November 28, 2005

Vatican edict on gays, priests

Denver Post

A new edict from the Vatican makes it clear that homosexuals are not welcome to join the Roman Catholic priesthood, but the document from Pope Benedict XVI seems studiously nuanced - it makes a distinction between homosexual acts and personal tendencies - leaving room in the priesthood for gay men who maintain celibacy.

The document to be officially unveiled next week is a response to the church's ongoing sex abuse scandal, in which hundreds of men have claimed they were molested by priests when they were boys.

The document released by the Catholic news agency in Italy is loaded with questionable assumptions - for example, its consideration of homosexuality as a "transitory problem" to be overcome with abstention. It sets an arbitrary three years from the time "adolescent" acts may have occurred to the time when it's OK to become a priest.

The rules implicitly blame the sex scandals on gay priests, overlooking any heterosexual abuses and cover-ups condoned by church leaders, saying, "One cannot ignore the negative consequences that can stem from the ordination of people with deeply rooted homosexual tendencies."

Posted by kshaw at November 28, 2005 12:36 PM