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Dear catholic.com visitors: This website from Catholic Answers, with all its many resources, is the world's largest source of explanations for Catholic beliefs and practices. A fully independent, lay-run, 501(c)(3) ministry that receives no funding from the institutional Church, we rely entirely on the generosity of everyday people like you to keep this website going with trustworthy , fresh, and relevant content. If everyone visiting this month gave just $1, catholic.com would be fully funded for an entire year. Do you find catholic.com helpful? Please make a gift today. SPECIAL PROMOTION FOR NEW MONTHLY DONATIONS! Thank you and God bless.

Could the Church ever allow homosexuals to marry?

Question:

I am a homosexual who wishes to obey the Church’s teachings on homosexuality, but I am not sure what they are. I know that the Church teaches homosexual acts are wrong, but it teaches that all sex outside of marriage is wrong--a teaching which I support. What if two homosexuals were married to each other? Would sex between them be legitimate, and could the Church ever change its position and allow homosexuals to marry?

Answer:

This is a sensitive area, and you are to be commended for your commitment to support and fulfill the Church’s teaching. The answer to both questions is no.

The reason homosexual acts are wrong is not simply that they take place outside of marriage, but that they are contrary to natural design. For various reasons, both inside and outside of their control, some people have desires that are not in accord with nature. When these desires are acted upon, the result is an unnatural and immoral act. Even if two homosexuals were “married,” they would still be having unnatural sex.

The Church cannot change its teaching on marriage, which is grounded in natural law. Under natural law a man can marry only whom he was designed to marry: a woman. He cannot validly marry another man any more than he could an animal or a plant. Any attempted marriage between a man and another man would be invalid by definition. It might be recognized by the state as a legitimate marriage, but it would not be so before God.

This is a difficult teaching to hear for one struggling with homosexual desires, but it is the truth. To get help, consider contacting Courage, a nationwide Catholic organization set up to help homosexuals lead chaste lives. Their Web address of  is: http://couragerc.net. Our prayers are with you.

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