“Sadness, pain and confusion”

A gay couple © Dragon Images (shutterstock)

Ukraine's Roman Catholic bishops' conference criticizes German push for church blessing of same-sex couples. Homosexual acts are sinful according to Church teaching, says Archbishop Mokrzycki.

Media reports that some German bishops support such blessings have caused "sadness, pain and confusion" among many Catholics as well as Christians of other denominations, Archbishop Mieczyslaw Mokrzycki of Lviv, president of the bishops' conference, said over the weekend. Homosexual acts are sinful according to church teaching and deprive people of "sanctifying grace".

Reaction to book published in November

Mokrzycki encouraged prayer for the Church in Germany and "its bishops, who are under strong ideological prere, so that they may overcome difficulties with courage and preserve the treasure of faith without compromise". The archbishop was reacting to the book published at the end of November by the Arbeitsgemeinschaft fur katholische Familienbildung (akf), "Paare.Rites.Church. When a Catholic wedding ceremony is not possible: liturgical examples collected and commented on".

Munich Cardinal Reinhard Marx and the bishops of Mainz and Osnabruck, Peter Kohlgraf and Franz-Josef Bode, among others, would support a blessing of homosexual couples, Mokrzycki said. People "with homosexual tendencies" should be treated with respect and helped pastorally and, if necessary, psychologically, he advises.

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