Courage apostolate preaches chastity to homosexual Catholics at national conference

Sexuality is always a controversial topic to discuss in the Church, and even more so when dealing with homosexuality.

As same-sex marriage is becoming legal in more and more countries – Catholic-majority Malta recently legalized it – more and more people find it difficult to understand the Church’s objection to gay relationships.

In his new book, Building a Bridge: How the Catholic Church and the LGBT Community Can Enter into a Relationship of Respect, Compassion, and Sensitivity, Jesuit Father James Martin argues the Church should do more to reach out to gay Catholics, including using the words gays use to self-identify, including LGBT and LGBTQ, as well as “seeing them in their complexity, and sensitivity is being sensitive to their life experiences.”

RELATED: Father James Martin: “Respect, compassion and sensitivity” for gay Catholics

Martin has drawn criticism from some Catholics for not speaking about chastity in his book, and his friendship with organizations such as New Ways Ministry, which has advocated for same-sex marriage.

The Courage apostolate, which has been holding its annual conference from July 27-30, has been ministering to Catholics with same-sex attraction, and their families, for over 30 years.

What is unique about their mission is a strong emphasis on following official Church teaching on sexual relations.

Father Philip Bochanski, executive director of Courage International, said the group has five goals: Living chastity; developing a life of prayer and dedication; helping one another by sharing experiences; forming chaste friendships; and giving good examples to others.

RELATED: Courage apostolate is offering compassion, respect and sensitivity

He told Crux that living a chaste life living the Gospel call to chastity “leads to freedom, peace and joy in authentic relationships.

“The world thinks that a life without sexual intimacy is a life without love; that every strong feeling must ultimately be a sexual feeling, and…

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