This week fashion designers Stefano Gabbana and Domenico Dolce came out against gay adoption and surrogacy. They are both gay men (they had been in a relationship for 23 years) and have previously spoken out against gay marriage. The backlash against them was swift and powerful with some very big names joining the boycott against the designers. What struck me, however, was how similar their views are to the views of the Catholic Church.
They are both Italian natives, I wonder if they were raised Catholic. I cannot find anything to either confirm nor dispute this theory, but if they were, their catechists should be proud and here’s why:
|Dolce and Gabbana’s Comments||Quotes from Catechism of the Catholic Church|
|“Procreation must be an act of love.”||“A child does not come from outside as something added on to the mutual love of the spouses, but springs from the very heart of that mutual giving, as its fruit and fulfillment.”- CCC 2366|
|“…the family is not a fad. In it there is a supernatural sense of belonging.”
|“The family is the original cell of social life. It is the natural society in which husband and wife are called to give themselves in love and in the gift of life.” – CCC 2207|
|“We did not create the family. It is the icon of the Holy Family.”||“The Christian family is a communion of persons, a sign and image of the communion of the Father and the Son in the Holy Spirit.” – CCC 2205|
|“A child needs a mother and a father. I could not imagine my childhood without my mother. I also believe that it is cruel to take a baby away from its mother.”||“A child is not something owed to one, but is a gift. The “supreme act of marriage” is a human person. A child may not be considered a piece of property, an idea to which an alleged “right to a child” would lead. In this area, only the child possesses genuine rights: the right “to be the fruit of the specific act of the conjugal love of his parents,” and “the right to be respected as a person from the moment of his conception.” – CCC 2378|
Now, there is one big difference and it is a difference that I don’t think Dolce and Gabbana intended. Like any parent, Sir Elton John was offended by any implication that his children were somehow subhuman because of their birth from a surrogate. A child is not somehow less human because of the immoral mode of their conception. Every child is a gift regardless of the circumstances of their birth. As “Begotten not Made,” an article by Dr. John M. Haas on the USCCB website states:
Human beings bear the image and likeness of God. They are to be reverenced as sacred. Never are they to be used as a means to an end, not even to satisfy the deepest wishes of an infertile couple. Husbands and wives “make love,” they do not “make babies.” They give expression to their love for one another, and a child may or may not be engendered by that act of love. The marital act is not a manufacturing process, and children are not products. Like the Son of God himself, we are the kind of beings who are “begotten, not made” and, therefore, of equal status and dignity with our parents.
Given their words quoted above, I somehow doubt that Dolce and Gabbana meant to insult Elton John’s children, but may have meant to give Elton John and people like him something to think about.