A new survey released on Monday found that young people strongly supported same-sex marriage and believed homosexuality to be moral and compatible with religion.
Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) conducted the poll which analyzed the results of 3,000 adults in the United States based on their age, religion, and ethnicity or race. The results showed that adults between the ages 18-29 were more accepting of gay marriage and theological acceptance of homosexuals.
The survey found that there was at least a 20-point generation gap between millennials, people of ages 18 to 29, and seniors, those 65-years and older, on every public policy regarding gay and lesbian rights.
Poll results show over six in ten millennials are in favor of allowing homosexual couples to marry, 69 percent supported gay adoption, 71 percent approved of civil unions, and 79 percent were in favor of employment discrimination protections.
Among the senior citizens: one in three were in favor of gay marriage, 51 percent supported civil unions and 58 percent approved of employment discrimination protections.
Of the white evangelical millennial Christians, 44 percent supported the legalization of same-sex marriage – compared to the 12 percent of evangelical senior citizens and 19 percent of evangelicals overall.
PRRI’s survey revealed that 69 percent of millennials thought religious groups alienated young people by judgment of homosexual issues. Only 37 percent of seniors felt this way.
The Christian Post spoke with the Very Rev. Dom. Daniel, Pastor of St. Patrick’s Parish in Glen Cove, New York, who said that most young adults today are not educated on the fundamentals of Christianity.
“Marriage is not something that can be defined by a consensus. It was instituted by God. It has meaning. The generation discussed here has not lived in world where things are dependent upon a set definition.”
He said people must call things by what they really are.
“Lumping together same-sex marriage with civil rights is extremely inaccurate and deceptive. It is not a question of civil rights, but rather what is the truth. The truth is Christ and cannot be determined by my will or that of the group.”
Father Daniel told CP the section of the survey that found 69 percent of millennials felt alienated by religious groups presumed that a religious body “simply makes up a teaching.”
He stated that people could not bend reality: “The Church is not free to invent teachings that fit other people’s ideas. Christians are bound by the truth.”
According to Father Daniel there is a distinction between a civil union and a marriage. The purpose of a marriage is to have children, to create a healthy family and build the kingdom of God.
“Homosexuals can never procreate,” he said. The push to ultimately redefine the word marriage “is part of the arrogance of the baby boom generation that did whatever it liked.”
He told CP that marriage is a sacred sacrament: “It is an obscenity to pretend that anything else is a marriage. I don’t know how a serious Christian who takes the Lord at his word would not understand that.”
According to Father Daniel, to call someone a homosexual is inaccurate, because that is a limited definition – that just defines specific “desires.”
“There are weaknesses in all of us but those [weaknesses] are not to be held up as virtues.”
The results of the poll have sparked an online debate arguing support for both sides of the issue. Some say it’s great that young adults are keeping an open mind – while others say religion and marriage just cannot go “hand-in-hand.”
“Good to see young people not driven by mindless ignorance and bigotry. Maybe some of the older folks could try to learn something instead of mindlessly posting Bible verses and even more mindless non-arguments?” said Ioan Lightoller.
Isfan12345 said, “Nothing will change God's laws. Society can become more tolerant and accepting of "alternate lifestyles" and any manner of permissiveness and "doing what feels good" but it will never change what God says is sin.”