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INDIAN LAND, South Carolina (LifeSiteNews) — A Catholic priest in South Carolina recently explained how the faithful should address the issue of transgenderism and gender ideology.

“Love has been redefined by our fallen world,” Fr. Jeffrey Kirby said during his homily on Sunday at Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church. Fr. Kirby also wrote a book on transgenderism and related moral issues called “Sanctify Them in Truth.”

“Love is I will die to myself in order the good in you might flourish,” Kirby said. He said the “greatest symbol of love” is the crucifixion of Christ. “So we have to have a proper understanding of love.”

He said this is why we must “love” people who “adamantly disagree with us.” Fr. Kirby called it a “lie” to say that calling someone to change is antithetical to love.

“Oftentimes it’s the ones who love us the most [who] are the ones who are calling us to change our lives, to become better people, to improve ourselves, to become more virtuous, to draw closer to God,” he said.

“Love cannot accept evil,” Fr. Kirby emphasized. “True love is about seeking goodness and holiness.”

“Love does not lie, love always holds the truth, even when it is difficult,” he said, before moving into the topic of transgenderism.

Fr. Kirby said the topic had become “pressing” and is “growing in popularity” and that he had heard from his flock that they wanted advice on how to address this issue with others.

“I would never have imagined that … Nike would ask a man pretending to be a woman to try to promote sports bras to women,” Fr. Kirby said, in reference to the partnership between gender-confused male Dylan Mulvaney and the shoe company. He said he knew of a parishioner who lost their job or is being “threatened” for not endorsing gender ideology.

“In fact and I speak broadly, there is a large outreach, a large store in the area, the greater Charlotte area whose general manager was a Catholic and was told that they would put the LGBTQ+ products and propaganda right in the area of the store where the children would go. The general manager refused as a Catholic, thinking that this would be something that they could discuss. That Catholic was immediately fired and dismissed. So much for hashtag tolerance huh?” he said.

“We are living in a different age, an interesting age,” Fr. Kirby said.

He went on to explain what gender dysphoria is and how it is a mental health issue. “In a healthy society” people with gender dysphoria would be treated to help them find “peace” and become more comfortable with who they truly are, not encouraged to live as the opposite sex. But instead, society promotes “dualism.”

“Transgenderism is a grave disorder when it is acted upon. It’s an offense to God, the natural order to creation, and the proper male and female genders that have been given to us in real life,” he said.

He said that “maturity … has always been viewed as the ability to find harmony … between our bodies and our souls and the ability of our intellect and will, which is our spiritual soul, to temper and order our feelings and our experiences according to reality,” but transgenderism is opposed to this.

“Transgenderism denies all of this,” Fr. Kirby said. It says that God has made a mistake and it is up to humans to fix this.

He continued:

Our response to those who have such feelings or who have undergone sex-reassignment surgery is one of love and compassion. Regrettably, due to the militant approach of many transgender activists, it can be very difficult to welcome and accompany such people, since tolerance is oftentimes lacking in them, as they demand that we use pronouns contrary to observable reality and permit a normalization of what is not normal, such as a man wearing women’s dress or women wearing men’s dress and other such things.

However, Christians must “seek ways to manifest God’s love” and “we cannot normalize a disorder.”

“This is the witness and the encouragement we give we will not play along and allow someone to cause psychological damage to themselves because they refuse to acknowledge that there’s an issue that has to be addressed,” he said.

Fr. Kirby called on Christians not to “mock” people who struggle with gender dysphoria. “We do not do such things, we respect the dignity of everyone,” he said. This “respect” gives “credibility” to “our message,” he said.

He concluded by calling on Christians to “hold the line.”

“I encourage you to hold the line, to understand this as best you can when this is being addressed. You speak the truth but you always speak it in love,” he said. “We always seek the good of the other, we do not degrade or mock, we do not get on some high horse, we don’t seek to hurt the other, we speak the truth in love, and love is always in the service of the good that we are seeking to serve.”

LifeSiteNews has compiled testimonies from formerly gender-confused people along with insights from credential medical experts on the harms of transgenderism. This is a resource for confronting LGBT activists and helping gender-confused individuals realize the harms of chemical and surgical mutilations. Read more here.