Charles Scicluna keeps up opposition to gay unions in homily that warns of ‘troughs’ filled with ‘food of folly and rat poison put by our enemy’
Thursday 26 December 2013 - 12:27 by Matthew Vella
Mgr Charles Scicluna
Auxiliary Bishop Charles Scicluna's Christmas Day homily did not fail to send yet another strong message to politicians, in which he called on the Christian faithful and MPs "not to destroy the family based on the lasting bond between one man and one woman" - a reference to the forthcoming legislation that will introduce gay unions.
Mgr Scicluna, 54, has been vocal in his opposition to civil unions for homosexual couples and gay adoptions, albeit a lone voice in the otherwise muted response from the Maltese Catholic archdiocese.
'I will not be silenced' - Charles Scicluna
Scicluna used the story of Baby Jesus in the manger, the bedrock narrative of Christmas celebrations for Christians, in a homily where he called on the "Sweet Baby of Bethlehem" to grant MPs grace and wisdom "not to destroy the family".
"The message of Christmas remains always a current message. It beckons and invites us to seek and recognize the true Wisdom that the manger of our Lord Jesus embraces," Scicluna said in his homily.
"Around the manger of baby Jesus there are also a woman and a man: the mother who gave him birth and her husband Joseph whom God chose to bring up, along with the mother, the child of Mary.
"God, who generated his Son as a human being without the participation of a man, did not want his Son as man to be brought up without the participation of a man. The silent and essential mission of Joseph was to ensure that the boy Jesus, in his upbringing as a man, was not deprived of a father's affection and example.
"In the upbringing of his Beloved Son, God himself ordained and chose to be subjected to the wisdom and law of creation according to which a baby should be reared by a mother and father, by a couple made of a man and a woman and not by a couple made of woman and woman or a couple made of man and man."
In one of the more controversial tracts of his homily, Scicluna questions whether Christians were "looking for nutrition of mind and heart" from the Lord's manger, or from other mangers and troughs that had "the food of folly and the rat poison put by our enemy".
Scicluna was formerly the Vatican's chief prosecutor on child and sex abuse crimes by members of the clergy, and for years stood by the side of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
He has described a bill to legalise civil unions for gay couples as "deceptive" because the draft law states that its object is equate unions and marriage. "If the government wants gay marriage, it should say so. I understand the party in government did not promise gay marriage, so it doesn't feel it has this mandate. But that is something that should be discussed in parliament: why is government introducing gay marriage under a convenient label?"