I was waiting for attribution for the stuff you posted.
Here are links, provided on another e-list....
"On public and easily accessible Internet postings, Orthodox clergymen --
including OCA priests --
repeat disgusting and discredited theories about
the etiology of same-sex attraction
liken gay people to "old perverted men who love little boys"
tell Orthodox Christians that homosexuality "should make our stomachs turn and make us vomit"
call for "spiritual warfare" against those in the Church who advocate a more
restrained pastoral approach
and accuse those who speak up for gay people of being "homosexual
activists," publicly expressing hope that they will leave the Orthodox faith"
I noticed the same phenomenon too. When OCA News published the reflection of Father Arida, which was a musing about the pastoral issues that would arise when/if a same-sex couple comes to one of churches, it seemed that some folks' minds shut down and they started talking about the implication of the reflection rather than what was actually written. Same thing with Father Vinogradov's reflection. I can understand and accept that in the Anglican communion, it started with questions and reflections about pastoral concerns. What I could not understand was the vehemence, the fear and even hatred.
Having now heard the videos, I'm not sure if this isn't what is going on here.
One thing that must be conceded to Fr. Trenham:you will hardly ever see such moral indignation than what you see from the supporters of "gay marriage" when you tell them you are opposed. It is not a question of "live and let live" versus "imposing your morality on everyone." The first legal gay couple in America (who married after 14 years together IIRC, and divorced in a year or so, with Orders of Protection and everything) were asked, right after getting the license, if they would accept civil unions. "No," they replied "marriage says that society and everyone accepts us as a couple." For them to say they are not trying to impose their morality on us is disingenuous. They're free to try to do so, but it's mano a mano, and that's no place for whining. The judges have lost their minds, and mostly the people, by and large, have kept their sanity and accept morality as a rational basis of law. He does not, however, demonstrate that rational basis.
I have to try to disentangle what Fr. Trenham actually says here, from what I have seen him write elsewhere, to get an accurate picture. He does have a rather prescriptive, narrow, definition of "civilized." I don't care for such assertions from the Left, and I'm not much fonder of them from the Right. He does have a rather broad definition of perversion (he writes, for instance, that "sexual toys are sexual perversions and are always sinful, even for married Christians." He doesn't say, but I wonder, does he include lingerie among "sexual toys" let alone, for instance, body paint
? Why or why not?). Well, one issue that he doesn't address is many civilized societies have been quite fine with polygamy: is that not a perversion of the created order?
He is quite wrong that the Church has never dealt with this, and that the Greeks abhorred anal intercourse (to be fair, Fr. Trenham explicitely teaches "Anal and oral intercourse...are sexual perversions and are always sinful, even for married Christians," to which he means, of course, heterosexuals. He also states that rather ex cathedra, giving no rational nor reason for his position). For proof of that:
WARNING: VERY GRAPHIC DEPICTION OF ANCIENT GREEKS ENGAGED IN ACTIVITY FR. TRENHAM CLAIMS THEY ABHORRED.http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/f8/Wiki_anal_sex.jpghttp://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/0c/Warren_Cup_BM_GR_1999.4-26.1_n2.jpghttp://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/ee/Warren_Cup_BM_GR_1999.4-26.1_n1.jpg
The first historical mention of the performance of same-sex marriages occurred during the early Roman Empire. For instance, Emperor Nero is reported to have engaged in a marriage ceremony with one of his male slaves. Emperor Elagabalus "married" a Carian slave named Hierocles. It should be noted, however, that conubium existed only between a civis Romanus and a civis Romana (that is, between a male Roman citizen and a female Roman citizen), so that a so-called marriage between two Roman males (or with a slave) would have no legal standing in Roman law (apart, presumably, from the arbitrary will of the emperor in the two aforementioned cases). Furthermore, "matrimonium is an institution involving a mother, mater. The idea implicit in the word is that a man takes a woman in marriage, in matrimonium ducere, so that he may have children by her." Still, the lack of legal validity notwithstanding, there is a consensus among modern historians that same-sex relationships existed in ancient Rome, but the exact frequency and nature of "same-sex unions" during that period is obscure. In 342 AD Christian emperors Constantius II and Constans issued a law in the Theodosian Code (C. Th. 9.7.3) prohibiting same-sex marriage in Rome and ordering execution for those so married.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gay_marriage#Ancient
The issue of Roman law not recognizing marriage with non-citizens (Julius Caesar's son Caesarion, for instance, could not inherit because his mother, Cleopatra, wasn't a Roman citizen and therefore ipso facto she and Julius could not be married) is the equivalent of the oft brought up issue of anti-miscegenation laws. As the Theodosian Code (Theodosius II) shows
Impp. Constantius et Constans aa. ad populum. Cum vir nubit in feminam, femina viros proiectura quid cupiat, ubi sexus perdidit locum, ubi scelus est id, quod non proficit scire, ubi venus mutatur in alteram formam, ubi amor quaeritur nec videtur, iubemus insurgere leges, armari iura gladio ultore, ut exquisitis poenis subdantur infames, qui sunt vel qui futuri sunt rei. Dat. prid. non. dec. Mediolano, proposita Romae XVII kal. ianuar. Constantio III et Constante II aa. conss. (342 dec. 4).http://ancientrome.ru/ius/library/codex/theod/liber09.htm
Emperors Constantius and Constance [the former Arian, the latter Orthodox btw] to the archives, to the people.
When a man marries as though he were the woman, [as] the woman offering to men what he desires, where sex/gender loses [its] place, where the crime is such that it is better not to know it, where Venus is changed into a different form, where love is sought but not seen, we order laws to arise, justice to be armed with an avenging sword, so that the disgraced who are or in future shall be guilty may be subjected to exquisite penalties.
the Church has dealt with this before. Of course, the Church only had to reiterate the proper context of sex being marriage and refuse to marry same sex couples. She had no power to influence the powers that be/were until perhaps 244 (the crypto-Christian Emperor Philip the Arab), perhaps 313, but most definitely after 381. And of course she did exercise that influence, and rightly so. There is no reason why she shouldn't do so today (the Orthodox should vote, IMHO).
It's rather odd Fr. Trenham brings the Greco-Romans up both admitting that they praised homosexuality (yes, a literature exists) and claiming that "even they didn't accept it." Some obviously did, and some obviously did not. As Solomon said in scripture, "nothing is new under the sun."
Father also doesn't see the distinction when he claims that the Greco-Romans would never imagine calling homosexual relations "marriage" (although they did) because they were not so "opposed to children." The problem he has here is that he sees marriage as a means to an end, i.e. propogation of the race
Sexual relations are also designed to serve as marital glue. "For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and the two shall become one flesh." The physical union of intercourse is designed to strengthen the marital bond by both enacting a very real physical unity and by producing a child, who is a creation not from only husband or wife alone, but from both the husband and wife together.
....Sexual relations are also designed to bring forth children. For the married sexual relations are not only an unspeakable blessing but one of the main ways to fulfill God's commandment to "be fruitful and multiply." The procreation of children is the duty of Christian spouses, and can no more be avoided or tampered with than can the other purposes of sexual relations.
Those not prepared to assume the responsibility of sexual relations ought not engage in them. The intense pleasure of sexual relations are designed by God to promote the procreation of children, since the difficulties inherent in childbearing and Christian parenting might otherwise tempt spouses to avoid this solemn responsibility.
Today's contraception culture strikes at the heart of the God-designed unity of pleasure and responsibility, opting to embrace pleasure while avoiding the responsibility of childbearing and calling it "family planning." Such planned parenthood and family planning is in reality planned barrenhood and family banning, and as such has been vigorously forbidden by the Holy Fathers throughout the history of the Church. St. Paul teaches that married women find their salvation in and through childbearing
which dovetails with the Greco-Roman view that saw marriage as duty to the state, who had a claim on the children as creatures of the state. Hence the fines and penalties the Empire levied against the unmarried and childless (which the holy Emperor Constantine had to remove to allow monasticism to legally flourish (interestingly, Czar Peter, Czarina Catherine etc. reimposed such notions and restricted the monastic profession in Holy Mother Russia). Such views, however, are not in accord with marriage as Christ elevated it to a mystery and returned it to its original institution. (Note: the Lord says "cleave." He says nothing about being fruitful and multiplying, which is the basis the Saduccees were using to bring marriage down).
He is correct about those preaching "tolerance." As a group, they have no interest in marriage as an institution. He touches on, but only in passing, however, that there the homosexual lobby is not alone in this: many feminists denounce marriage as patriarchal and stiffling, and have no interest in building it up, or motherhood or fatherhood. To that he could have, and should have, added the advocates of 'no fault divorce,' which more than any other thing has brought us to the point where gay marriage is a possibility.
It is obvious that Fr. Trenham has a dislike of anal sex, even to the absurd assertion that the Greco-Romans didn't indulge in it, and hence the Fathers never had to deal with the issue. When he says "perverted/perversion," I have to admit I get the impression that he is trying to draw on/exploit some nausea that we are all supposed to have, the "ick factor" that even the homosexual lobby admit is their biggest problem in promoting their agenda. Well, some of us don't have an "ick factor" on that (at leat the basic anal sex, variation on that theme such as gerbils may be a different story), especially when it is a married heterosexual couple engaged in such activity (which, I'm sure, would turn Fr. Trenham's stomach just as fast as two men in a bath house), and he hasn't explained why we should. One can argue against gay marriage without such pandering to personal dislikes. In the context of a Sunday sermon, one should.
If he had left it to the first half of the sermon, it wouldn't be bad. His real troubles start in the second half: I'd love to know how parents explained what Father was talking about "that violent interchange of blood" (it would be more amusing if, in defending his read on the Greco-Romans and anal sex, he got into frottage, intercrural sex, oral sex etc. which-if Fr. Trenham knows anything of what he talking about about that segment that did abhore anal sex what sex they got into-would make up what he referred to and admitted in his reference to Classical Pedestry. Btw, up until the 60's at least, studies/anecdotes show homosexual men prefered frottate, oral sex etc. over anal sex, and even now only about half engage in anal sex regularly and about a quarter never engaging in it).
Also, I don't have any evidence that Father Trenham acknowledges the existence of Lesbians.
He doesn't say that homosexuals are all dirty old men seeking boys-in fact he is saying somewhat the opposite-but I can see how that is easily confused. What he posits is that the N.A.M.B.L.A folks' moral argument is immoral, and then likens the homosexual argument to that. He doesn't think homosexuality=pedophilia.
The study he cites on homosexual marraige being the equal to heterosexual marriage is corrobrated elsewhere: in Scandinavia few gays take advantage of the ability to get a license, and the studies show do not value fidelity as a basis of it (but then that implicates no fault heteresexual divorce too, though I'm sure Father Trenham is against that too). He is also correct that the children being raised in a "gay marriage," if they are heard, will and already have things to say. But then the children of divorce have lots to say too. It would have been better served if Father Trenham linked gay marriage more with the problems with easy divorce, as they are aspects of the same problem:moving away from the norm of one man, one woman united in marriage for life, raising the children their love brings.
As for the complaints
Open letter to the Holy Synod from 15 college students and young adults
August 12, 2011 -- Martyr Anicetus of Nicomedia
To: Holy Synod of Bishops, Orthodox Church in America
From: 15 Orthodox college students and young adults
(Letter to follow in hard copy)
Your Beatitude, Your Eminence, Your Graces,
Though our Lord never condoned sin, He nonetheless ministered to the
most vulnerable and marginal, reserving His public condemnations for
those who victimized them. As Orthodox college students and young
adults, we are writing to express our grave concerns about the state of
public Orthodox discourse on a highly sensitive pastoral issue that
especially affects young people in our Church. In the wake of a string
of suicides by American students persecuted for their homosexuality -- a
tragic trend which has not left our Church untouched -- our consciences
do not permit us to ignore the language of revilement directed by some
in the Church towards gay people.
On public and easily accessible Internet postings, Orthodox clergymen --
including OCA priests -- repeat disgusting and discredited theories
about the etiology of same-sex attraction; liken gay people to “old
perverted men who love little boys”; tell Orthodox Christians that
homosexuality “should make our stomachs turn and make us vomit”; call
for “spiritual warfare” against those in the Church who advocate a more
restrained pastoral approach; and accuse those who speak up for gay
people of being “homosexual activists,” publicly expressing hope that
they will leave the Orthodox faith.
not all those hagiographies of martyrs to the homosexual cause turned out to be what they were made out to be; at least in the case of Fr. Trenham in this sermon his accusers accuse him of "liken[ing] gay people to “old perverted men who love little boys”" when he likens their moral reasoning to those who "justify" the actions of such “old perverted men who love little boys” in an effort to discredit Fr. Trenham and disgust their target audience of him (something that he helps along with his rhetoric in several places), etc. My question to our 15 college students and young adults, can they seperate a sinner from his sin, or must you condone the sin to save the sinner?