I get that my church is against gay marriage (and any other kind of marriage that isn’t heterosexual monogamy). They’re against gay marriage because they’re against sex outside of Holy Matrimony and I get the religious reasons why. The Holy Tradition (which includes, and validates, Holy Scripture) mandates that marriage is between one man and one woman and that it is sinful to have sex outside of marriage.
That’s great…for Christians (or Orthodox Christians if you want to get persnickety). I mean, look, I get that subjectivity is a poor basis for morality and that moral relativism is laughable. I get that the Church should stand for what it believes and not shirk it’s responsibility as a moral compass. I get that the Church shouldn’t change what it means by Holy Matrimony to make a few people happy.
But, in the context of a secular or plural society, where there are lots of people of differing opinions that are trying to pass laws to govern themselves, I don’t know why we really get involved. There are a billion sinful things people can do that are legal — and we keep inventing them. I don’t understand thinking that policies on political issues that require everyone to be Orthodox are good in those kinds of societies.
Personally, I’m a fan of “as long as you’re consenting adults, I don’t care what you do.” I don’t have a problem with polygamy or homosexuality as a legal thing carrying the same legal benefits as a church marriage and I don’t see why the church really does either.
Does it condone the behavior? No. It’s the state admitting that it doesn’t have any real hold on consensual, adult sexuality and that it can’t fairly discriminate against those people. It doesn’t condemn the behavior, but it really doesn’t do much of that now anyway. *That’s* the role the Church plays.
Does it normalize the behavior? Not really, no. Media outlets normalize (and sell) behavior and that’s already happened here.
Does it make the behavior right? Not unless you believe in moral relativism and the Church clearly doesn’t.