Bishops reaf­firm tra­di­tional Catholic po­si­tions on ho­mo­sex­u­al­ity

The Washington Times Weekly - - Front Page - By Ju­lia Duin

BAL­TI­MORE — Catholic bishops on Nov. 14 ap­proved three doc­u­ments ham­mer­ing home es­sen­tial Catholic doc­trines on sex­u­al­ity and the Holy Com­mu­nion, re­peat­ing ba­sic church teach­ings that broke no new doc­tri­nal ground.

The doc­u­ments, worded to not stir up con­flicts, pro­vided guid­ance for the pas­toral care of ho­mo­sex­u­als, ex­plained the church’s con­tin­ued ban on ar­ti­fi­cial con­tra­cep­tion and out­lined how Catholics should re­ceive Holy Com­mu­nion.

“We’ve a re­spon­si­bil­ity to teach peo­ple about th­ese things that are dif­fi­cult for them be­cause of the cul­ture,” Kansas City Arch­bishop Joseph F. Nau­mann said dur­ing the bishops’ an­nual fall busi­ness meet­ing at the Wa­ter­front Mar­riott.

“We have not been clear enough or ef­fec­tive enough as teach­ers,” he added.

The “Min­istry to Per­sons with a Homo- sex­ual In­cli­na­tion: Guide­lines for Pas­toral Care” avoided en­dors­ing any ther­apy geared to change ho­mo­sex­u­als’ ori­en­ta­tion, but it called the ori­en­ta­tion “dis­or­dered.”

The doc­u­ment lumped in ho­mo­sex­u­al­ity with other sex­ual acts, such as adul­tery, for-

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Vot­ers this year scored Mrs. Boxer at 100 per­cent and Mr. In­hofe, of Oklahoma, at zero.

“You ob­vi­ously can’t be any fur­ther­a­part­thanthe­setwo,”saidTier­nan Sit­ten­feld, LCV’s leg­isla­tive di­rec­tor. “We look for­ward to a vastly dif­fer­ent approach where we have sci­en­tists rather than fiction writ­ers on the Hill giv­ing tes­ti­mony.”

Mr.In­hofe­lastyearcalled“Juras­sicPark”au­thorMichaelCrich­tonto tes­tify as an “ex­pert” on global warm­ing.In­his­book“Sta­te­of­Fear,” Mr. Crich­ton ques­tioned the le­git­i­macy of cli­mate change the­o­ries.

Repub­li­cans say they wouldn’t be sur­prised to see an­other fa­mous face called to tes­tify on Capi­tol Hill: for­mer Vice Pres­i­dent Al Gore, a Demo­crat whose sum­mer film “An In­con­ve­nient Truth” ex­plores cli­mate change.

Rep.ChrisVanHollen,Mary­land Demo­crat, said on Nov. 14 that Con­gress­must­con­front­glob­al­warm­ing. “It’s a big is­sue that has been swept un­der the rug,” he said.

Mrs.Box­er­has­said­glob­al­warm­ing “could re­shape the world as we know it.”

She isn’t alone — pend­ing in the com­mit­teeis­abill­bySen.JohnMc- Cain, Ari­zona Repub­li­can, look­ing to re­duce green­house gas emis­sions, sim­i­lar to a Cal­i­for­nia law signed by Repub­li­can Gov. Arnold Sch­warzeneg­ger this sum­mer.

One Repub­li­can staffer pre­dicted that global warm­ing hear­ings “will be more PR than pol­icy” and are de­signed to play to the Demo­cratic base.

On the House side, Democrats plan to push hear­ings on global warm­ing and air qual­ity.

“DrillingintheArc­ti­cis­prob­a­bly even more dead than it was be­fore,” saidoneDemo­crat­ic­staffer­fa­mil­iar with the work­ings of the House Re­sources Com­mit­tee.

Rep. Richard W. Pombo, Cal­i­for­nia Repub­li­can and chair­man of that panel, lost his re-elec­tion bid on Nov. 7.

Rep.NickJ.Ra­hal­lIIofWestVir­ginia, the com­mit­tee’s rank­ing Demo­crat, is in line to as­sume the chair­man­ship.

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