So close

So, last week, I mentioned that I would’ve walked out of Mass in response to an anti-gay rant, if only I were a little bit braver.  Maybe.  Maybe,  I’m just not that brave.  To some degree I wrote off last week’s sermon as the prejudice of an African priest.  Nothing against Africans, but if one looks at all the controversy within the Episcopal church, it’s well known that their African dioceses have much greater opposition to homosexuality.   Alas, yesterday, our mild-mannered, American-born, pastor gave much the same sermon (a good Catholic will vote for NC’s marriage definition amendment), though in a much less prejudiced manner.  The priest seemed to think if he just said “natural law” enough, that made everything okay.  The ovation from many parishioners at the end really bugged me.  I really think that if David and I were not sitting right in the middle of the row, but on the edge, I would have left at the end of the sermon.  If I had been by myself, I’m pretty confident I would’ve left, but I’ve got my own internal struggles about what it means to instill religion in your children when you are really not all that sure about that religion.  But hey, that’s for another blog.

Anyway, what really annoyed me about the sermon was that the priest kept insisting that the Church was not getting involved in politics, but rather that politics was coming to the church, and they could not sidestep it.  You know what, I could actually accept that.  And even the sermon, if they seemed to give a damn about poverty.  Are they trying to say that poverty is not political?  That when we cut taxes on the wealthy at the same time we cut Medicaid and social services for families with special needs children, that’s not political?  Apparently.

I think that disjunction is what really pisses me off so much.  Read the Gospels.  Does Jesus really seem to care at all about people’s sexual behavior?  Fair to say it’s not exactly a point of emphasis.  Does Jesus care about us helping the poor, downtrodden, and oppressed?  Maybe just a little.  Urgh.


About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State

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