My journey through love

By Michael

I’ve known I was gay for quite some time. I’ve always had little daydream fantasies of some handsome man holding me close (mind you, as a kid, I knew nothing of the world of sex– this was pure physical attraction). Perhaps some would say that I needed a strong father figure when I was young, and that is why I am attracted to men (responsible, mature, pretty much typical fatherly men). I do now know nor do I care if that statement is correct. All I know is that I am who I am, and there is nothing short of lying to myself that I can do to change it.

Now, I’m still “in the closet” because I both fear the loss of my friends who are blessed with heterosexuality to the effect that they cannot empathize with my condition, and I don’t want to stir the waters in my family, to ruin our close bond. I know my family would eventually be accepting, but I don’t want to become estranged from them– I know that our relationship will never be the same post-revelation. I guess bottom-line is that I’m scared of change, and I’m too comfortable with the now.

But I promised myself that I would not hide in the shadows forever. I promised myself that if I found someone who loved me the way I will love them, I will face the world’s wrath and hatred to be with them.

The one thing I do fear is separation from the Church that I devote myself to entirely. I love the Church. It is infinite in its mysteries of love and compassion and faith. It is a repository for every good thing that humans are capable of. For to be all we were meant to be, we must be Christ-like in our lives; we must be servant leaders, putting others before ourselves; we must keep our eyes towards heaven even whilst being whipped and crushed by our individual crosses; lastly, and most importantly, we must love as fully and wholly as Jesus did. For love is the human manifestation of God’s will. Our love for God, our love for our family, our love for our friends, and our love for our significant other is the way God works through us humans. When our love is unconditional, when it is real love– not lust– it serves only to make us grow closer to those around us. When we center our lives around Christ– as we are called to do– we bring His light and comfort to those we are bonded to.

This view of mine had been developed over the course of many bible studies, many passages in scripture, and many acts of the holy saints. Thus, this is what I believe:

I think that we as homosexuals are no different than heterosexuals in that we have the same capacity to love. We are NOT worse than heterosexuals because we love the same gender. And (here’s where some may get uneasy) we are NOT wrong in our romantic love for someone of the same sex. In fact, my love for a guy is the same as my love would be for a girl had I been a heterosexual. It is the ACTIONS that set us apart; A heterosexual person is, just like we are, forbidden to have premarital sex. They are forbidden to lust after someone just as we are forbidden to lust after someone of the same sex. Unfortunately, sexual lustfulness is almost synonymous with being ‘gay’. It’s terrible, and it’s something that needs to go away. Because it is possible to be a man following God and being chaste in both body and thought, while he loves another man. If I keep away from lust, keep away from sex, why is it wrong to love another guy?

That is the fundamental question, and I believe that the Catholic Church’s teaching is in line with it: Lust is still a sin, premarital sex is still a sin, but love for another human, be it a guy or a girl… That is no sin. That is Grace.

That is all I want. I just want to love somebody romantically. I want to live life with one man by my side, with someone I can share that soaring, bubbling feeling in my heart with. Someone that I can sleep under a warm blanket with on cold nights. Someone I can talk to about anything, who I can laugh with, who I can pray with and go to church with. Someone who will share my short time on this Earth with. I want to love their smile, the way they smell (lol), the funny quirks that makes him human.

I guess in this way, you can know if it’s real love or not; If you love them with everything and can confidently say that you will give up sex just to be with them, I think that you should be allowed to love them regardless of gender. While we may never be married, I don’t find any regret in that consequence– If marriage is the union between a man and a woman for the creation of a family, then why do I desire it? I want to raise a family, but we can just adopt a child and give them a chance at a life they would never have known in an orphanage.

So yes. I am gay. I am human, and so I will fall repeatedly to sin, especially to lust (which everyone does really). But it is not because I am gay that I am a sinner. All I want is to love someone freely, and be loved back. To go through life with a best friend, and hopefully, enter the Kingdom of Heaven with him at my side.

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7 Responses to My journey through love

  1. Heidi says:

    Joe, you write beautifully, and I agree with everything you say. As the mother of a gay son, and a parish secretary, I can certainly empathize with you situation. I believe that the church must change its teaching on homosexuality, as do many Catholics, including priests and bishops. As more and more LGBT Catholics stand up to be counted, the church will have to be open to the lived experience of these members who need the church to listen to them. I hope to see this change within my lifetime, and I hope that you and my son are part of it. God bless you.

  2. Matt says:

    Hey, I really appreciated you thoughts. As a Catholic man (who happens to be straight) I have often really been bothered by how the world and many fellow Catholics treat this issue. You have really stumbled on to something with the reality that love is simply not the same thing as sex, and that being gay is NOT evil. I caution you against a few of the more vivid ideas of “sleeping under a warm blanket” with them not because I caution against companionship, but out of charity in helping you avoid lust. This is the same reason I urge couples not to live together before marriage: it is so extremely tempting and lust-provoking. I wish you the very best, as your love of God is truly beautiful. I hope and pray that when you are a saint in Heaven nobody will consider you for being straight or gay, but for being a person on fire with the love that God has for you for exactly how He made you.

  3. markas says:

    to read your story brings me to tears i know the problems as i was in the same position as you when i was young i loved the church played the organ let the church for some time went back but still find my gay life hard all you can do is your best mate if it is of any comfort to you there are lots of gay people in the church and many gay priests they also have these problems te cross is very heavy for gay people just try your best god bless you

  4. Joe Townley says:

    The Church now allows religious people to have a Particular Fiendship as long as it is a celibate relationship. This change saved many religous Monks and Community religious from leaving their communities. One of the objectives of Courage is to have a chaste friendship.

  5. Sean says:

    Hej Michael! Your story is underbart! sorry, I can not speak good english, I am from Sweden.

  6. G. says:

    I totally agree with your beliefs Michael. Be strong 🙂

  7. R Wilson says:

    Very nice note and your opinions were very well expressed. Let me assure you no research supports that homosexuality is created by parenting, poor father, over protective mothers.

    While the cause might be environmental, most research is leaning towards homosexuality is physiological and genetics based in origin and is found at the same rates in all cultures and religions. I believe it is God who planned this. If this is how a person is born and designed, how is it wrong to be who you are. To insist on such would be like asking a fish not to swim or a bird not to fly.

    While I would never advocate become sexually active…… who is to say, that a committed same sex relationship should not have sex. According to natural law, our church says the purpose of sex is procreation and thus, according to natural law is wrong. At the same time if a couple marries in after age 55 and can have children, they are still allowed to have sex……..that seems inconsistent. Additionally, we know homosexuality is found throughout the animal kingdom…..hmmm, maybe it is natural.

    Anyway, try to authentic and follow your conscience. Love does not seem a bad reality to me. I have been with the same man 27 years. I also suggest you do research on the topic look at peer reviewed studies from science sectors and compare these to church teaching. In essence compare facts to church teaching with the desire to find truth. Nobody can do this for you. I personally think you will come to see that gay people are wonderfully made and of equal worth and dignity as straight persons.

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