Ex-Gay? Celibate Homosexual? (A Question of Names)

So I just read a phenomenal, erudite post which you can find here. I was quite captivated by much of what the author of the aforementioned post had to say, and it stimulated some thinking on my own part – a sure sign of well-thought out writing!

First, I’d like to deeply thank the author of the post I’ve linked to. His thoughts, as one who no longer identifies himself as gay, were very, very helpful. While he and I could likely have a rousing debate on the subject of the Church of Rome, I cannot possibly express how good and helpful it was to read anything from anyone who has, by their own profession, left the homosexual lifestyle.

Furthermore, the question he asks is a deep one, well worth pondering: “What should we call those who have left the gay lifestyle behind?” I want to let Richard speak for himself here:

…I do not think referring to myself as a “celibate gay Christian” is particularly accurate or truthful. I think it automatically labels me into a corner of the world I no longer belong to. It seems to me a lot like calling myself, as my former wife (but current good friend) Shirley, who happens to have epilepsy, an “epileptic.”  Clinically, both terms are accurate. But one says I am something. The other says I am a human person with something. And, again, words matter.  One is a label, and the other is a description of an imperfect but real creation of God. One makes me sound like an “ex-con” and the other like a current and present member of the family of our Lord Jesus and His Church.  Which would you like better if you were in my shoes?

After moving on from this statement, Richard launches into a well-argued piece of polemics, outlining why he thinks the most correct term would be “same-sex attracted” (SSA), and then has this to say:

So how does this fit with the misleading term “SSA disorder?”  Quite easily in fact. If I as a human being am disordered, and I will concede that the wound of having SSA does include a “disordered passion,” so too are my non-SSA friends who undress every woman that they see while sitting by their wives in Mass or church, as well as the pastors (some statistics would say 50%) who have their occasional slippage into the world of pornography.  And “porn” is not what it was when I was 14 and snuck a look at some old Playboys found in the neighbor’s dumpster by my friend Marty.  The most I ever saw at that time was the human body, but never in action as such. The fact that 10 year olds can now see actual sexual intercourse (oh pardon me I mean the “marital embrace” for those of you who are offended at the use of the word “sex”), neither hinted at nor suggestive of, but the real thing, including the climax, by the click of a button, should alarm us drastically. Do not call me “disordered” and then forget to include yourselves as part of the photo-op. We are all disordered in some way or another, and when the term was originally used in the Church it was made quite clear that this was the case.

All I have to say in response to this is, “Wow”. Richard couldn’t be more right when he points out that Adam’s fall has left us all sexually disordered. That is a truth that we must keep sight of!

So, I say to Richard, thank you. Thank you so very much.

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4 thoughts on “Ex-Gay? Celibate Homosexual? (A Question of Names)

  1. I was deeply touched by your comments, which I read on your page. With your permission I would like to add it to my blogroll (your page that is).
    Whatever our disagreements about Rome, we are brothers in our Lord Jesus Christ, and that is first and foremost. Thank you for your kind sharing. God bless you so much for your kindness.

    • Mr. Richard,

      Of course you have my permission to add me to the blogroll! And I can’t thank you highly enough for your post – it was a good reminder that Paul was right: “Such were some of you, but ye were washed, but ye were sanctified, but ye were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and in the Spirit of our God.” May God be praised for His great mercies.

      • I will do so right now! God bless you and your internship for our common Lord and Savior Jesus Christ this summer. Stay in touch.

"I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naïve." (Romans 16:17-18) Please read "The Comments Policy."

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