Patrick Archbold is co-founder of Creative Minority Report, a Catholic website that puts a refreshing spin on the intersection of religion, culture, and politics. When not writing, Patrick is director of information technology at a large international logistics company in New York.
As the year comes to a close it is natural to reflect upon the year and see if there are any lessons to be learned.
Well it just so happens that this December provided us with a very valuable lesson, if only we are willing to learn it.
For the past 20 years, the Church's teaching on homosexuality have been progressively criticized, marginalized, delegitimized, and perhaps soon criminalized.
As we have lost battle after battle, the rational mind will also understand that at the same time Church leadership has taken a very soft approach to the issue. They chose to focus almost exclusively on God's love for the sinner with almost no time reserved to God's abhorrence of the sin. So effective has this strategy been that to even mention the sin is considered the height of intolerable intolerance.
The current strategy of focusing on the nice has seen 'gay marriage' enshrined in law in multiple states and now in all states due eminently foreseeable consequences of absurd and immoral judicial fiat. We have seen Catholic adoption agencies shutter their doors when forced to provide gay adoptions or go along with the immoral practice.
So it is that under the current strategy that our religious liberty has been dangerously eroded to the point where plainly stating the eternal Christian position on homosexual acts can get you shunned, fired, or even worse.
And yet our leaders continue to focus on the nicey-nice shouting to deaf ears "But we love gay people!!"
Well, guess what. You can't have real love without real truth, even the uncomfortable truths.
Look what happened when a Christian man decided to stand up and defend Christian teaching, he lost his job, and then refused to apologize or in any way soften his stance. People rallied, they spoke about the truth of it, and in the end won a small victory for the Christian position and religious liberty.
This is what happens with real love and whole truth.
What we need now is for our leadership (and all of us as well) to stop mitigating and downplaying the deadly effects of the homosexual lifestyle to mind, body, and of course the soul.
Preach it. Talk about it. Stop accommodating it all the time. It is not love or tolerant to look the other way when a person imperils his life and soul. Saying that homosexual acts are gravely sinful is no more intolerant than telling someone not to touch a hot stove.
20 years of softening our position of homosexuality has pushed us to the brink. If there is a lesson to be learned, it is one that any general could teach you. A softened position eventually becomes indefensible.
So we must stop softening our position and fight for the whole truth, even the uncomfortable parts. We must abandon the Church of nice and choose again the Church of truth.
The lesson we should learn from all this is that if we stand for truth we can win the day. If we will not, we have already lost.