Today, we could paraphrase this warning by saying: “A specter is haunting the world — the specter of homosexual ideology.”
Homosexual Ideology, the New “Opium of Intellectuals”
Indeed, just as communism back then exerted an almost magical attraction on Western intellectuals to the point of being called The Opium of the Intellectuals,1 the same now appears to be happening with the homosexual ideology, which has close affinity with the philosophical premises of Marxism.2
Under the influence of this new opium of intellectuals, the justices of the Brazilian Supreme Court, imitating their colleagues elsewhere, legalized homosexual unions by judicial fiat and paved the way for so-called “marriage” between same sex couples.
Interpreting the Constitution in Light of Ideology
On May 4-5, the judges of the highest court in Brazil unanimously3 decided to give a new interpretation to two articles of the Brazilian Constitution.
Art. 226, paragraph 3 of the Federal Constitution states: “For the purpose of State protection, the stable union between a man and a woman is recognized as a family entity, and the law should facilitate its conversion into marriage.” Article 1723 says: “The family entity is recognized as a stable union between a man and a woman configured as a public, continuous and lasting living together with the goal of establishing a family.”
According to the new interpretation, the expression “family entity” in these clauses must no longer be understood as defining only a stable union between a man and a woman for the purpose of establishing a family, but also as a “continuous, public and lasting union between persons of the same sex.” From now on, homosexual unions must be recognized “according to the same rules and with the same consequences of a stable hetero-affective union.”4
Paving the Way for Homosexual “Marriage”
As Fr. Lodi da Cruz, a valiant combatant defending the family against abortion and homosexuality, has emphasized: “One of the immediate consequences of recognizing a ‘stable union’ between persons of the same sex is that, according to article 1726 of the Civil Code, such union can be turned into marriage: ‘The stable union can be converted into marriage at the request of one of the partners to the judge and by being inscribed in the Civil Register.’ Therefore, with one stroke the Supreme Federal Tribunal recognizes both the ‘stable union’ and homosexual ‘marriage!’”5
The Bishops Conference’s Moderate Reaction
The ruling by the Brazilian Supreme Court, which has dealt a grievous blow to basic principles of natural morals and Catholic doctrine, was issued at exactly the same time that the Brazilian Bishops Conference was holding its annual meeting. However, this extremely important matter was not on the bishops’ agenda.6
At the end of the meeting, the Bishops Conference published a communiqué lamenting the ruling and recalling Catholic doctrine on marriage. Unfortunately, however, it expressed a cold and bureaucratic tone, without calling upon Catholics to make every effort to restore the correct interpretation of the Constitution.
Strangely enough, the communiqué also fails to mention the notion of sin. Whether called “stable unions,” “partnerships,” “civil unions,” or even “marriage,” any kind of homosexual union must be recognized as sinful. Taking this terrible blow against marriage and the institution of the family as a done deal, the note by the Bishops Conference closes with a vague promise by the bishops to “renew our commitment to an intense and vigorous pastoral policy for the family.”7
The position of the Bishops Conference obviously does not represent the thinking of all the bishops, some of whom have taken a more combative attitude.
“Not Starting Any Crusade”
During the annual meeting, some bishops are usually designated on a daily basis to speak with the press. When asked about the decision by the Brazilian Supreme Court, these spokesmen gave answers that displayed a lack of combativity and even ambiguity regarding homosexual unions.
For example, the diocesan bishop of Camaçari (state of Bahia), Most Rev. João Carlos Petrini, criticized the decision of the high court. However, he said the bishops “are not going to start any crusade” against the ruling but will continue to defend their concept of family.8
For his part, the archbishop of Rio de Janeiro, Most Rev. Orani João Tempesta, gave to understand that he was not opposed to “homosexual unions” but merely to homosexual “marriage.” A newspaper reports: “As far as he is concerned, ‘it is a right of the human person’ to have access to inheritance and other benefits, as established by the judges, but ‘it is something else altogether to establish a human family in what we see as part of the natural law.’ According to the same paper, he added: “We are in favor of life, we are against any discrimination. We are against people living this way, opposing one another.”9
“Just Don’t Call it ‘Marriage’!”
Most Rev. Edney Gouvêa Mattoso, bishop of Nova Friburgo (Rio de Janeiro) was even more explicit in his acceptance of the iniquitous judicial ruling. He stated: “One thing is a civil union. Another is marriage, which is a sacrament of the Church. The right of two people forming a patrimony is [part of the] consensus, but we must not call it marriage.”10
“Liberation Theologian” Supports Homosexual “Marriage”
Asked how he reacted to the judges’ ruling, Carmelite Fr. Gilvander Moreira, of Belo Horizonte, an avowed liberation theologian and professor of theology, answered:
“With joy, for this is a victory of the movements and groups which historically have been fighting for the right to homosexual sexual freedom…. There are traditional families with only a mother and children… families with only ‘husband and wife,’ without children. Why can there not be also homosexual families?”11
Having looked on May 16-17 at the web site of the Bishops Conference, the web site of his Order and other web sites, we have found no word of reprimand or punishment for his stand. On the contrary, one of the “legislating” judges, as well as representatives of the homosexual movement warmly welcomed the Carmelite liberation theologian’s statements.12
Preparing a “Gag Law”
This dictatorial intervention by activist judges legislating from the bench favors the approval by Congress of a law that establishes a homosexual dictatorship in Brazil. It is the so-called “gag law” about to be voted on in the Senate, which aims to curb and penalize manifestations against homosexual practice by labeling them a “crime of homophobia.”
For legal and penal purposes, this ‘crime’ would be placed on a par with the crime of racism, which has no statute of limitations and requires imprisonment without bail.13
“Resist Ye, Strong in Faith”
Facing the powerful homosexual movement and the intoxication of sectors of the public with the homosexual ideology, this new “opium of intellectuals,” and above all the lack of leadership of those who should be first to call for a legal and moral struggle against the implantation of complete amorality in a Catholic country, we must, with divine help, follow the advice of Saint Peter, and resist, being strong in faith.14
- Cf. Raymond Aron, L’Opium des intellectuels (Paris: Calmann-Lévy, 1955), English translation: The Opium of the Intellectuals (New Brunswick, N.J.: Transaction, 2001).
- Cf. TFP Committee on American Issues, Defending A Higher Law — Why We Must Resist Same-Sex “Marriage” and the Homosexual Movement, (Spring Grove, Penn.: The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property, 2004), pp. 15-20.
- One of the judges, although favorable to homosexual unions, recused himself on technical grounds.
- Cf. Pe. Luiz Carlos Lodi da Cruz, “Supremo absurdo – Contrariando o texto da Constituição, STF reconhece “união estável” entre pessoas do mesmo sexo” May 12, 2011, at http://www.ipco.org.br/home/noticias/supremo-absurdo.
- Carolina Iskandarian writes on G1-SP: “Controversial, the issue was brought up by reporters in the interview, around 15:30, when four bishops were present. The spokesman of the event, Dom Orani João Tempesta, Archbishop of Rio de Janeiro, took the microphone and reminded everyone that the issue ‘was not dealt with’ and was not on the agenda of the Bishops meeting, which runs until May 13.” (http://g1.globo.com/sao-paulo/noticia/2011/05/bispos-criticam-uniao-gay-em-dia-de-votacao-do-tema-no-stf.html).
- “Nota da CNBB a respeito da decisão do Supremo Tribunal Federal quanto à união entre pessoas do mesmo sexo,” at http://www.cnbb.org.br/site/eventos/assembleia-geral/6533-nota-da-cnbb-a-respeito-da-decisao-do-supremo-tribunal-federal-quanto-a-uniao-entre-pessoas-do-mesmo-sexo. Qua, 11 de Maio de 2011 12:34 / Atualizado – Qua, 11 de Maio de 2011 12:47 por: cnbb
- G1 São Paulo, “‘Não vamos fazer nenhuma cruzada’, diz bispo em SP sobre união gay” May 6, 2011 18:14 – Updated on May 6, 2011 18:51, http://g1.globo.com/sao-paulo/noticia/2011/05/nao-vamos-fazer-nenhuma-cruzada-diz-bispo-em-sp-sobre-uniao-gay.html.
- Carolina Iskandarian, G1 SP, em Aparecida, May 5, 2011 17:26 – Updated on May 5, 2011 17:41 “Bispos criticam união gay em dia de votação do tema no STF,” http://g1.globo.com/sao-paulo/noticia/2011/05/bispos-criticam-uniao-gay-em-dia-de-votacao-do-tema-no-stf.html.
- Chico Otávio, “Por que não famílias homossexuais? Padre contraria CNBB e elogia Supremo por legalizar união de casais gays no Brasil,” O Globo, May 12, 2011 23:42, http://oglobo.globo.com/pais/mat/2011/05/12/padre-contraria-cnbb-elogia-supremo-por-legalizar-uniao-de-casais-gays-no-brasil-924449881.asp
- Evandro Éboli, “Ayres Britto elogia padre Gilvander por sua defesa da união homoafetiva,” O Globo, May 13, 2011, http://oglobo.globo.com/pais/mat/2011/05/13/ayres-britto-elogia-padre-gilvander-por-sua-defesa-da-uniao-homoafetiva-924460768.asp#ixzz1Md3qXXbG.
- Cf. Instituto Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira, “Senado adia votação do PLC 122/2006: a lâmina da guilhotina permanece suspensa,” 13, maio, 2011, at http://www.ipco.org.br/home/noticias/senado-adia-votacao-do-plc-1222006-a-lamina-da-guilhotina-permanece-suspensa ; Luiz Sérgio Solimeo, “The World Watches as Brazil Advances Toward a Homosexual Dictatorship,” July 24, 2008, at https://tfp.org/tfp-home/news-commentary/the-world-watches-as-brazil-advances-toward-a-homosexual-dictatorship.html
- “Be sober and watch: because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, prowls around seeking whom he may devour. Whom resist ye, strong in faith: knowing that the same affliction befalls your brethren who are in the world. But the God of all grace, who hath called us into his eternal glory in Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a little, will himself perfect you, and confirm you, and establish you.”(1 Pet 5:8-10).