Living out chastity and holiness

For this week’s reflection, let us view a video that Courage International posted on their Facebook. It features Avera Maria Santo and Emmanuel Gonzalez who answer questions about their own experiences of being Catholic and living with SSA. They also share about how God empowers them to live their lives in healthy, joyful and Christian ways as people with SSA.

You can watch their sharing here:

As you watch this video, take some time to reflect on these points below (they are paraphrased) that Avera and Emmanuel make. They can encourage you to consider how you can better live out the chastity and holiness God invites you to with honesty, confidence and joy.

We will feel some sort of loneliness because we are not dating or married to another. It helps to know that our lives are meant for God. But we will only understand this truth that God alone fills us when we can go deep into the wound of our loneliness.

Fellowship is important for people with SSA. We need to have friends who also have SSA. They can sympathise and empathise. They know our struggles, pains and hopes because they also have them too. This is because all people with SSA carry the same cross

It’s good for people with SSA to still interact with people who call themselves gay. Both groups can interact civilly and learn from each other, even if they disagree about how to live chastity. People with SSA who

You can’t pray the gay away. This is not how one’s SSA will go way. Those who have deep seated homosexuality realise this is who they are. Those who have transitory homosexuality can strive through God’s grace, counseling, and support to slowly grow out of their homosexuality.

We are not born this way. It doesn’t make sense that God would creates in love would create us this way to suffer. This is not the God of love we know. People who have SSA are not sinful. It is the homosexual act that is sinful.

The vocation of chastity is worth the sacrifice. Chastity frees a person to love authentically by loving freely. Chastity is about helping us to love not as we want but as we ought. Freedom isn’t loving and living as we want but as we ought. “As we ought” — that is, according to God and God’s ways. Chastity is about giving ourselves to Christ and to live in Christ and to love like Christ. This is the truth of being Catholic and homosexual — we are created to have the freedom to love Christ and love like Christ.

Having listened to Avera and Emmanuel, here are some points for your prayerful reflection:

  • Many people say that a person with SSA is condemned to a life of loneliness. How have you manage the struggle with loneliness? Has God a part to play in how you are managing this? If yes, how so?
  •  If a person with SSA is not born this way and praying the gay away is not the way to manage one’s struggles with SSA, how do you think God is inviting you to live your Christian life as a person with SSA? How is God helping you to do this?
  • “The vocation of chastity is worth the sacrifice”. Spend some time with the Lord and share with him how you feel about this statement. Speak with the Lord about a hope you wish as you strive to live your chastity well

Words of Encouragement for this week

“O let there be rejoicing and gladness for all who seek you.” – Psalm 40:17-18