Posthumous

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Eglise des Jacobins
69 rue Pargaminieres,
31000, Toulouse, France

Dear Brother Adriano,

I am taking the opportunity of a brief respite in my induction course for those recently discharged from purgatory to drop you a line about your new book.

I had hoped, on the strength of my (wholly undeserved) reputation for misogyny, to escape involvement in the politically correct liberalism which is currently wreaking havoc in the Western Church. Alas, your recent book, by attributing to me thoughts and sentiments which I have never for a moment entertained, has dropped me right in it.

Your premise is that I suppose that the procreation of children is somehow incidental or inessential to the marriage bond. Attributing the sentiment to me, you write: ‘for the heterosexual couple, each person is called to transcend him or herself in love of the other, and this not through openness to pro-creation, which is not part of the essence of marriage, but through indissoluble love for one’s spouse.’ On the contrary, in the Commentary on the Sentences, I state quite clearly: ‘the good of children is the principal end of marriage.’

I was delighted, in the turbulence of the sixteenth century, to find that my view was sustained even among the separated brethren. (Herr Luther and Dr Cranmer both produced memorable statements to that effect.)

You go on to claim, procreation apart, that the moral good entailed in heterosexual relationships of self-giving love can as well apply to relationships between persons of the same sex.

The fact is that not only are you mistaken in your premise, but you are misguided in your belief that your conclusion follows from it.

You suppose (on another misreading of my tex), that homosexual sentiments arise from the very soul and nature of the person; that they are, in consequence, wholesome and good and that the Church should celebrate and bless them.

I think, on the contrary, that we differ fundamentally about what is ‘natural’ and what is ‘Nature’. Of course, if every action could be attributed to the very ‘nature’ of the actor, it would be possible to exonerate all the crimes and follies of mankind.  But Aristotle and I have always upheld a more objective approach to the natural world.

If you care to discuss these matters further I am usually available at the above address,

With all good wishes,
Thomas.

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