Mandatum nostrum

The idea for this blog originated from discussions between its main contributors, Eiluned de Oxonia (Roman Catholic) and Victor de Villa Lapidis (Russian Orthodox), and many other young religious LGBTQ of our acquaintance.  We decided to begin this blog, motivated, on the one hand, by the lack of support for religious LGBTQ amongst the Church hierarchy, and on the other hand, by the lack of careful theologically-grounded discussion of sexuality amongst those church groups which do welcome us (and for which we are very grateful!).  Ideally, the blog will be a safe space for those who are LGBTQ and have traditionalist leanings,  and will also provide a place fostering discussion with those who are not queer, traditionalist, or even religious.

Published in: on July 2, 2010 at 3:10 pm  Comments (7)  

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  1. I am interested in following this blog, however I have a question that I anticipate will be important to help me to interpret what I read:

    You cite “…the lack of support for religious LGBTQ amongst the Church hierarchy…” as one of your reasons for starting this blog. What would solid support from the Church heirarchy look like? Would it be like the support offered by bishops J. S. Spong and K. Jefferts-Schori? Or would it be pastoral work that is in keeping with the Churches theology of grace, forgiveness and love without necessarily going against traditional Church teachings on human sexuality?

  2. Nicholas,

    Loaded question! You have given us two options: a) siding with Bishops Spong and Jefferts Schori who are are not only Anglican but also extremely controversial figures even within their own church, or b) “pastoral work that is in keeping with the Churches theology of grace, forgiveness and love without necessarily going against traditional Church teachings on human sexuality?”

    We would say that b) is the status quo, and that that it does take place; there are some (albeit too few) pastors and religious out there, doing exactly that. This is good, and we would like to see more of it. However, we feel this isn’t enough. We choose: c) the Church must, at some point, acknowledge homosexuality is not always a choice; it has strong biological components, and thus presents a major problem for Natural Law as it currently stands.

    We understand the church moves slowly to avoid error, and that the current stance is based on thousands of years of doctrine and tradition impossible to throw thoughtlessly away. That being said, we would like this process to start and be taken seriously.

    Sorry it took so long! It took quite a bit of thought and discussion to devise an accurate and precise response. Exactly the sort of thing we hoped this project would prompt!

    The Homodox Confessions

  3. How would this be different from taking the same, controvercial route taken by the two Anglican heirarchs I mentioned, but for your respective traditions?

  4. Actually, on thinking about this, I don’t think that the what you are suggesting is explicitely denied by what I understand to be the teachings of either the Eastern Orthodox Church or the Roman Catholic Church either. Surely, just as these churches recognize that a man might see women (other than his wife) in a day that he finds attractive and yet not sin, he can (according to the teachings of these churches) see men that he finds attractive and not sin. It is, if I understand the teaching correctly, some of his possible responses to these urges — whether they have biological components or not is irrelevant — that is considered to be sinful.I’m delighted to be a part of this conversation. However, I would like to worn you that much of what I have read on this blog seems very similar to the rhetoric of the powerful Anglicans and Episcopalians that have been so controvercial in this past decade. Even if you agree with them, for the sake of the dialogue, I would urge you to express yourselves differently. Poking a dog with a stick will not teach it to fetch, and hitting a girl with a book will not convince her to read it.

  5. Dear Nicholas,

    Thanks for your comment(s), and sorry for my delay in replying to them. To clarify, and speaking just for myself for the moment, I do believe that significant portions of the Church’s official teaching on sexual ethics are, or have become, erroneous. I do not believe that homosexuality (the disposition, the identity, and/or the act) is intrinsically disordered or necessarily sinful. What differentiates me from the Anglican bishops you mention is that I am also, by all credal tests, orthodox. I accept the dogmatic definitions of the ecumenical councils; and I accept the authority of catechism and canon law, even as I wish to modify some of their contents. I think that liberal Anglicans, by the way, do a great disservice to the cause for same-sex unions and female ordination throughout catholic Christendom, both by the complacent disregard they have too often shown for the opinion of the rest of the Anglican Communion, and by their own heterodoxy (not to say heresy) where essential matters of faith are indeed concerned (such as the nature of Christ’s divine-human person and his bodily resurrection, just for example). My hope is that as Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox begin to debate issues of gender, they will not follow the Anglican example, and permit what are to my mind individual and legitimate complaints, to turn into a pretext for schism.

    But much will follow in the weeks and months ahead.


  6. Something that’s bothered me in much of what’s been going on in the Anglican Communion is this perspective that the Anglican churches must either endorse homosexual unions and sexual promiscuity together or forbid both. In the Church we had bratotvorenie from early times. Would it be so wrong for our hierarchy today to bless the use of this service and call those united through it to the same standards of relational fidelity and holiness that married men and women are called to?

  7. Dear Jon,

    No, it would not be so wrong. 🙂


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