I didn't write this, but i found it on a friend's wall and thought it pretty much hit the nail on the head. Just because someone is for traditional marrriage, that doesn't mean he or she hates gays. In fact, it means we must love them all the more. Here is the post:
difference between a person, their orientation, and their actions. The Church has a different stance on each, since each is totally distinct from the others, though interrelated.
HOMOSEXUAL PERSON - must be loved, totally. Made in the image and likeness of God. Cannot be discriminated against whatsoever. God wants every single gay person to be with Him in Heaven forever. A person can't BE a sin. A person can only COMMIT a sin. But it is never sinful to just BE a person. A person is separate from their actions, good or bad (although those actions, good or bad, help form a person into a better or worse person along the way). This truth underlies the old adage, "Hate the sin; love the sinner". A homosexual person is not second-class in any way. They are the same as everyone else in their worth, value, dignity, and must be treated as such. It is not our actions or sexual orientation that give us worth or demands that we be loved. It comes more from Whose we are rather than who we are. Again, God wants every single gay person to be with Him in Heaven forever. He died for them to open up that opportunity.
HOMOSEXUAL ORIENTATION - like hundreds of other desires in the human heart, sexual orientation can be ordered in the wrong way. It can point in the wrong direction. This is not necessarily the fault of a person. The homosexual orientation is a cross to bear, just like the propensity to lust, alcoholism, anger, laziness, etc., and literally hundreds of other desires that get can be off the mark from their original purpose. God didn’t give me this particular cross, but He gave me lots of others to work on. Having to deal with a homosexual orientation is not the WORST desire by any means. It didn’t even make the list of the 7 deadly sins. It is often blown out of proportion, to my dismay. People with this orientation deserve support, compassion, and prayers. We all have our crosses. The Catholic Church doesn’t think we should try to “change” people through some sort of gay counseling. Orientation would be difficult if not impossible to change, but BEHAVIOR can be changed. A gay person can be helped and encouraged to change behavior, but it’s a shame when the media paints this as trying to “convert gays to straights”. Again, orientation is very different than action.
HOMOSEXUAL ACTIONS – Now these, as opposed to homosexual persons and homosexual orientations, are sins. These are actions, so they are willed and done on purpose, so we are responsible for them. They CAN be avoided, whereas the orientation often cannot be. The Church wouldn’t blame someone for something they have no control over. That’s cruel. But the Church would hold us accountable for embracing it, fostering it, and acting on it.
So in summary:
Homosexual persons – not a sin. Loved by God and should be loved by all people.
Homosexual orientation – not a sin, but at the same time not ordered correctly. A great cross to bear. Compassion and support is needed, not hate or condemnation. We all have our crosses.
Homosexual actions – sinful, and should be avoided, just like all the other sins in the world.
I am pro-chicken, anti-intimidation, anti-discrimination, pro-gay (the persons -- I'm pro-ALL persons, actually, even the unborn ones), anti-homosexual behavior (the sexual actions), and pro-traditional marriage.
Keeping marriage 1 man - 1 woman does not discriminate against persons. It discriminates against a type of love - a type of relationship. Right now, any person, regardless of orientation can marry someone of the opposite sex. There is no discrimination there. But of course you say, "Well gay people don't WANT to marry someone of the opposite sex." And you are right. That's why the discrimination isn't against persons, but against certain wants, loves, desires. Desires are not made in the image of God. People are.
So you see, the Catholic Church can walk and chew gum at the same time. It is a sophisticated and nuanced view because there are different elements involved. A person is not an action, nor an orientation. They are all different, and should be treated differently.
The Catholic Church is consistent, nuanced, fair, and loving, even if not all Catholics themselves are. That’s the beauty. Even when a wicked corrupt pope has mistresses and steals money, he never issues a statement that now having mistresses or stealing is okay and morally acceptable. The standard is golden, but the people often fall short. But there is nothing wrong with the standard, just those who fail to live up to it, myself included."
“There are not one hundred people in the United States who hate The Catholic Church, but there are millions who hate what they wrongly perceive the Catholic Church to be.” ― Venerable Fulton J. Sheen