The Market Ticker
Commentary on The Capital Markets- Category [Social Issues]

You're flat-out insane, Tim.

WASHINGTON –  Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine is predicting that the Roman Catholic Church may eventually change its opposition to gay marriage.

Kaine is a Roman Catholic as well as a U.S. senator from Virginia and a former governor of that state. He told the Human Rights Campaign during its national dinner Saturday in Washington that he had changed his mind about gay marriage and that his church may follow suit one day.

"I think it's going to change because my church also teaches me about a creator who, in the first chapter of Genesis, surveyed the entire world, including mankind, and said, 'It is very good,'" Kaine said. He then recalled Pope Francis' remark that "who am I to judge?" in reference to gay priests.

No it won't, and no it shouldn't.

Indeed, if it does then the Catholic Church will cease to exist at that instant in time and will become something else -- and that, my friends, is exactly what Tim Kaine and many others want.

You can disagree with Catholic theology all you'd like.  There are some 5,000 religious paths available to you today, and if you don't like any of those you can go create your own and the government is required to leave you alone.  So says the US Constitution.

But Catholic theology isn't formed from public opinion, nor should it ever be subject to same. As for Pope Francis and his view on gay priests let me remind you that priests, gay or otherwise, are required by the Church to take a vow of celibacy.

In other words irrespective of how you feel you are required to conform to a particular standard when it comes to what you do.

The Church, and indeed nearly all Christian faiths, teach that humans are inherently sinful. That is, we're imperfect; we err both in thought and deed.  But such are in fact errors when it comes to that path, and the Church does not, and indeed cannot without destroying itself confer upon that which is claims to be error a blessing.

Marriage is a sacrament, not a civil act.  The conflation of the two is one of the worst errors the Church has undertaken, and ought to be corrected.  As I have written on many occasions, including for many years before starting The Ticker, if you want a civil contract of some sort then you should go see a JP.

If you want a sacrament to be performed then go see a priest.

The two ought to be disjoint acts.  Why?

It's simple, when you get down to it: A Catholic sacramental marriage is irrevocable until death of at least one of the parties unless originally formed under false pretense -- that is, invalid at the time it was originally undertaken, not at some point later.  This is not unique to marriage as a sacrament -- you cannot be baptized twice either.  If baptized by anyone, in the Catholic Church or not, you cannot have the ceremony performed in the Catholic faith as you're already baptized.

Sacraments are not civil obligations and conflating the two when they do not represent the same set of conditions is open, rank hypocrisy and in this case an intentional lie told before God in a sacramental context.  Such an act is quite-arguably the most-serious of sin because it not only evidences intent to deceive it is undertaken as a direct part of a sacrament that requires taking an oath as to your intentions before God.  

In short civil marriages are subject to termination any time either party wants them to be, and this is in direct conflict with the Catholic Church's teaching on marriage as a sacrament.

Therefore, by definition the presentation of a state-issued marriage license to a Catholic priest and his signature on same is a per-se act that invalidates the sacrament itself as the moment you do so you have presented a written document bearing your signature under oath -- that is, under penalty of perjury -- which directly contradicts the oath you are required to take in order for the sacrament to be performed!

You can't have this one both ways folks and Tim Kaine has obviously never actually studied Catholic theology.  He was probably confirmed as an adolescent and thus lacked the capacity or incentive to do so, but it doesn't matter. Theology just is, and if you accept that a Catholic sacramental marriage is what the theology claims it to be and the grounds for annulment (one of them being the lack of intent, at the time of contraction of the marriage, for it to be for life) then the very act of presenting a state document that by the controlling law for same leaves either party the option of voiding their marriage at any time, for any reason or no reason at all is a per-se act of fraud upon God and the Church with the willful and intentional complicity of the priest who countersigns same!

In short all such marriages are void ab-initio and subject to annulment under Catholic theology -- that is, Canon Law.

This is theology, not politics.  I have no quarrel with gay people who wish to do whatever, including getting married in any religious path that has no problem with it, or through some civil ceremony.  But the Catholic Church, should it "allow" what Kaine claims, will cease to be the Catholic Church.  I don't believe that will happen, nor that it should.  Diversity of paths in faith is good, not bad.

Instead of Kaine's insanity the Church should insist that its priests not execute any form of civil paperwork in the context of marriage.  There is not only no law requiring it to do so no law can be passed compelling it to do so due to the First Amendment's protections.  The Church should instead register Catholic marriages internally as it does for other sacramental rites and events, including births, baptisms, confirmations and deaths, practicing the faith as its theology directs.  If Catholic celebrants wish to have some sort of civil law registration of their commitment they should go handle that separately, preferably after their sacramental marriage.

The Catholic marriage sacrament is not "marriage" as defined by civil authorities or, for that matter, other religious faiths.  It is defined by the theological rules of the Church -- sacramental procedures, requirements and rites that the Church alone has the authority to determine.  We're long past the point where restoration of that split between church and state, which once existed when it came to marriage, ought to be vigorously pursued and enforced by the Church with regard to both its priests and celebrants.

View this entry with comments (registration required to post)

Main Navigation
MUST-READ Selection:
The Rule Of Law

Full-Text Search & Archives
Archive Access
Legal Disclaimer

The content on this site is provided without any warranty, express or implied. All opinions expressed on this site are those of the author and may contain errors or omissions.


The author may have a position in any company or security mentioned herein. Actions you undertake as a consequence of any analysis, opinion or advertisement on this site are your sole responsibility.

Market charts, when present, used with permission of TD Ameritrade/ThinkOrSwim Inc. Neither TD Ameritrade or ThinkOrSwim have reviewed, approved or disapproved any content herein.

The Market Ticker content may be excerpted online for non-commercial purposes provided full attribution is given and the original article source is linked to. Please contact Karl Denninger for reprint permission in other media, to republish full articles, or for any commercial use (which includes any site where advertising is displayed.)

Submissions or tips on matters of economic or political interest may be sent "over the transom" to The Editor at any time. To be considered for publication your submission must include full and correct contact information and be related to an economic or political matter of the day. All submissions become the property of The Market Ticker.