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gay marriageA tongue-in-cheek advertisement depicting Pope Benedict XVI blessing the marriage of two gay men has
sparked controversy in New Zealand.

The signs were put on display last month in central Auckland and Wellington, according to the publication.

No comment so far from the real pontiff, who slammed same-sex marriage as an "attack" on the traditional
family in his annual Christmas address last month.


i will never understand how a lifelong celibate presumes to direct the personal lives of family-oriented people. the dalai lama (who is a similar lifelong religious celibate) freely admits that this is a topic upon which he has no direct insights.
What is the difference between a signpost "directing" people and what the Church does? A signpost doesn't compel people to go anywhere.
a signpost that doesn't know what it's talking about is typically taken down and replaced with a more usefully informative one.
An institution that has lasted for 2,000 years, has spread across the world, has had billions of followers, and has many, many extremely well-educated professors, must have something to offer by way of advice. Surely if it "doesn't know what it's talking about" who does?
this is called "appeal by referral to authority". folks used to think the world was flat, too; so what?

my husband is catholic, and is not in agreement with the pope on this point.

i live in a state which has had gender-neutral marriage for some years now, and i look to my friends and neighbors in their goodness and their love. they're the ones doing it; i think they are the ones who know of what they speak.

how many same-sex couples have you spoken with?
I haven't spoken to any murderers either, but I do not think what they do is morally right. By all means let two men love one another - we are all called to that - but redefining "marriage"?
what could possibly be immoral about using some word some particular way? it's not as if it's a curse word, and it takes advantage of the way the term is already used in law, so that new laws don't need to be written (for instance, the right to make medical decisions for one's spouse in an emergency).

also, comparing loving couples to murderers is irrelevant and insulting :/

I'm afraid that the church (Catholic or Protestant) doesn't have a monopoly on the word "marriage". Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs and Buddhists and people of no religion at all get married. People have been joined together in marriage before there was a Christian church. You only have to read the Old Testament to see that, not to mention all the other ancient cultures such as Egyptian, Roman, Greek etc.

Catholics have one particular definition of what they consider a marriage, but there is no reason why non-Catholics can't re-define marriage as they please. If Catholics don't want to conduct same-sex marriages in their churches, that's up to them, but as wyrmwwd says, whilst that will please the African churches, it will lose many European Catholics.
The Catholic Church is facing a huge dilemma right now. Membership in the U.S. & Europe is at an all-time low, while at the same time, it is growing in So. American and Africa. However, it is growing among very poor people. People in the poorer countries will tend to be socially more conservative. In order to serve those countries, the Pope must say things that are relevant to them. However, as the U.S. and Europe are becoming more and more tolerant of same-sex relationships, the Catholic Church begins to seem less and less relevant to us. lyonesse's comments are perfectly in line with how most people here think.

People think that organized religion all "comes from God", and it does, but it does so through the very practical. There is no point in HAVING an organized religion if no one goes to church.
"The Catholic Church is facing a huge dilemma right now."
- it must blow with the wind or die!
Yeah, kind of. Do you remember when the Pope visited the U.S. several years ago? It was, basically, a public appearance to promote the image of the Church here. You see, it used to be that there were all these churches, schools and hospitals run by the church and largely staffed by nuns and priests. Now, no one here wants to BE a nun or a priest, so they have started paying actual employees. That is VERY expensive. (Priests... and, especially nuns... work for VERY little money). The life of a nun or a priest seems a lot more attractive to someone already living in poverty in Africa. It's a huge deal within the church, but most people are completely unaware of it.