Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Christianity and Homosexuality: Welcome to Topsy Turvy Land

Owen and Eunice Johns
I know the case of Eunice and Owen Johns, the married couple who cared for many foster children over the years only to be rejected by their local council because their Christian beliefs meant they could not speak positively about homosexuality, has taken up many column inches in the press, in the blogosphere etc.

All I will say about their case per se is

"Whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad" (Latin: Quem deus vult perdere, dementat prius).
On last night's prime-time BBC One Show a presenter/journo interviewed the couple and said 'so you are prepared to put your Christian beliefs ahead of the welfare of children.'

I don't think I'd ever heard such Orwellian newspeak so blatantly put.

They were not putting the children's welfare on the back seat (and thus putting the children at risk). Being Christian (and Catholic) is like being human, or being Welsh, or being European.

You are what you are.

Because I am Welsh and (for example) I will always cheer Wales when they play rugby does not mean that I put the welfare of my children on the back-burner. If I was to foster an English child (or French, African or Japanese) it would not impinge on my caring for that child, even though my support for Wales is far more a personal opinion and open to debate than the 2000 year fact central to Western civilisation that is Catholicism (and Christianity).

It shows how relativism and the homosexual lobby have twisted facts, words and media output.

Is Christianity now something to be sneered at? Is Christianity "backwards" or "hateful?"

Which (to use modern media language) 'lifestyle choice' is imbued with drugs? Which has a lower life-span? Which has a greater relationship break-up rate? Which promotes multiple "partners" and sexual acts with strangers? Which has extreme and violent sexual acts as part of its worldview? Which promotes sexual liaisons in public, including dirty toilets? Which encourages sexual activity that can spread a killer disease? Which promotes public processions involving (illegal) lewd behaviour?

Is it Christianity that poses all these risks to public decency and the morals of young people?

Why is it when Christians use sober, reasoned and charitable language towards homosexuality (for the good of homosexuals) then they can expect a knock on the door from the police or action taken against them by councils; yet when homosexuals use hateful, twisted, bitter, violent and blasphemous language and acts against Christianity and Christians (and Christ!) in public, in the media, on their organised displays and activities, the police turn a wilful blind eye.

We have even had the police being told (by their superiors) to ignore illegal homosexual activity in public parks, and ignoring blatantly illegal homosexual activity on "pride" marches and rallies, although they police them, indeed police officers are urged to take part in uniform, and many local councils bank-roll the events that otherwise would be financial flops.

The Pope warned UK politicians quite vividly about relativism and the side-lining of Catholicism, the Faith these very islands are rooted in.

Yet the march of relativism and the side-lining of Christianity goes on.

Thus we have a caring couple who have helped many a poor youngster, possible troubled souls etc., painted as hate-mongers who 'put Christianity before the care of young people.'

We are on the road to destruction, because things are getting madder by the week.

Back in his day G.K. Chesterton wrote the following essay after taking umbrage at a news headline concerning the matter of shop assistants marrying. How much more topsy turvy would he consider our world where Elton John is all but canonised for having a "gayby" (on Christmas day!) whereas Owen and Eunice Johns are made into outcasts for being (I hope they will pardon me) run of the mill, normal Christians daring to be... er... Christian.

Listen closely. That whirring sound is GKC spinning so fast they could run the national grid off him.

Quem deus vult perdere, dementat prius


In Topsy-Turvy Land by G.K. Chesterton

Last week, in an idle metaphor, I took the tumbling of trees and the secret energy of the wind as typical of the visible world moving under the violence of the invisible. I took this metaphor merely because I happened to be writing the article in a wood. Nevertheless, now that I return to Fleet Street (which seems to me, I confess, much better and more poetical than all the wild woods in the world), I am strangely haunted by this accidental comparison. The people's figures seem a forest and their soul a wind. All the human personalities which speak or signal to me seem to have this fantastic character of the fringe of the forest against the sky. That man that talks to me, what is he but an articulate tree? That driver of a van who waves his hands wildly at me to tell me to get out of the way, what is he but a bunch of branches stirred and swayed by a spiritual wind, a sylvan object that I can continue to contemplate with calm? That policeman who lifts his hand to warn three omnibuses of the peril that they run in encountering my person, what is he but a shrub shaken for a moment with that blast of human law which is a thing stronger than anarchy? Gradually this impression of the woods wears off. But this black-and-white contrast between the visible and invisible, this deep sense that the one essential belief is belief in the invisible as against the visible, is suddenly and sensationally brought back to my mind. Exactly at the moment when Fleet Street has grown most familiar (that is, most bewildering and bright), my eye catches a poster of vivid violet, on which I see written in large black letters these remarkable words: "Should Shop Assistants Marry?"

. . . . .

When I saw those words everything might just as well have turned upside down. The men in Fleet Street might have been walking about on their hands. The cross of St. Paul's might have been hanging in the air upside down. For I realise that I have really come into a topsy-turvy country; I have come into the country where men do definitely believe that the waving of the trees makes the wind. That is to say, they believe that the material circumstances, however black and twisted, are more important than the spiritual realities, however powerful and pure. "Should Shop Assistants Marry?" I am puzzled to think what some periods and schools of human history would have made of such a question. The ascetics of the East or of some periods of the early Church would have thought that the question meant, "Are not shop assistants too saintly, too much of another world, even to feel the emotions of the sexes?" But I suppose that is not what the purple poster means. In some pagan cities it might have meant, "Shall slaves so vile as shop assistants even be allowed to propagate their abject race?" But I suppose that is not what the purple poster meant. We must face, I fear, the full insanity of what it does mean. It does really mean that a section of the human race is asking whether the primary relations of the two human sexes are particularly good for modern shops. The human race is asking whether Adam and Eve are entirely suitable for Marshall and Snelgrove. If this is not topsy-turvy I cannot imagine what would be. We ask whether the universal institution will improve our (please God) temporary institution. Yet I have known many such questions. For instance, I have known a man ask seriously, "Does Democracy help the Empire?" Which is like saying, "Is art favourable to frescoes?"

I say that there are many such questions asked. But if the world ever runs short of them, I can suggest a large number of questions of precisely the same kind, based on precisely the same principle.

"Do Feet Improve Boots?"--"Is Bread Better when Eaten?"--"Should Hats have Heads in them?"--"Do People Spoil a Town?"--"Do Walls Ruin Wall-papers?"--"Should Neckties enclose Necks?"--"Do Hands Hurt Walking-sticks?"--"Does Burning Destroy Firewood?"--"Is Cleanliness Good for Soap?"--"Can Cricket Really Improve Cricket-bats?"--"Shall We Take Brides with our Wedding Rings?" and a hundred others.

Not one of these questions differs at all in intellectual purport or in intellectual value from the question which I have quoted from the purple poster, or from any of the typical questions asked by half of the earnest economists of our times. All the questions they ask are of this character; they are all tinged with this same initial absurdity. They do not ask if the means is suited to the end; they all ask (with profound and penetrating scepticism) if the end is suited to the means. They do not ask whether the tail suits the dog. They all ask whether a dog is (by the highest artistic canons) the most ornamental appendage that can be put at the end of a tail. In short, instead of asking whether our modern arrangements, our streets, trades, bargains, laws, and concrete institutions are suited to the primal and permanent idea of a healthy human life, they never admit that healthy human life into the discussion at all, except suddenly and accidentally at odd moments; and then they only ask whether that healthy human life is suited to our streets and trades. Perfection may be attainable or unattainable as an end. It may or may not be possible to talk of imperfection as a means to perfection. But surely it passes toleration to talk of perfection as a means to imperfection. The New Jerusalem may be a reality. It may be a dream. But surely it is too outrageous to say that the New Jerusalem is a reality on the road to Birmingham.

. . . . .

This is the most enormous and at the same time the most secret of the modern tyrannies of materialism. In theory the thing ought to be simple enough. A really human human being would always put the spiritual things first. A walking and speaking statue of God finds himself at one particular moment employed as a shop assistant. He has in himself a power of terrible love, a promise of paternity, a thirst for some loyalty that shall unify life, and in the ordinary course of things he asks himself, "How far do the existing conditions of those assisting in shops fit in with my evident and epic destiny in the matter of love and marriage?" But here, as I have said, comes in the quiet and crushing power of modern materialism. It prevents him rising in rebellion, as he would otherwise do. By perpetually talking about environment and visible things, by perpetually talking about economics and physical necessity, painting and keeping repainted a perpetual picture of iron machinery and merciless engines, of rails of steel, and of towers of stone, modern materialism at last produces this tremendous impression in which the truth is stated upside down. At last the result is achieved. The man does not say as he ought to have said, "Should married men endure being modern shop assistants?" The man says, "Should shop assistants marry?" Triumph has completed the immense illusion of materialism. The slave does not say, "Are these chains worthy of me?" The slave says scientifically and contentedly, "Am I even worthy of these chains?"

[The end] 

1 comment:

  1. A very brave post Gareth. For me it highlights the importance of holding onto one's faith for dear life.
    I come from a time before it was made legal. Now its everywhere in your face. We are all expected to accept it as the norm. Otherwise the PC brigade would be hammering on the door.
    Very sad that you can't take your grandchildren for a walk in the woods on a Sunday afternoon because of men hanging around behaving furtively. You would almost be afraid to use a public toilet these days if you could find one that has not been closed down by the Council.

    I feel for this couple trying to do their very best in a world that has changed too fast, that no longer cherishes faith, good manners, common decency all being eroded by a society where standards have hit rock bottom and literally anything goes.