Friday 2 December 2016

We can't deny anyone the right to express love

Published 04/03/2014 | 02:30

Still-life of grooms.
Still-life of grooms.

* The issue of gay marriage surfaces on a regular basis, stirring up the predictable array of prejudice and gratuitous assertion.

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Invoking what is referred to as "the teaching of the church" is particularly unhelpful, even for Catholics. Moral life is not a matter of following a set of prescribed rules or teachings, cultivating docile recipients of doctrine rather than encouraging free, rational discussion between equals. Acting morally requires thoughtful reflection on the demands of life and the imposition of these demands upon oneself.

Appealing to the teaching of the church cannot release us from personal responsibility for our actions. Acting morally is not an expression of obedience but the exercise of intelligence.

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