MANILA, Nov. 7, 2011–People who experience homosexual tendencies must be treated with genuine compassion and not the “tele-novela” kind of compassion that tends to stay on the level of emotions, a priest said.
“I think in our country there is a greater ‘tolerance’ for those who are homosexual or gay. But media trends have given birth to the ‘third-sex,’ even though homosexuals themselves are aware and admit (within their same-sex unions) that one still take the role of male and the other of the female. Given the high tolerance in our country, to the point of glamorizing it, there enters the wrong ‘tele-novela’ compassion: it’s okay, because that’s how they feel about each other. Here, feelings become the dictating condition for choices in life,” explained Fr. Francis Ongkingco, who writes a column for the CBCP Monitor and the Cebu Daily News.
“The fact that one may have [homosexual] tendencies does not merit being condemned or becoming the butt of every green or morbid joke. Even though the Medical Society — due to certain political pressures — has removed homosexuality from the list of illnesses, it continues to be experienced by gays themselves, and by society as a disorder. But this is not something to be thrown at the person,” Ongkingco points out.
“In fact, this is where true and genuine compassion comes in to understand and help these individuals find their path towards a more stable and engaging identity in society.”
The priest clarifies that to experience a homosexual tendency is not a sin; what would be a sin is to engage in same-sex unions given their physiological-moral disorder.
“Whatever [others may] say, people of the same gender cannot perform the biological act of sex properly speaking – the only way to describe it is mutual stimulation by using another person’s body as a means to one’s pleasure for both the persons involved and society; and worse to use this tendency as a pretext for engaging in such abnormal acts,” he explained.
Understanding and helping people experiencing same-sex attraction through counseling and chastity-based programs as well as forums for families is the Church’s way of carrying out the call to live genuine compassion toward others, including those battling issues that keep them from living a life of union with Christ.
This faithfulness to the teachings of the Church as regards human sexuality, chastity and marriage has been misinterpreted as a refusal to embrace the changing times. Ongkingco points out that the Church is simply upholding a basic and fundamental truth about man when She holds on to the concept of marriage as being for one man and one woman only.
“This truth is not ‘invented’ by the Church. Morality is an objective reality that man belongs to, and not something that belongs to man. To emphasize the latter would justify any act, even those that degrade man’s dignity and prevent him from attaining his true end,” he said.
“In short, when the Church pronounces something for man’s good, it isn’t because She herself says so. She is only reiterating what is an objective good for man. When someone writes the word ‘poison’ on a can of Baygon, the contents do not become poisonous, rather, because of the fact that it is poisonous, it is labeled poison in order to avert any possible danger of ingesting the substance.”
“The Church, in this way, also indicates what is not good for man,” he continued. “Such acts — unions in this case — are not good, not because the Church says ‘they are not,’ but because they are ‘in themselves not good,’ that She says, ‘they are not good for man and society.’ (CBCP for Life)