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COLF seminar tackles gender theory and sexual orientation

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Professor warns transgenderism is non-compatible with a Catholic worldview

By Deborah Gyapong
Photo caption: Douglas Farrow, professor of Christian Thought at McGill University. (Deborah Gyapong)
Gender theory and transgenderism needs to be opposed with Christian revelation, speakers told a Catholic Organization for Life and Family seminar March 30-31.
“This kind of thinking is not compatible with a Catholic worldview or a Christian worldview,” warned Douglas Farrow, professor of Christian Thought at McGill University.
He said the Christian view is “being attacked head-on by this ideology. If this ideology prevails, the Judeo-Christian view is done with in the public square,” Farrow told more than 100 clergy and lay pastoral leaders gathered from across Canada.
Gender ideology views people the same way they view themselves and is now considered a basic human right, said Farrow. With subjective notions considered a right and everyone obligated to agree, the notion of a public sphere is obliterated.
“If there is no public verification for it, the only way to have a public sphere anymore is ‘you must agree with what I say, and the government will enforce it.’ This changes things dramatically.”
Farrow said protesters from Queer McGill disrupted a version of his talk earlier this year at McGill’s Newman Centre.
“They, I hope, will come to understand I am not their enemy,” Farrow said. “The ideology I am describing is their enemy and it will eventually swallow them whole if they allow it.”
Farrow said the ideology behind sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) is not “of and for the powerless.” It’s “an instrument of and for the very powerful.”
He pointed to Beijing’s 1995 United Nations 4th World Conference on Women, which highlighted the need for gender equality. A movement that originally promoted equality of women became a “gender/queer program” intent on “bending gender boundaries” and “eliminating sexual difference.”
“Within a decade, liberal feminism has been overtaken by a far more radical gender feminism, building on Marxist ideology,” Farrow said.
He cited the 2006 Yogyakarta Principles on sexual orientation and gender identity, which have widespread support among a range of international bodies. Its principles can already be seen in various sex education programs in Canada and such countries as France.
“It is the education of the young that must serve these goals,” he said. “The young are a soft entry point for SOGI and gender mainstreaming theory. Try substituting religion for SOGI and see how far you get. There would be howls of outrage.”
Teachers, authorities, parents and students are all being forced to accept the new ideology, which stems from a worldview that “sex is chiefly for pleasure, self-expression, self-creation and self-recreation,” he said.
“It’s all about cultivating that notion in the heads of young children,” and parents who refuse to comply will risk having their children taken from them, he said.
Farrow described SOGI as a new version of the Gnostic heresy that regarded the body with deep suspicion and distrust. The response must be repentance, catechesis, “private education without compromise,” and civil disobedience when necessary.
The social crisis society is witnessing “is not an ethical crisis, it is an anthropological crisis,” said Father Robert Gauthier, PSS, director of St. Joseph Seminary in Edmonton. “The fundamental truths about men and women must be revealed and taught.”
Christian anthropology – the truth we profess about humans being made in the image of God – is being set aside by pressure groups, he said.
The Catholic understanding of human dignity – the unity of body and soul, and the complementarity of two sexes created by God – is being treated as an injustice, Father Gauthier said. The new ideology sees gender as a product of historical and cultural conditioning.
Human freedom, which is now interpreted as freedom of license, has replaced human nature as a supreme principle. But human nature cannot be manipulated simply because people want to do so, Father Gauthier said.
True freedom, and the full truth about man and woman, is found through Jesus, the Way, the Truth, and the Life, for all men whether they know it or not, he said.
Even the natural law against killing innocent people is being set aside, said Father Gauthier. 
And while children experiencing gender dysphoria must be treated with compassion, the Church cannot support hormonal or surgical interventions that would cause irreversible harm by removing organs that are not sick, he added.

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