Same Sex Attraction
God created man in the image of himself, in the image of God he created him, male and female he created them. And God blessed them and God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply"
Step 1: Watch the Video
This video features Rev. Paul Scalia, experienced in pastoral care of persons who experience SSA, talking about marriage to a group of teen boys in a classroom setting. Following that talk is testimonial from a member of Courage International.
Source Video Outline
Episode 1: Same-Sex Attraction: What Does the Church Say?
Very Rev. Paul Scalia
You Can’t Love Another Person Apart From Truth
© 2022 St. Michael the Archangel High School, www.saintmichaelhs.org
Episode 2: Testimonial: What Does Experience Say?
Desire of the Everlasting Hills
© 2022 Courage International Inc. www.couragerc.org
Music by Clamavi De Profundis
Biographies of Featured Speakers
Fr. Paul Scalia
Fr. Paul Scalia was ordained as a Roman Catholic Priest in 1996, when he finished his master of arts degree at the Angelicum in Rome. He is now Episcopal Vicar for Clergy in the Diocese of Arlington and Pastor of Saint James Parish in Falls Church, Virginia. He founded the Arlington chapter of Courage, an apostolate that counsels men and women with same-sex attractions in living chaste lives in fellowship, truth and love. He served as its chaplain from 2004 to 2011 and served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Courage International, from 2010 to 2018. He remains a member of the Board.
Step 2: Review Important Principles
After watching the video, give teens a chance to comment or ask questions. Go over the following together.
Created Beings: God is our Creator and he made us male and female.
Marriage has a two-fold purpose: unitive and procreative. Any violation of these two is unchastity.
Marriage connects a child to his father.
Health: The sexes are biologically complimentary and sexual orientation follows your biology.
Disordered attractions can develop as a result of nature and nurture, a little bit of both.
Living in accord with chastity is vital for one’s physical, psychological, and spiritual health.
Honesty: Words should be based on reality and clear in meaning. Language cannot change reality. A universal definition of marriage as the union of a man and a woman has existed for millennia and across civilizations.
Distinguish between actions, attractions, and persons:
1. action – intrinsically disordered
2. attraction – objectively disordered
3. person – created in God’s image, a child of God.
Charity: Truth is for your happiness.
“We don’t want to think of people just in terms of categories: black, white, Hispanic, gay, bi, trans, or whatever else. We want to think of people as persons. Talk about people who have these experiences."
-Rev. Paul Scalia
Step 3: Practice Role-Play
Scenario #1: Messing with Marriage
You are at your grandfather’s funeral and your cousin Stan from out of town, whom you haven’t seen for years, greets you and introduces you to his “partner” Rick.
Scenario #2: Labeling Limitations
You are on your high school Year Book Committee working with the main photographer, a male student. While working together you point out that there are a lot of pictures of another classmate, Jeff. The photographer peer explains, “That’s because I have a crush on him.” You seek clarification with, “You mean you admire him?” But he answers, “No, I mean I’m gay.”
Scenario #3: Misleading Movie
A classmate tells you about his new favorite show which features a homosexual couple.
“We are created by God in love, for love, and for eternity. Our identity is a created son or daughter of God.” -Mary Hasson
Download the program materials and distribute to participants. The materials include the important principles and the complete role-play scenarios for participants to review and put into practice.
Allow about two hours (one hour for video, one hour for role playing). One parent presents the video program to three or four teen friends with youth in the front of the room and their parents in the back of the room. After presenting the video, move to another room and act out the role playing scenarios. Give each teen a chance to read the “You” part of each script. Parents take the roles in the scripts opposite of “You.” The role playing was a primary motivation for developing the T2 : Tough Topics programs. Youth in the parish wanted not only to learn about a tough topic but also to get practice articulating the principles underlying the Christian response to the topic.
13+ years old, defer to parent’s judgement. A segment of the video program contains strong and explicit material unsuitable for pre-teens.
Prerequisite: Some sex ed covered by parents.
Helpful sex ed resources: PUREly YOU!, Theology of the Body for Teens, Sexual Wisdom for Catholic Adolescents
See other age appropriate recommendations in Raising Children of Light.
For pastoral care for families and friends of people who experience same-sex attractions and/or gender dysphoria: https://couragerc.org/for-families/
For a video by Jason Evert on Homosexuality, Gay Marriage, and Holiness: www.youtube.com/watch?v=bLrRfwpvERU&t=3s
Age appropriate for 13+
For parents of younger children: CanaVox https://canavox.com/videos/helping-our-children-navigate-gender-ideology-the-elementary-yearsmature/
For young children 3-7 years old, Philo and Sophie: Philosophy for Children by Healing the Culture www.philoandsophie.org
For information on the universal definition of marriage: Dissenting Opinion, Obergefell v. Hodges Nos 14-556,14-565,14-571,14-574 U.S. (2015) supremecourt/opinions/Obergafell.pdf
Excerpts from Chief Justice Roberts dissenting with Justice Scalia and Justice Thomas joining (pages 4-7):
And a State’s decision to maintain the meaning of marriage that has persisted in every culture throughout human history can hardly be called irrational.
As the majority acknowledges, marriage “has existed for millennia and across civilizations.” Ante, at 3. For all those millennia, across all those civilizations, “marriage” referred to only one relationship: the union of a man and a woman. (p.4)
This universal definition of marriage as the union of a man and a woman is no historical coincidence. Marriage did not come about as a result of a political movement, discovery, disease, war, religious doctrine, or any other moving force of world history—and certainly not as a result of a prehistoric decision to exclude gays and lesbians. It arose in the nature of things to meet a vital need: ensuring that children are conceived by a mother and father committed to raising them in the stable conditions of a lifelong relationship. (p. 4,5)
The human race must procreate to survive. Procreation occurs through sexual relations between a man and a woman. When sexual relations result in the conception of a child, that child’s prospects are generally better if the mother and father stay together rather than going their separate ways. Therefore, for the good of children and society, sexual relations that can lead to procreation should occur only between a man and a woman committed to a lasting bond.
Society has recognized that bond as marriage. (p.5)
In his first American dictionary, Noah Webster defined marriage as “the legal union of a man and woman for life,” which served the purposes of “preventing the promiscuous intercourse of the sexes, . . . promoting domestic felicity, and . . . securing the maintenance and education of children.” (p.6,7)