Letter: Sin can be forgiven, not condoned, according to church’s teaching

The Seattle Times article by Lornet Turnbull headlined “Doctrine, gay marriage collide in Catholic workplaces” that The Advocate ran on Saturday, Jan. 25, is a prime example of irresponsible journalism that is common today. The reporter did not bother to interview an authority of the Catholic Church or to fact-check assertions made by those she did interview, all of whom openly dissent from Catholic teaching.

The reader of the article is left with the impression that polls, lobbying, letter-writing and protests might change the truths that the Catholic Church upholds. Yes, to quote the article, “Marriage is a sacred institution designed by God … and homosexual acts are immoral and contrary to natural law.” But this is not a position on a “social issue” that can change, as one interviewed person incorrectly asserts and who then goes on to say, “Eventually the church will have to reflect the sentiments of the church body.” No matter how often it is explained, the media ( i.e., “the world”) just can’t (or won’t) get it: The Catholic Church is not a democracy or an autocracy or a theocracy. It is not a merely human institution but is the mystical body of Christ, who is truth. To quote Pope Francis: “The Church is not an organization established by an agreement between a few people, but … a work of God.” (General Audience, May 29, 2013) There needs to be better catechesis of Catholics, for sure, as the article clearly shows. There also needs to be higher standards among members of the media. Yes, to quote the article again, “sin can be forgiven;” the followup to that, though, is “go and sin no more.” Repeat as needed, for God’s mercy is without end! But never condone sin, because it separates man from God.

Margaret Lovecraft


Baton Rouge