Some things just shouldn't be said.

Civil Unions, Logical Disconnects

Some things just shouldn't be said.


Civil Unions and Logical Disconnects – Episode 25

[00:00:00] CA: Welcome to the Catholic experience episode 25 baby recorded Sunday. Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Sunday, March 17th in the year of our Lord 2024. I am your host, the Catholic adventurer. And I thank you very much for joining me. Whoo! We got a big show for you today. So much to cover today. So very much. Is the Pope giving his blessing to same sex civil unions?

[00:00:33] I mean, is that crazy? Is he even doing that?

[00:00:38] Maybe I should shy away from the word blessing. Is the Pope giving his approval to same sex civil unions? We’re going to talk about that. Very dense topic. Also, I have a few things to say in response to a statement by Cardinal Dolan, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, a statement he made to our, quote, Islamic brothers and sisters, and a response to something posted to X by Bishop Strickland.

[00:01:03] Surprise, surprise.

[00:01:05] Those are on tap up top. Popesplaining, taxiing to the runway for flight at the bottom of the show. So a lot being covered. Very thick, dense show.

[00:01:15] Hey, did you guys know I put chapter codes, chapter time codes in these shows? It’s true. It’s true. I wonder if you’re using them. The shows have a few layers, right? Sometimes, the segments are deep. Sometimes, they’re more fun. Some shows are as short as [00:01:30] 40 minutes. Some, my last show, which was a really great one, episode 24 was fantastic.

[00:01:34] That was like an hour and a half, so it can be a lot to kind of ingest. I guess it’s a lot to, it’s a lot to listen to. So what I do is I put chapter time codes in the episodes descriptions so that you guys can navigate the episodes better. Maybe you want to jump around a little bit. Maybe you want to stop and get back to the show.

[00:01:52] Maybe you want to listen back to one of the segments. So on the episodes, wherever you’re getting this podcast, scroll down the description page. And you’ll find time codes there. Sometimes I just have the major chapters there. Sometimes I have, you know, individual moments there, but makes it a lot easier for you to navigate the show.

[00:02:09] I also put transcripts on the description pages of these episodes. That makes it, that also makes it a little bit easier to navigate an episode, to go back and reference it later, whatever. Time codes and transcripts. You’ll find both in the episode’s description page. Just scroll down, you’ll find them.

[00:02:30] Nice little features. I hope you take advantage of them.

Catholicc Ramadan? Cdnl. Dolan

[00:02:32] CA: Okay, without further ado, let’s do it. First segment, top of the episode of a show that sits on top of the Catholic world, yeah! The Catholic experience. Let’s do this. Check this out. This is the month of the Muslim season of Ramadan. Did you know that?

[00:02:49] I didn’t know that. You know how I came to know that? Because Catholic bishops, charged with guarding, defending, and spreading the Catholic faith, have told me that. [00:03:00] That’s how I know. Ramadan is a penitential season for Muslims. And Cardinal Dolan recently took to Twitter to pander to, I mean, to greet Muslims and to wish them a happy or a holy season of Ramadan, whatever.

[00:03:15] And also he used the opportunity to tell the Catholic faithful that Muslims are a good example to us. He also wanted to take a moment to tell us that Ramadan is similar to our season of Lent. How strange. Monday, March 11th folks, Cardinal Timothy Dolan here. Blessings and graces to our Islamic neighbors and brothers and sisters because they’re holy.

[00:03:37] Okay, the brothers and sisters part frustrates me first Let me start off this way and lay this foundation for you Okay, because I want you guys to receive this with a balanced attitude. I don’t think the cardinal dolan is a bad guy I really don’t have a negative opinion of Cardinal Dolan. I really don’t.

[00:03:54] And I want to give him the benefit of the doubt here. Statements that he makes in this video, statements like these, are usually not carefully calculated. They’re often impromptu. They’re unscripted. Some social media manager comes in and says, Hey Cardinal, have you got some time for me? You know, just do a quick video, you know, on something addressing the Muslims and wishing them a happy, holy, healthy season of Ramadan, whatever.

[00:04:17] And the Cardinal’s Alright, sure, let’s do it. How about 12 o’clock? And then they get together and they record it, and this just comes off the top of his head. They come from the upper surface of someone’s brain, not from the deeper, calculative regions of [00:04:30] a theological mind. By the nature, by nature of these videos, They won’t be very deep or well thought through at all, because they’re not intended to be.

[00:04:40] But we, on the receiving end of it, we assume that they’re scripted or they’re thought out or thought through. We assume that we should take this message seriously, even though that’s not what it is by its nature. It’s not intended to be taken that seriously. My point is, you really can’t know, in videos like these, how serious we’re supposed to take them.

[00:05:02] But I can tell you generally these videos are slapped together. It’s a 45 second video. We on the receiving end, though, we’re receiving it from a position of seriousness. We’re taking seriously what we’re hearing here. Probably wasn’t meant to be taken as deeply seriously as we’re taking it. But it should have been taken seriously by the people behind the video.

‘Islamics’ are not Brethren

[00:05:23] CA: They should have taken this a lot more seriously. Because this video is really bad evangelization, and it’s bad politics. Let’s roll it. Monday, March 11th, folks. Cardinal Timothy Dolan here. Blessings and graces to our Islamic neighbors and brothers and sisters. I can get down with the Islamic neighbors part.

[00:05:43] In fact, I think I have Islamic neighbors. But once you say Islamic, it becomes a matter of religion. And then we have to ask the question, are they baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity? If they’re not, then they are not our brothers and sisters. Are they our brothers and sisters of the human order?

[00:05:59] Of [00:06:00] course! Of course they are! But once you say Islamic, you’re no longer talking about the human order, you’re talking about the religious order. 

Ramadan, Islamic Lent?

[00:06:07] CA: So that’s problem number one. Let’s get to problem number two. Go! Because their holy season of Ramadan, Ramadan begins today. I love how he’s channeling Donald Trump here.

[00:06:17] Their holy season of Ramadan, Ramadan begins today. It sounds like something Donald Trump would Ramadan. Ramadan begins today. It’s a lot like their version of Lent. Which we’re going through now. It is not like their version of Lent. Ramadan is not Islamic Lent. Ramadan is not Islamic Lent. If anything, Ramadan is Islamic Rosh Hashanah.

[00:06:44] Because Ramadan, the penitential season for Muslims, continues. Is more similar, much more similar, to the penitential season of the Jews, which I think is Rosh Hashanah. Or it culminates to Rosh Hashanah. I don’t know, I’m not a Jew and I’m not a Muslim. Anyway. It’s more similar to the Jews season of penance.

[00:07:04] Because the Jews and the Muslims are petitioning God directly. They don’t have Jesus Christ, the mediator between God and man. They don’t have Jesus Christ at the center. For Catholics, for Christians, Jesus Christ is at the center. He is the source and the fountain of mercy. The only reason why there is mercy available for man is because of the blood of Jesus Christ.

[00:07:29] [00:07:30] There is only mercy for mankind because of the shedding of the blood of Christ. And you have to you have to unite yourself to that sacrifice. The main way you do that is by believing in Jesus Christ as the Son of God, the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. The Jews today do not do that.

[00:07:49] The Muslims do not do that. Neither of them have Jesus Christ at the center or in the middle. Neither of them do. Their practices are different. Their belief is different. I mean, from us. So to say that Ramadan is like our season of Lent, I’m sorry, that’s just crazy. The Cardinal is not giving a theological lecture or a lecture on Islamic jurisprudence or Islamic, if you can call it, theology.

[00:08:17] He’s trying to explain to average people that Ramadan is a season of penance, sort of like how Lent is ours. I think that’s all he was trying to do with that statement, but damn, was that the worst way to do that? By equalizing our two religions. When they aren’t equal. There is no parity. Our Islamic brothers and sisters Again, our Islamic brothers and sisters, enough said about that, continue!

[00:08:43] As our our Islamic brothers and sisters take very seriously fasting. Acts of sacrifice and self denial and penance, deeper prayer. Boy, they take that very seriously during this month of Ramadan. They’re a good example. I’m going to let this finish [00:09:00] because what I want to comment on is the big picture of this portion of the video.

Are Muslims an Example for Catholics

[00:09:04] CA: They’re a good example to us as we’re on our Lenten journey. To kind of be in solidarity with our Islamic brothers and sisters. They’re a good example to us as we’re on our Lenten journey. What I think the Cardinal is trying to do here is he’s trying to say, Look how seriously the Muslims take their faith.

[00:09:20] We should do likewise.

[00:09:26] I think that’s what he’s trying to Listen, I think that’s what he’s trying to do. He does it very poorly here. I have to get Move this forward. So I’m going to make a closing statement about this. I wrote a long response a long comment to this video. I will copy it and paste it in this episode’s On Demand page.

[00:09:49] And you can read the substance of everything I wanted to say about this video. But I will say this one last statement in closing because I really have to move forward. Very heavy show today. Penance, fasting, prayer, self denial, The Muslims take this very seriously. You know where they got all of that from?

[00:10:05] Us. They got all of that from us. Because we were the example for them. Not the example. Muhammad basically stole half of his religion from us and the other half from the Jews. Or maybe less than half. And then he filled in the blanks on his own. He made some stuff up. We were the example. We were the example.

[00:10:27] Probably, I guess, the Jews too. The point I’m trying [00:10:30] to make is everything the cardinal outlines here about what’s so admirable about how Muslims practice their faith during the holy season of Ramadan. We do all of those things too, but we’re not compelled by law to do them. So when we do them, it’s actually more meaningful because we’re doing it by the force of our own wills.

[00:10:52] Not by the force of being compelled by law to do it. To lend a voice to what I think he’s trying to say, we really should take our faith more seriously. We should take Lenten sacrifices more seriously. I should too. I don’t take them seriously enough. If the, if Cardinal Dolan or any other bishop or cardinal wants to exhort Catholics to take their faith more seriously, Just come out and say that.

[00:11:18] We don’t need pandering to other religions to make the point. In fact, By doing that, you, my dear Cardinal, are not taking the faith very seriously. You are not taking Catholics very seriously. If you think this is what you have to do to get Catholics to take their faith more seriously, my dear bishops, priests, and cardinals, Hear me when I tell you this, Catholics can take it.

Take Catholiism Seriously

[00:11:43] CA: We can take it. Just get in front of a camera and just say, guys take this more seriously. Take this more seriously. You know, the church only requires you to fast and abstain on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. You only have to abstain from meat [00:12:00] on Fridays but try to go above and beyond.

[00:12:03] Take this seriously. Self denial. Take self denial seriously during this Lent, because the Catholic faith is a beautiful thing. It’s a beautiful thing, and it’s even more beautiful in its depths. Not the depths of what it is on paper, but the depths of what it is in the lived experience. A deep and powerful beauty.

[00:12:25] But you will never find it, my brothers and sisters, if you aren’t going deep to get it. There you go. Catholics can take it. Just get in front of a camera and say something like that. I’m just so damn tired. You know? It’s hard to get a priest in front of a microphone, believe me, very hard to get a priest who feels comfortable getting in front of a microphone in a way that’s, you know, it goes out on the internet and it’s recorded and all this stuff.

[00:12:50] But I guess there are some priests who have no trouble getting in front of a camera to pander to Muslims in some strange, passive aggressive way of exhorting Catholics to deeper holiness. Why don’t you just exhort Catholics to deeper holiness? Is that too brainy? Okay, then simplify it. Simplify it. But dammit, get in front of a camera or a microphone and just tell the truth.

[00:13:18] Because your people are lost. They are lost. They are lost. And they will not be found if the shepherd is not going out to find them. 

Strickland and Communion in the Hands

[00:13:29] CA: [00:13:30] Now in that case, in my opinion, Cardinal Dolan was erring a little to the left.

[00:13:34] But it’s also possible to err a little to the right. Having said that, let’s talk about Bishop Strickland and communion in the hand. My spidey senses are telling me that the hairs on the back of your neck are Have just started to stand up, but don’t tune me out. I happen to be a fan of Bishop Strickland I’m not like a super fan like he seems to have You know in the Catholic sphere They’re just folks that I like and folks that I don’t care for I’m not really as I can’t think of anyone In the Catholic world that I’m just like a super fan about, when I say heirs to the right, I’m not saying he heirs in teaching.

[00:14:17] I’m not saying he’s saying something erroneous, he’s saying something contrary to doctrine or tradition or anything like that. I’m saying that there is also an error of attitude that a Catholic can be guilty of, an error of attitude, right? And that’s what I think I observed a little bit. In this post by Bishop Strickland, that he sent up to X the other day, it goes like this.

[00:14:42] We must return to this. And what’s the this? He quotes the following. Quote, Out of reverence for this sacrament, nothing touches it. Nothing touches it but that which is consecrated, since the corporal and chalice are consecrated, and likewise the [00:15:00] hands of the priest, to touch this sacrament.

[00:15:02] Therefore, it is not lawful for anyone else to touch it. Quote, so I’m a communion on the tongue kind of guy. My wife, my kids, same thing. We receive on our, on, on our tongues. And I happen to kneel down also when I receive Communion. That’s a personal devotion. I do believe everyone should be receiving on the tongue, but not for the reasons that that some people state.

[00:15:27] I have known and observed people receive on their tongue with Zero reverence, and I have known and observed people receiving in their hands with tremendous reverence. For me, it is a question of reverence. I receive on the tongue, and I suggest everyone does, because it’s a more reverent way of receiving the body of Christ. Now, reverence isn’t always the body. Reverence starts in the heart, okay? But, what we do with our bodies can affect our hearts. You know what I mean? I think it’s a more reverent way to, and I can enumerate the reasons, but I think it’s irrelevant.

[00:16:01] It’s, for numerous reasons, it’s a more reverent way to receive Holy Communion. But I don’t tell people that receiving in the hands is wrong, because the church doesn’t say that. And I don’t ever try to be holier than the church. What Bishop Strickland provided here in his tweet was written by Thomas Aquinas in the I mean, he quotes it as it is.

[00:16:26] I’ll just read a little bit to you. The dispensing of Christ’s body [00:16:30] belongs to the priest for three reasons. First, because, as was said above, he consecrates as the person of Christ. In other words, what he’s saying is, Christ consecrated his own body at the Last Supper, and then he administered it to the apostles.

[00:16:48] So the priest is doing that too. But, where, the disconnect that I’m seeing is the Apostles at the Last Supper were not priests, and yet they touched the body of Christ, and they weren’t priests yet. They self communicated and they weren’t priests yet. Anyway, who am I to go up against Thomas Aquinas, right?

[00:17:11] But, the issue I have with this is Thomas Aquinas is offering commentary in the Summa based on what I believe was current Catholic law. He’s making this a matter of law. He’s not making this a matter of sin. He’s making it a matter of law. And this is how he demonstrates the law. This is why he says The law should be followed.

[00:17:34] Okay, but there was a time in chur hundreds of years in the church when that law did not exist and Catholics always self communicated. Who was it, St. Cyril of Alexandria, I think, is one of many references of people who spoke about how we receive communion. And the way he describes receiving communion is how we receive it today, including reception in the hand.

[00:17:56] At the time that Thomas Aquinas wrote this, that was the law in the [00:18:00] church. Today it is not. Because the church, not Thomas Aquinas, the church is the legislature of the law. The church is, the magisterium is, and what the magisterium says is law, is. And when the law changes, it be then the law becomes something else.

[00:18:17] I don’t like this argument that, because the priest’s hands and I’ve heard modern priests say this, and listen, I don’t want to sound mean, but to me it sounds stupid. Because your hands aren’t consecrated. You should not touch the Eucharist. My tongue isn’t consecrated either. Neither is my stomach, for that matter.

[00:18:36] Now, the church continues, and I agree with this, continues to say reception on the tongue is the normal, preferred, ordinary way of receiving communion. The church still says this. Unfortunately, it doesn’t make its way down to the people, but it ought to. And my friends, I’ve been receiving on my tongue, on my knees, it’s gotta be at least 25 years.

[00:18:57] This is not a new thing for me. You don’t have to make the argument to me, but if you’re going to make the argument by saying St. Thomas Aquinas said, my brothers and sisters, you’re going to lose the argument because he’s not the Magisterium, and the Magisterium has authority over the law of the Church, and the Magisterium can change the law in the Church.

[00:19:17] We should all go back to communion on the tongue. Okay, I’m with you, but this is a sorry argument to make for that cause. Sorry argument to make.

Pope on Same-Sex Civil Unions?

[00:19:29] CA: Is [00:19:30] the Pope endorsing Same sex civil unions. Is he an advocate for equal rights, including the right to adopt children? This really, I don’t, I wouldn’t say it blew up on Twitter. If it did, I missed it, but it definitely popped up. Talking about that right now. I just did. I’ve been doing a whole lot of research on this, a whole lot of tweeting on this.

[00:19:53] And to my surprise, I’m going to make this actual, it’s going to be heavy, but I’m not going to make it as, as heavy as they could. This popped up on Twitter. There’s going to be a documentary released March 19th on the Holy Father. And Vatican News is reporting the following statement by the Holy Father in that documentary, Vatican News, on homosexuality and civil unions.

[00:20:17] While homosexual marriage remains impossible, the Pope said, This is not the case for civil unions because, quote, here’s the quote, here’s what he said, quote, it is right that these people who live the gift of love can have legal coverage like everyone else, end quote. I’m going to try and boil this down to a few categories.

Not a Church Issue

[00:20:42] CA: First, this is not an ecclesiastical issue. This is not a church issue. This is not a sacramental issue. And the Pope has already said this. Marriage is between a man and a woman. He has said it numerous times. And that will never change in the church. He’s [00:21:00] even said that. We cannot marry same sex couples.

[00:21:04] Period. And we don’t do civil unions. We don’t marry you outside of a sacramental setting. So we don’t do civil unions. Civil unions, civil marriages, those happen in the civil, in, in the civic order, not the ecclesial order, right? That’s not a sacrament. So that’s going to happen in court, or it’s going to happen through, in some places, a justice of the peace can marry you I don’t know.

[00:21:27] You have to go and get a license and all this stuff. So this is not an issue that really affects us. Not directly, not in a direct way. That’s the first thing to point out. Second thing to point out is gay marriage and civil unions. Gay marriage and civil unions is already legal in a lot of places.

[00:21:50] So whether the Pope endorses this or not is irrelevant, because the Pope has no say over what laws get passed. So it’s kind of irrelevant. Now, quote, It is right that these people who live the gift of love can have legal coverage like everyone else. That’s all he, that’s all that we’re getting. From that quote, people have been tweeting and otherwise posting that the Pope is supportive.

[00:22:20] From that quote, people are saying the Pope supports equal rights even for gay people? From that quote, [00:22:30] certain Catholics are saying things like, Real Popes talk about marriage, not civil unions. That’s a Catholic communicator. That’s a Catholic communicator, saying this to God knows how many thousands of people.

[00:22:43] Real popes don’t talk like that. Fact of the matter is, and for those who don’t know me, I don’t blindly defend anybody. Anybody. I’m not anti Pope Francis, and I’m not a superfan either. Once Benedict XVI died, I have not been a superfan of anybody. Anybody. When Pope Francis is wrong, I will be the first to say it, or I’ll be the first to say nothing.

[00:23:10] Thank you for watching. Sometimes you don’t always have to say, you know, a thing that you want to say. But I won’t blindly defend him when he’s wrong. And if he’s really wrong about something that really matters, I’m in there. I’m right in there, saying that he’s wrong. If somebody says something that’s right, it doesn’t matter who they are.

[00:23:26] They could be Father James Martin. And this has happened. Where he said something that was right, even solid, believe it or not, on rare occasion, it happens. And I have backed him up. 90 percent of the time he’s wrong. Needless to say, he’s blocked me on Twitter. Anyway, so I’m not some blind defender. I’m coming at this from the perspective of truth, because truth is my first and really only passion.

[00:23:48] Truth is my only passion. I’m not some blind defender of Pope Francis. That having been said, it is an awful, vicious, literally vicious, it comes from vice, thing to [00:24:00] say. When you say real popes, talk about marriage and family, not civil unions. Vicious. Because if you really believe that, and you’re a Catholic communicator, you better man up and keep that nonsense to yourself.

[00:24:14] And not hose everybody down with it. And the fact of the matter is, as I said, the pope has come out in defense of marriage, being between a man and a woman. He’s come out in support of family. He has said more than once that children have a right to a mother and a father, two parents, of opposite sexes, or genders, I don’t remember which word he used.

[00:24:35] He’s been very specific, very direct on that. So let’s get that squared away. Now, on the question of civil unions. First, we don’t know exactly what that means since that already exists. Right? He’s not commenting on something that’s new. And we don’t really know the nature of the comment anyway.

[00:24:56] Because we don’t know what was asked of him. All we have is Vatican News saying, while homosexual marriage remains impossible we already knew that, genius. Thank you. We knew that one. Pope Francis said quote, this is what he said, It is right that these people who live the gift of love can have legal coverage like everyone else. 

Pope’s ‘Record’ on Civil Unions

[00:25:14] CA: Now, let me say this, has been vague about his support for civil unions to my knowledge. He’s been directly asked and has sidestepped the question. There have been a few times where being directly asked about civil [00:25:30] unions, His response was, marriage is between a man and a woman.

[00:25:34] It’s an answer and a non answer. Doesn’t tell us much about where he stands. He did support civil unions when he was Archbishop of Buenos Aires. That may come as a surprise to some of you. But, what you will not get from some Catholic commentators and communicators in the blogosphere, and I guess the podcast o phere, what you will not get is this detail.

[00:25:58] I don’t know what the nature of his support was. I know that it wasn’t his idea. I don’t know if he was a big, vocal advocate for it or proponent of it. But he preferred it, I can say that, he preferred civil unions as a means of defending marriage. Because there was a bill That was going to be voted on or passed or signed, whatever, legalizing gay marriage as a way of protect, as a way of preventing that or avoiding that.

[00:26:26] I don’t know, again, I don’t know what the nature of his support of it was. But I know that his, I’ll put it in quotes, support or his preference for civil unions was specifically, and he has said so, specifically to guard sacramental marriage. So that we weren’t calling marriage individuals that were homosexual as well as individuals that are heterosexual.

What are Civil Unions

[00:26:52] CA: So what is civil unions? What does this mean? What does he mean by coverage? By civil union, that might not mean a legal [00:27:00] marriage. That might mean a common law marriage. Civil unions can be a couple of different things. I don’t know what the Pope is addressing here, right? The Pope has said himself in the past, when pressured for his opinion on civil unions, he has said in the past, I’ll dig this up and find it, I know it’s out there someplace, he has said in the past that there are different kinds of civil unions.

[00:27:25] Each one has to be considered separately. In other words, again, there’s same sex civil unions, opposite sex civil unions. There are civil unions where there’s also a legal marriage. There are civil unions where it’s just common law marriage, quote unquote marriage, right? There are, there could be civil unions between friends who are not even romantically involved, but they just live together.

[00:27:47] They share assets and stuff, which sounds a little weird, but it does happen. Could that be a type of civil union? Maybe. We don’t know what civil union we’re talking about here. The article does not say. 

What is “Gift of Love”?

[00:28:00] CA: We don’t know what the Pope means by the gift of love. The article does not say. What does that mean, a gift of love?

[00:28:08] Those who share the gift of love. Two heterosexual friends can share the gift of love. Two heterosexual friends can share the gift of love. I have a friend, I’ve known him actually 40, 45 years. We’ve been friends since we were very little, since we were little boys. And I love him very much. We’re like brothers.

[00:28:27] I am absolutely not [00:28:30] romantically involved with him. There can be that connection, right? Of a fraternal love between two friends or a sororal love, I guess, between two female friends. Then, another way to live the gift of love could be between relatives, obviously, who are not romantically involved. Two sisters who, you know, moved into a house together, they bought the house together, and they, you know, they’re spinsters, or they’re both widows. I don’t know, but they live the gift of love. But what is the Pope saying by living the gift of love? We don’t know because he doesn’t say. It could mean a million different things. 

What is “Legal Coverage”?

[00:29:06] CA: What does he mean by have legal coverage like everyone else? Health coverage? Because he’s not talking about, you know, quote unquote rights per se.

[00:29:15] He’s not saying all rights. This sounds very specific, legal coverage like everyone else. What kind of legal coverage are you talking about? It does not say. Should people in civil unions, whether they’re gay or straight, should people in civil unions, and I want to say also this Vatican News article, the paragraph says homosexuality and civil unions, But we don’t know if the, if what is being treated here is specifically a question about gay civil unions.

[00:29:46] What the Pope is saying here, he might have been saying about civil unions in a general sense, more with straight couples in mind. We don’t know, the article does not say. So what I have said on Twitter and Facebook is what I’m [00:30:00] going to say here in front of the microphone. We get nothing from this quote, except for a big fat pile of questions.

[00:30:07] Yet everybody has something to say about it. Fine. Anyway, what kind of legal coverage is he talking about? If you have a heterosexual couple in a stable relationship for, I don’t know, 10 years, 15 years, 20 years, and one of them, I don’t know, one of them works for the state and he gets health coverage, really good health coverage, should his quote unquote common law quote unquote wife, should his common law wife, or whatever they’re called in civil unions, should she get those medical benefits?

[00:30:41] I don’t, I really don’t see why not. What do you think? Drop a comment and let me know because I actually do read all the comments. Everyone tells you I read every comment. I read every comment. I actually do read mine. I can tell you they don’t read theirs. They’re just telling you I read every comment so that you feel confident enough to comment and boost their engagement.

[00:31:02] I actually read my comments. So if you think I’m wrong, please comment because I am listening with an open mind. I don’t mind being corrected. If I’m wrong, I really don’t. Should this heterosexual couple, should one partner benefit from the other partner’s medical coverage? I think so. Should one partner be able to visit the other partner in the hospital when they have a family only rule in place?

[00:31:25] I think so. And this is like a lady speaking, I’ve been living with this man [00:31:30] for 15 years. We’re not legally married, but effectively, he’s my husband, and he’s dying, and I want to spe I want to spend 24 hours a day with him by his bedside. While I still have some time left with him.

[00:31:44] Nope, sorry, family only. I mean, does anybody think there’s justice there? Should she be able to go and visit this man? And sit with him all day and all night? As he is dying in that hospital bed? I think so. Is that the kind of coverage the Pope is talking about? I suspect it is. I suspect it is. But the bottom line is we get very little from this.

Summing it all up

[00:32:11] CA: We do have some things that we can look back to on the Pope’s comments on the question of civil unions. Largely he’s been silent on that. Choosing instead to affirm and reaffirm marriage as being between a man and a woman married sacramentally in the church. Numerous times. I mean, that’s an easy one.

[00:32:32] That’s an easy one to dig up. So we know that, but he has sidestepped the question a little bit. At least on one occasion when asked about civil unions, he very astutely, he said, there are many kinds of civil unions. Which one are we talking about? Each one is different in kind and nature or different in character.

[00:32:50] And we can’t address them all uniformly. We have to address each one separately, uniquely. He’s absolutely right. [00:33:00] He’s absolutely right. And then once we cross that bridge where we’ve established, okay, let’s just say, just pretend there’s five different kinds of civil unions, and we’re discussing each of them separately and uniquely.

[00:33:13] Okay, fine. Now, what rights are we talking about? Should Johnny and Sally have a right to adopt? I don’t like that word but whatever. Should they be legally permitted to adopt? Should Harry and Thomas, who are in a civil marriage, should they have a right to adopt? I don’t think they, I don’t think those two scenarios invite the same quote unquote rights.

[00:33:39] And I think the Pope would agree with me because the Pope has said more than once that children have a right to a mother and a father. So what other rights are we to, or what other rights or privileges, maybe a better word, are we talking about? Survival, survivor benefits? Certain types of insurance benefits or tax benefits?

[00:33:55] It all has to be treated separately and uniquely. It all has to be treated separately and uniquely. Yet everyone is treating this as though the Pope just endorsed same sex marriage. From the Pope’s quote, we don’t know what kind of relationships he’s talking about. We just know that they’re talking about civil unions.

[00:34:12] We don’t know what kind of rights or privileges we’re talking about because all he says is legal coverage like everyone else. We know the Pope has been supportive. I won’t say he, it was his idea or that he was an advocate, but he was supportive of civil unions in Argentina in defense of sacramental marriage or in [00:34:30] defense of keeping marriage between one man and one woman.

[00:34:33] We know that happened, but we know that support wasn’t about advocating for secular civil unions, whether it’s heterosexual or not. It wasn’t about advocating for secular civil unions. It was about protecting sacramental marriage. You understand? It wasn’t about advocacy for secular, for something secular.

[00:34:52] It was about protecting something that’s true. Marriages between a man and a woman. Might not have even been specifically sacramental marriage he was protecting, but marriage between a man and a woman, even in the secular space. It was about protecting something that is true. Not advocating for something that is false.

We All Know People in These Situations

[00:35:12] CA: The reality of it is, we all know people who are in some kind of civil union. A man and a woman living together for 30 years, like I know, I’m not going to name names. I know one man and a woman who’ve been living together, oh man it’s got to be 30 years. It’s got to be 30 years. And you want to talk about one nut job, shacking up with another nut job.

[00:35:37] They’re just, I guess they, they are oddly made for each other. Yeah. But they have never gotten married. They have never gotten married. He calls her his wife, she calls him her husband, but they have never gotten married. We all know friends and family who have, who are in situations like these, right? Where they’re living together for a long period of time but not married.

[00:35:59] Not [00:36:00] legally married. And then we know some who are legally married but not sacramentally married. I’m not saying it’s a good thing, I’m saying that it’s a thing that happens. I’m not saying that they, you know, they’re definitely going to hell. And I’m not saying that they’re probably going to heaven either.

[00:36:15] What I’m trying to say is, this is a very sensitive topic. For me, as the podcaster, and for people who are hearing it. And I don’t want, I don’t want it to be insensitive. Life happens, sometimes in ways that are not good. Sometimes in ways that we don’t choose, and sometimes in ways that we do choose, but we choose because we get caught up in the moment.

[00:36:39] Or we choose because we think it’s a good thing, we continue to think it’s a good thing, and we fail to see why the church would say that is not a thing to do. You shouldn’t do it, marriage for instance, that way. But I just wanted to put that out there. It’s a sensitive issue. It’s a sensitive topic. I’m not being insensitive saying what I’ve said. We all have friends and family in these situations. Pray for all people to find and follow the truth.

[00:37:07] I pray that all people who I know and love find and follow the truth. I pray that I find and follow the truth.,

[00:37:15] pray for yourselves to know and follow the truth. To seek, find, and follow the truth. And pray for the same for others in your life. Okay? 

[00:37:23] . If you have any questions about something I’ve said, you think I might have left something out, you think I didn’t give something the level of treatment or the depth [00:37:30] of treatment that you feel it deserves, you can let me know.

[00:37:33] I’m not hard to find. Follow me on x at forthequeenbvm. Do me a favor also, follow the show’s On x cath experience c a t h experience because catholic experience does not fit cath experience on x for the queen bvm On x for other socials and stuff.

[00:37:56] Check out my bio my social media link bio at bio. 2 slash catholic You Adventurer, and you’ll also find you’ll find the podcast at LNK. TO slash Catholic Experience. Think I left something out? You don’t have to reach too far to grab ahold of my throat. Hit me up on socials, man. I’m right there. But be kind, please.

[00:38:22] We’re brethren. Okay, please. Stop talking to me like Stop talking to me like you want to slap me in the face. Alright, be kind. I’m kind to you, be kind to me. All right, that’s about going to do it. Mr. DJ, did I forget anything? No, you didn’t. Oh, yes, I did. Sign up for my newsletter. Go to my website, castadventure.

[00:38:40] com. Sign up for my newsletter. I guess that’s it. Let me get out of here. Damn, so that’s about a 40 minute recording, and paired with the first segment. Man, that’s still about an hour’s show. I’m trying to keep these things short, folks. It’s real hard. This has been [00:39:00] Another episode of the Catholic experience.

[00:39:02] I’ve been your host, the Catholic adventurer. Yeah. Follow me on exit for the queen BVM. Follow the show’s feed on Twitter at path experience, signing out of here. Pray for me and my family. God bless you. God be with you. All my friends.

Analyzing the Pope’s statements on civil unions and same-sex couples.  Also responding to Cardinal Dolan’s message to “our Islamic brothers and sisters” and a reaction to a post on š¯•¸ by Bishop Strickland regarding communion on the tongue.

Reacting to a video message by Cardinal Timothy Dolan addressing our“Islamic brothers and sisters” It’s a message of good intent, but terrible execution, and I explain why it errs to the left. Following that, I then explain why, in my opinion, a post by Bishop Joseph Strickland errs to the right in a message about communion on the tongue. Don’t worry, it’s not doctrinal error. As I explain in the episode, the Dolan video, and Strickland’s post err in attitude.

Then I discuss the controversy sparked by a completely empty quote by Pope Francis about civil unions. (“it is right that these people who live the gift of love can have legal coverage like everyone else.”) It’s a quote that provides nothing but a bag of questions, and yet the Catholic social-sphere have used it as material to put words in the Holy Father’s mouth. I respond to that, and I explain his record on civil unions, what he has and hasn’t said, reaching back to his time as Archbishop of Buenos Aires to assess and analyze his record, and what he may have meant in that quote


  • Cardinal Dolan, and Catholic Ramadan? – 2:32
  • ‘Islamics’ are not Brethren – 5:23
  • Ramadan, Islamic Lent? – 6:07
  • Islamics’ are not Brethren – 9:04
  • Take Catholicism Seriously – 11:43
  • Strickland and Communion in the Hands – 13:29
  • Pope on Same-Sex Civil Unions, Not a Church Issue – 19:29
  • Pope’s ‘Record’ on Civil Unions – 25:52
  • What is ‘Gift of Love’? – 28:00
  • What is ‘Legal Coverage’? – 29:06
  • Summing it all up – 32:11

Comment/Response to Cardinal Dolan

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