARRIAGE
      1a (1) : the state of being united to a person of the opposite sex as husband or wife in a consensual and contractual relationship recognized by law

      • Adam says:

        Trevor,
        I appreciate your response but if the definition of marriage is what you’re responding to I would argue that words and their definitions have been adapted and changed throughout time as society changes and grows. This is just another time when society is growing and changing.

    • jenas says:

      Through all of this I have been trying to find understanding. In my search I find the need to adopt the word of ‘marriage’ as the place of major conflict. If the fight is truly for equality of civil rights then why the need to adopt the word marriage? The problem is the word ‘marriage’ applies both to a religious ceremony and a civil proceeding. Churches have every right to restrict marriage as they see fit, but the court had to decide if the word will be retained for them alone.

    • Megan says:

      You hit the nail on the head! Thank You! I totally agree with Adam!

    • Kristina Ciminillo says:

      Nothing is a “simple civil issue”. We are spiritual beings and everything we do and claim, or don’t do and disclaim affects our eternal souls.
      Diversity cannot be a “cornerstone” or the house/”society” will be weak and fall apart just as we are seeing all around us in world today. Any other cornerstone than the rock of Jesus Christ = failure.

      • Adam says:

        Kristina,
        Yor argument is based on everyone accepting your god and religion as the basis for the argument. That’s fine for you to believe, but please do not force your beliefs on me through the government and its laws. One religion should not be able to force what it perceives as true on people who don’t believe the same.

  9. Dimitri says:

    I appreciate all the touchy-feely “everybody wants more love” theme of your post, but you’re not addressing a major point. Before November 5, 2008, I was able to marry the man I love. After November 5, 2008, that right was taken away from me.

    Advocates of marriage equality are not championing any legislation that would prohibit you from living or loving the way you want to live or love. The position you support–the “non-homophobic” stance that I can’t love my partner until I live God’s plan–actually did me and my partner tangible harm.

    Marriage equality isn’t an esoteric issue like the origin of the universe or the meaning of life. Before November 5, 2008, I had a right that I no longer have today because some people think that I need to live God’s plan before I can love my partner. I have fewer rights today than I did then because of your faith.

    The position I advocate for (that all couples, day or straight, should have access to the same rights, responsibilities, and title of marriage) literally does you no harm. You and your partner have the same rights and responsibilities regardless of Proposition 8; my partner and I do not.

    And, finally, I advertise my position using an equal sign. Yes, equal rights for LGBT people is a complex topic that touches on historical issues of race, gender, sexuality, family, etc. Yes, reducing my position to a symbol is reductionist. But so, too, is Christianity a complex belief and I don’t hear you screaming loudly against “trendy” crosses or reducing religion to “the orientation of a set of lines.” Just like the cross means something (i.e., it’s symbolic of Jesus’s sacrific), the equal sign also carries symbolic weight: the rights, responsibilities, and title that my family enjoy should be equal to those that your family enjoys, whether or not I’m gay.

    • Drew says:

      Dimitri, I can only guess you are from CA, then you should know that prior to Prop 8 there was Prop 22. And even before that there was DOMA signed by Clinton at the Federal level. It goes back further. Cellphones have been around longer than any form of legalized same-sex union. Gavin Newsome did a travesty to the gay community when he created this legal limbo and I truly feel sorry for those who are caught in the back and forth. Nevertheless, this wasn’t something you had and which was taken away… and to blame it on our faith is hurtful and unproductive.

      • Charles says:

        To blame it on faith is quite accurate. The entire impetus for Proposition 8 was religious. If that hurts, sorry. It’s true. If you can’t acknowledge that truth, there can be no productive debate.

        • Ryan Best says:

          Charles,

          Certainly it is a religious issue, as the word marriage is first and foremost historically defined as a religious Sacrament (or ceremony or whatever you would define it as apart from Christianity). Point being, if a couple gets married in the Church and it is a legal marriage, it is a legal and religious “marriage”. That is what the word “marriage” entails. If a couple does not get married in a church, but instead find it more suitable simply to have the legal term “civil union” apply to their love, then they can do that and will probably still call themselves “married” just to make it simpler to understand. It isn’t marriage, because that is not what the word “marriage” entails, but they can call themselves married if they wish; it doesn’t bother me because their misconceptions, as is often argued, do not affect me. What does bother me is if *the state* defines marriage as something other than a religious concept/Sacrament/ceremony. While I do not have any association with other *people* referring to themselves as married, I do have to be in a country that tries to redefine marriage, and that is just simply counterintuitive. For all I (and, as I understand it, the Church) care, make up another word to define the union of love between homosexual couples and legalize that. Whether it’s a moral act or not… That’s another question. :p

          Pax Christi.

          • Charles says:

            There are Churches that will perform same-sex marriages, and thus it is a religious sacrament in by your own general definition. You err in presuming that your particular Church is the definitive authority on what constitutes marriage in the eyes of God.

            More importantly, seeing as how our Constitution expressly prohibits the endorsement of any particular religion, we are free as a people to define civil marriage as we choose. Your misconception of the importance of having it sanctioned by your Church, or any Church, is thus irrelevant. You can hold whatever judgment you want about it, but you will have to learn to live with the fact that we are not a theocracy.

      • Dimitri says:

        It’s true that I’m oversimplifying the history a bit by focusing on the passage of Prop 8 on November 5, 2008, but it’s also true that I’m acutely aware of the timeline.

        To say that “[marriage equality] isn’t something you had” is totally inaccurate. Indeed, until Prop 8, I did in fact have the right to marry my partner. After Prop 8, I lost that right. The wording of the proposition stated that it would “eliminate the right of same-sex couples to marry.”

        I appreciate that it hurts you to know that people of faith promoted the elimination of my rights on religious grounds. However, the fact that this is hurtful to you does not make it any less true. Andy Pugno, Maggie Gallagher, and Brian Brown aren’t shy about the faith-based origins of their opposition to marriage equality. The Mormon and Catholic Churches are among the largest contributors to the anti-equality campaigns. On the other hand, secular businesses (e.g., Starbucks and Microsoft) and professional societies (e.g., pediatric, psychiatric, and sociological societies) support marriage equality.

        Moreover, “traditional marriage” refers to the typical American Christian marriage of the 1970s (after SCOTUS recognized the right of Blacks and Whites to intermarry). The traditional arrangements of the Torah and Quran, which involved one man and many wives, are understood not to be implied by that phrase.

        I also find it hurtful that faith has been used to deprive me of the right to marry the man I love, a right which I previously enjoyed until it was taken from me by popular vote.

    • Meg says:

      Oh, gosh–use the equals sign all you want! I’m objecting to the plus signs and multiplication signs that I’ve seen *opposing* gay marriage. If you want to use a symbol to explain your position, go for it. My problem is with people reducing another group to a symbol–capitalizing on the inherent limitations of an image and attacking people through them. Sorry this was unclear!

  10. Charles says:

    When compassionate religious people are confronted with vitriolic rhetoric, they are as alarmed and turned off as any other decent person. What bothers me, however, is that you presume that each side is on equal footing. LGBT people and those supporting same-sex marriage do NOT have equal legal standing, nor even equal social standing in light of so many clearly bigoted people who tell us we are “unnatural,” “immoral,” and condemned to Hell for our sins. Talking about “living in God’s plan” is just a nice way of saying that you, likewise, are of that opinion.

    Yes, a lot of gay people do get offensive in their rhetoric… But you fail to acknowledge that they have much more to fight for and much more to lose in this debate. I think you are being rather naive and childish to simply suggest we should just all sit down and act nice. Would you have simply have told slaves and anti-slavery proponents to just settle down and listen to the other side?

    I do understand that what we are seeking is a significant cultural change. But the change doesn’t deny heterosexual couples anything, nor fundamentally change the historical reality that children have always been raised in a variety of family configurations and circumstances. The supposed straight, nuclear family ideal is somewhat of a fantasy; not everyone has two living, capable biological parents. And until same-sex couple have the same legal spousal and parental rights as straight couples, their financial and emotional security hangs in jeopardy.

    And as for symbols, as Dimitri pointed out, Christians have plenty of them: crosses, fish symbols. Do you object to those types of displays of their faith? Given the profound consequences of being denied the right to marry, why shouldn’t gay men and women make their position clear?

    • Megan says:

      Charles and Dimitri have EVERYTHING right! I totally agree with you guys, and couldn’t have said it better myself! :)

  11. Jackson K. Eskew says:

    The Architect and the Triangle

    A triangle approached the architect and said:

    “I’m tired of being limited to three sides. I want four sides. Please give me another.”

    Architect: “Do you want to remain what you are, a triangle?”

    Triangle: “Yes. And I want four sides.”

    Architect: “You want to be a four-sided triangle?”

    Triangle: “I do.”

    Architect: “But you’ll cease being a triangle, as a triangle by definition has only three sides.”

    Triangle: “No. I’ll endure no more discrimination. I’m free. I’m
    tolerant. I’m flexible. I’m open-minded. I’m compassionate. I’m
    up-to-date. I’m enlightened. I’m not bound by your rigid, ignorant old
    dogmas. I shall be a four-sided triangle, the first four-sided triangle
    in the history of the world. And henceforth the class of triangles shall
    forever include the four-sided.”

    The architect shook his head and sighed.

    • Alden says:

      I have always viewed marriage as the union of people to create a family where there was none. Your implication is that the only thing a marriage needs is a man and a woman and its only use is to join a man and a woman. I have not found this to be the case. When you marry, you not only join yourself to another person, but you join your family to theirs. Marriage is a beautiful, prismatic, beautiful thing that you are treating like a mere triangle.

      If we are working with shape metaphors, I think a more apt comparison would be that moment when as a child you were told that a square was also a rectangle…that in fact all squares were rectangles. In your mind they are entirely separate and they stay that way until you understand the breadth of what a rectangle is.

      • Jackson K. Eskew says:

        Marriage isn’t something to be defined as one wishes. Its essence is entirely independent of your, or anybody else’s, point of view. I understand, however, where you and others are coming from. Processed by the myth of progress and its concomitant chronological snobbery, you accordingly see marriage as subject to evolution and thus “improvement.”

        But you’ll be delighted that as today’s race to the bottom accelerates, we’ll surely get to the point where homosexual “marriage” is held to be law. If not now, then a decade or two from now, just as Lawrence v. Texas overturned Bowers v. Hardwick.. Yet homosexual “marriage” will, in fact, be neither marriage nor law.

        As a triangle – to remain a triangle – is bound to be three-sided and not four, so marriage – to be marriage – is bound to involve only one man and one woman. The fact that this baffles so many today is yet another indication of today’s plunge into the darkest, most blinding abyss.

        Nor will it be law. As Aquinas makes clear (ST, Ia-IIae Q. 90) a law is 1) an ordinance of reason 2) made and promulgated for the common good 3) by one who has charge of a community or society. Homosexual “marriage” fails under the first two prongs, though failure under any one of them would be fatal.

        And so what you’re actually arguing for isn’t marriage or law, as marriage by definition involves one man and one woman, and law must be reasonable and for the common good. What you advocate is the redefinition of marriage; in other words, something that isn’t marriage, and can never be marriage, is to nevertheless be called “marriage.” On the purely natural level, this is thoroughly Orwellian. It’s also radically hypocritical, as those on your side never cease singing the praises of “authenticity” and “keepin’ it real.” On the supernatural level, it’s thoroughly diabolical.

        By the way, one may thoroughly reject homosexual “marriage” on Nietzschean grounds; i.e., based on the rejection of all decadence and every form of bestial tranquility.

        One may also reject it on purely Platonic grounds, as laid out in Book I of Plato’s Laws.

        In other words, homosexual “marriage” can be soundly rejected on purely naturalistic grounds, that is, without any resort whatsoever to religion.

        All of this can be explained much more extensively, but alas, I grow fatigued.

        P.S. In debate elsewhere today I learned that those who vigorously oppose homosexual “marriage” are surely closet homosexuals. Upon further questioning by me I then learned that those who vigorously support homosexual “marriage” are surely NOT closet heterosexuals. This revelation occurred not long after my interlocutor categorically rejected double-standards. Fascinating!

        • Alden says:

          One can easily defend it on all of the same grounds you just mentioned. You accept your own definitions as unassailable when they are anything but. You strike me as a person that uses what little philosophy he has learned to build a fortress for his preconceived notions. I hope you enjoy your certainty.

          “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds” – Emerson

        • Kristina Ciminillo says:

          Thank You Jackson K. Eskew, very well said.

          • Jackson K. Eskew says:

            You’re most welcome, Kristina.

            I was tempted to continue by saying, for instance, that the bottom of the slippery slope has long since been reached, and thus the acceptance of the likes of homosexual “marriage” and legalized surgical infanticide are CONSEQUENCES of the end of the race to the bottom, not causes, and that henceforth we’ll merely see variations and amplifications of the utter depravity we already see.

            But then, happily, I remembered the total futility of arguing with our blinded neobarbarians.

            Age, thou art shamed.*
            O shame, where is thy blush?**

            -Shakespeare, Julius Caesar,* Hamlet**

    • Charles says:

      The triangle was imposed on homosexuals by the Nazi’s. The LGBT community as adopted it as a symbol: to reject the oppressive stigmatization that it once represented by virtue of making it a symbol of positive identity.

      Your allegory of shapes really doesn’t make any sense. Gay men and women do not want to be straight, they want their relationships to be recognized. In fact, this is happening in many of the most populous states in the country, so to suggest it is impossible to be married and gay demonstrates that you are in denial of what is going on.

      The fatigue that overtook you in your subsequent commentary most certainly had to do with your tortured logic. I’m sorry if that sounds snippy, but quite clearly, if marriage cannot be defined as someone wishes, then you are no more qualified than anyone to define it, and you have rendered your own attempts null and void. In fact, however, marriage can indeed be defined, particularly civil marriage. The government defines marriage in terms of legal rights and responsibilities. To argue that the government must recognize a particular Churches theological view on the spiritual aspects of marriage run counter to the Constitution, which expressly forbids adoption of a state religion. The state allows Churches to marry couples, but it does not require it. For religious people to make religious justifications for the state’s position on marriage calls into question the appropriateness of accepting a Church marriage as valid at all.

  12. ashlie says:

    “There is no other subject on which the average mind is so confused as the subject of tolerance and intolerance…Tolerance only applies to persons, but never to principles. Intolerance applies only to principles, but never to persons.” – Blessed Fulton J. Sheen

    While I agree with Blessed Fulton Sheen, I think this concept becomes difficult on the issue of homosexuality. It seems that with homosexuality, people struggle to separate the person from the principle – because they feel the principle (homosexuality) IS their person, that it is not separate from who they are (in our view, who they ARE is primarily a child of God). Which means that discussions about homosexuality and the differing beliefs on marriage must be treated with the utmost sensitivity and – as you pointed out – with caring conversation…not snarky links and hostile comments.

    Thank you for writing this and continuing the conversation in a respectful and loving manner.
    ashlie recently posted…Holy Week.My Profile

  13. Patty says:

    Hi Meg,

    Thanks for this! It’s really refreshing to hear this after the last day or so on social media where it seems more like a mud slingin fest…

  14. You always have the best way of wording things :)
    Jenna@CallHerHappy recently posted…Mike Hines-SightMy Profile

  15. Anne says:

    Nicely put, thanks!

  16. Anita says:

    First, I had to stop reading all the comments above, because, like you, “the minute somebody gets upset my shoulders seize up and my stomach starts to churn” but I wanted to make one comment. I was one of those who posted a red and pink equal sign for my profile picture today. It was my “quiet” way of showing support for family and friends who are daily condemned for their life choices, and who, I believe, should have the right to marry the person they love, just as I was able to. I’m a Christian, though some of my friends may now feel I’m not a “good” one, but that’s ok with me.

    As for those who are so disturbed by the equal signs, I have to say, I have often had to look at a lot of crazy profile pictures and scroll through a lot of rhetoric myself. That comes with being a member of a social media site. There are solutions… hide the post, block the “friend” whose posts and pictures offend you, or look for a new place to hang out. I never apologized when I put up pictures of the cross, or of saints, or angels, so I won’t apologize for displaying a small sign in support of those I love.

    I enjoyed reading what you had to say. It was obviously from your heart, thoughtfully stated, and I look forward to reading more.

  17. Joshua Danis says:

    Meg,
    You are very thoughtful, you say a lot of great things in here, and I appreciate that. I also think we need to be very careful to not communicate in ways that are uselessly rude or destructive. However, I think this issue is serious enough, that it is important to speak and yes, be counted.
    When you post a plus sign or an equal sign, you are voicing that you are out there. That you believe what you believe and that you want your voice heard. I have had the opportunity to speak to people on both sides of the symbols with respectful and considerate dialogue. Though, I admit, I have also witnessed rampant uncharity, and that is not helpful. But it has never been more important to voice our opinions, because we really are talking about the potential crumbling of society. The truth should always lead us to love those from whom we are divided, but at times, the truth DOES divide us.

  18. Andy says:

    Thank you for sharing your thoughtful views on this.

    As a well-educated Catholic who is leaning towards supporting the movement for marriage equality, but who is nonetheless not theologically educated, I have a question. When Jesus was on earth, as a Jew, he shattered the commonly-held Jewish beliefs, laws, and prescriptions at the time — as followers of Jesus, aren’t we called to the same, to see the weaknesses in the hard-line rules of our Church and to create a world where love proliferates? I am curious what folks who are more certain about this debate think about this argument.

    The way I see it though, Jesus was not so much concerned with moral rules imposed on society. He was much more concerned with teaching people how to love more fully. So, yes, the divisive and hurtful rhetoric very much goes against this teaching of love. But I think that social laws that take away rights based on sexuality (or race or religion or ethnicity or gender or age, etc) also go against our Gospel call to love.

    Jesus encountered many “sinners” in his time on earth. His interaction with them was not to condemn them or to, in any way, take away their rights. Rather he demonstrated to us how to love people that were marginalized by society. We are called to do the same.

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