As the nation’s Roman Catholic bishops gathered in Chicago Thursday
for a meeting to review their sexual abuse policy, Cardinal Francis George
said homosexual men should not be admitted into seminaries.
George, who is archbishop of Chicago and vice president of the U.S. Conference
of Catholic Bishops, said in light of the sexual abuse crisis, bishops are
paying closer attention to the sexual backgrounds of men interested in entering
the priesthood. Part of the commitment is that a man is celibate when he enters
"Also, anyone who has been part of a gay subculture or who
has lived promiscuously as a heterosexual would not be admitted … no matter
years in his background that might have occurred," George said.
I don’t think a policy that would have excluded St. Augustine
from the priesthood would be a good policy. This is the problem with a broad
policy or zero tolerance ideas that seek to be seen as fair over being discerning
and prudent. That seem to make a strait line moral equivalency between homosexual
activity and sinful heterosexual activity. Both are gravely sinful, though
homosexual activity is also gravely disordered. This is what happens though
when those accepting men to the seminaries have not been prudent in their judgments
in the past forcing some fit-all-policy to be forced into place.
The 1961 Document, “Careful Selection and Training of Candidates
for the States of Perfection and Sacred Orders” was promulgated by the
Vatican’s Sacred Congregation for Religious on February 2, 1961.
“Advancement to religious vows and ordination should be
barred to those who are afflicted with evil tendencies to homosexuality or
pederasty, since for them the common life and the priestly ministry would constitute
There is also suppose to be in the works a Vatican document
to again address this topic and reports of the draft document say that it
reiterates what the 1961 documents said.
The role, if any, of sexuality in the sexual abuse scandal is
being debated. Critics have charged there is no evidence that gays are more
likely to engage in abuse than heterosexuals. Others have said placing attention
on homosexuality is a way of deflecting attention from bishops who allowed
the scandal to unfold.
I always enjoy the unnamed "critics have charged" boilerplate
that so often ends up in articles. Unnamed critics with unmentioned research
or evidence is thrown in to "balance" an article. The fact that the overwhelming
instances of abuse was in fact predominately homosexual ephebophilia is ignored
which is why so many articles on abuse work overtime to ignore or not mention
the gender of abuse victims. They never seem to get around mentioning why the
introduction of altar girls did not create a spike in the amount of girls being
Bishops are expected to approve a broader definition of sexual
abuse that covers priests who buy or disseminate child pornography, and they
will be asked to approve spending $1 million in reserve funds for an in-depth
study of the "causes and contexts" of the abuse crisis. The study
is expected to focus on whether abuse might be related to homosexuality, celibacy
and other issues. [Source]
The bishop’s conference seems to be more and more a studyarchy.
Go forth among all nations and initiate studies. Bishops don’t have to lead
or make decisions, they just inaugurate one more study to put off actually
using their common sense and acting on it.
consider celibacy to be a factor in sexual abuse is to buy in to the culture.
To ignore that the discipline of priestly celibacy has not created this amount
of sexual abuse in the past. To ignore that these abuses started to spike
in the sixties and seventies which is definitely not when priestly celibacy