How Should Christians Respond To The Ray Boltz News?


I think the Catechism of the Catholic Church explains it nicely.

Chastity and homosexuality

 

2357
Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.” They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.
2358
The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.
2359
Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.
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Ray Boltz Shocks Christian Community


This story is from onenewsnow.com from Jim Brown:

There is shock and sadness in the Christian community over word that famed Christian music singer Ray Boltz has publicly announced he’s living a homosexual lifestyle.

 “If this is the way God made me, then this is the way I’m going to live…I really feel closer to God because I no longer hate myself.”  Those were the words of Ray Boltz in an interview with the Washington Blade about his decision to engage in homosexuality. Boltz, a father of four who was married for 33 years before officially divorcing his wife this year, is well-known for his widely acclaimed songs “Thank You” and “I Pledge Allegiance to the Lamb.”

The disclosure by Boltz was stunning news to former homosexual Greg Quinlan who is now with the New Jersey Family Policy Council.

“I’m absolutely shocked.  I’ve got some of his CDs and cassette tapes –- tells you how long it’s been around. When he says he’s born that way, we know now for a fact that that’s false. In fact, just last year in March, the director of the Human Genome Project, Dr. Francis Collins, said this: homosexuality is not hardwired. There is no gay gene. We mapped the human genome. We now know there is no genetic cause for homosexuality.”

 

View entire video interview with Greg Quinlan

When asked about Boltz’s homosexuality, The Gospel Music Association — the group which gives out the Dove Awards — told the Blade, “We do not comment on the lifestyle choices of people in our community.”

According to Quinlan, by making such a statement the GMA seems to be “enabling a behavior that is totally inconsistent, incongruent with the message of the gospel.”

The New From The Old: Mark 2:18-22


The disciples of John and of the Pharisees were accustomed to fast. People came to him and objected, “Why do the disciples of John and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?” Jesus answered them, “Can the wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them? As long as they have the bridegroom with them they cannot fast. But the days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast on that day. No one sews a piece of unshrunken cloth on an old cloak. If he does, its fullness pulls away, the new from the old, and the tear gets worse. Likewise, no one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the wine will burst the skins, and both the wine and the skins are ruined. Rather, new wine is poured into fresh wineskins.”

This seems to be a continuation of the goings on at Levi’s dinner party. Maybe the fact that these people see Jesus and His disciples eating and drinking on this particular day (for we know according to the Didache 2.8 that the “hypocrites” fasted on Monday and Thursday) that they bring this question to Jesus. And, once again, Jesus gives a fascinating answer (as He always did).

Can the wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them? or as we would look at it now; “My disciples cannot fast while the Messiah is with them, can they?

By using the matrimonial imagery, Jesus is reiterating what had been taught (and maybe set aside) in ancient Israel; that Israel was called God’s wife ( Isa. 54:5, 62:4-5).

  • For he who has become your husband is your Maker; his name is the LORD of hosts; Your redeemer is the Holy One of Israel, called God of all the earth.
  • No more shall men call you “Forsaken,” or your land “Desolate,” But you shall be called “My Delight,” and your land “Espoused.” For the LORD delights in you, and makes your land his spouse. As a young man marries a virgin, your Builder shall marry you; And as a bridegroom rejoices in his bride so shall your God rejoice in you.

With the arrival of Immanuel (God with us) the messianic time is ushered in.

Jesus then continues: As long as they have the bridegroom with them they cannot fast. But the days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast on that day.

Does this present itself as a contradiction? After all, Jesus states later, And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age; He says this right before ascending to the Father. So….Is it a contradiction? For us with faith it isn’t, but even with faith, it can still be confusing.

We can over spiritualize what Jesus said and make this contradiction disappear. Don’t get me wrong, He is certainly with us in a spiritual sense, but is that the extent of it? After all, He created us physical beings as well as spiritual beings. Did He leave us any tangible evidence of His presence? The answer to this question is a resounding YES!

You may now be asking yourself, “What does this have to do with studying this section of scripture?” Could this be part of the new cloth and the old cloth? The new wine and the old wineskins? Let us examine!

The only presence of God at the time of Christ, was in the Temple (the Holy of Holies to be exact). This would be the old cloth, the old wineskin, established by God long ago. But now, we see God Himself, becoming man and leaving the Temple, to make His dwelling among us, with His people. This was something the old cloth or the old wineskins couldn’t patch-up or contain.

Jesus take the idea of a “far off” God and presents a “personal” God. This too, was something that the old cloth and the old wineskins couldn’t patch-up or contain. So, “What is this tangible evidence,” you ask?

First He left His Church, His Kingdom on Earth, to continue His work (Matt. 25:31-46, 28:18-20). Secondly, He left the seven (7) Sacraments of the Church (Baptisim, Confirmation, Eucharist, Reconciliation, Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders and Matrimony). The word Sacrament is defined as ” a visible sign of God’s invisible presence.”

Through His Church, we are reminded in a tangible way, to continue in Christ’s mission; did He only come to meet the spiritual needs of the people? No. He met their physical needs as well. So as important as it is to share our faith in Christ, it is equally important to show our love for Christ, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me (Matt. 25:40).

Through the Sacraments, we are tangibly reminded and strengthened as we continue our faith journey and our work for the Lord. The most precious of the Sacraments is the Holy Eucharist, “the source and summit of the Christian life” (CCC 1324). In the most intimate way, Jesus is not only with us spiritually, but tangibly, as a humble servant, in the form of bread and wine. Who else could do this? Who else would do this?

What was that noise?

Did I just hear your cloth tear? Did your wineskin just burst?

This week, let us not be like the Pharisees, who couldn’t accept the “new” because of the “old.” Rather, let us understand more fully, what Jesus Himself left for us through His Father.

From the beginning, Jesus associated his disciples with his own life, revealed the mystery of the Kingdom to them, and gave them a share in his mission, joy, and sufferings. Jesus spoke of a still more intimate communion between him and those who would follow him: “Abide in me, and I in you. . . . I am the vine, you are the branches.” And he proclaimed a mysterious and real communion between his own body and ours: “He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him.”     CCC 787

When his visible presence was taken from them, Jesus did not leave his disciples orphans. He promised to remain with them until the end of time; he sent them his Spirit. As a result communion with Jesus has become, in a way, more intense: “By communicating his Spirit, Christ mystically constitutes as his body those brothers of his who are called together from every nation.”    CCC 788

As Christ Jesus is the sacrament of God, the Church is our sacrament of Christ.

Amen.

A New Forum


Check out an exciting new forum here.

Thanks Amber!

Public Policy Alert for Knights of Columbus in the U.S.


Congress considers transforming AIDS relief into a massive abortion program financed by U.S. taxpayers

ACTION:

A Congressional committee is about to take America’s overseas AIDS relief program and use it as a vehicle for population control and abortion promotion.  Knights are urged to write to their members of Congress (especially if they’re members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee) to oppose this change.  See additional details at the bottom of this e-mail alert.

BACKGROUND

The President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) is due for reauthorization in 2008. In 2003 this bill was passed with bipartisan support and has a proven record of success in saving lives.

Last month, however, the House Foreign Affairs Committee proposed a reauthorization bill (the “Global HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria Reauthorization Act of 2008”) which would drop the program’s exclusive focus on HIV/AIDS, and define HIV/AIDS and pregnancy as a “dual threat” to women’s lives.

The $50 billion authorized by the bill would then be used for both AIDS relief and what are termed “women’s reproductive health services” and “family planning services.” Although the bill’s definition of “reproductive health” does not mention “abortion,” abortion advocates have long interpreted “reproductive health” and “family planning” to include abortion.  Women seeking solely HIV/AIDS treatment could unexpectedly find themselves subjected to abortion counseling.

MEXICO CITY POLICY

Currently, the Mexico City Policy provides that no U.S. population assistance funds can be given to non-governmental organizations unless they certify that it will not perform or promote abortion as a method of family planning.  But the Mexico City Policy does not apply to AIDS relief legislation.  The insertion of “reproductive health” and “family planning” in AIDS relief legislation is a ploy to redirect AIDS relief money to international abortion organizations, and represents an end run around the Mexico City Policy restrictions.  Foreign abortion groups that cannot currently obtain US funding for family planning would be able to do so under this AIDS relief legislation. 

CATHOLIC RELIEF SERVICES AFFECTED

Catholic health institutions deliver approximately 25% of all HIV and AIDS care worldwide, and this bill places Catholic participation in jeopardy. Men, women and children seeking treatment for HIV and AIDS by Catholic providers in the world’s poorest regions could lose their access to treatment.

On February 6, Bishop Thomas Wenski, Chairman of the USCCB Committee on International Justice and Peace, and Ken Hackett, President of Catholic Relief Services, wrote to the Foreign Affairs Committee, welcoming the major increase in funding for AIDS relief, but said that they were “deeply troubled” by inclusion of ‘reproductive health’ and ‘family planning’ services . . .” 

That is why the National Right to Life Committee and many other organizations are asking that the legislation be changed, and we ask that you do, too.

Click here for the full text of Bishop Wenski’s letter and a fact sheet.

 

WHAT YOU CAN DO:

Contact members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee by phone, FAX or e-mail.  This is especially important if your own representative in Congress is a member of the committee.  Click here for a list of committee members.

Even if your representative is not on the committee, it will also be helpful to contact your representative and your U.S. senators by mail, Fax, e-mail or phone.  Call the U.S. Capitol switchboard: 202-224-3121 or call your representative’s local office. 

MESSAGE:

“When you reauthorize the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), please do NOT link the AIDS/HIV program to family planning and abortion.  PEPFAR should keep its bipartisan focus on saving human lives.  Those suffering from HIV/AIDS should not be sacrificed to the cause of abortion and population control.”

WHEN:

Due to the death of Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Tom Lantos, markup of this legislation has been postponed until February 25.  Immediate action will ensure that your voice is heard before the committee action is taken.

If the March For Life Ain’t News….What Is?


Remarks by Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson at the 2008 March for Life
Washington, DC – January 22, 2008 

“Thank you, Nellie, for your tireless energy and devotion to the pro-life cause.
 
We first met 30 years ago at the March for Life and I am proud that thousands of Knights of Columbus have volunteered to help stage this march over the years.
 
We have followed your example.  We help organize Marches for Life all across North America – at the West Coast March for Life three days ago in San Francisco, in Mexico City last fall, and in the Canadian capital of Ottawa each May.
 
We gather here today at the beginning of another election year, a year in which almost all of the candidates promise “change.”  But we have been coming to Washington for 35 years asking for change – asking to change Roe v. Wade. 
 
Thirty-five years ago, the Supreme Court imposed a change on our nation that is at odds with our history, our Constitution and our humanity.  And it is time to change Roe v. Wade.
 
Abortion is wrong because abortion hurts everyone.
 
It takes the life of the innocent unborn child.
 
It victimizes the mother and the father.
 
It compromises doctors and nurses.
 
It undermines respect for judges.
 
It implicates the taxpayer who pays for it.
 
It coarsens the society that tolerates it.
 
No woman should feel that she must have an abortion. 
 
We can find a better way. 
 
We can build a society in which every woman and child can find the support and care they deserve. 
 
We can build a culture of life. 
 
We can give hope to every woman and every child. 
 
Today I see thousands of helping hands ready to make this hope a reality and I know there are millions more.
 
Together we can bring change. 
 
Together we can build a new culture of life in our hearts, in our homes, and in our laws.”

I saw nothing about the March on the news reports…..did you?

Ten Challenges for the Pro-Life Movement


I received this in an e-mail earlier today.More information is at the bottom of the post:

As we gear up for next Tuesday’s March for Life in Washington DC, I (Rev. Thomas Euteneuer) offer this list of challenges to the pro-life movement in America. If we really wish to beat the abortion culture we have to mature as a movement. Thirty-five years of the same strategies and ideas have not gained us the victory we seek because the fight against the most pervasive spiritual evil that has ever entered the world can only be won on God’s terms. The pro-life movement has invested more in political and cultural change than in spiritual change. Let us not be afraid to fight Goliath’s weapons of mass destruction with the faith of David who came against the giant “in the name of the Lord of Hosts.” (1 Sam 17:45)

10. Recruit Hispanics and other minorities into the pro-life movement—while we march on Washington DC, the abortion industry is scheming more ways to get minority women into their killing centers and capitalize on their vulnerabilities as immigrants, legal or illegal. Every pro-life group needs to put Hispanic outreach on the agenda immediately so that their largely Catholic values and culture will not be paganized by the politics of death.

9. Reject politicians who believe in rape, incest, life-of-the-mother and fetal deformity “exceptions”—political candidates who believe that these “exceptions” are legitimate are really saying that it’s okay to kill some babies and save others. They are worse than false prophets; they are frauds who perpetuate the notion that we can adopt the values of the devil while still serving God. Vote pro-life, not pro-some-life.

8. Challenge the accepted notion that condoms and birth control reduce abortions—reverse that lie with the truth: namely, that birth control does not reduce abortions, it increases them. Why else would a society saturated by birth control still have 1.3 million abortions? Almost 60% of women who go into abortion clinics cite failed birth control as their reason for aborting. Remember that the same folks who sell abortion also sell birth control, and they’re making a killing.

7. Educate doctors that abortifacient birth control is chemical homicide—most physicians conveniently overlook the abortifacient nature of all chemical birth control methods. Doctors are complicit in the chemical deaths of millions of babies and need to be told that they will be held accountable before the Throne of God for every lethal prescription that bears their signatures. If you care about his or her soul, you will educate your doctor!

6. Boycott corporations and organizations that fund or promote abortion—the abortion industry lusts for public support of any kind. Businesses and organizations that fund the baby-killers need to be awakened, and rather sharply, by the pro-life conscience of our society. Companies that refuse to see abortion’s moral dimension must be made to feel—economically—that abortion is a really bad business decision. And don’t hide your light under a bushel basket: make a public witness, write a letter, stage a picket. Let others know that you dissent from the culture of death.

5. Go on the offensive against Planned Parenthood’s funding—abortion is not the only source of money for the Planned Parenthood baby-killers; they are awash with cash due to the profits from their “clinic business” (i.e., selling birth control and sterilizations) and senseless government funding for “family planning.” Pro-life groups not willing to cut off their funding stream for contraception will just continue to see the PP monster grow and will never effectively undermine the demand for abortion.

4. Embrace the embryonic stem cell and euthanasia issues with the same fervor as abortion—let’s not adopt the same logic as the pro-aborts who dismiss the pre-born child and the inconvenient handicapped person as “not viable” and look the other way when they are destroyed for profit, or worse, market them as material for extermination. Let’s recognize that our defense of life must remain rock solid through the entire life spectrum, no matter how small or vulnerable.

3. Remind the Christian churches—again—that abortion exists with their permission—history will judge the churches of Christ that were apathetic toward abortion more harshly than the churches of Germany during the 30s and 40s. Christians living in a free society aren’t being sent to gas chambers for speaking out, so we have no excuse. It has been said that the hottest places in hell are reserved for those who, in the face of a moral crisis, do nothing. Christians must know that we will be held accountable if we are silent and indifferent to the plight of Christ’s least brethren.

2. Fast for the conversion of abortion promoters—“Some demons are not driven out except by prayer and fasting,” said the Lord (Mt 17:21). A regular habit of tangible sacrifices for those most immersed in the grip of the abortion demon will erode the power of this evil. The Lord just needs an army of souls who are willing to embrace this practice—then astonishing results will abound. Why not go back to fasting or abstaining from meat on Fridays for this cause?

1. Get down on our knees and ask the one true Savior to end abortion—the pro-life movement needs to humbly admit that abortion is such a massive evil and so deeply rooted in our social fabric that no human power can eliminate it. While we need to vote for pro-life politicians, they are not our saviors. Abortion needs to be driven out by the spiritual authority of Christ’s church like an unclean spirit. Once the pro-life movement begins to seriously fight abortion in its spiritual dimension, we will see some real pro-life victories in politics and society. We can’t say that prayer hasn’t worked until it’s actually been tried.

Spirit & Life®
“The words I spoke to you are spirit and life.” (Jn 6:63)
Human Life International e-Newsletter
Volume 03, Number 03 | Friday, January 18, 2008

www.hli.org