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Reaction Paper on Same Sex Marriage

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A growing movement today favors making those relationships commonly called same-sex unions the legal equivalent of marriage. This situation challenges Catholics—and all who seek the truth—to think deeply about the meaning of marriage, its purposes, and its value to individuals, families, and society. This kind of reflection, using reason and faith, is an appropriate starting point and framework for the current debate. Marriage, as both a natural institution and a sacred union, is rooted in God’s plan for creation. The truth that marriage can only exist between a man and a woman is woven deeply into the human spirit. The Church’s teaching on marriage expresses a truth, therefore, that can be perceived first and foremost by human reason. This truth has been confirmed by divine Revelation in Sacred Scripture.

I. Same Sex Marriage
* Countries where Same Sex Marriage is legal
The first country in the world to legalize gay marriage was the Netherlands on April 1st2001. In the first six months after the legislation was approved, 3.6% of all marriages were same-sex. The total amount of gay marriages performed in 2001 was 2,500. More or less, about 1,000 same-sex couples get married in the Netherlands every year. Its legality in the Netherlands, though does not guarantee that it will be recognized by another country unless that country accepts gay marriages as well. On January 30th 2003, Belgium became the second country in the world to grant same-sex marriage as legal, with certain restrictions. One of the spouses has had to have lived at least three months in Belgium for the marriage to be permissible. In a span of two years between 2003 and 2005, 2,442 same-sex marriages had taken place. Also, new legislature in 2006 now allows the spouse of a biological parent to legally adopt its spouses’ child. Spain became the third country in the world to legalize gay marriage on June 30th 2005 by the Socialist government. It also simultaneously granted the right for same-sex couples to adopt. 4,500 homosexual Spaniards wed during the first year of the law’s passage.

One partner has to have Spanish citizenship, or two non-Spaniards can marry if they can prove that they legally reside in Spain. According to the BBVA Foundation, 60% of the population supports gay marriage. Not far behind, a month later Canada legalized same-sex marriage on July 20th 2005. The road to legalization began through provincial court cases where judges ruled already existing bans on gay marriage unconstitutional. Marriage licenses for gay couples then became obtainable. The federal government finally passed a law to include same-sex couples in the definition of marriage upon seeing the results of provincial court decisions. South Africa became the fifth country in the world and the first country in Africa to allow gay marriage on November 30th 2006. The Civil Union Act allows same-sex couples to either call their union a marriage partnership or a civil partnership.

If they opt for a marriage partnership, they are protected under the Marriage Act and receive the same privileges as heterosexual couples. The sixth country in the world to legalize gay marriage was Norway on January 1st 2009. The new legislation makes the definition of a marriage gender neutral and gives same-sex couples the right to adopt and church weddings. According to the Synovate MMI poll, 66% of Norwegians support same-sex marriage. Sweden became the seventh country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage on May 1st 2009. Registered partnerships have been around since 1995, but in 2006 the Swedish parliament noticed that its civil union law was outdate and that same-sex marriage should be legalized. So far, only seven countries have legalized same-sex marriage nationwide, though there are many countries on their way to legalizing it. Countries that allow civil unions include: Andorra, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Luxembourg, New Zealand, Slovenia, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and Uruguay.

II. Why can marriage exist only between man and woman?
The natural structure of human sexuality makes man and woman complementary partners for the transmission of human life. Only a union of male and female can express the sexual complementarities willed by God for marriage. The permanent and exclusive commitment of marriage is the necessary context for the expression of sexual love intended by God both to serve the transmission of human life and to build up the bond between husband and wife. In marriage, husband and wife give themselves totally to each other in their masculinity and femininity. They are equal as human beings but different as man and woman, fulfilling each other through this natural difference. These unique complementarities make possible the conjugal bond that is the core of marriage. Biblical passages:

* Marriage comes from the loving hand of God, who fashioned both male and female in the divine image (see Gn 1:27). * A man “leaves his father and mother and clings to his wife, and the two of them become one body” (Gn 2:24). * The man recognizes the woman as “bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh” (Gn 2:23). * God blesses the man and woman and commands them to “be fertile and multiply” (Gn 1:28). * Jesus reiterates these teachings from Genesis, saying, “But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother [and be joined to his wife], and the two shall become one flesh'” (Mk 10:6-8). These biblical passages help us to appreciate God’s plan for marriage. It is an intimate union in which the spouses give themselves, as equal persons, completely and lovingly to one another. By their mutual gift of self, they cooperate with God in bringing children to life and in caring for them. III. Same Sex Marriage Society. (Philippine Setting)

* Same sex marriage is not reproductive.
* They can live together as friends.
* Immigration and residency for partners from other countries. If ever same sex marriage will be allowed in our country what will happen? * If ever same sex marriage will be made possible here in our country I think the government will made the divorce possible also. And those children of couples will suffer because they wanted divorce because they wanted to marry their same sex. What difference it would make for married couples if same sex partner are allowed to marry? * The difference it would make is that for married couples in terms of finance is that because of growing number of family those married couples will have more payments to make and etc., while those same sex partners won’t have any children and they will not have more payments to pay. IV. Personal Reflection:

* For me I would not be in favour for the same sex marriage because we’re still Catholics and it’s written in the bible that only a MAN and a WOMAN should get married.

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