At a two-week meeting of Catholic leaders in Rome, the focus was on faith and family values. However, at the end of the synod, there was no consensus reached among bishops on the idea of accepting non-traditional families or same sex-marriage. A priest, Fox News religion contributor, Father Jonathan Morris, author of The Way To Serenity, suggested that baptizing children of gay married couples would be a very delicate experience because parents would be raising their kids in sin, based on current doctrines of the Catholic Church.
The Synod of Bishops, which commenced on October 6 in Rome, faced a litany of lingering issues that required open discussion to arrive at consensus among various parishes. Pope Francis resided over the council of over 200 church leaders who deliberated over adapting to the modern family with regard to cohabitation, same-sex unions, birth control and divorce, among other topics.
Perhaps, the issue that received the largest scrutiny was how church leaders approach gay parishioners with children who wish them to be baptized. Fox News' Father Jonathan Morris, who was present at the gathering of Catholic bishops, talked about the impact the final draft on gays and lesbians has on the sacraments of baptism among church priests.
Father Morris pointed out the synod revealed a division among progressive and conservative clerics, and said even the pope is challenged with finding a medium between LGBT marital views and God's prescription for marriage between a man and woman.
Bishops voted against a progressive proposal to officially "accept and value" lesbians and gays. In the end, bishops included language that said homosexuals should not be discriminated against in any manner. The Fox New priest weighed in.
"The midterm report made is sound like, by welcoming, we're changing doctrine. And what does that mean to welcome? Should we welcome? Of course, we should welcome everyone.And on the final language, The Fox priest said bishops are going to have to figure out how to strike a balance between Biblical scripture and denouncing bias, citing a Crooks and Liars report.
"I always look at my church when there's a baby crying, and people are looking back, 'Oh, get your baby in order.' The baby is the only innocent voice in this whole church. We are all sinners. Of course, we should find creative ways to welcome, and not change the Bible. You know, we actually believe in the Bible."
"I mean real practical situation; a gay couple comes in with their child to baptize the child, for example. Should the child be baptized? Of course, but every couple, gays, straight...saying we're gonna baptize the child is saying we're going to raise them in the Catholic faith. So, as a priest, as a minister, how do you deal with that, what does it exactly mean?
"Homosexuals have gifts and qualities to offer to the Christian community... Are our communities capable of this, accepting and valuing their sexual orientation, without compromising Catholic doctrine on the family and matrimony? The Church affirms that unions between people of the same-sex cannot be considered on the same level as marriage between man and woman," read the first draft at the synod.In summary, the status quo among Catholic bishops and the Pope is that gays and lesbians should be accepted with respect and sensitivity, but the institution of marriage with respect to scripture should be upheld. Read the full text of the family synod's updated mid-term report.
"No grounds whatsoever exist for assimilating or drawing analogies, however remote, between homosexual unions and God's design for matrimony and the family. Any sign of unjust discrimination in their regard is to be avoided," read the final draft.
[Image via: The Message]