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I was in a recent SSM discussion with a distinguished Church of England priest who was quite concerned about the “natural rights of children”. These are some of my own thoughts.

Much is made of, “The natural rights of children to know and be loved and brought up by their biological parents”.

Er, of course! Hard to argue with that … in theory.

It’s rather like saying that children have the natural rights to be loved and not killed or maimed in a war. Or not to suffer malnutrition. Or not to be sold by parents into slavery. Or not to have to flee as refugees. Or not to be born in an animal stable. Or not to be found in the bullrushes. Or not to be sacrificed to the deities. etc etc. Not to mention being victims of divorce, drugs, alcoholism and recession etc.

The reality is that many, many children cannot rely on their ‘natural rights’ because, on Earth, shit happens! So we try to solve problems using our brains. We have state institutions, we have foster homes, we have welfare camps, we have NGOs, we even have Catholic boarding-schools, like the one I went to when I was 8-years-old, Ruperstwood at Sunbury.

We also have many childless and loving people who are willing to adopt children who are not quite able to get their ‘natural rights’.

Would same sex marriage be a helpful solution for some of these kids or would it be a further burden to them?

Thought experiment:
At that time, Jesus was talking to his group of followers and three little kids came to him to seek his help. One was an orphan, one was the child of a leper, the third was a servant in the local Roman garrison. They asked Jesus, “We have no parents who can look after us. Can we turn to others who are not our parents to care for us?” What did Jesus say?

I can’t help thinking Jesus said, “YES. It is okay”.

This is just based on what I was taught about his weltanschauung, his way of thinking and teaching. To use a reference I would quote Matt 18:1-5 …

Listen! I’m telling you disciples the truth now. Unless you change and become like little kids, YOU won’t ever be getting into the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever makes himself as little as this little kid, he’s the one who is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And anyone who welcomes one little kid like this one, in my name, also welcomes me.


Hmmm. “anyone who welcomes one little kid like this one, in my name, also welcomes me”. I find nothing equivocal about Jesus’ view on the primacy of the care of children.

It would have been the perfect opportunity for him to have said, “anyone, except those who are not legally married, who welcomes one little kid like this one, in my name, also welcomes me”. But, he didn’t.

I think Jesus was well aware that many of his gathered followers, to whom he gave this fundamental teaching, were not legally married.

Perhaps it would be better for the kids if many Christians focused a little more on Jesus’ actual teachings.