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About me

Can’t be a priest if you’re gay; can if you’re just a bit poofy


Warning: This post was published more than 12 years ago.

I keep old posts on the site because sometimes it's interesting to read old content. Not everything that is old is bad. Also, I think people might be interested to track how my views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have mellowed and matured!

But given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views might have changed in the 12 years since I wrote this post.
  • This post might use language in ways which I would now consider inappropriate or offensive.
  • Factual information might be outdated.
  • Links might be broken; embedded material might not appear properly.

Many thanks for your understanding.

From Guardian Unlimited:

The Vatican today published its long-awaited statement on homosexuals and the priesthood, affirming that those with “deep-seated” gay tendencies should not be ordained.

Note that I got this spectacularly wrong, saying in August that

I would personally be surprised to see this published any time soon, especially by this Pope.

Oopsie. Though, to be fair, they did go much further than the earlier draft. Compare and contrast today’s document…

The document confirms the Catholic church’s view that deep-seated homosexual tendencies are “objectively disordered” and “grave sins”. It also says heads of seminaries have a serious duty to see to it that candidates for the priesthood do not “present disturbances of a sexual nature which are incompatible with the priesthood”.

…with the August leak…

the presence of homosexuals in seminaries is ‘unfair’ to both gay and heterosexual priests by subjecting the former to temptation

But either way, I was clearly wrong.

Whilst I think it’s entirely fair for the Church to take its own standpoint on its own issues, I do still think they might have some difficulty here. After all, with a less than brilliant history of preventing paedophiles from joining the clergy, how do they expect to prevent gay people from joining? And what precisely is the difference between ‘deep-seated homosexuality’ and any other kind? Are they saying bisexual priests are allowed in? Or is it a case of ‘no hard-core gays, but it’s okay if you’re just a bit poofy’?

But then perhaps, like much the Church says these days, maybe this move’s more about symbolism than practicality. As much as I disagree with the standpoint taken by the Church on this and many other issues, it’s their prerogative to take it, just as it’s my prerogative to condemn and ridicule their ancient delusional fantasies, outdated stereotypical views, and general separation from reality.

This 767th post was filed under: News and Comment.

More posts worth reading

What I’ve been reading this month (published 4th December 2017)

What I’ve been reading this month (published 6th November 2017)

What I’ve been reading this month (published 5th October 2017)

How ‘The Inbetweeners’ was created (published 19th April 2013)

Of applications’ independence from devices (published 26th January 2010)

But, are you happy? (published 21st February 2007)

Protestors call for Delta Goodrem’s crucifixion (published 21st January 2005)

Comments and responses

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Trackback received at 21:43 on 7th January 2006.

This post has been referenced by another on this site:
sjhoward.co.uk » More Christian advice needed

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