In the first gathering of the Love & Responsibility 2022 summer series, Cardinal Dolan told the participants the passion between a husband and wife “is a glitter of God’s passion for us. God’s love for us is faithful.”
The annual series that features speakers and musicians for young adults takes place Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. through Aug. 9 in the courtyard of Immaculate Conception Church, 414 E. 14th St. in Manhattan. Sponsored by the archdiocesan Office of Young Adult Outreach, the gatherings are free and open to the public.
The June 21 event was held in the parish hall because of rain.
The cardinal often speaks at Young Adult events and celebrates the monthly Young Adult Masses during Lent and Advent at St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
“I’m very comfortable and happy to be in your company, and I appreciate very much the invitation,” he told attendees and organizers.
He went on to talk about the topic of the series, love and responsibility, “which you know is a euphemism for sex; a nice way to say let’s talk about sex…It is godlyand good and noble and beautiful if, of course, we use it as God intended, which is true of all His gifts. If we use them correctly…they speak to the dignity of the human person. If we misuse them, they’re bad.”
The cardinal noted that in Scripture God “compared His love for the people of Israel, His love for us as just like love between a man and a woman…How can we better understand God’s love for us? One of the more beautiful ways is to look at how a man and a woman love each other in lifelong, life-giving, faithful marriage. If we look at them, we get a hint of the way God loves us.”
He added, “That explains the Church’s teaching on love, responsibility, sex and marriage. The love between a man and a woman in marriage, therefore, should have the same characteristics as the way God loves us…God’s love for us is personal; it is passionate; it is eternal. God’s love for us is faithful; it is lifelong; it is life-giving love.”
Citing the virtues of chastity and purity, he also spoke of “the law of the gift” and “sacrificial love,” and how these are noble and good, unlike “the law of the get,” which violates the true meaning, the godly meaning of love and responsibility.
Emily Bittner, 26, who attends Mass at Our Saviour Church in Manhattan, was among those who attended the gathering.
Shortly after the cardinal’s talk and before the social time, Ms. Bittner, who works as an accountant in Manhattan, told CNY, “My roommate and I are here because we saw that Cardinal Dolan was going to speak; and we plan to attend the rest of the summer...His message was great, getting that message out there, the Church’s teachings about sex and marriage.”
William Kaye, 19, a member of Precious Blood parish in Milford, Conn., who was visiting friends in Manhattan, said, “This was a very good topic. I’m happy that I attended.” Kaye, who recently finished his sophomore year at Georgia Tech, added he was grateful for the cardinal’s insights and that such events help him grow in his Catholic faith.
Colin Nykaza, director of the Young Adult Outreach office, gave remarks of welcome. The parish pastor, Msgr. Kevin Nelan, dean of Manhattan South, offered a welcome blessing.