Colorado’s Catholic Archdiocese of Denver is being forced to defend its longstanding policies against admitting students who have rejected their biological sex. After the article was published on November 7 in The Denver Post outlined the policy of the school system, which advises against the enrollment of students who self-identify as transgender.
A 2019 document outlined the policy, which offers guidance to administrators on navigating hot-button issues and Church teaching. Other guidelines outlined in the policy include not funding or promoting groups that encourage “an LGBTQ identity (rather than embracing their primary identity as a child of God.).”
“A Catholic school cannot affirm a student’s identity as transgender gender-nonconforming, non-binary, gender-fluid, gender-queer, or any other term that rejects the reality of the student’s given male or female sexual identity; any asserted identity that rejects the reality of biological sex is incompatible with Christian anthropology,” reads the document.
The Archdiocese of Denver clarifies that regardless of sexuality or sex, all persons should be “treated with dignity and kindness.” However, the school system deemed the issues resulting from a disconnect between Catholic theology and transgender ideology “unworkable.”
“Practically speaking, when parents are relying on secular medical or psychological advice that stresses parental affirmation of the child’s desired identity as the only way to support the child, then the situation will prove unworkable.”
The archdiocese’s document continues, “Practically speaking, when parents are relying on secular medical or psychological advice that stresses parental affirmation of the child’s desired identity as the only way to support the child, then the situation will prove unworkable. Even if parents and child express willingness to comply with relevant school rules in the short term, the situation is not workable because the family and the school are working from irreconcilable premises and moving towards incompatible goals.”
Some have left the Catholic faith over differences
According to an article by the Denver Post, Sally Odenheimer, a former Catholic who left the church over LGBT issues, said,” I felt if I was staying in the church, that meant I was supporting their ideology, but in order for things to change, I have to be involved.”
“People are leaving in droves. I came back because they are not going to win. There are more of us who do not agree with them, and we will not let them do this,” Odenheimer continued.
Another archdiocese critic, Tricia Williams, agreed, saying that the church was “separating them from God” and “hurting people” by following the policies.
The Vatican released a document titled “Male and Female He Created Them” the same year the Denver Archdiocese’s document was released — 2019. The document explains the church’s teaching that gender theory “speaks of a gradual process of denaturalization, that is, a move away from nature and towards an absolute option for the decision of the feelings of the human subject.”
Pope Francis has long been an outspoken critic of gender ideology and quoted his predecessor Benedict XVI in calling it “the epoch of sin against God the Creator.”
Pope Francis spoke to a group of Polish bishops about the issue in 2016, saying, “Today, in schools, they are teaching this to children — to children — that everyone can choose their gender.”
The pontiff told the bishops, “Speaking with Pope Benedict, who is well and has a clear mind, he was telling me: ‘Holiness, this is the epoch of sin against God the Creator.’ He’s intelligent! God created man and woman; God created the world this way, this way, this way, and we are doing the opposite.”