Mgr Paul Grogan

Mgr Paul Grogan
Mgr Paul Grogan

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Gay marriage is impossible

I have just responded to the government's consultation concerning its proposals re "same-sex marriage." I feel a lot better. It is great to engage in the public forum - the privilege of living in a democracy. I'm grateful to the bishops for mobilising us as they have. The campaign has exposed as untrue the lazy, frequently made, criticism that the Catholic Church is somehow "against homosexual people." The Church which is in part made up of people with a homosexual orientation., simply wants to uphold marriage. I sat down and tried to answer the government's question: "Do you agree or disagree with enabling all couples, regardless of their gender, to have a civil marriage ceremony?" I have read various articles in recent weeks by people far more learned than myself. Drawing on their wisdom, here are the four points which I submitted to Her Majesty's government, the government which is charged by her and mandated by the people to uphold the common good of society.

"Marriage is an institution which predates the state and is logically prior to it: it would be illiberal for any government to presume to determine its definition. The state has a responsibility simply to receive and foster what is an essential constitutive part of human culture.

There is no such thing as a marriage ceremony. There is a wedding ceremony which marks the beginning of a marriage. To legislate for any kind of 'marriage ceremony' would therefore be nonsensical.

If a civil wedding ceremony were to be introduced for same-sex couples this would lead to a man and a woman who were married, whether in a civil or religious service, no longer being able to describe their union without qualification. It would breach their right to possess an unequivocal, publicly acknowledged identity.

It is unclear how a marriage following a civil wedding service of a same-sex couple would be consummated. Presumably mere public consent would be taken to be sufficient to validate such a marriage. This would mean that an event whose aim is to join persons would in fact merely indicate intersecting wills."

I was warming to my theme and then I ran over my word allowance. The government is only so interested in what I have to say!

1 comment:

  1. Yes, the Scottish government, in its separate consultation on this matter, gave me enough space to write a short essay on the subject. The UK government only allowed a few 'tweets'!