Saturday, February 4, 2012

The Gay Mass Scandal in London

Like my friend Father Ray Blake, I was sent a link to this video and hesitated before publishing it. I do not want to unnecessarily scandalise my readers. I think particularly of some of my younger readers. But Father Blake and Father Finigan, who has also published it, are priests whose judgement I respect highly and trust implicitly. They have published it, and so do I.

"God", not "Lord", and prayers that the Church may change teachings she cannot change. References to the "season of Pride" as if a liturgical season rather than a one-day secular rally. This is a clear politicization of the Mass and must come to an end.

A correspondent has also sent me a link to the following video which he made, interviewing one of the prominent parishioners, who openly advocates homosexual relationships.

The interviewee is in fact Martin Pendergast, who entered into a civil partnership with Julian Filochowski, former head of the English and Welsh Bishops major overseas aid charity CAFOD (Catholic Fund for Overseas Development, mentioned elsewhere in this blog here). Father Finigan refers to the Pendergast/Filochowski union at his blog. Pendergast wrote in The Guardian on April 28, 2009:
Marriage is a variable and culturally conditioned social institution with no inherent religious inspiration, but subsequently clothed with meaning by various faiths. In many cultures it was rooted more in property contracts or ways of social engineering through annexing others into extended family networks.
which tells you all you need to know about his understanding of Christian marriage and how it is totally at odds with the Church's understanding.

A worrying claim by Mr Pendergast is that the Vatican is aware of these Masses and seems to think fit not to intervene. The teaching of the Catholic Church on homosexuality and chastity is contained in the Catechism of the Catholic Church ##2357-2359:
Chastity and homosexuality

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, tradition has always declared that "homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered." 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.

2358 The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God's will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord's Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.

2359 Homosexual persons 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.
Pendergast clearly equates homosexual unions with marriage. He says that those who enter into such unions are prayed for at these Masses and on their anniversaries. He distinguishes between celibacy and chastity in the homosexual, as if one in a homosexual union is not called to live in the celibate state. This is contrary to Church teaching. One thing is clear: if you are a "liberal" in the terms described by the interviewee, you do not hold the Catholic faith.

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