Pope Francis and transsexuals. Christian Spaemann’s objections
Google translation of Papa Francesco e i transessuali. Le obiezioni di Spaemann jr
Settimo Cielo (Seventh Heaven)
by Sandro Magister
October 12th 2016
In a previous post on October 3, Seventh Heaven published as received, as out of the mouth of Pope Francis, the story he did on the plane, the flight from Azerbaijan to return to Rome, the story of a transsexual Spanish to whom he had gave a warm audience in the Vatican together with “his bride”.
The story told by the Pope does not entirely coincide with that announced by the same transsexual, Diego Neria Lejarraga, in the days of his audience at the Vatican, on 24 January 2015. In the papal rewrite some details are pushed to the edge of caricature, in order to advocate not only the full reception into the Church of people with a similar story, but also, if “married”, to give them absolution and communion, in fact legitimizing their cohabitation.
With this, Pope Francis has made an exception with respect to the current discipline of the Church, which does not allow transsexuals to celebrate a sacramental marriage, according to confirmed by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith with a letter to the German bishops of 28 May 1991 and a ” fact ” for the congregation for religious in 2000, as well as from the Italian Bishops’ conference with a notification of 21 January 2003.
Almost no one, in reporting the words of the Pope, found this tear, nor criticized.
But it has not gone unnoticed to the German Christian Spaemann, 59, a psychiatrist by profession but also with a solid theological formation, which sent us his commentary.
His father, Robert Spaemann, one of the greatest living philosophers Catholics, a contemporary and friend of Joseph Ratzinger, Seventh Heaven was released on April 28 and June 17 two memorable slating of “laetitia Amoris”.
Christian Spaemann also criticized the post-synodal exhortation on Kath.net of 22 July 2016:
NOTES INTO ALLEGATIONS OF POPE FRANCIS ON TRANSSEXUAL
During his return flight from Azerbaijan, October 2, 2016, among many topics, Pope Francis touched the pastoral approach to transsexuals.
In doing so, he began with the story of a girl who, as a child, he felt like a boy. After her mother’s death, “he” had done work and then you would be married and had written and asked potergli to visit “with his bride.” “Him,” the Pope quote verbatim, “it was her, but it’s him.”
The pope continued telling of the old priest of the neighborhood where “he” lived, that when he met him, he insisted inviting him to confession and communion.
“Life is life and the things you have to take as they come,” so the Pope.
Although this interview with Francis of journalists is not an anthropological treatise, but concerns of pastoral considerations, remain, however, open some essential questions, just about the ministry. There are some comments then allowed.
Transsexuality involves severe pain, especially for those directly involved, but also for their relatives, and especially for their children. It is a suffering that with hormonal or surgical measures can only be mitigated. There are studies showing that, even after the sex change operations, transsexuals are exposed to increasing mental disorders, suicide attempts and actual suicide rate is twenty times higher than normal. Recurs often the desire of operations restore the previous physical condition.
The phenomenon of transsexuality is widely exploited by activists of the “gender” for their political and social purposes, with a relativization of the natural sexual dichotomy (basically nonsense, since precisely transsexuals, with their strong desire to belong to another sex, they confirm the existence of such sexual dichotomy).
Meanwhile there has gone so far as to consider paramount for sex definition of the subjective perception of themselves and speak euphemistically, of operations “for sexual adjustment.” It scares the haste with which these days is pushing young people in puberty-type surgical interventions. There’s really nothing to boast about the current state of medical and psychological science, when it acts with hormones and scalpel to remove a deep identity disorder. Complex surgical operations and perpetual intake of hormones will not be able to produce if not a kind of “fake sexuality”, the artificial sexuality. A transsexual will always be a woman who has been operated as a man and a transsexual will always remain a man who was operated as a woman. For that alone, the choice of terms by the pope should have been more cautious.
The condition of pain of people who feel transsexual, to the point of inducing suicidal tendencies, can be so great that, in the absence of alternatives, even on the part of the Church you can hardly refuse entirely of surgical and hormonal measures to reduce this suffering, once they have exhausted all other possibilities.
Here dell’automutilazione prohibition must be assessed in a prudent assessment of costs and benefits, as a last “resort.”
Today should also be obvious to accompany these people on the pastoral level, turn to them in the way they wish and integrate them into the life of the Church.
Finally, the human soul has a chance to speak directly to God, regardless of their sexual sensitivity and characterization. Support and encourage this relationship with God is the first task of the ministry. In this you can not find a specific obstacle to access to the sacraments of confession and communion, although, of course, we need a specific spiritual direction, in order to entrust to God’s mercy sexual that identity, not to pre-established nature and coveted psychologically, rather than seize it as a sort of self-determination, as well as propagates today. It is, moreover, also to accept the fact that in the parish registers of baptisms can not be a change in the indication of their sexual status.
If, however, it comes for wedding transsexuals from them with what is considered “the other sex”, you must take it for certain that this is not a real marriage, in the strict sense, nor in the natural sense nor in the ecclesial sense.
As a result, as well as the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith had taken over in 2000 in a private Directive [leaked in 2003], a valid sacramental marriage is not possible in such cases.
Given that fact with regard to human sexuality in a Catholic perspective there are only two forms of life which correspond to the nature and dignity of the human person, namely sexuality lived within marriage between man and woman or abstinence, the Church has no power to legitimize a relationship of a sexual nature between transsexuals, without the precondition of continence, by the administration of the sacrament of confession and communion.
In line with the sacramental system of the Church (cfr. “Sacramentum Caritatis,” 29) also applies in this case the principle that you have to leave everything, in humility, to the mercy of God, without expecting to be able to have prejudiced by the administration the sacraments.