Society functions on compromise, always has, always will, you get two groups vying for attention (like 3 year olds) or for their point of view and the wrangle can go on forever until the two groups eventually stratify and go their separate ways (like the Church of England) or someone, somewhere, gives a little ground, and then someone of the other side gives a little ground and then eventually saner minds prevail and compromise is achieved, or so you’d hope in a sane society.
[I know I may have just suggested that the Church of England isn't a part of sane society but no analogy is perfect or maybe it is, no short answer on that one.]
And on the subject of Gay Marriage we’ve had the shouting, we’ve had the wrangling, we’ve had the morons suggesting that any marriage that doesn’t produce kids isn’t real, how about the compromise?
Gays, Catholic officialdom will never recognise your civil unions as marriage, never, ever, ever. Never, not at all. Not ever. Never, Ain’t going to happen. You know that, I know that, the Church knows that, everyone knows that. Never.
Catholics, you aren’t going to recognise civil unions as marriage, we know that. If anyone tries to take you to court over that then they have de facto taken the law of man over the law of God and excommunicated themselves, you can already refuse to officiate declarations of union between non Christians. If any court tried it on over that one then most of Europe would erupt.
So let it go. They can have their civil unions and call it marriage, they can call it pogo sticks if they want, you won’t be recognising it. They can think “Oh yeah, sticking it to the man”, and you can think “You think we actually care?”
Happy to help.