Quote of the day

“I love our priests, and honor them, but it’s hard to argue that an unfaithful straight priest is better than a faithful gay one. I would rather see a homosexually-inclined happy, celibate priest be able to live in honesty about who he is, than learn about a hetero priest living a lie. A faithful priest is a faithful priest. A happy, joy-filled priest serves the body of Christ in a powerful way.

Allow me to anticipate the argument that the priesthood cannot be open to people the Eastern religions call “imbalanced” and our church calls “disordered.” Find me a priest who doesn’t have some sort of disorder, whether it’s an eating disorder, or an attention-seeking disorder, or a disorder of social ineptness, a hearing disorder, or even a learning disorder. Our priests are human, imperfect, faulty and sometimes broken, just like the rest of us. I think as a church we do ourselves and our dear priests a disservice by pretending that one particular disorder is not represented among them — and we do our gay brothers and sisters a disservice, too, by rendering them only partly visible.”

– The Anchoress.

Read the whole thing.

Comments

  1. naturgesetz says:

    I think she’s right.

    But I suspect many homosexually-inclined priests would be worried about the reaction among their parishioners if their orientation became known.

  2. oldestof9 says:

    But I thought they were only unbalanced/disordered if they PRACTICE homosexuallity?

    AND I would submit that hetro sex outside of marriage in unbalanced/disordered. Maybe not in the same way, but unbalanced/disordered nonetheless.

    Peace to all

  3. oldestof9 says:

    …oh by the way, “right on” Anchoress

  4. naturgesetz:

    You may be right but I am reminded of Father Mychal Judge, the Franciscan friar, who was chaplain to the New York firefighters and became the first recorded casualty of the 9/11. Apparently, his homosexuality was known by many. He was loved and respected by all who knew him. Some revered him as a saint.

  5. Hmmmm. I find this to be a real double-edged sword, and here’s why:

    Firstly, The Anchoress is quite right to affirm the inherent dignity of all of us “disordered” creatures, no question.

    BUT, does a priest with an eating disorder really want to be “defined” by that disorder or “affirmed in” that disorder? Should that disorder be made a publicly known thing? I’d think not, no more than a priest with an alcohol “disorder” needs to be known, identified, or defined as such.

    More to the point, the “disorder” of same-sex attraction is the kind of disorder that touches the very heart of priestly identity, and this is why it is critical to understand why men with SSA are at a genuine disadvantage when it comes to assuming the identity of a priest. This is something reflected in the attitude of the Church toward admitting homosexual men into priestly formation.

    This is *not* to say that men with SSA absolutely “shouldn’t” be priests, nor to say that there aren’t priests today with SSA who are strong in their priestly identity and ministry. But I think this does mean that SSA is not something to “affirm” or even “identify” with the context of priestly ministry.

    God bless you!
    Deacon JR

  6. Barbara P. says:

    I agree with what she said but have to disagree with the way she referenced a learning disability as “even a learning disorder.” I’m not sure what she meant by the word “even” but people with learning disabilities can have average to above average/superior cognitive abilities. I’m sure she didn’t mean anything particularly negative by the reference, but I feel the need to raise awareness on this issue.

  7. Probably her most superficial piece in ages…it is a false dichotomy to offer choice between a chaste homosexual priest v. a failed heterosexual priest.

    If the “gift of celibacy” is indeed a gift (to the person and to the Church) then the sacrifice that celibacy entails must be a good. In heterosexual persons it is the sacrifice of a good (a marital relationship) for the “sake of the Kingdom”. In a heterosexual person it is not performing morally sinful acts, since the homosexual would not be eligible for natural marriage. So it would be forgoing not a good (marriage) but an evil (sodomy). The gift is not the same. the Church already calls the homosexual and the non-married to chastity.

    What is there in the “bride of Christ” image of a priestly union to the Church? How is a homosexual male configured integrally to a bride that is universally described as feminine?

    Would anyone consider it prudent to place of a homosexual man in an exclusively all male environment like a rectory, seminary or monastery? Why do celibate chaplains live apart from nuns? Quite obviously this would be a near occasion of sin.

    The scandal too, demonstrates that a disproportionate number of abused persons were male. Take from this what you will, but for the most part the Church is top-heavy with female volunteers, yet males are many times more likely to be abused- by the numbers.

    And in the sad case of Fr. Thomas Williams, how many breathed a silent sigh of relief that “at least it was an adult woman”? Signaling a veil of normalcy? Of course that same day, the Vatican laicized a bishop (http://tinyurl.com/79g22xz) who (by his own admission in court) “was a homosexual attracted to young men” and possessed over 1000 images of young men, 288 underage.

    At the end of the day, the Church has been ordaining priests and deacons from the very start…and given that experience, likely is aware of what man is best suited to the office he is being ordained to. Most of the time, they are right. The present version of homosexual activism and the promotion of a homosexual public lifestyle is a new thing in the culture…it is an experiment we can hardly afford to undertake in the Church in this era.

  8. Diakonos09 says:

    Amen, Anchoress. Allleulia.

  9. Chris Mac says:

    In those few brief moments when there is not real news, Deacon Greg, you go about creating controversy by citing another liberal blogger to stir the “gay” pot. I am sure you understand the Church’s position (set out in writing) on admitting men with same-sex attraction into the priesthood. I often feel you would do anything to make sure you’re “lively” and “interesting” rather than doing something so mundane as affirm the doctrine given us in faith.

  10. excellent analysis

  11. Deacon Greg Kandra says:

    “Another liberal blogger”?

    My sides almost hurt from laughing so much :D.

    Oh, Lawdy. I have to sit down.

    DGK

  12. Here’s a text that may help clarify:

    “Deep-seated homosexual tendencies, which are found in a number of men and women, are also objectively disordered and, for those same people, often constitute a trial. Such persons must be accepted with respect and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. They are called to fulfil God’s will in their lives and to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter[8].

    In the light of such teaching, this Dicastery, in accord with the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, believes it necessary to state clearly that the Church, while profoundly respecting the persons in question[9], cannot admit to the seminary or to holy orders those who practise homosexuality, present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called “gay culture”[10].”

    [CONGREGATION FOR CATHOLIC EDUCATION Instruction
    Concerning the Criteria for the Discernment of Vocations
    with regard to Persons with Homosexual Tendencies
    in view of their Admission to the Seminary and to Holy Orders,
    August 31, 2005]

  13. Another Modernist.
    http://hahahaha.fr

  14. Daniel, you’re ignoring a few important points.

    One, there aren’t all that many multi-priest rectories any more. More often, there’s one priest serving two or three or even four parishes.

    Two, there’s a long history of indviduals who have a homosexaul orientation serving honorably (and chastely) as priests.

    Three, for ANY celibate person, the need to not act on one’s sexual desires is likely a challenge to a greater or lesser degree. (Heck, it’s a challenge to be chaste in any state of life.) There’s some sacrifice and intense prayer involved in almost every case, I would guess. In other words, a conforming of one’s self on an on-going basis to the love and compassion of Christ — certainly something I would hope we would desire in a priest. Straight priests and priests who have a gay (homosexual) orientation would both be serving the people of God, and giving of their own time, energy, and talents. I really don’t see a difference in the gift they could make of their lives (not just their right to marry) to the Church.

    Elizabeth Scalia makes an incredibly good point. Of course, there are all sorts of prejudices (pre-judgments — that is, judgments reached without knowledge of the individual or his particular circumstances) that would preclude many, including many in Church leadership, from accepting the vocations of all whom God might be calling to the priesthood. (If you believe that God could not call a gay person to the priesthood, then you are essentially denying that any priest who was ordained with a homosexual orientation in the past and who served God’s people honorably did so with God’s blessing. In effect, you’re arguing that God was not able or willing to be involved in that sacramental ordination and that man’s vocation. Perhaps that’s not what you intend to argue, but it seems to be the implication of what you’ve set out.)

  15. No it doesn’t.

  16. Daniel’s not making a purely functional argument, because the priesthood is more than mere function. It is sacramental. The priest in his very person must signify.

  17. naturgesetz says:

    So, are you saying it’s as impossible for a same-sex attracted male to be validly ordained to the priesthood as it is for a woman? Because if you aren’t, you aren’t saying anything.

  18. Chris Mac says:

    Deacon Greg,

    On this subject, yes. On Fr. James Martin SJ, yes.

  19. Barbara P. says:

    if celibacy is a gift how can it be a sacrifice? i think when it is a true gift it doesnt feel like a sacrifice. sometimes it may get hard but i think the word sacrifice is not the right word.

  20. It is generally a bad idea to ascribe “legitimacy” to the idea that disordered “sexual compulsions or appetites” are a form of “Human Identity” and therefore we should categorize people into little credible zoological hierarchies as a result. If so, I look forward to the day when the church officially recognizes “peanut-butter fetish orientation” as a credible & new subset of people within the church, who are once again called to chastity and holiness, yet can meet, organize and may proudly & openly identify as such within the church regularly, as long as they are “Non-Practicing” peanut butter fetishists.

    I am compassionate to people with disordered sexual appetites, we can even talk about them, however we should be very careful that we don’t legitimize them, compulsions or addictions are not material forms or realities, like “Black” or “Female”. They should not be looked at in the same way as these categories. The secular culture confuses the difference purposely for political reasons…the church should not engage in this kind of trickery. There are people who suffer each day with compulsions and addictions off all sorts, trying to fight the good fight…to accept a human compulsion as a form of “Human Identity” is to my mind a kind of defeat or to give in…it is saying this is “Unchangeable”, “Uncontrollable” or “intrinsically inherent” in me.

    I don’t think as Christians we believe that whatever drives us to sin is something we we should give legitimacy too beyond the acknowledgement that it exists and its a burden.

    My two cents, God Bless those struggling with Same Sex Attraction.

  21. What I’m saying is that in exodus, the Lord specifies a male lamb without blemish.

  22. Maybe it does, if I knew what it was and what it was accused of doing.

  23. The Anchoress is wrong. Father Martin has had such a bad effect on this issue, which has been addressed many time and by the Holy See itself. There is too much “gay” apologetics out there in the catholic blogosphere.

  24. Ah, the “No True Scotsman” argument.

  25. For Sacraments, the threshold for validity is low. All that is required is a “validly baptized male” for Holy Orders. Prudence requires seminary formation, a particular temperament and outlook, language skills, etc. It would be profoundly imprudent to deliberately ordain a man with “deep seated homosexual tendencies” as the Church teaches. Not only for the reasons that I described above but because such a tendency inherently distorts their view of men, women and marriage.

  26. Priesthood is about taking on the nature of Christ – it is about who the man is by nature, not what he does – all Christians pray, love and serve. It is difficult to imagine a man being “father” who would otherwise reject fatherhood in the natural order. Further, to the lifestyle question (living alone with 2 or 3 parishes) that is the WORST thing you can do to a man with disordered tendencies – work his butt off and then isolate him alone with his tendencies.

  27. Midwestlady says:

    Learning disorders have no moral content.

  28. Midwestlady says:

    Excellent.

  29. Midwestlady says:

    Superficiality seems to be a problem over at the Anchoress lately. Just 2 days or so ago there was a very sloppy piece on celibacy across religious traditions from there.

  30. Midwestlady says:

    Daniel, you said, “Two, there’s a long history of indviduals who have a homosexaul orientation serving honorably (and chastely) as priests.”

    Really? I’m pretty sure you’re not going to point them out. And I’m not inclined to take your word for it without proof. I’m tired of this old shopworn tactic when it comes to this argument.

  31. Midwestlady says:

    Weird. This priest either can’t tell the difference between a dog and a sheep, or he thinks people in his congregation can’t. Kind of insulting, really.

    The dog doesn’t even look very sure about this, poor thing, being held by its feet like that. There’s not much slack in this man’s grip considering the position the poor thing is in. Poodles, on the whole, tend to be intelligent tolerant dogs, but this isn’t how they’re supposed to be treated. I hope, whoever this is, they don’t do this often.

  32. Richard M says:

    Quite right, Deacon JR.

    And that’s why I just can’t agree with the Anchoress on this – there was bound to be a first, eventually. The Church is wounded by * both* priests.

    The 2205 Instruction by the CCE merely confirms what the Holy See has already said, even more definitively, before. See Bl. John XXIII’s 1961 order, “Careful Selection and Training of Candidates for the States of Perfection and Sacred Orders” (and confirmed by the Congregation for Divine Worship in 2002). Homosexuals cannot be admitted to orders. The fact that the order has sometimes been ignored does not make it right.

  33. Richard M says:

    Well said.

  34. Thomas R says:

    You do make a good case and I say that even though I tend to agree with her on this. To me we do allow people with moral disorders, like alcoholism, so I generally don’t get “this disorder is worse, no no.”

    And yet the issue of scandal and being “married to Mother Church” does have a validity. Although the idea homosexuals can’t live with men without temptation wouldn’t seem to be that relevant in the case of parish priests. And would also seem to be an argument against priests having female housekeepers or the like. (I admit SSA is part of why I didn’t become a monk, but there are still times that grieves me and I wonder if maybe it could be okay now that I’m older)

    There’s still a part of me that thinks a homosexual man isn’t entirely analogous to being a woman and that he could still be priestly, but you do give food for thought.

  35. Thomas R says:

    So the physically disabled can’t be priests either? Do all mental disorders and addictions render one not able to be a priest. (I could see the second except that doesn’t seem to be how things work)

  36. On the other hand, maybe it’s not so good to have the metaphor dictate matters. We tolerate important paradoxes at the very core of faith (three-in-one; true man, true God) that the anti-gay meme seems petty and silly here. You could make an equally symbolic case for insisting clergy be Jewish, or denying Communion to women based on what happened at the Last Supper, and find plenty of nice imagery to support that.

    “My sides almost hurt from laughing so much.”

    Me too, but for a different reason.

  37. oldestof9 says:

    Barbara,
    How can pain in our lives (mental or physical) be a blessing?

  38. Barbara P says:

    This may ignite a firestorm but do we know for certain that none of the apostles had same sex attractions? I’m not saying any acted on it but we really dont know for sure.

  39. oldestof9 says:

    OK new poll:

    How many gay priests do you know or know of?

    I’ll start.
    I stopped counting at 11. AND THEY ARE GOOD, HOLY, and DEDICATED PRIESTS.

    Just remember:
    NOT either or…
    …but BOTH AND.

    Peace to all

  40. Deacon Greg Kandra says:

    I’m reminded of Mother Teresa, who prayed “I want to … drink ONLY from His chalice of pain.” Her prayers were answered, in ways she never expected.

    The crucibles we endure are given to us for a reason. Sometimes, they can help to make us saints.

    DGK

  41. Barbara P says:

    But if it is a painful crucible maybe that person is not meant to be celibate. I know many celibate people, most celibate by circumstances, who accept the situation and don’t see it as “pain”.

  42. oldestof9 says:

    Daniel,
    I totally disagree.
    It is NOT about who he is but about what he does.
    A priest who is an “ax murderer from hell” OR gay still validly consecrates through his ordination and by the power of the Holy Spirit.
    It’s not about who the man is.

    Peace to all

  43. oldestof9 says:

    Thank-you DG…My point exactly.

  44. oldestof9 says:

    But the Church has an unspoken “don’t ask…don’t tell” policy.
    Would that be a double don’t ask…don’t tell?

  45. Who he is provides the authority for what he does. If a baptized man of any nature or tendency is ordained by a bishop he validly consecrates the Eucharist, etc. The man is now a “gay” or “axe murdering” priest – using your example. The question is should we ordain gays or expanding the conversation – axe murders.

  46. @ Midwest Lady – actually Steve said that. We concur.

  47. naturgesetz says:

    In the first place, “deep seated homosexual tendencies” is vague and undefined.

    Second, the instruction uses another vague term, “affective maturity.” Without defining the term, it hints that those with “deep seated homosexual tendencies” always lack “affective maturity,” but it never comes right out and says so, nor does it explain why the Congregation believes it is true. (Often it is easier to pretend that something is obvious than to actually prove it.)

    Third, the statement that those with such tendencies is not a teaching but an instruction for bishops and major superiors.

    Fourth, the instruction is clearly not irreformable.

    Fifth, my personal opinion is that they went too far in lumping those with “deep seated homosexual tendencies” with those who are homosexually active or support the gay culture. Nevertheless, because of this Instruction I refrained from applying for admission to the diocesan seminary, despite my pastor’s encouragement to become a priest. Now I wonder if I even fit the category they said to exclude, although at the time that’s how I took it.

  48. @ oldest of nine – how do you determine (1) sexuality – did they tell you or do they “act homosexual” – whatever that is (2) what is good, holy and dedicated – not examples but what is holiness itself and how is is seen in a gay priest v. a hetero priest? Do they act holy? – What’s that? Is observing something sufficient to determine goodness? Can you actually trust what you see given what is a typically limited and scripted window? Do they share their interior life with you?

    You claim you know 11 and judge them holy – how many days per year do you spend with them? Did they tell you “I’m gay, holy, good and dedicated”?

    To make one public priest an example of you do not know that which you see – I bet that until last week, I could easily fill a stadium with people praising Fr. Thomas Williams, LC (1) wrote 14 books (2) Superior of Community (3) Celebrates the Sacraments with dedication, piety, etc. (4) Seminary Professor (5) Used MSM to promote the Gospel (6) almost 20 yrs a priest and over 25 as a professed religious…up to last week, he was good, holy and dedicated. Now he is an absentee Dad moving back in with his parents who had at least one “affair” – all the while doing the above.

    Ditto Bishop Raymond Lahey, the former Bishop of Antigonish, Nova Scotia.

  49. oldestof9 says:

    “Who he is provides the authority for what he does”
    No Daniel it does not for NONE…NONE…NONE of us are worthy to be in any way shape or form, graced by God for ANYTHING WE ARE. Only by the simple fact that He made us and loves us. PERIOD.
    Priesthood as with anyother calling is NOT A RIGHT but a calling and He calls the rich AND the poor…of whom I am the greatest/poorest.

    But who is going to openly admit that they are gay or an ax murder(or pedophile) if they know that it would endanger their chances of becoming what they believe God is calling them to.
    Let’s for a moment remove ax murderer…bad example…
    And so maybe they are living with the “tendencies” toward being gay and struggling mightily. Insert your own daily suffering here and tell everyone here that you can say positively, that you have NEVER given in to your worst suffering/tempations.
    As is the same for human priests. Why would I/should I publicly admit that I may have gay tendencies OR struggle with my promise to celebicy. God is calling me to the priesthood and allowing me to suffer tempation(s) at the same time. If I have given into the temptations and I make it public (I am assuming that the bonds of confession have not neen broken) then shame on me.
    So to answer your question; Yes we should ordain them…but my question back to you is How do you know they are gay?

    Peace to all

    PS I apologize for any fragmented thoughts here as I am doing 3 things at once here.

  50. oldestof9 says:

    “…you do not know that which you see.”
    Do you see glasses as half full or half empty, Daniel? I tend to see half full glasses and
    I am always ready to loving admonish when I am SHOWN that the glass is half empty. But never loose sight of the Spirit of God in everyone….that glass half full. Ever hear the story of the prodigal son?
    …………………….I love you too.

    Peace to all

  51. oldestof9 says:

    Sacremental through the power of the Holy Spirit and through the rite NOT through who we are but through who the Spirit has made us.

  52. naturgesetz says:

    “[W]hat is good, holy and dedicated – not examples but what is holiness itself and how is is seen in a gay priest v. a hetero priest?”
    Holiness, for a creature, is belonging to God. For a human, that means being in the state of grace. “By their fruits you shall know them,” whether they are homosexually oriented or heterosexually. Of course we can’t see into the souls of any of them. All we can do is form a reasonable opinion based on the behavior we observe.

  53. Didn’t God make all people. If I have a disorder of any kind and I work hard to not let that disorder manifest itself in my actions and my life, I’m following God’s Will. But He’s the one that made me with the disorder, isn’t He?

    Not trying to be argumentative. Just trying to understand.
    I’m not homosexual. My disorder is attention related. (I guess you’d have to call it ADD, but I hate that). Anyway, I often complain to God, “You made me this way! Help!!”

  54. oldestof9 says:

    Right on, naturgesetz! Which brings us full circle back to my first post (#3 above) Tendencies (which is what Elizabeth says)….do NOT exclude. Practice ONLY would/should exclude.
    Again God calls EVERYONE to be a part of His Mystical Body in whatever manner HE chooses.

    Peace to ALL.

  55. oldestof9 says:

    I meant to say (which is the word Elizabeth uses).
    Sorry

  56. oldestof9 says:

    “… I bet that until last week, I could easily fill a stadium with people praising Fr. Thomas Williams, LC ”
    And rightly so. But as disciples we are called to lovingly admonish and in doing so have obeyed Christ. Now the page turns to the one we admonish and their decision to obey or not. We can become critical but not to the extent that we stop loving

  57. The mere fact that one notes a calling to Orders or Marriage does not in the eyes of the Church, mean that they are in fact, called. The Church affirms (and ultimately confirms) the calling. If one lies or deceives about any serious vice or tendency that is indeed evidence contrary to holiness. Those involved in the formation of priests must, as part of the discernment process ASK pointed and direct questions on sexuality, habits, addictions, etc. and note how they are dealt with. Strong identification with and participation in the “gay” subculture that attempts to normalize same sex attraction as simply another item in the buffet of sexuality, is one thing, a solitary encounter years ago is quite another. But as the Church teaches – a deep seated tendency is an identity issue.

    A priest has sacramental authority and the Holy Spirit works through him in the Eucharist, etc., because and only because the Church ratified his calling and ordained him – making him what he is – a priest. Which allows him to do what priests do and if he is irregular for any reason prior to ordination (gay, addict, kids outside of marriage, whatever) he is still a priest and because of what he is – he can still do what priests do.

    And if you can identify a priest as “gay” there is undoubtedly something irregular about his countenance, manner and personality.

  58. I agree, but you need to go deeper sometimes (and ordination is one of those times) and determine not only the volume of the glass but the contents – there is a big difference between water and vodka but they look the same on the outside. That is why “seeing” alone is insufficient observation.

  59. I pretty much agree with Anchoress, but I do have to say that her logic is a little flawed here:

    “Find me a priest who doesn’t have some sort of disorder, whether it’s an eating disorder, or an attention-seeking disorder, or a disorder of social ineptness, a hearing disorder, or even a learning disorder.”

    None of those disorders are actually sins, except possibly the eating disorder if it can be discerned as gluttony. Homosexuality is a sin if it’s acted upon.

    To all those homosexuals who live celibate, Christian lives, God bless you. In fact, may God give you extra blessings.

  60. oldestof9 says:

    Apples and oranges Daniel, apples and oranges.
    By content I assume you are talking about what is on the inside of the person. Well the Holy Spirit is in there and that is the glass half full.

  61. oldestof9 says:

    I agree with every point you made in your first paragraph and would add – and the church needs to prove that deep seated tendency/rightly discern the calling.

    “And if you can identify a priest as “gay” there is undoubtedly something irregular about his countenance, manner and personality.”
    I also know a few men who if I were to judge their ACTIONS, appear on the outside to be gay. They may have the tendencies but we have been friends for 20 years or more. I know their “bar antics” and they are NOT gay.
    Have you ever talked to a gay man Daniel. Have you ever been close enough to a homosexual man to love him and hug him and show him Christ?
    I am not gay nor am I trying to push any type of “button” to make you or anyone else mad or offend anyone. I’m just offering another, less popular scenario.
    A possible “Scriptural” scenario.

    Peace to all

  62. oldestof9 says:

    …a scenario that under properly discerned circumstances (whether someone is lying or not) and with the proper spirtual discernment, that ALL are included….NOT either or, but BOTH AND…

    I think this thread has swayed from the true topic…so…everyone…
    Leaving out the fact that you have personal biases and opinions, who would you find to be more spiritually uplifting…who would help you with receiving your “Daily Bread” either through the Eucharist or the Word, an “unfaithful straight priest” OR a “faithful gay one?”

    Peace to all

  63. Tons of gay friends – including my Confirmation sponsor who is a leading citizen of the community and a pillar of the Church. Lost over a dozen to AIDS at the height of the epidemic and served and lived closely with more than I can count in the USN. But it is not about establishing my bona fides regarding my fellow Christians who suffer same sex attraction within my personal community – it is about the prudence of ordaining them.

    As I have stated, the sacramental bar is quite low, so the decision to ordain a man who is homosexual is an exercise of the virtue of prudence. There is no “Thou shall not ordain a gay” commandment.

    Homosexuality or at least the gay culture in general, is the only exercise of vice that demands to be accepted as natural, normal and good. That is not to say that a gay man does not have rights – he does; he has the same natural rights as any single male.

    We all have the same natural rights; but ordination is not a natural right.

    Saying that a homosexual man is imprudently ordained to me is the same as to say it would be imprudent for the NY Giants to draft Tiger Woods to play football – he is (though no fault of his own) incapable of playing football a the pro level. And that is all that is says. No matter Tiger’s heroic desires and efforts, he will never be capable of playing pro football. That does not make him a bad athlete, person, man, father, etc. Saying Tiger is a poor candidate to play pro football does not make me a racist. It simply states that as a matter of prudence, Tiger is no football player – despite his many talents in other areas. Tiger has no “right” to play football. He may try out, but he is not assured a spot on the Giants roster.

    No matter how many golfers I know, hug, and associate with; no matter if my cousin, brother or son is a golfer, no matter how hard he tries and how hard it is for us to witness his struggles to try, Tiger Woods is and will remain a poor candidate for pro football.

  64. oldestof9 says:

    “Saying that a homosexual man is imprudently ordained to me is the same as to say it would be imprudent for the NY Giants to draft Tiger Woods to play football …”

    Agreed BUT one is more likely IMHO to happen more than the other.
    Just so we’re clear as I think we are not too far off… my argument is that if it is KNOWN FACT or the Church discerns through whatever means it can that a person should not be ordained due to homosexuality, then don’t ordain them. But I also argue that IF through no fault of their own the Church ordains a homosexual man, the man comes out of the closet, and remains faithful to his calling, his flock, his promise of celebicy and first and formost to Our Lord’s commands, what is the problem. Once he is “out”, does the Church have a responsibility to laicize him? Some of the posts are questionably heading in that direction and need to, again IMO take a more loving tone. YES Christ instituted the traditional Church, YES the Holy Spirit inspired the gospels, but we need BOTH. It’s the same reason why homosexual men AND hetrosexual men are called and ordained…God wants it that way and we need both. Not for their orientation, but for their individual, God given dignity. Again I think we’re not to far off and I really would like to know how all y’all feel about the first question of ES’s post. I’m goin’ out on a limb and sayin if given only those (2) choices, I’m takin the homo (no ill intent) every time.
    Peace to all

  65. Midwestlady says:

    Perhaps for people who don’t mind celibacy, probably something else is the “crucible” in their life.

  66. Midwestlady says:

    All metaphors aren’t the same, Todd.

  67. Midwestlady says:

    Actually, Thomas R. The priesthood is not a right. It’s a gift and a responsibility. Not everyone is called to it; not everyone is allowed to be ordained. There are expectations with respect to health and sanity and there should be. The priesthood has a function in the Church that it must be able to carry out in the persons of ordained men.

  68. Midwestlady says:

    Absolutely true. Just as it would be highly imprudent to ordain a man with profound psychological disease, a history of complicity in severe corruption, or a violent criminal past. These things are not prudent precursors for the kind of selfless service that’s required of Catholic priests.

  69. Midwestlady says:

    You’re arguing 2 different things here:
    1) Once ordained, the quality of the sacraments does not depend on whether the priest is holy or not.
    HOWEVER
    2) Before ordination, the CHurch has the right to determine who gets ordained and who doesn’t any way she wants, and we can say anything about that we want.

    Don’t get the 2 mixed up. They’re different.

  70. Midwestlady says:

    Sorry, Daniel. These nested comments can get really confusing as new comments get wedged in between old ones. My apologies.

  71. Midwestlady says:

    Barbara,
    Look up homosexuality in a good concordance some time.

  72. Midwestlady says:

    Nice. How do you know they’re gay? Just curious.

  73. Midwestlady says:

    God doesn’t make disorders any more than he causes sin, suffering or death. The world is imperfect because it’s fallen, and that’s where disorders, suffering, death and sin come from. This is Catholicism 101.

    Look up Catechism of the Catholic Church paragraphs 385-387. I’m not going to paste the whole thing in here. Here’s the searchable version online: http://www.scborromeo.org/ccc/p1s2c1p7.htm#385

  74. Midwestlady says:

    Never an either/or choice, oldestof9. Why? Because there are more than 2 priests in this world. Most of them are not in either of your categories.

  75. Midwestlady says:

    The problem is constituting what “out” means. I don’t want to hear about the sexual preferences of a priest, anymore than I want to hear if the guy next door likes this or that fetish with this or that woman, man, appliance, animal or what-have-you. It’s not only none of my business, but it’s a violation of decency and a massive imposition for the person in question to volunteer that unsolicited information to bystanders, including me.

    NOTE CAREFULLY: It’s not that I’m doing anyone a disservice by not liking their habits, whatever they are. It’s that they are IMPOSING like hell on me for expecting that I should give a damn what their habits are.

    This is very much like the person who craps in the middle of the floor in the bathroom at the mall, the person who just can’t resist believing that somehow, someway, their crap doesn’t stink just because it’s theirs, and I the accidental viewer should have that opinion they have forced into my view when I happen upon it. News: It’s not special. It’s crap. People who impose on others like that are beyond disgusting.

  76. Midwestlady:

    “This is very much like the person who craps in the middle of the floor in the bathroom at the mall, the person who just can’t resist believing that somehow, someway, their crap doesn’t stink just because it’s theirs, and I the accidental viewer should have that opinion they have forced into my view when I happen upon it. News: It’s not special. It’s crap. People who impose on others like that are beyond disgusting.”

    Maybe I’m wrong but I would think that a midwestLADY would be able to express her opposition to an idea with a bit more dignity.

  77. The choice between two dysfunctions is no choice at all. It is a logical fallacy know as false dichotomy. Neither priest should have been ordained and neither priest is an appropriate icon of manhood or the priesthood. The hetero because he violates his promise/vow of chastity and the gay because you know that he is – likely by his countenance or behavior. Both are grossly dysfunctional and false.

  78. Midwestlady says:

    HMS: Give me topic that doesn’t involve underwear and I will.

  79. naturgesetz says:

    The problem, Midwestlady, is that, in addition to being disgusting, your analogy is so unclear in its relation to the topic at hand that it is useless as an illustration of what you think on the actual topic. You made the point that you neither care nor want to know about the orientation of any priest. And I think it’s fair enough to say that a priest’s orientation, like anybody else’s is nobody’s business. Unfortunately the analogy doesn’t seem to fit that point and so adds nothing of value to the discussion. It only serves to make you look crude.

  80. Midwestlady says:

    It’s the Church’s business, aka the bishop’s business, who gets ordained. Not yours, not any politician’s and not mine.

    And, talking about sex openly with strangers is crude–every bit as crude as my example.

  81. Thomas R says:

    Okay but is there a reason God does not wish a gay man to be a priest but would wish an alcoholic, or a man with an illegitimate child, to be one? (Augustine had an illegitimate child as I recall)

    I’m not saying there isn’t one as there are some ideas on that. But if gays can’t serve God as priest, or monk or nun presumably going by what’s said of scandal/temptation, than what is their role in the faith? Can chaste gays at least be Third Order or Parish Council or something?

  82. Thomas R says:

    I do not inquire of my priest’s sexuality so I have no idea how many I’ve known. If a priest feels it’s necessary to discuss a “dissolute past”, as Augustine did, I’d be okay with listening but I haven’t really had a priest like that.

    I have to admit though my traditional view was once you become a priest you are renouncing the sexual life so I don’t really care about your sexuality one way or the other so long as you maintain your vows.

  83. Midwestlady says:

    False dichotomy, Thomas. All of these are severe impediments and should not be present in seminary candidates.

    Chaste homosexual people are called to live out their lives in obedience to the Gospel. This is part of being a Christian, even if it is difficult.

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