In 2006, Sister Margaret Farley, an award-winning scholar, published “Just Love: A Framework for Christian Sexual Ethics.” The Vatican recently denounced the book, mostly because of how Farley presented her opinions about same-sex relationships and female masturbation. Farley asserted that same-sex marriage could be an important step to reducing the hatred, rejection, and stigmatization aimed at gays and lesbians. The Vatican responded that opinions such as these were “unacceptable” since homosexual acts are “acts of grave depravity” and “intrinsically disordered.” In talking about female masturbation, Farley claimed that many women enjoyed masturbation and that she believed it can help teach women about their bodies and sexual pleasure.
Given the enormous pressure to conform to the Vatican’s teachings, I applaud Sister Margaret Farley for thinking outside the box and for having enough strength in her convictions to share them publicly. I think it is time for organized religion to take a good look at the importance of sexuality and began talking about it. It can only make the world a better place.
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