My Take: Why good Catholics are challenging church line on homosexuality
A series of recent conferences have cast a light on gay Catholics and their families.
November 8th, 2011
12:22 PM ET

My Take: Why good Catholics are challenging church line on homosexuality

Editor's Note: Patrick Hornbeck is an assistant professor and associate chair for undergraduate studies at Fordham University.

By Patrick Hornbeck , Special to CNN

The Roman Catholic Church has long been a reliable source for one-dimensional storylines: Victims of sexual abuse call for justice. Parishes close as numbers of clergy plummet. Rosary-clad Catholics protest outside abortion clinics.

Perhaps nowhere has the storyline seemed more clear-cut than with regard to the church’s treatment of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people and their relationships.

Official Catholic teachings describe gay or lesbian orientation as “an objective disorder” and tell those who love their same-sex partners that they possess a “tendency… toward an intrinsic moral evil.”

Catholic bishops have been public advocates for laws banning same-sex marriage, and some have sought to prevent LGBT Catholics and their allies from fully participating in the Church’s rituals and activities

But neither formal teachings nor bishops’ statements tell the whole story.

A series of recent conferences at American colleges reveals the breadth of Catholic approaches to issues of sexual diversity.

The conferences, part of an effort called More than a Monologue, have happened at two Catholic universities and two non-denominational divinity schools

The events conclusively show that American Catholics are hardly of one mind, nor in lockstep with their bishops, when it comes to same-sex marriage; to rights for LGBT people at home, at work, and in church; or to the ongoing campaign against anti-gay bullying in schools.

At Fordham University in New York, a Catholic school, a proud mother of a grown gay son drew a standing ovation when she told a story about discovering the effect of church teachings on her child.

Here’s that mother, Deb Word, who has founded a group Fortunate Families to help Catholic families with lesbian daughters and gay sons, in her own words:

Fast forward to a family vacation in the Gulf. There were five of us floating—Sean and his wife, Chris, and his dad and me, holding onto each other’s rafts. And I said, ‘I think this is what Heaven is like.’ And Christopher said quietly, “except I won’t be there with you.” “Son, where do you get this stuff?” “Mom, it’s your club. You know the rules.”

And if my cradle Catholic child, growing up in a loving family, got this message, then what does Catholic mean in more conservative homes? … And I wonder, why do I stay in a club that my son says is dangerous to his soul?”

Another panelist at the event described the freedom she feels as a result of living, within the church’s rules, as a celibate lesbian.

A third, a physician in New York City, praised the Catholic tradition for its emphasis on human dignity and social justice, but added: “I am troubled by the fact that I find greater acceptance of myself as a whole person in my professional community as a physician, than I do in the official hierarchy of the church of my family, my childhood, and my life.”
Nationally syndicated columnist Dan Savage may be better known for his very public critiques of Catholic leaders than for the year he spent in a high school seminary, or for his Catholic deacon father, or for the baptism he and his husband sought for their son.
But speaking recently at New York’s Union Theological Seminary, Savage described his Catholic family and upbringing, celebrating parts of his Catholic experience.

At the same time, he refused to let the church off the hook for the part he accuses it of playing in tacitly condoning the bullying of LGBT youth.

Last month, at Yale University, a Catholic layman who teaches psychiatry spoke movingly of his attempt to offer church leaders the wisdom of his scientific field, and of his bitter disappointment when his offers were met with silence.

And at Connecticut ’s Fairfield University, scholars, clergy, and lay Catholics recently discussed the implications for the church of having many gay and lesbian people, both in and out of the closet, in roles as priests and ministers.

These public events have brought into the light the struggles, compromises and choices about meaning and love that many Catholics experience daily.

Poll numbers show that while many of their bishops have been stepping up their rhetoric on the issue, only one-in-three American Catholics describe opposition to same-sex marriage as “very important.” Seventy percent support legal recognition for same-sex couples.

All of us, Catholic or not, LGBT or not, owe it to ourselves and our fellow citizens to keep these new conversations going. Let’s not to settle for only part of the story.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Patrick Hornbeck.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Bishops • Catholic Church • Homosexuality • Opinion

soundoff (2,880 Responses)
  1. Fuyuko

    That picture is so romantic! Good for them. I hope the catholic church will be more accepting some day. Here's rooting for you!

    November 8, 2011 at 3:53 pm |
    • Alien Orifice

      Fuyuko'n A!

      November 8, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
  2. CNN


    November 8, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
    • Chuckles




      November 8, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • CW

      I'll have whatever you're on, because it's gotta be pretty good stuff.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
    • CNN

      CW I would give you some but Hippy Poet keeps bogarting the good stuff!

      November 8, 2011 at 3:51 pm |
    • hippypoet

      little bit for you, alot for me.....a little for you, alot for me!!!

      make it last!

      November 8, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
  3. Johnjon

    I grew up in an Irish – Italian, Catholic family............... yeah, I know, lots of drinking and screaming. As I realized in my teens what was in store for my life, I struggled with the idea of acceptance from my family and God. I kept my orientation a secret as long as I could. When my parents found out, they quickly threw me out of the house and into the arms of my boyfriend. After that eventful night, I had many years of trying not to feel worthless and abandoned............. by my family, the boyfriend who couldn't deal with new living situation, and God. I finally realized that I wasn't such an awful person, and that God wouldn't have made me this way if He didn't think I could endure it. I'm at peace with my relationship with God, but not so much the church. My partner and I have been together 21 years, and I thank God everyday for bringing him into my life. My parents eventually came around, and consider my partner their son-in-law. I'm a lucky guy, and feel very, very blessed.

    November 8, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
    • hippypoet

      what exactly did god do beside be the influence behind your parents throwing you out?

      November 8, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
    • HAHAHA

      Thank you for sharing about your loving relationship.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
  4. donni

    Don't you love when someone tries to argue about something they can't even spell? If you want anyone to take you seriously, buy a damn dictionary. Ignorance and blanket statements like that make my skin crawl to think we still have people in this day and age that think it's still the 15th century. Get a clue.

    November 8, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
    • Robear in Ojai

      Well, in the 15th century, priests were still able to marry...

      November 8, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
  5. DexSF

    Why oh why do we humans think we know it all, and have it right, when it comes to our belief in God and the judgement and condemnation of others who are different? There is so much more in heaven and earth than we could ever hope to know or even imagine.

    November 8, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
  6. fred

    The sweet kiss with the cross of Christ as a backdrop says it all. Nothing is sacred. Once you remove the standard bearer anyone’s standard is as good as the next. The picture says stick it in your face Jesus. Here is what CNN thinks about your god. Your god is powerless WE will do what we want and where we want. Welcome to the new godless society and we are just getting started. Who do we have to thank for this new world left to our children?

    1 Christians that pretend to follow Christ yet behave just like the godless.
    2The Catholic Church that put a purple robe of royality over sinful priests.
    3 Jews who control the media and pump out lies and filth having abandoned their God long ago.
    4 Islam that has twisted the truth of the God of Abraham to kill innocent children in the name of God.
    5 O’Hair the president of American Atheists who took credit for kicking God out school

    For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Repent and return to Lord while there is still time.

    November 8, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
    • vinobianco

      The bible is an archaic story book written by prude men – why live your life based on it's teachings? Times change, so should society.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
    • HAHAHA

      "Once you remove the standard bearer anyone’s standard is as good as the next. "

      That's why there are so many christians and other organizations that totally disagree with you. Prejudice like yours has no place in our society.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • J.W

      They probably think that their relationship is godly. Do you think that gays are forming relationships just to rebel against God? I am sure that they really love each other.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • Chuckles


      one of the few times I wish a hel.l did exist so you could see where hate leads the way you currently just displayed it. Shame you may never understand the depth in which your idiotic comments will lead you.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
    • Bucky Ball

      "while there is still time"
      Well, since you folks have been saying that for about 2000 years now, I guess there is really no big rush. 😈

      November 8, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
    • fred

      Glad to see you like our new world. It is not about gay or straight. You could have put Bill Clinton and Monica under the cross in a lustful pose. It is the condition of our standards in taking down the Cross of Christ to the level of a backdrop in a suggestive advertisement to draw internet traffic.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
    • Sharon

      One of these days, science will come up with the definitive explanation as to why folks are created gay or straight. It's going to happen. When that day comes, many folks who call LGBTQI sinners are going to have to give up the hate. In the meantime, I am absolutely certain that God created me and my wife to be lesbians, so He does not care that we are and that He is glad every time we show love and mercy to those around us. To be "saved", Jesus said that we need to love God with all our might, heart and soul, and to love our neighbor as ourself. Period. He said nothing about being straight. I choose to take Him at His word.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
    • HAHAHA

      "Glad to see you like our new world. It is not about gay or straight. You could have put Bill Clinton and Monica under the cross in a lustful pose. It is the condition of our standards in taking down the Cross of Christ to the level of a backdrop in a suggestive advertisement to draw internet traffic."

      Wow are you grasping at straws to justify your prejudices. What bill Clinton and Monica did was not OK – DUH – don't need a god for that stupidity. We now know that being gay is not a choice, it's not a mental illness, etc..etc.. What you have to ask yourself is the personal prejudice you hold against this minority a good representation of your christ.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
    • fred

      Explain the hate Chuckles. Surprised you would use an old cop out to discredit truthful statements. You tell me why CNN staged this picture.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
    • MumsToo

      And who the heck are you to take Christ away from those LGBT folks who believe in him? Judge not.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • J.W

      Well they couldnt really move the church so that it would be in the front of the picture. That just happened to be where the cross is on that church. It probably was not moved just for that picture.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:45 pm |
    • Chuckles

      Im full of surprised, freddy boy

      Here's your hate,

      1 Christians that pretend to follow Christ yet behave just like the godless. – I don't take personal offense, but I'm sure theres a heck of a lot of people that would.
      2The Catholic Church that put a purple robe of royality over sinful priests.- Again, don't take offense, but you've seen countless times that catholics don't condone pedophilia just because a priest does it.
      3 Jews who control the media and pump out lies and filth having abandoned their God long ago. – This I do take offense to. Control the media? really? no one controls the media, it's free, if you only like reading articles by jewish people, then thats on you bud. There's also the issue with implying that the jews are godless, not to me specifically, but to my community that's on par with saying jews killed jesus, which generally incites pogroms, no one likes those.
      4 Islam that has twisted the truth of the God of Abraham to kill innocent children in the name of God. – fundamentalists are the ones to twist the words of muhammed, not islam itself. Christians have blown up abortion clinics and killing many innocent people, do you blame christianity?
      5 O’Hair the president of American Atheists who took credit for kicking God out school. – no offense really taken here except god should not be present in school, so regardless of where credit goes, thats a GOOD thing.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:47 pm |
    • fred

      Interesting I never brought up the gay issue you did. I said nothing about gay. These could be straights for all know or care.
      As to Christ he never brought up being gay as sin. God is bigger than that. If you can't get the basics right why focus on ho mo $exuality.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
    • Rick

      The jews that control the media?

      Sorry, Freddie, free people do not need to be saved

      November 8, 2011 at 3:49 pm |
    • Rick

      "It is the condition of our standards in taking down the Cross of Christ to the level of a backdrop in a suggestive advertisement to draw internet traffic."

      as opposed to doing it to draw donations, freddie?

      November 8, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
    • fred

      It is not hate it is expressing truth as ugly as it is. Let’s take the Jews for example. If you are saying just because someone is a Jew by heritage does not make them a Jew for religious purposes, that is wrong. As to control of the media the Jews controlled Hollywood and still do as of this date. As to news media I need go no further than the New York Times. The New York Times took the lead in Catholic bashing for years. You know all the web sites as well as I do and you know the impact the Jews have had with their control of the media.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
    • TruthPrevails

      @Fred: Really? Your christ does not preach against gay being a sin? So I guess the following is being read wrong by all but you?

      You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abom­i­na­tion. Leviticus 18:22

      If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have com­mit­ted an abom­i­na­tion; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them. Leviticus 20:13

      November 8, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
    • fred

      No one is taking Christ away from you. Christ said to the women at the well "neither do I condem you now, go and sin no more"
      Once again I repeat Jesus made it clear there are other things you must get straight on first before you focus on $ex.

      November 8, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
    • Chuckles

      Well.... first and foremost, I am a jew by heritage and not a jew by any stretch of the imagination in the religious sense...so...... yeah, kind of kills your points right there.

      Secondly fred, jews do not control the media, never have and never will. The media is free to anyone and like I said, if you're worried about the jew bias in the media, then don't read anything by a jewish person, its that simple, a lot of the times the news is still going to be the same. If you're reading an opinion piece, well I can't really help you as its someones opinion so it can be as bias as they want. It always kills me when people balme the jews for controlling the media and hollywood and all that crap, I mean there are jews present in both those areas, but its not like they have any mystical or voodoo powers to get them there, they're there, beacause they earned their right to be there (most of the time except for some neopitism, but that again, happens regardless of race, religion, s.ex, age, etc...).

      Fred, that view is exactly part of the reason why jews were targeted in russia and germany, because people felt that jews had a shadow government and controlled the world, which is patently false.

      Our shadow government just controls trade routes and all the money and many of the other governments are in our pocket, nothing more.

      November 8, 2011 at 4:07 pm |
    • fred

      Easy on Leviticus that whole book requires a levite to properly translate and keep things in context. I am speaking of Jesus which we must understand first and very clear before we jump back into Jewish text. I made no coment on other scripture because Jesus did not in regards to ho mo $exuality. There is clear reason for this.

      November 8, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
    • J.W

      Actually Leviticus was not spoken by Christ. It was before him. Christ did not speak of gayety.

      November 8, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
    • FYI


      The ones who believe that Jesus is "God" believe that Jesus wrote the OT too.

      November 8, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
    • GodPot

      I guess adding a loving embrace and a kiss in the foreground distracts to much from the symbol of torture and murder for you then eh fred? I'd rather be reminded of love then murder myself.

      November 8, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
    • J.W

      Well no one believes that God wrote any of the Bible. Christians believe that the Bible was inspired by God. The writers wrote what they believe that God did and how they believed that God influenced them.

      November 8, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
    • fred


      Did the Jews make themselves targets or were they simply easy to exploit for political gain is hard to say. I suppose one could argue Adam was a Jew and all our problems began with him. From the time of Ishmael the Jew has been hammered in the Bible on just about every moral issue. From the Egyptians to the Babylonians to Hitler and now the middle east the Jew find themselves the focus of God and man. I continue to find this more than a coincidence. God has a consistent complaint against the Jew, they reject God and go their own way. The foundation of their rejection is knowledge that leads to pride.
      You said your heritage kills my argument but you reject God as did you ancestors. Now, I will not quote the verse where the sins of the father are passed to the son………….drats did I just do that………however, there is something to be said of the blood. You may well be part of the chosen ones or the line of Ishmael. Either way why do you persecute Christ to this day? Defend the Jew or secular government and leave Christ alone. Paul a strong Jew became the greatest strength behind the current form of Christian doctrine. If there was such a thing as a devil I could understand why he keeps you distracted with continually proving Atheism rather than Christ as Lord.

      I do not know the numbers but Jews still have considerable wealth and political power. America is tied to the Jew when the religion of peace beats its war drums. That will not end any time soon and the current pot stirring against the rich and wall street for political gain is of great concern.

      November 8, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
    • fred

      Why do you say Jesus tortures you, I find nothing of the sort. To the contrary it is we who cause pain to others and Christ.
      Somebody told you a fib or you are pulling a few lines out of the entire Bible out of context

      November 8, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
    • fred

      You may be right, however, it is impossible to say what moved the first pen. The translations certainly appear to be from man. I always found it interesting that what Jesus did write was written in sand and was clearly understood by everyone passing by. The topic was religeous types condeming another for sin. They all hung their head in shame and walked away when they read the "sandscript"

      November 8, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
    • Get Real

      fred, - "I always found it interesting that what Jesus did write was written in sand and was clearly understood by everyone passing by."

      Well, isn't that special - that someone in the first century writing under the name of "John" *said* that this magic writing occurred to wow those gullible folks that he was evangelizing. If Jesus was smart, and wanted no misunderstanding, mistranscribing, mistranslation nor misinterpretation, the whole dang Bible would have been written that way.

      November 8, 2011 at 5:09 pm |
    • Chuckles


      Firstly, you want to get away from being called an anti-semite? start saying jewish people instead of "the jew", it sounds awfully hitlarian and makes me cringe just reading it.

      secondly, BOY do you have this as.s backwards. If god wasn't about the jews, he wouldn'th ave chosen them has his chosen people, or did god make a mistake? Jews are obvious targets because they were commanded to separate themselves through the law from the gen.tile and in turn communities ostr.acised and eventually turned them into a scapegoat. I guess if you're going to point the finger at who made the jews the eternal targets, that'll have to be god. Secondly, I reject religion, my ancestors, you know the ones who died in the hol.ocaust because they refused to reject god, yeah those people were believers 100%, to say they rejected god is an insult to them and the 6 million who perished in the concentration camps just because YOU think differently. Get your head out of your as.s fred.
      Also, just a side hint, you want to start talking about the bible, we're from the line of ISAAC, not ISHMAEL (who is the supposed father of Islam.... yeah).

      Jews have power in america because one of the tenants the community follows is a very big emphasis on education and getting one at all costs. Education in america especially will earn you access to climb the ladder and wield more influence. Not the jews fault that many other communities spit on academia because they're too stupid to see the importance. America is tied to multiculturism and freedom of religion, jews came to America because of that reason. Now if you're saying america is tied to israel, well thats a little different, but it's indirect anti-semitism, whether you realize it or not, to equate jews and israel as the same, it is not the case and bre.eds contempt for jews in america whatever israel's policies might be. Would you want to be judged because I disagree with another country?

      What really saddens me fred is that you've been brainwashed enough to accept this as truth, even if you think its distasteful. Go meet a jew fred, in real life, see what we're all about and don't try to look at them through the lense of "christ killer" . it's des.p.icable and cowardly at best. Educate yourself fred, zeus knows you could do with brushing up on your writing skills and it wouldn't hurt to brush up on other religions as well.

      November 8, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
    • fred

      Get Real
      Chirst died for your sins and it is by grace you were saved. All you need to do is tell Jesus your sorry and ask Jesus to help you find the truth.

      November 8, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
    • HAHAHA

      "Chirst died for your sins and it is by grace you were saved. All you need to do is tell Jesus your sorry and ask Jesus to help you find the truth."

      Which the gay christian people have done, now they want their partnerships certified through legal marriage.

      November 8, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
    • fred

      Good points thanks !
      As to rejecting God this was why the chosen ones were led into captivity in Egypt and Babylon. Not so sure about the holocaust as my Bible stopped 2,000 years ago. We know how Hitler stirred the pot against them but, as to what God was up to I will look into that. You mentioned something interesting in that they did not reject God which is different than not accepting Christ. They also gave the illusion of oppressing the people of Europe. Today they give the impression of oppressing the Palestinians.
      That aside the theme of persecution continues. The early followers of Christ were persecuted. Today in the U.S. we see the church and Bible under attack. You may point to a rare abortion clinic shooting but, the mass attacks are against Christians and church property. Jesus says they do this because they first hated Christ. Our (mine) behavior often brings trouble but, I catch more flack over religion than anything else.

      November 8, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
    • fred

      Time to rewrite all the marriage rules not just for ho mo$exuals. The entire financial system related to marriage was based on mom staying home most of her life and the man making all the bucks. Time to strip away all the financial benefits for all married people. We are broke as a country.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:07 pm |
    • HAHAHA

      "Time to rewrite all the marriage rules not just for ho mo$exuals. The entire financial system related to marriage was based on mom staying home most of her life and the man making all the bucks. Time to strip away all the financial benefits for all married people. We are broke as a country."

      Wow are you one negative person. Gays deserve the same rights as married straights.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
    • fred

      I agree with you but you must change all the marriage laws to be equal and fair all the way around.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
    • Bucky Ball

      No J.W.,
      The editors/writers/compilers of the biblical texts did NOT, themselves, believe they were "inspired". THAT is a MUCH later concept. They were written for many different reasons, and edited, and rewritten, and compiled by groups of HUMANS, all with ONLY brains, and THEIR OWN OPINIONS, and AGENDAS. Much later, the texts were VOTED on, (NON-unanimously BTW), into a "canon". They NEVER said god had "inspired" them. 😈

      November 8, 2011 at 6:29 pm |
    • GodPot

      @fred – "Why do you say Jesus tortures you, I find nothing of the sort. To the contrary it is we who cause pain to others and Christ. Somebody told you a fib or you are pulling a few lines out of the entire Bible out of context"

      Nope. First, I never said Jesus tortures me, I called the cross a "symbol of torture and murder" which is a fact. Nothing taken out of context. The cross was a torture device, a killing machine for displaying the criminals so that others would not commit the same crimes used by many cultures, though more often it was a single stake, post or tree that was used since it was easier to fabricate and is just as effective.

      Look again if you can fred, there is no Jesus on that cross in the picture, all you get is the torture device, or the loving couple in the foreground enjoying a loving kiss, which apparently is lost on you, or you won't let anyone else define "love" if it doesn't fit in YOUR narrow mind. Don't try to pull the "It's not me, it's the bible" bunk either. It is you, you and every other bigot that discriminates against someone for the crime of love.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:13 pm |
    • fred

      God Pot
      Jesus is not on the cross because he has risen, his work is finished.
      My problem is with CNN. I have no idea who set the pose for the photo shoot. The purpose is clear. You do not need to read the article since it came from CNN. The picture from CNN says to the Catholic Church stick this in your face your doctrine has no power. The cross is small insgificant and in the shadows of the new world order. It is a deliberate slam against all things of old that are sacred to some.
      When Madonna joined the jewish sect she hung herself on a glitzy cross as a slam on christians not because she just became a sect member.

      November 8, 2011 at 7:47 pm |
    • GodPot

      @fred – My point is that your revered symbol that you are claiming is being pushed into the background is a torture/death device. If Christ had been hung would all Christians wear little golden nooses around their necks? Would you be upset that your holy gallows were being obscured by a show of love? The fact is, you are upset at an image of two guys kissing and it makes you feel uncomfortable due to years and years of indoctrination. Jesus disciple John rested on Jesus's chest in an intimate manner and his face was likely close enough to stretch his neck up and kiss his Lord in much the same manner as seen above, does the fact that the bible never mentions their lips touching the line in the sand for Christians? Is it "Show love but wow, not that much love, geez..."?

      Your logic is flawed, your book is flawed, your lives are spent paying homage to an ancient deity invented by people who needed to fill in the blanks as best they could, and you choose to continue their racism and bigotry by validating the blatant endorsement of discrimination against anyone who is not "one of you" that your book contains. It started with the Israelite's who claim God spoke to Abraham and made a covenant with him that his children would be "Gods chosen people" who were then given a country by God, even though the country was already occupied, and had his "chosen people" attack every city and village murdering or enslaving the inhabitants, women, children, old and young. Now Christians claim the mantle of "God's Chosen people" and continue to take other peoples lands, resources and at times even the people themselves, all in the name of YOUR Lord. And you have decided to carry the torch your bigoted religious forefathers lit into the next century. Well news flash, your torch is about to go out, we have no need for your archaic religious doctrine and the world will be a better place when it is finally extinguished.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:57 pm |
    • fred

      You have been blessed by being born in a Christian country where God fearing men and women fought hard and continue to fight in order that you may lounge in the peace afforded in a land of plenty. Hate Christ all you will but, it is the Judeo-Christian values at the heart of Western Civilization that give you life.

      November 8, 2011 at 11:18 pm |
    • GodPot

      I was born into a country that had already been stolen by Christians from it's inhabitants who were either killed or converted or sent out to live with no hope in some internment camp aka reservation. It's a sad day when people like you try to rewrite our history as something glorious and righteous when the reality of how we came to be America is far from something we can be proud of. But i'm sure you believe as do most Christians that the end justifies the means.

      And when did I say anything about hating Christ? I don't hate some guy who may or may not have lived a few thousand years ago. I hate stupid , violent, selfish, greedy people who proclaim allegiance to Christ then use that as an excuse to further their own agenda of control, which includes EVERYONE associated with any religion that has been used as cover for other nefarious deeds.

      I know you have a hard time understanding that you are taking sides with murderers, pedo-files, rap ists and psychopaths every time you defend any Christian religion, but you are.

      I am thankful I was born into a country where adopting the fashionable local religion was not required on pain of death as it is in many other places, but it was not the Christians who made it so but our founding fathers who had the foresight to block any religion from taking control of our country.

      November 9, 2011 at 10:22 am |
    • GodPot

      Here's something to think about fred. If NAMBLA stopped promoting man boy love and set up some soup kitchens and some counselors who reach out to people with no hope, would it be OK to join them? I would think not based on the groups prior actions. If you took the time to investigate every Christian religion today you would have to admit that in every Churches past their are act's of violence and depravity and by being a part of any of them means you share in their guilt, regardless of the good deeds they happen to perform today.

      November 9, 2011 at 10:39 am |
  7. JJ

    lokii , you are correct. These are the beliefs and teachings of the religion. If you do not agree or subscribe to it – leave.

    November 8, 2011 at 3:15 pm |
    • HAHAHA

      Yo moron, learn to use the reply button

      November 8, 2011 at 3:17 pm |
  8. lokii

    Let's see... I can sum this article up. Blah Blah Blah, I want to be included (insert any group, religion, or affiliation here)
    to reap all the benefits, but I still want to act contrary to and spit on all the groups beliefs, rules, etc. Oh No!! They won't put up with it. These people just amaze me because they think that the whole world should bend to their will and way, then throw a hissy fit when it doesn't.

    November 8, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
    • EndTheHate

      Yep that sounds like the "religious right" (which is neither)

      November 8, 2011 at 3:16 pm |
    • Alysandir

      Here's an alternate perspective for you to consider: as thinking, feeling, spiritual beings of deep religious conviction, they are experiencing a significant rational disconnect between what the Church teaches as God's plan and what they themselves have experienced of God. This is about questioning the rightness of unflinching dogma as a good Catholic instead of slavishly following "rules" based more on tradition and outdated assumptions than fact. If we did not question the Church's teachings, we'd all still believe that the Sun revolves around the earth and would burn so-called heretics at the stake, so it's not like there isn't precedent. But in today's "with us or against us" society, you're expected to either fall lockstep into the fold or risk being branded as a malcontent and shown the door, with no allowances for dissension or discussion. So I have to ask you, lokii, why are you so afraid to hear a different perspective on God's plan for us?

      November 8, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
    • lokii

      I'm sorry. I am glad you are here to correct God, Jesus, the apostles and everyone else in between who got it wrong. Bend your beliefs to fit the bible, don't bend the bible to fit your beliefs

      November 14, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  9. Jennifer

    The church should clean out it's own closets before commenting on gay parishioners.

    November 8, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
  10. Yup

    This is exactly what is wrong with America these days. I cant say anything that i believe, whether it is in jest or a true belief...


    Oh watch this Email will go through, because the only people i attack is CNN hypocritical BS

    November 8, 2011 at 3:03 pm |
    • BRC


      search your post for as-s, cu-m, and ti-t. 9 times out of 10 that's what tripped you up.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
    • Fookin' Prawn

      It's an automated moderator that searches for banned words, you idiot. No one's sitting around watching you desperately try to post BS, then hitting a magic button to censor you. Take the system's hint and give up.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
    • NOo..oON

      "No one's sitting around watching you desperately try to post BS, then hitting a magic button to censor you. "
      ...but you really shouldn't be thinking about your boss that way.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
    • Ummmmm

      It's your gods way of showing you that you are full of crap! LOL!

      November 8, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
    • Helpful Hints

      Bad letter combinations / words to avoid if you want to get past the CNN automatic filter:
      Many, if not most, are buried within other words, so use your imagination.
      You can use dashes, spaces, or other characters to modify the "offending" letter combinations.
      ar-se.....as in ar-senic.
      co-ck.....as in co-ckatiel, co-ckatrice, co-ckleshell, co-ckles, etc.
      co-on.....as in rac-oon, coc-oon, etc.
      cu-m......as in doc-ument, accu-mulate, circu-mnavigate, circu-mstances, cu-mbersome, cuc-umber, etc.
      cu-nt.....as in Scu-ntthorpe, a city in the UK famous for having problems with filters...!
      ef-fing...as in ef-fing filter
      ft-w......as in soft-ware, delft-ware, swift-water, drift-wood, etc.
      ho-mo.....as in ho-mo sapiens or ho-mose-xual, ho-mogenous, etc.
      ho-rny....as in tho-rny, etc.
      jacka-ss...yet "ass" is allowed by itself.....
      ja-p......as in j-apanese, ja-pan, j-ape, etc.
      koo-ch....as in koo-chie koo..!
      o-rgy….as in po-rgy, zo-rgy, etc.
      pi-s......as in pi-stol, lapi-s, pi-ssed, therapi-st, etc.
      p-orn… as in p-ornography
      pr-ick....as in pri-ckling, pri-ckles, etc.
      ra-pe.....as in scra-pe, tra-peze, gr-ape, thera-peutic, sara-pe, etc.
      se-x......as in Ess-ex, s-exual, etc.
      sh-@t.....but shat is okay – don't use the @ symbol there.
      sp-ic.....as in disp-icable, hosp-ice, consp-icuous, susp-icious, sp-icule, sp-ice, etc.
      sp-ook… as in sp-ooky, sp-ooked
      ti-t......as in const-itution, att-itude, ent-ities, alt-itude, beat-itude, etc.
      tw-at.....as in wristw-atch, nightw-atchman, etc.
      va-g......as in extrava-gant, va-gina, va-grant, va-gue, sava-ge, etc.
      who-re....as in who're you kidding / don't forget to put in that apostrophe!

      There are more, some of them considered "racist", so do not assume that this list is complete.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
  11. Yup

    CNN, stop censoring my f–ucing post.

    November 8, 2011 at 3:00 pm |
    • Bucky Ball

      Hmm, they don't censor MY fucking posts. Why it MUST be god doing it. 😈

      November 8, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
    • NOo..oON

      Exactly where does one purchase a fucking post, anyway.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
    • Helpful Hints

      Bucky Ball and Nooo..ooon,

      Oooooh, you magicians are from the debil 🙂

      November 8, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
    • Central Scrutinizer

      I think you can get a fuc king post on Second Life.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
    • Central Scrutinizer

      YUP, don't go down the long lonesome road that HeavenSent has traveled. Nothing good can come from that.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
    • Bucky Ball

      I think I saw one at Hardware Hank last night. I can check on the price if you REALLY want one. 😈

      November 8, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
  12. JJ

    It isnt the club that is danger to your soul, it is your lifestyle

    November 8, 2011 at 2:52 pm |
    • ThinkForYourself

      And potentially your clothing...

      November 8, 2011 at 2:53 pm |
    • HAHAHA

      "It isnt the club that is danger to your soul, it is your lifestyle"

      Huh, no where in your bible does your god condemn the christian gay partnership.

      November 8, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
    • Yup

      um, ONE MAN, ONE WOMAN. duh

      November 8, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
    • ThinkForYourself

      except when it's one man, several hundred women...

      November 8, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
    • BRC

      "What would you do if you had a mililon dollars?"
      "I tell you exactly what I'd do, two chicks at the same time."

      November 8, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
    • J.W

      The marriage should be between one man and on woman line actually isnt found in the Bible.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
    • NOo..oON

      So let me get this straight (no pun intended), according to the Bible a hermaphrodite can marry themselves?

      November 8, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • Bob

      to HAHAHA – Read Leviticus 20: 13If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them. And there are 3 cases in Bible (It is a book you never seen obviously). So bad news for you – you go to HELL. LOL

      November 8, 2011 at 3:49 pm |
    • Bucky Ball

      Actually, some friends of mine rotated through the Genetic Clinic for one of their optional rotations in (Med) school, and unless you actually see that, or work in that environment, you have NO IDEA how many variations humans are born with. Parents, in general are too embarrassed or too protective to talk about things like that. Too bad, because if people knew how common that sort of thing was, or how many genetic problems are taken care by surgery, and hormones, the concept of "natural" would be long gone. 😈

      November 8, 2011 at 3:55 pm |
    • ThinkForYourself

      @Bob, Leviticus also condemns mixed textiles. I hope you're not wearing cotton blends or else you're going to burn with the rest of us.

      Oh, and stoned any disobedient children lately?

      November 8, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
    • HAHAHA

      "Read Leviticus 20: 13If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them. And there are 3 cases in Bible (It is a book you never seen obviously). So bad news for you – you go to HEL"

      You moron Leviticus was called "The Holiness Code," because it listed out punishments spells out requirements for Israel to remain "Holy." Israel was God's "Chosen People." God had a covenant with them – it doesn't apply to christians today. Cor. the word homosexual was added later by bias translators and Romans has to do with using sex to worship a pagan god did you miss the part where it states "22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 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. " LMAO!

      November 8, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
    • Central Scrutinizer

      Watch out for the corn hole bud.

      November 8, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  13. nami

    They should rename the article "Don't worry, activists, most opponents are caving in!"

    November 8, 2011 at 2:51 pm |
  14. Yup

    GOD, if you're there, give me the power to post on more than one website... PLEASE, i am falling to the unfaithful and cannot keep up.

    November 8, 2011 at 2:50 pm |
    • Yup

      crap, i forgot to say what GOD i am praying too... Monolithic GOD, PLEASE GIVE ME STRENGTH....

      November 8, 2011 at 2:52 pm |
  15. Reality

    The nitty-gritty of gay se-xual activities:

    Lots and lots of "gays" doing their hot and heavy things on Internet tube sites but nothing about coin flipping, who is on first, and sanitizers sites?? There must be some "Gaying It For Dummies" books out there somewhere. Hmmm, I wonder if said books/sites have to have FDA and CDC approval??

    Is said activity wrong and worthy of a trip to hell? Of course not but to the general heterose-xual population it is yucky, unusual and not normal to them. With that mind set, approval by the majority is not always sanctioned in law.

    The general population to include many of the voters in California, rightly or wrongly, find gay se-xual activities, married or not, to be "yucky" and unusual and typically associate. Such activity is associated with the spread of AIDS which is of course wrong. Said AIDS epidemic in the gay male community at the start of the AIDS crises will always remain unfortunately a stigma on the gay community.

    And after all of this rhetoric, gay "marriages" simply simplify and somewhat sanitize what are still acts of mutual masturbation caused by a variant gene(s) and/or hormone imbalance. One wonders if stem cell research will find a cure??

    Hmmm, would the embryos formed from the sperm of gay guys and the eggs from gay gals make more ethical embryos for this and other types of research?? "

    Again, from below, on top, backwards, forwards, from this side of the Moon and from the other side too, gay se-xual activity is still mutual ma-sturbation caused by one or more complex issues. Some defects are visually obvious in for example the complex maleness of DeGeneres, Billy Jean King and Rosie O'Donnell.

    Yes, heteros-exuals practice many of the same "moves" but there is never a doubt who is the female and who is the male.

    November 8, 2011 at 2:50 pm |
    • EndTheHate

      I would like to THANK YOU for PROMOTING the GAY AGENDA.
      You have not given one logical, factual, rational or legal reason to oppose gay marriage. (because there aren't any)
      ps How does to people entering into a monogamous government sanctioned relationship encourage the spread of disease?

      November 8, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • Reality

      "Abrahamics" believe that their god created all of us and of course that includes the g-ay members of the human race. Also, those who have studied ho-mo-se-xuality have determined that there is no choice involved therefore ga-ys are ga-y because god made them that way.

      To wit:

      o The Royal College of Psy-chiatrists stated in 2007:

      “ Despite almost a century of psy-choanalytic and psy-chological speculation, there is no substantive evidence to support the suggestion that the nature of parenting or early childhood experiences play any role in the formation of a person’s fundamental heteros-exual or hom-ose-xual orientation. It would appear that s-exual orientation is biological in nature, determined by a complex interplay of ge-netic factors and the early ut-erine environment. Se-xual orientation is therefore not a choice.[60] "

      "Garcia-Falgueras and Swaab state in the abstract of their 2010 study, "The fe-tal brain develops during the intraut-erine period in the male direction through a direct action of tes-tosterone on the developing nerve cells, or in the female direction through the absence of this hor-mone surge. In this way, our gender identi-ty (the conviction of belonging to the male or female gender) and s-exual orientation are programmed or organized into our brain structures when we are still in the womb. There is no indication that social environment after birth has an effect on gender ident–ity or s-exual orientation."[8

      Of course, those gays who belong to Abrahamic religions abide by the rules of no adu-ltery or for-nication allowed.

      And because of basic biology differences said monogamous ventures should always be called same-se-x unions not same-se-x marriages.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  16. I'm The Best!

    "YEA! let's ban gays rights for then to do stuff because I don't like it! While we're at it let's do the same for fat people because no one wants to think about that. Also old people, once you turn 60 you're done"

    Religious n.uts, wanting their way since forever

    November 8, 2011 at 2:46 pm |
  17. Central Scrutinizer

    Didn't anyone see the article about the Gay penguins this morning? It is on the front page of CNN.com

    Buddy and Pedro are two male African penguins at the Toronto Zoo who seem to have a connection — a very special, loving connection — that has zookeepers wondering if their relationship is more than just a bromance.

    According to the Toronto Star, zookeepers have noticed that although Buddy, 20, and Pedro, 10, swim and play with the other penguins in their enclosure by day, they pair off and nest together at night as well as exhibit other telltale mating behaviors, such as touching, making braying sounds and defending their territory.

    Does this mean that Buddy and Pedro are gay? Not exactly, as the term doesn’t normally apply to animals. But according to research from the University of California, Berkeley, birds — and other animals, for that matter — are known to form same-s ex relationships.

    Read more: http://newsfeed.time.com/2011/11/08/tough-love-toronto-zoo-to-separate-gay-penguin-couple/#ixzz1d92UAZ8l

    November 8, 2011 at 2:45 pm |
    • BRC

      Penguins in the zoo, Exchanging glances,
      Wondering in the pool, what were the chances,
      They'd be sharing fish, before the night was throooogh

      November 8, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
    • Central Scrutinizer


      The older Penguin....bit of a cradle robber!

      November 8, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
    • NOo..oON

      Haven't they also been spotted at the 'Manhole in the Ice' club?

      November 8, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
    • BRC

      It's an autum/summer romance. People say Pedro is just using him because of his sweet nesting spot, but I believe in them.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
  18. DB

    SIN=SIN. EVIL=EVIL===PERIOD!!!!! we cannot adjust religions fo rthe sake if acceptance...So lets accept petafilers while we are at it...At some point they will demand that its their right to love a minor...and visa versa....

    November 8, 2011 at 2:38 pm |
    • ThinkForYourself


      I hope you're not wearing any!

      November 8, 2011 at 2:39 pm |
    • Chuckles

      petafliers? I just ignore those stupid PETA fliers, I mean, I get it, animals are cute, but its annoying.

      Ooooooo, you mean pedophiles? Yeah, stupid comment, go back to your bridge, troll.

      November 8, 2011 at 2:40 pm |
    • HAHAHA

      "So lets accept petafilers while we are at it...At some point they will demand that its their right to love a minor...and visa versa...."

      It might help if you actually did some research on this subject. Oh, and while your at it look up the meaning of consent and the law. What a moron.

      November 8, 2011 at 2:42 pm |
    • Central Scrutinizer

      So DB,
      Why are you not out killing the sinners as the Bible commands you to do?

      November 8, 2011 at 2:48 pm |
    • Mike

      Listen to you DB "we can not adjust religion." You assume everyone subscribes to YOUR religion. Typical self-centered Christian who thinks God only speaks to him and his believers. So sad.

      November 8, 2011 at 2:48 pm |
    • Central Scrutinizer

      A thoughtful person who thinks about God cannot help but notice the amazing contradictions. They are everywhere you look.

      Here is one very simple example. On the day Moses comes down from Mount Sinai with the stone tablets containing the Ten Commandments, he discovers that the Israelites have created a golden calf. To punish the people, Moses gathers a group of men and takes the following action in the book of Exodus, Chapter 32:

      Then he [Moses] said to them, "This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: 'Each man strap a sword to his side. Go back and forth through the camp from one end to the other, each killing his brother and friend and neighbor.' " The Levites did as Moses commanded, and that day about three thousand of the people died.
      So... one minute we have God carving into stone, "Thou shalt not kill." Then the next minute we have God telling each man to strap a sword to his side and lay waste to thousands.

      November 8, 2011 at 2:49 pm |
    • Central Scrutinizer

      Don't forget to kill the EVIL penguins!!

      November 8, 2011 at 2:51 pm |
    • Fookin' Prawn

      All anyone really got out of that was moron = moron.

      November 8, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
    • Rick

      If belief systems are not adjusted for sake of acceptance, they will wither and die

      November 8, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
    • GodPot

      SIN = "a : an offense against religious or moral law b : an action that is or is felt to be highly reprehensible c : an often serious shortcoming : fault
      2a : transgression of the law of God b : a vitiated state of human nature in which the self is estranged from God" – Merriam- Webster

      Seems that sin only exists for those who proclaim allegience to some diety.

      And speaking of PERIOD... Do you follow God's law in Leviticus 15:19-30? "“When a woman has a discharge, and the discharge in her body is blood, she shall be in her menstrual impurity for seven days, and whoever touches her shall be unclean until the evening. And everything on which she lies during her menstrual impurity shall be unclean. Everything also on which she sits shall be unclean. And whoever touches her bed shall wash his clothes and bathe himself in water and be unclean until the evening. And whoever touches anything on which she sits shall wash his clothes and bathe himself in water and be unclean until the evening. Whether it is the bed or anything on which she sits, when he touches it he shall be unclean until the evening."

      November 8, 2011 at 3:02 pm |
    • J.W

      Chuckles your comment made me chuckle

      November 8, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
  19. hippypoet

    i am too smart for yall. i aint no dummie like yall say, im the shizznittt u crabs. i poo all over myself.

    November 8, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
    • Chuckles

      Gross dude, you should clean up after yourself

      November 8, 2011 at 2:37 pm |
    • Central Scrutinizer

      You take care of me?? I'm your older brutha Mikey.....I'm smat, I'm not dumb like everybody thinks, I'm smat and I want respect!

      (Real HP, I wish you had a more intelligent staker. This person is sad)

      November 8, 2011 at 2:55 pm |
    • hippypoet

      central, swap out mikey for fredo – then do a whole dead by fishing thing.

      November 8, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
    • hippypoet

      oh wait, nevermind, i thought .... ahh your right, my bad! lol love godfather! and godfather 2....fuk 3!

      November 8, 2011 at 3:00 pm |
    • Central Scrutinizer

      HP I agree. 3 sux

      November 8, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
  20. hippypoet

    i would say its the Avesta texts... written before 500b.c. but it was translated around then...so thats the date i know of.

    November 8, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.