Firstly, the Church remains steadfast in her core biblical teachings on the nature of marriage, emphasising its foundation between a man and a woman. However, it is crucial to understand the declaration itself.
Contrary to some interpretations, the document does not signify an approval of same-sex marriage. Rather, it aligns with a fundamental principle of the Church: “bless, not curse” (Rom. 12:14). The declaration emphasises that a blessing serves as a means to deepen trust in God, expressing and nurturing openness to transcendence, mercy, and closeness to God in various life circumstances, even for those in irregular unions.
The document clarifies that when a couple in an “irregular” situation or same-sex couples seek a blessing, it should not coincide with the ceremonies of a civil union or bear resemblance to wedding rituals. Instead, it suggests alternative contexts like visits to shrines, meetings with priests, group prayers, or pilgrimages.
Now, you might wonder about potential risks to the sanctity of the sacrament of matrimony. Could this lead to consciously blessing sin, and what are the limits to this blessing? These are valid concerns.
The declaration emphasises that blessings should be evaluated as acts of devotion, and those seeking a blessing should not be required to demonstrate moral perfection as a precondition. It acknowledges that spontaneous requests for blessings can occur in various settings, meant for everyone without exclusion.
There is no cause for alarm. However, it is crucial to constantly pray for the Church and her leaders, recognising the need for more grace.
May these developments not weaken your faith. Amen.
Feel free to ask any questions. 🙋🏾♂
Fr. James Anyaegbu