Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Majority and Minority Are Terms of Quantity Not Quality

In every time and space, there is going to be a minority. This is true in the world of humans: differences of thinking, appearances, tradition, and infinite ways of acting. Within this quantity we have groups who are in the majority and those in the minority, The problem is the relationship of the majority with the minority. An article in the WithBible magazine by a priest of the Seoul Diocese introduces the readers to this important issue.

This can be mutually beneficial living in harmony, or can  be with conflict, and exclusion, control, and subordination. We must remember this is a question of quantity and not quality.

However, this quantity and quality are often forgotten and we mix up the two. He gives us an example of a family who  getting together have prepared a meal of cold bean soup noodles. One of the family members every time she has the meal  has a serious case of diarrhea and mentions this. At this time the other family members together chime in:  "We are all going to eat it, you also have to, we can't prepare another dish just for you. " What would a family who spoke this way say about the family?

He begins discussion on the the the topic of homosexuality: those who are sexually attracted to the same sex be it male or female. Korea has not been very open in bringing the  problems associated with homosexuality to the attention of the public. He asks the readers:  Are those who are attracted to the opposite sex the majority and the normal and the minority who are attracted to the same sex abnormal and to be excluded?

He reviews the teaching in the Catechism of the Church  on Chastity and Homosexuality. "Tradition has always declared that 'homosexual acts'  are intrinsically disordered.  They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life, They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved" (2357).

"The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. They do not choose their homosexual condition; for most of them, it is a trial.They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These  persons are called to fulfill God's will in their lives and,if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord's cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition" (2358).

"Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery. that teach the inner freedom,at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace,they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection" (2359).

He concludes the article noting that the Church in Korea sadly has been silent on this issue; true also in society.  This teaching has a tendency to bring about a conflict in community and wonders if the silence  was not a wise way of acting. For we  are faced with a greater  problem when  we  fight about something as noble as sexuality: conservatives and  progressives in holding their positions can fight and  be violent.

Homosexuality is not the only issue where we have a majority on one side and a minority on the other. This is the reality of our world and requires that we always deal with those different from us with charity. A situation which is rarely achieved.