First, we’ve just noted that “exclusivity” is not a feature of spiritual friendship.Second, as mentioned above regarding the temporal vows of of friendship is superfluous to the meaning St.Aelred’s writings that favors the experience of “spiritual friendship” among those with same-sex attraction. Chief among the errors of the New Homophiles’ views on St.

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Perhaps that’s enough to make their friendship “beautiful”—but what makes a friendship Rewind the clock back beyond World-War-II Morocco to a twelfth-century Cistercian abbey of Rievaulx in North Yorkshire, England, and you’ll find an answer. Aelred, now known to some as the “gay abbot of Rievaulx” and author of a notable work titled Well, no direct evidence at all, actually. Aelred had same-sex attraction, thus causing some “gay-friendly” organizations to refer to him as their patron saint.

Enter those whom readers will recognize as the “New Homophiles”—they, too, are partial to St.

Campanella takes the Church’s belief that marriage is indissoluble as her starting point.

Marriage is not, as modern society perceives it to be, a contract which can be broken nor is it simply an ideal.

Aelred’s understanding of genuine (spiritual) friendship, its testing and forming, and its “consummation” which can only be realized among the “perfect” (those who achieve abiding spiritual progress toward that deep union with God).

Just as authentic Christian spiritual perfection regarding union with God transcends the temporal by giving the “perfect” a foretaste of the eternal Beatific Vision, so too spiritual friendship is reality for those united in this friendship.

(So, what about the “vowed friendships,” solemnized by publicly professed vows culminating in the Eucharist, for same-sex “friends”?

The New Homophiles are proposing that two people with SSA should be able to publicly vow lifelong commitment to one another, within their Church communities. Aelred’s writing doesn’t support this notion, for two main reasons.

The Key to Understanding “Eros”: It’s About Time So, can “same-sex eros,” as claimed by some of the New Homophiles, enter into St. Even the authentic eros of conjugal love is a the complete and eternal realization of our union with God.

Aelred’s notion of “spiritual friendship,” so long as same-sex sex acts are avoided? The Catholic Church’s understanding of authentic eros is that it complementarity and reciprocity. Aelred, in contrast, makes it The mark of the union of “spiritual friendship” is that, once entered into, it becomes a never-ceasing reality that lasts beyond death and into eternal life. Aelred says, an expression of the “Sabbath rest” of true love rooted in the yoke of Jesus Christ (cf. It’s only through such a union with the Divine that we can experience an endless “spiritual friendship” that begins in time but lasts forever.

Thus, you can take that forms the heart of monastic life and spirituality.