Fr. James Martin is Not Telling the Truth About the Church’s Teaching on Sexuality

In this Nov. 19, 2014, file photo, Fr. James Martin speaks onstage at the 2nd Annual Save The Children Illumination Gala at the Plaza in New York City.

By Jennifer Hartline Published on January 6, 2018

Fr. James Martin has gone from obscuring Catholic teaching on human sexuality to distorting it. See, for instance, a recent interview he gave while at Misericordia University.

Pouring lemon juice on the cut, he also implicated the truth of Church teaching in the high suicide rate among “LGBT” youth. Here is what he said on the Catechism’s description of homosexual acts being “disordered.”

[Interviewer] Well, the people who’ve seen your book or know something about you are complaining that you want to rewrite some of the Catechism to differently ordered, can you speak about that?

[Martin] Yeah, well part of the Catechism says that homosexual people are objectively disordered; their actions are objectively disordered and they themselves are intrinsically disordered. And so basically what I’m saying in the book is you know we need to look at how that language is received by people and heard by people and basically all I’m saying is that there are several bishops who said that that wording needs to be looked at. And now imagine someone telling you — you are intrinsically disordered, I mean how would that make you feel? … I mean LGBT youths are five times, five times more likely to attempt suicide than straight kids. Five times.”

What the Catechism Actually Says

Nowhere in any of its 2,865 paragraphs does the Catechism of the Catholic Church say that any individual person or group of people is disordered.

What Fr. Martin misstates is this: “Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.”‘ CCC 2357

Homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered. Not the person. Fr. Martin also fails to ever mention why the Church teaches that these acts are disordered, because that reasoning doesn’t help his cause.

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He says his goal is to see the wording of the Catechism changed so as not to sound so insulting, so offensive. But different words are not just different words. They result in a different meaning.

‘Differently Ordered’ is not the Truth

Fr. Martin believes the Catechism should call homosexual acts “differently ordered” instead of intrinsically disordered. Such a rephrasing changes everything. Suddenly, homosexual sex is just another expression of human sexuality, and one that God surely intended from the very beginning.

If same-sex sex is just a “different” type of sexual intercourse, then it ceases to be sinful. It can no longer be seen as immoral, or even as contrary to natural law. We must accept it as equal to the marital act. Which leads us to marriage: It also means same-sex “marriage” can no longer be opposed.

The trouble is, it makes God unreasonable. Sex between two men or two women has no biological purpose and can never bear any fruit. God created every aspect of our physical nature with a purpose, and He designed the human person, male and female, to bear fruit.

It’s absurd to insist that God creates some people with a sexual inclination that renders their reproductive system useless. It makes God either irrational or idiotic.

Male and female were made for each other, and our physical bodies affirm this in every way. At the risk of being indelicate, the only reasonable pairing for the male sex organ is the female sex organ. Anything else requires misusing the human body in ways it was never designed for.

To now insist that God creates some people with a sexual inclination that renders their reproductive systems useless is absurd. It makes God either irrational or idiotic.

Time to Own the Truth

Fr. Martin surely knows this, but he won’t own it. Perhaps because that would shatter his façade of being faithful to Church teaching. What he wants contradicts the revealed truth about marriage and the human person. It’s time he was made to own it and stop using his fuzzy, feel-good propaganda to confuse and mislead people.

Jesus Christ said that the truth of His Word shall set us free. (John 8:32) What Fr. Martin is selling is chains. He seems to think God’s design for marriage and human sexuality is a millstone around people’s necks. Or, that the Church has been duped for all these years, but now he’s finally here to set things right.

Whatever the case, he is not telling the truth about the Church’s real teaching on sexuality.

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