Is the Catholic Church Going the Way of the Episcopal Church?
In our New Oxford Notes (Jan. 2003, and Nov. 2004) we noted how the “Shorter Form” in the Lectionary omits some politically incorrect sayings of the New Testament having to do with Hell and with wives being subordinate to their husbands (although they do appear in the “Longer Form”).
But when it comes to homosexuality, there are passages in the Lectionary that are completely omitted (not to be found in any “Longer Form”). In the Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, First Reading, Cycle C, in the story of Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen. 18:20-32), the Lord says, “their sin is so grave,” but we’re not told what that grave sin is. The following chapter does make it explicit — the sin of active homosexuality — but the Lectionary omits it. In the Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Abraham bargains with the Lord. Abraham says, “Suppose there were fifty innocent people in the city….” The Lord replies, “If I find fifty innocent people in the city of Sodom, I will spare the whole place for their sake.” Abraham continues to bargain, and at the end, Abraham says, “What if there are at least ten there?” The Lord replies, “For the sake of those ten, I will not destroy it.” The reading ends here on a happy note.
The Lord’s raining down fire and brimstone on Sodom and Gomorrah is not found in the Sunday Lectionary. Only in the Weekday Lectionary will you find it (Gen. 19:15-29), and only one percent (at a maximum) of Catholics attend weekday Masses. But again we’re not told what the sin of the people of Sodom and Gomorrah is. It’s made explicit in Genesis 19:4-7, the same chapter. It’s the sin of active homosexuality, but the Lectionary editors chose to omit it.
With the biblical illiteracy of so many Catholics, how many will know it’s the sin of active homosexuality?
You will not find Jude, verse 7, in either the Sunday Lectionary or the Weekday Lectionary: “Likewise, Sodom, Gomorrah, and the surrounding towns…in-dulged in sexual promiscuity and practiced unnatural vice, [and] serve as an example by undergoing punishment of eternal fire.”
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