Fr. Meconi: It is an honor to be with you. Your reflections on the beauty of Humanae Vitae, and the Church’s incessant teaching on the divine will for married love, have helped many come to see what Christian marriage really means. Recently, it was announced that you are involved in sponsoring a conference “Welcoming and Accompanying: Pastoral Approaches to Same Sex Issues.” When is this event and who can be a part of it?
Dr. Smith: Yes, it will happen on August 10-12 at the St. John Inn in Plymouth, MI. It is being co-sponsored by the Archdiocese of Detroit, and Courage International, with the help of a very generous grant from the Our Sunday Visitor. The Catholic Medical Association is also a sponsor. We have over thirty speakers, some very well-known, and others who should be well-known, and soon will be. Cardinal Collins from Toronto, Archbishop Vigneron from Detroit, and Bishop Byrnes, auxiliary from Detroit, will be celebrants and homilists at the Masses. Among the speakers are: Ralph Martin, Mary Healy, Peter Herbeck, Teresa Tomeo, Jennifer Roback Morse, Fr. John Riccardo, Bob Schuchts, Dr. Tim Flanigan, Dan Mattson, and many more who have prepared very thoughtful and timely talks. We are providing as comprehensive a treatment as we can; we have talks laying out a strong Christian anthropology; we have philosophical approaches both from a natural law and a personalist perspective. We will hear the inspiring and touching testimonies of some who have been active in same sex sexual relationships, but now are devotedly seeking holiness. We will hear from spiritual and psychological counselors who help persons living with SSA deal with some of the wounds connected to their attractions. We will learn about the strategies used by those who have been promoting acceptance of same-sex sexual behavior, and about strategies which dioceses can use to educate the faithful.