“I have no idea how they will apply it. It will just be a nightmare.”
— Rev. Eugene Lauer of the New York-based National Pastoral Life Center.
“Our seminaries are likely to be depopulated to a significant extent….the hunters might turn out to be the hunted.”
— Rev. Donald Cozzens, John Carroll University, who estimates 25 percent to 50 percent of priests are gay — and notes some of them are bishops and men in the Vatican
“Witch hunts and gay bashing have no place in the church. There are many wonderful and excellent priests in the church who have a gay orientation, are chaste and celibate, and are very effective ministers of the Gospel.”
—Bishop William Skylstad of Spokane, Wash., president of the U.S. Conference of Bishops
That Vatican document on gays in the priesthood was leaked, and the reaction, as you see, is coming in from angry and confused members of the clergy. How are you supposed to respond to this insanity? (N&O;):
The decree, approved by Pope Benedict XVI, is set for release next week. The Italian text was leaked Tuesday, and a Vatican official confirmed its accuracy to The Associated Press.
It says men should not be admitted to seminaries or ordained as priests if they practice homosexuality, have “deeply rooted homosexual tendencies” or “support so-called gay culture.” Those with only “transitory” homosexual tendencies must be celibate three years before being ordained as deacons, the step before priesthood.
Some observers said it will be difficult to define what is meant by “deeply rooted” or “transitory” tendencies.”
Why is the church doing little or nothing about the child molesters in its ranks? The obsession over who is gay (and how to purge them), and not who is engaging in criminal behavior, makes the church itself a criminal enterprise.
I point again to Father Mychal Judge, the hero priest who died in the ruins of the World Trade Center ministering sacraments to fallen NYFD. He was unfit to have been ordained a priest in the eyes of Benedict?
But why on earth would a gay man seek to become a priest at this time, given opinions like this:
Answering Rev. Cozzens’ charge that the new document will empty already meagrely occupied seminaries, Rev. Richard John Neuhaus of First Things magazine told the New York Times that the decree will attract to seminaries those candidates who in the past were repelled by “the presence, and sometimes dominance, of a gay culture” in seminaries.
On his website, Fr. Neuhaus explained, “The new Vatican instruction is clearly aimed at countering what Archbishop Wilton Gregory, when president of the U.S. bishops conference, called the homosexualization of the priesthood that has turned many manly young men away from a priestly vocation. “
“Any impediment that would prevent a priest from fulfilling that duty is cause for examination or disqualification…that could be one’s sexuality that, one way or the other, gets in the way; it could be alcoholism; it could be that that person is incredibly selfish and not willing to give of themselves in the measure that is required of a priest.”
— Tod Tamberg, spokesman for the Archdiocesees