German bishops criticize parliament’s approval of sodomarriage

German bishops criticize parliament’s approval of sodomarriage

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[Confetti flying as well as champagne and other corks popping in the Bundestag]

By Hannah Brockhaus

Berlin, Germany, Jun 30, 2017 / (CNA/EWTN News).- Archbishop Heiner Koch of Berlin expressed his regret Friday at the German parliament’s vote in favor of legalizing same-sex marriage, saying it had abandoned the fundamental characteristics of marriage.

“The fathers of the (German) constitution gave marriage such pride of place because they wanted to protect and strengthen those who, as a mother and father, want to give life to their children.”

“I regret the fact that the legislature has given up on essential aspects of the marriage concept in order to make the latter amenable to same-sex partnerships,” he said June 30.

Lawmakers in Germany’s parliament voted in favor of legalizing same-sex marriage in the country by changing the definition of marriage in their legal code to include two persons of the same sex.

In a statement reacting to the vote, Archbishop Koch, chairman of the commission for marriage and family of the German bishops’ conference, said he also regrets a loss in differentiation between different forms of partnership as a means to “stress the value of same-sex partnerships.”

Regarding different forms of relationship, “differentiation, however, is not discrimination,” he said.

“If the protection of relationships and the assumption of shared responsibility is now provided as a justification for the opening of marriage,” he continued, “then this means a substantial re-balancing of content and a dilution of the classic marriage concept.”

He went on to stress that the Church’s understanding of marriage and its sacramental nature have not changed with the law, and that Catholics must continue to present publicly the truth and goodness of the reality of marriage as being between one man and one woman.

“As the Catholic Church, we will now increasingly face the challenge of convincingly presenting the vitality of the Catholic understanding of marriage,” he said. “At the same time, I recall that the sacramental character of our marriage understanding remains unaffected by today’s decision in the Bundestag.”

The vote passed the lower house of Germany’s parliament 393 to 226, with four abstentions. The vote, which took place in a sudden and somewhat unexpected manner, was added to Friday’s agenda by the Social Democratic Party of Germany, the Greens, and The Left.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel herself voted against the redefinition, pointing to her belief in marriage as being between a man and a woman.

However, the chancellor paved the way for the vote to take place with the announcement Monday that she had changed her position on adoption by same-sex couples and would allow deputies of her party, the Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU), a free vote, so they could act according to their “conscience,” she said.

Several of those who voted in favor of the change in definition are members of the Central Committee of German Catholics.

The move was opposed by the Christian Social Union in Bavaria, Alternative for Germany (which holds no seats in the Bundestag), and some members of the CDU.

The session was the final before parliament’s summer recess and the country’s national elections in September.

Representatives of the Church in Germany, including the chairman of the German bishops’ conference, Cardinal Reinhard Marx of Munich and Freising, spoke out against the measure shortly before the vote.

“The German Bishops’ Conference emphasizes that marriage, not only from a Christian point of view, is the bond of life and love of woman and man as a principally lifelong connection with the fundamental openness to life.”

“We are of the opinion that the State must continue to protect and promote marriage in this form,” they stated.

Since 2001, it has been legal for same-sex couples in Germany to enter into civil unions, although now they will be allowed the legal protections of marriage, including the option to adopt children.

From here the legislation goes on to the upper house of Parliament for formal approval. It then requires the signature of President Frank-Walter Steinmeier to go into effect, which will likely take place before the end of 2017.

With this change, Germany joins more than 20 other countries that have legalized gay marriage over the last 16 years, including Ireland and the United States in 2015.

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2 comments on “German bishops criticize parliament’s approval of sodomarriage

  1. [Muzzies (like Catholics) should oppose sodomarriage? Well … not for “practical reasons” to advance their agenda]

    All of Germany’s Muslim MPs [regardless of party] vote in favor of sodomarriage

    JULY 2, 2017 BY ROBERT SPENCER

    “Merkel thinks marriage is sacred bond between men and woman. Most Germans and all Muslim MPs believe in equality. Who needs integration?”

    If Filipe Henriques really thinks that this is a sign that Muslims are integrating and accepting German values, he could be in for a rude surprise. Many Islamic groups in the West support same-sex marriage solely for tactical reasons: they know it will open the door to the legalization of polygamy. This is step toward the Islamization of society, not a step away from Sharia.

    All of Germany’s Muslim MPs voted in favour of sodomarriage,” by Greg Wilford, Independent, July 2, 2017:

    All six of Germany’s Muslim members of parliament voted in favour of same-sex marriage as Angela Merkel faced criticism for opposing the bill and announcing: “Marriage is between a man and a woman.”

    Despite the Chancellor’s opposition, the historic “marriage for all” measure was approved with 393-226 votes in the Bundestag on Friday, leading hundreds of MPs to rise to their feet in a spontaneous standing ovation.

    The Green Party, who launched rainbow confetti into the chamber when the result was announced, have since confirmed that the party has four Muslim lawmakers – Cem Özdemir, Ekin Deligöz, Özcan Mutlu and Omid Nouripour – who approved the legislation.

    Aydan Özoğuz, a Muslim MP for the centre-left Social Democratic Party, also voted in favour of the bill after his party criticised Ms Merkel for “embarrassing” delays to the legislation.

    The issue has divided the Chancellor’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU/CSU) party, which remains the largest in the German parliament and has enjoyed comfortable poll leads and local election victories ahead of September’s federal elections.

    Ms Merkel has always been unequivocal with her personal opposition to marriage equality, but her party’s MP Cemile Giousouf, the first Muslim elected into the Bundestag in 2013, was praised on social media after endorsing the landmark measure.

    Activist Filipe Henriques tweeted: “She’s a Muslim woman and a Conservative. She voted for marriage equality, most of her CDU colleagues voted against.

    “Merkel thinks marriage is sacred bond between men and woman. Most Germans and all Muslim MPs believe in equality. Who needs integration?”…

  2. Catholics should oppose sodomarriage? Well … not too strongly or divisively, because such relations are “good and fruitful,” and as Catholics “our message of love of neighbor calls us to put what unites us above what divides us”:

    Posted by Sacerdos Romanus at 7/03/2017

    German Parliament Votes to Legalize Gay Marriage — Weak Response of German Catholics

    The lower house of the German Parliament has voted to legalize homosexual pseudogamy (aka gay marriage). The German bishops voiced mild disapproval of the law, but without of course ever giving the reason why all people of good will should oppose such laws: the gravely immoral character of homosexual acts, which such laws are meant to normalize.

    The chair of the so-called “Central Committee of German Catholics” (ZdK), an important umbrella organization for German Catholic lay organizations that is supposed to promote their interests in politics, gave a statement in which he criticized the law, but calls homosexual relationships “good and fruitful.” Nine members of the Central Committee of German Catholics are MPs who voted on the law. Four of them actually voted for legalization. One of them, Monika Gruetters, wrote that she supported it, “not although I am Catholic, but because I am Catholic; it is the Christian message of love of neighbor that calls us to put what unites us above what divides us.”

    One of the strongest statements in support for the new law came from the head of another German Catholic umbrella organization: Katharina Norpoth, chair of the “Union of German Catholic Youth” (BDKJ), an umbrella oranization that represents about 660,000 Catholic young people. She wrote on the BDKJ’s Facebook Page:

    I am pleased that Parliament has enacted the complete equality of heterosexual and homosexual couples… Mutual love in the deep attachment of a commitment to take responsibility for another in fidelity is to be protected in every form, and should be treated equally by the state.

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