Thursday, 21 February 2013

Times: Same-sex adoption is no game
Thursday, February 7, 2013 by Henry Pace

The political parties are expressing their views on what to do (if elected to govern) in the forthcoming five-year term. It is said that the issue of adoptive children by gays and lesbians would be considered, provided that such adoptions are in the interest of the children.

Like divorce, this should not be a political issue because it is a moral question.

Moves by legislators and homosexual activists to endorse same-sex adoption are misguided. They are ignoring the rights of children and important social and psychological research into the homosexual lifestyle.

Experimenting on children by permitting adoption by same-sex couples poses serious problems. Children have a right to and a need for parenting by both a father and a mother. This need should be recognised by the State and by professional groups as being far more important than an adult’s supposed right to adopt.

Same-sex relationships do not provide an ideal environment in which to raise children for several reasons. Same-sex couples tend to be promiscuous.

The Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith said that “Since this question relates to the natural moral law, the arguments that follow are addressed not only to those who believe in Christ but to all persons committed to promoting and defending the common good of society”.

The Church teaches that its concept of natural law is an absolute truth.

“Homosexuality is a troubling moral and social phenomenon even in those countries where it does not present significant legal issues. It gives rise to greater concern in those countries that have granted or intend to grant legal recognition to homosexual unions, which may include the possibility of adopting children,” the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith said.

The document was approved by Pope (Blessed ) John Paul II on March 28, 2003.

The most important issue is the welfare of the child. Social science research has repeatedly demonstrated the vital importance of both a father and a mother for the healthy development of children. Such research also showed the serious risks that they face if they are raised without a mother or a father. Mothers and fathers bring unique gifts that are essential to the health of a child.

Children who lacked maternal care for extended periods in their early lives “lacked feeling, had superficial relationships and exhibited hostile or antisocial tendencies” as they became adults.

The rights and needs of children to a mother and a father should be protected by the State. Adults do not have a right to deprive children of a father or a mother.

There are strong indications that children raised by same-sex couples fare less well than those that grow up in stable homes with a mother and a father.

An adopted child separated from his/her biological parents feels such loss. For this reason, adoption agencies historically have sought the best possible placement: a sensitive and stable father and mother. A same-sex couple is, by definition, a second-class placement because a parent of the opposite sex is missing.

A grave injustice to adoptive children is occurring as growing numbers of Catholic social service adoption agencies, which have provided outstanding help to children, parents and families for decades, are being denied the right to continue. Legislators are placing the rights of homosexual unions to adopt above the needs and rights of children to a mother and a father.

Social science research supports the view that deliberately depriving a child of a father or a mother harms the child. Adoptive children have experienced early-life abandonment trauma and should be protected from the additional trauma of being exposed to a cruel social experiment. Will no one step forward to protect these children?

On March 9, the Maltese electorate will go to the polls. Whichever party is elected to govern, each member of Parliament will carry his/her own responsibility. MPs should bear public witness to their personal faith and should not fall into “the trap of moral relativism”.

The true Catholic voter should seek with clear conscience the truth and the common good. This is defined by Benedict XVI thus: “A man of conscience is one who never acquires tolerance, well-being, success, public standing and approval on the part of prevailing opinion at the expense of truth.”

Admittedly, the common good is given different interpretations by today’s society.

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