In the wake of U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s secret wedding at a Catholic Church, Father James Martin, a liberal prelate, used the moment to push for the blessing of same-sex unions within the church.
As The Daily Wire reported, Johnson married his fiancée Saturday afternoon after keeping it secret from even his top aides. The wedding reportedly happened in a Catholic ceremony at Westminister Cathedral. Given that Johnson is a twice-divorced man who fathered a child out of wedlock with his fiancée, Martin argued that same-sex couples deserve to have their unions blessed in the church.
“Boris Johnson, a twice-divorced man, whose girlfriend recently had a baby with him out of wedlock (and who also has another child out of wedlock) was married in a Catholic ceremony in Westminster Cathedral, the seat of English Catholicism,” he tweeted. “At the same time, a same-sex couple, who are both Catholics (unlike Mr. Johnson, who was confirmed as an Anglican) cannot have their civil union blessed even in private by a priest because ‘God does not and cannot bless sin.’”
“Mr. and Mrs. Johnson were married within the rules of the Catholic Church. And I wish them well. I also wish that the same mercy and compassion that was offered to them, recognizing their complex lives, could also be extended to same-sex couples who are lifelong Catholics,” he added.
Mr. and Mrs. Johnson were married within the rules of the Catholic Church. And I wish them well. I also wish that the same mercy and compassion that was offered to them, recognizing their complex lives, could also be extended to same-sex couples who are lifelong Catholics.
— James Martin, SJ (@JamesMartinSJ) May 30, 2021
Martin was possibly taking a shot at a recent Vatican decree, allegedly approved by Pope Francis, barring priests from blessing same-sex unions in private or public.
“The presence in such relationships of positive elements, which are in themselves to be valued and appreciated, cannot justify these relationships and render them legitimate objects of an ecclesial blessing, since the positive elements exist within the context of a union not ordered to the Creator’s plan,” said the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF).
In an interview with Mexican broadcaster Televisa in 2019, Francis said that homosexual couples have the right to be in a family and that they should be legally covered by civil law.
“Homosexual people have the right to be in a family. They are children of God,” he said.
Regarding families with gay children, the Holy Father also said, “You can’t kick someone out of a family, nor make their life miserable for this. What we have to have is a civil union law; that way they are legally covered.”
Though Martin has positioned himself as an LGBT-friendly priest, he has always maintained he agrees with Catholic teaching on homosexual acts while simply calling for more compassion for such individuals. In October of 2019, however, that facade appeared to drop when he tweeted an article from the Protestant Scripture scholar and theologian Walter Wink, which said that the Bible’s condemnation of homosexual acts should be questioned due to the Bible’s alleged endorsement of slavery. Martin even used the words “interesting” in reference to the passage.
“Interesting: ‘Where the Bible mentions [same-sex sexual] behavior at all, it clearly condemns it. I freely grant that. The issue is precisely whether the biblical judgment is correct. The Bible sanctioned slavery as well and nowhere attacked it as unjust,’” he tweeted. “‘Are we prepared to argue today that slavery is biblically justified?’”
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