SHREWSBURY, England, March 19, 2014 (LifeSiteNews.com) – In an interview touching on life, family, faith, and culture, Shrewsbury Bishop Mark Davies told LifeSiteNews that despite perceptions of hate and prejudice, the real reason why Christians oppose same-sex “marriage” is out of love.
“It is often said that there is a prejudicial hate, a sense of discrimination [that] lies behind the teachings of the Church and the Christian understanding of marriage,” he said. On the contrary, “what we need to always emphasize is that what lies behind this is love – a genuine love for every person. That love very much extends, by the Church, to those who experience same-sex attraction.”
With same-sex “marriage” having passed into law last July and come into force in England last week, Bishop Davies said that the battle must continue. “The essential battle is now for the very foundations of marriage, its identity in the union of man and woman, a lasting union, a union which is open to life and thereby the foundation of the family.”
The Bishop of Shrewsbury acknowledged a “growing intolerance” experienced by Christians in England, but urged the faithful to speak the truth nonetheless. “We need the courage to give witness wherever we are in society and not to be inhibited from speaking that truth, which has to be spoken in love,” he said.
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His prescriptions for engagement include Pope John Paul II’s famous adage: ‘Do not be afraid.’ “We’ve got to have confidence that the essential goodness, the truth will attract the generations to come,” said Davies. “What we are doing now is not for this time only but for the generations who will follow us.”
“By giving witness to this truth by showing the goodness of the message that we share we are helping to encourage those who will follow us with those same foundations that we have received,” he said.
He added, “Our society, the world of our time, requires this witness from Christians which originally attracted and fascinated people into the Church.”
Asked where Christians are to get the strength to remain steadfast under sometimes severe pressure from society, Bishop Davies replied, “For good reason, a bishop carries a cross.”
“The cross is certainly a sign of sharing the suffering of Christ but it is also the promise of victory,” he said. “And in that fidelity in standing with Christ – those people of conscience and good will – the cross carries with it the promise of victory as far as we remain with him in truth and in love.”