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Same-sex marriage not a major concern for Church, says German Cardinal Marx

July 17, 2017

Cardinal Reinhard Marx of Munich argues that Germany’s acceptance of same-sex marriage is not a defeat for Catholicism. The German cardinal said that the Church should be more concerned about a history of intolerance toward homosexuals.

In an interview with Augsberger Algemeine, Cardinal Marx—who is president of the German bishops’ conference as well as a member of the Council of Cardinals—said that the Catholic Church should “express our regret that we did nothing to oppose” the German law that, until 1994, allowed for prosecution of homosexuals.

As for the June 30 vote to recognize same-sex marriages, Cardinal Marx said that it was not a concern for the Church. Church teachings cannot be encoded into law in a secular state, he said. When asked whether the legal acceptance of same-sex marriage indicated a loss in Catholic influence, he replied that “we don’t simply mold our opinions into laws and thereby measure the Church’s influence.”

“In a secular society, the state must make laws that are valid for everyone,” the cardinal said. He argued that the state’s acceptance of homosexual unions will not affect the Church’s understanding of marriage.


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Show 8 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: balderdash - Jul. 19, 2017 5:38 PM ET USA

    Ho does one tolerate something without accepting it, or, eventully, promoting it as normal?

  • Posted by: Bveritas2322 - Jul. 19, 2017 3:04 AM ET USA

    What a stupid thing to say. As Gandhi said, "Any man who believes God's moral laws and a nation's secular laws can be separated doesn't know anything about either."

  • Posted by: R. Spanier (Catholic Canadian) - Jul. 18, 2017 7:12 PM ET USA

    "The present Considerations do not contain new doctrinal elements... In those situations where homosexual unions have been legally recognized or have been given the legal status and rights belonging to marriage, clear and emphatic opposition is a duty. One must refrain from any kind of formal cooperation in the enactment or application of such gravely unjust laws and, as far as possible, from material cooperation on the level of their application." (CDF 'Considerations' 2003 approved by JP II)

  • Posted by: rpp - Jul. 18, 2017 9:49 AM ET USA

    Laws prohibiting homosexual activity are just laws that make for a better and more harmonious society and encourage proper family life. Homosexual activity is inherently and intrinsically evil. Catholics MUST NEVER tolerate or attempt to coexist with evil. That in itself is a grave evil. Unrepentant homosexuals never wanted "tolerance", they want to corrupt and dominate, especially children. One merely has to look at the world today to see that is true.

  • Posted by: WBSM - Jul. 18, 2017 8:06 AM ET USA

    He should add islamophobia too. I am sorry but this guy is just nuts. No reason to take him seriously. I am deeply sorry for all those entrusted to his care.

  • Posted by: feedback - Jul. 18, 2017 1:01 AM ET USA

    It is the same as saying "salvation of souls is not a major concern for the Church." I admire and deeply respect Bishop Paprocki publishing guidelines for Catholics regarding same-sex "marriage." It was truly an act of pastoral care for souls in a time of need. All Bishops should follow.

  • Posted by: jackbene3651 - Jul. 17, 2017 9:59 PM ET USA

    Their effort to mainstream homosexuality is going to be a bit more difficult now that that orgy came to light. The list of gay or gay-friendly Cardinals and others close to the Pontiff keeps growing.

  • Posted by: Erusmas - Jul. 17, 2017 7:55 PM ET USA

    It is true that governments need not prosecute every violation of the moral law. Some may be tolerated because efforts to suppress particular evils may cause greater harm to the common good than the evil itself. But this is a prudential judgement. Churchmen may indeed counsel the sovereign to cease prosecuting a particular offense. But the Church should have no regrets about failing to oppose laws penalizing a crime that cries to heaven for vengeance.