November 25, 2005

Pope Benedict, why isn't celibacy enough?

Los Angeles Times

By R. John Kinkel, R. JOHN KINKEL, a former priest, teaches sociology at Baker College in Michigan and is the author of "Chaos in the Catholic Church" (Xlibris, 2005).

THE CATHOLIC Church seems to be unraveling at an astonishing rate. The latest threat to its future comes next week, when the Vatican's Congregation on Catholic Education officially begins scapegoating gay priests believed to make up 30% or more of the U.S. Catholic clergy for its sex abuse scandals.

That's when the Vatican has said it will issue regulations banning men who are actively homosexual or have "deep-seated homosexual tendencies" from the priesthood. Catholic seminarians priests in training who say they are gay will be ordained, under the new rules, only if they have not had sex with another man for four years..

As a former priest who left the church to marry and raise a family, I am sadly sympathetic to gay priests who may quit rather than put up with these absurd and unenforceable homophobic requirements for ordination.

Isn't it enough that the church insists on a celibacy vow? Must it now also insist for gays only on celibacy even before entering the priesthood?

Posted by kshaw at November 25, 2005 08:17 AM