One of the most powerful members of the Catholic church in the Philippines has said it is ok for gay men to marry lesbian women.
‘May a lesbian marry a gay man? My answer is "yes" because in that instance the capacity to consummate the union is there. The anatomy is there. The possibility of conception is there,’ Archbishop Oscar Cruz said at a church forum yesterday, Philippine Daily Inquirer reports.
Filipina LGBT rights activist Angie Umbac told Gay Star News she is ‘speechless’ at the comments of the Archbishop, who is a member of the powerful Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines.
Umbac, who campaigns for Filipino LGBT rights organization Rainbow Rights, said that people should marry ‘not because their parts "fit"’ but ‘for the right reasons’.
‘I’d like to believe that human beings are more than the sum of their parts,’ said Umbac. ‘How about the brain? The heart? The soul? At what point do love, free will, and self-respect come in? They are important components of marriage that the Archbishop’s careless statement choose to ignore.’
The retired Archbishop was clear on the Catholic church’s opposition to gay marriage and to gay civil unions.
‘For the Church, even if you turn it upside down and call it by another name, it would still not be marriage,’ Cruz said. ‘For the Church, even if a hundred (judges) bless a same-sex wedding, it would still not be effective.’
The Catholic church remains a stubborn obstacle to LGBT rights in the Philippines, the only country in the world where divorce is still illegal. But despite this, sexual orientation and gender identity minorities are more visible and LGBT right groups are more active and vibrant in the islands nation than in its Asian neighbors.