POZNAŃ, Poland (ChurchMilitant.com) - A cardinal archbishop is decrying a "gender-equality" charter adopted by a Polish city council that includes an undercurrent of gender ideology.
Cardinal Stanisław Gądecki, archbishop of Poznań, is coming down against the infiltration of this form of post-Christian philosophy infiltrating Poland, one of the few remaining bastions of Catholic culture in Europe. The European Charter for Equality of Women and Men (ECEWM), the cardinal says, will "impact how citizens raise their children and spread gender ideology."
The Poznań City Council adopted the charter on Feb. 11, in spite of protests from social activists and members of the conservative Law and Justice Party on the city council. It was passed, Gądecki noted, without appropriate consultation or debate with those counselors who were against it, and without listening to parents and other citizens of the city who were opposed.
Although the cardinal believes the charter is commendably sensitive to inequalities that are played out in society between men and women, he is concerned that it "gives new, ideologized meaning to words like family, equality and tolerance," he said, "therefore questioning the fundamental role of family in social life and interfering in an inappropriate way with human sexuality and its development."
"In a spirit of responsibility for the safety of families, children and young people, as well as care for the good of future generations and the flourishing of our region, I express my deep unease at the adoption of European Charter of Equality by the Poznań City Council," Gądecki wrote. "In the opinion of many Poznanian families, NGOs [non-governmental organizations] and experts, it interferes in a serious way with the constitutional right of parents to raise their children according to their beliefs," he continued.
On a more practical note, the archbishop added that the charter will also cause an "ideological interference" in the development of businesses and could be a threat to economic freedom since it advocates promoting people for advancement for reasons other than their qualifications. Gądecki stated it was worrisome that the document will regulate the business of the entire city.
The charter throughout is fixated on "gender equality" and the eradication of traditional gender roles born of difference and love, which nurture and uphold the family and society. Subtleties in the charter's verbiage are seen to be openings to further anti-family regulations.
A 19-year-old Polish student, Bartosz Skrzypczak from Poznań, told LifeSiteNews that he agrees with Abp. Gądecki. "The archbishop is right ... I share his feelings and fears about the European Charter of Equality, a term that always reminds me of the French Revolution, which wanted to destroy the Church," Skrzypczak said. "Reading this statement of the European Union, I find it very dangerous."
Pope Francis sees gender ideology as one of the greatest evils in the modern world. While his rhetoric about homosexuality is at times unclear and ambiguous, Francis has had no problem clearly articulating his condemnation of "transgenderism," as has the Vatican Congregation for Catholic Education.
The Pope writes that "biological sex and the socio-cultural role of sex (gender) can be distinguished but not separated," and therefore the young "need to be helped to accept their own body as it was created."
In 2012, Pope Benedict XVI weighed in, criticizing ideologies that deny the "pre-ordained duality of man and woman," and thus deny the family as "a reality established by creation." Benedict also highlighted the atheism underlying the denial of created reality: "When the freedom to be creative becomes the freedom to create oneself, then necessarily the Maker himself is denied and ultimately man too is stripped of his dignity as a creature of God, as the image of God at the core of his being."
Scripture, Tradition and philosophy witness with clarity against the ideological undercurrents of the ECEWM document. God's design and plan for men and women is clear throughout the Old and New Testaments. Only an anthropological dualism that sees body and soul as different substances, like that which was made popular by French philosopher René Descartes, could support such an ideology. The Catholic Church, however, teaches unequivocally that body and soul are a single composite of one substance, the soul being the very form of the body, as formulated in the paragraphs 362-365 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
Cardinal Gądecki asked the entire archdiocese for prayers for the city of Poznań and for those in power, so that their actions "do not lead to the questioning of God's truth."