Marriage does not come into the sphere or ecclesiology but moral theology; the first is confined to Church order. All of the conditions defined by the Prayer Book lead to the ultimate aim of creating new life, of increaing and multiplying, of stabilising society. Homosexuality does not enter the questions. Barrenness has never been a ground for nullity; failure to consummate a marriage has. But I believe that fertile couples who want to marry without the intention of having children should question their reasons. In the Catholic Church this provides grounds for annulment.
Patriarchy does not enter homosexual relationships unless they are trying to perpetrate a parody of the norm. For illumination on the woman as chattel myth, read Ephesians which defines marriage as a state founded on equality and complementarity. What radical homosexuals of the past resented was the imposition of a social norm on a condition that was inimical to the applied model. Why, they asked, should we be pressured into adopting a heterosexual lifestyle when we are not heterosexuals? Marriage was seen, rightly I believe, as the heart of the heterosexual norm.
I am sorry that Nat has only heard of heterosexual life, rather than actually knowing it. The watershed for heterosexual physical relations was the availability of the contraceptive pill which for the first time put women on an equal basis for promiscuity as men.
This led to the present sexual turmoil. The pill does not affect homosexuals because they are incapable of creating life. But look at the results of excessive promiscuity in the 1970s, the era when the concept of gay 'marriage' was derided by many homosexuals. That lay in AIDS which has been responsible for millions of deaths on a universal scale and has spread into heterosexual life with devastating consequences. I support a charity set up to help children infected by AIDS in the womb and I have seen personally the devastation it has caused. Nat may, or may not, know that AIDS was once known as the gay plague, not least among homosexuals themselves.
Posted by: John Bowles on Sunday, 4 December 2011 at 10:25am GMT
As I said, there is so much wrong that I don't know where to begin, so I won't.
Instead, I'll take this whole argument out of the realm of abstraction with this: