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NerdyKeith's avatar

Why is the Catholic Church ok with evolution but not ok with homosexuality?

Asked by NerdyKeith (5464points) February 22nd, 2016

Both of these issues go against the bible. Evolution contradicts the book of Genesis, where as homosexuality defies the book of Leviticus.

It would seem to me that accepting a theory in which contradicts the very idea of a divine creator should be more of an issue than simply being tolerant of two human beings who love each other.

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18 Answers

rojo's avatar

The Book of Genesis contradicts the Book of Genesis so I wouldn’t put much stock in that

jca's avatar

I think that question would best be asked of a Catholic clergyman.

stanleybmanly's avatar

The Church ALWAYS lags behind the society advancing in spite of it. And as that advancement accelerates, the burden in remaining relevant grows ever more problematic for the stodgy edifice mired in archaic dogma.

rojo's avatar

Other than my above response, Genesis relates a creation myth, it does not require any specific actions or make any value judgements while the passages in Leviticus are translated to decry a certain behavior and can be thought of as a moral message.

elbanditoroso's avatar

Wait a sec. Four hours ago you asked if religion and faith could be rational.

Now you look for rational consistency in a religion.

@nerdykeith – Your questions are sort of at odds with each other.

Strauss's avatar

Short answer (according to Church teachings): Evolution is a science. A homosexual act (not necessarily homosexuality itself) is a human choice.

The Church has long held that rational thought can be used to determine the natural science behind natural phenomena, as long as the teaching does not conflict with Dogma.
As far back as 1950, Pope Pius XII, in his encyclical entitled Humani Generis stated: …For these reasons the Teaching Authority of the Church does not forbid that, in conformity with the present state of human sciences and sacred theology, research and discussions, on the part of men experienced in both fields, take place with regard to the doctrine of evolution, in as far as it inquires into the origin of the human body as coming from pre-existent and living matter – for the Catholic faith obliges us to hold that souls are immediately created by God.

As far as homosexuality, Pope Francis has demonstrated an acceptance that had not been apparent at all by his predecessors. Shortly after being elected to his office, he stated: “If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?”

More recently, when discussing this statement (as reported here) he stated:

I am glad that we are talking about ‘homosexual people’ because before all else comes the individual person, in his wholeness and dignity.

@jca I’m not a Catholic clergyman, but I did study to be one. If we do have one out there in Jellyland, please correct me if I am wrong…

NerdyKeith's avatar

@elbanditoroso I disagree. Both question are in fact questioning the consistency. I just took a different approach in doing that with both questions. I am already of the opinion that there is no consistency with organised religion. But I am attempting to question it in an unbiased manner none the less.

Aster's avatar

Why? Because they want to propagate the church? Because they think it’s icky? Not sure but to say it’s a choice I beg to differ. Who in their right mind would want to choose a lifestyle that disgusts and amuses the masses?
Gay people were born that way and I’ll never believe anything else. Like being left handed, it’s how their brain was wired in the womb.

jca's avatar

@Yetanotheruser: If you studied to be one, then that’s good enough for me as far as answering this question.

Strauss's avatar

@Aster Not sure but to say it’s a choice I beg to differ.

I’m not stating (nor do I believe personally) that being gay is a choice any more than having blue eyes is a choice. But a straight person or an LGBT person or any person has a choice to act or not to act when it comes to a sexual situation (or any situation, for that matter!), regardless of orientation.

BTW, the OP asks about the Catholic Church, so my answer was in the view of the Church (as I understand it), and not necessarily my own.

ucme's avatar

Because the church sucks dick, ironic much.

Aster's avatar

Thank you, @ucme , for your usual enlightening and predictable replies. The church is not perfect. No doubt about that.

stanleybmanly's avatar

To elaborate on my previous answer, the Church is ok on evolution because the issue has been settled for going on 200 years. Just as folks are no longer ostracized for spreading the heretical blasphemy of the earth orbiting the sun. Once it is realized that Gays “are born, not made”, the issue becomes one of civil rights and the Church is once again caught naked, and this time for persecuting people for acting as God designed them. Don’t worry. A big announcement flipping on the Church’s position on gays is in our near future.

MollyMcGuire's avatar

They have little to do with each other in your context.

JLeslie's avatar

How is the book of Genesis in conflict with evolution? God created the earth and everything necessary for life. That can include evolution.

As far as homosexuality, well the Catholics for hundreds of years now have given haven to homosexuals; they have been taken care of by the church working as Priests and Nuns. Not that all Priests and Nuns are gay, but a lot are.

Buttonstc's avatar

Not to put too fine a point on it, but the Catholic Church is not quite as archaic in their thinking as they used to be and certainly not quite as backward as a lot of fundamentalists who keep insisting that being gay is totally a choice.

The RCC does differentiate between “being gay” which is NOT a choice and acting upon that. In other words, they’re OK with gays being celibate since they are obeying the Bible.

Just to be clear, that’s not my viewpoint, it’s the viewpoint of the RCC.

I’ve had several discussions about this with a friend of mine who went as far into the priesthood (education-wise) As one can do if already married. This was in preparation to be a hospital Chaplsin , which he was for many years.

So, at least they aren’t as backwards as most Fundys in that they recognize empirically from all the psychological research that you can’t “pray away the gay”: someone’s sexual orientation is formed pretty early in life and/or genetic. It isn’t a choice.

Now that’s the official position which has obviously changed from the 50s era thinking but the degree to which its accepted by the average Parish priest is anyone’s guess.

But that still doesn’t leave gays in a great position vis a vis the RCC. Celibacy ain’t easy (as many of their own priests have demonstrated) and yet that’s what they’re holding on to.

Buttonstc's avatar

Oh, I ran out of edit time and almost forgot about the significant thing with why they’re fine with evolution (as are a good number of progressive thinking Christians; not every Christian is a fervent YEC.)
YEC= Young Earth Creationist=Bible Literalists
Anyhow, you wouldn’t know it from listening to many people who support evolution, but nowhere does it require the absence of God. It explains how life developed and evolved but nowhere insists that there was never God involved in its origin.
As a matter of fact there are many many Christians and people of other religions who don’t have a conflict with science and evolution.
In case you’re interested , a lot of info on what they think can be found at www.biologos.org
Francis Collins (Human Genome, current head of NIH) was instrumental in starting this website. He is both a scientist and a man of faith and has no conflict at all with the facts regarding evolution.
He just happens to believe that there is a Creator (as does the RCC and many other Christians as well.)

ucme's avatar

@Aster Not your question dear, wind your neck in.

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