The elephant in the sacristy again

The elephant in the sacristy again

Jack Kenny writes a very politically incorrect column in the Manchester Union Leader on homosexuals in the priesthood. I think he’s generally right on, although I might disagree with some of his initial statements.

    A FRIEND, who is both a faithful Catholic and a staunch Republican, notes the American Catholic bishops have said going to war with Iraq under existing circumstances would be unjust and immoral.

Actually, they didn’t say that exactly. They just questioned whether the currently stated reasons are just and moral. They did not make a judgment either way.

    Absent the rigors of the faith, the priesthood might appeal as a refuge to people with myriad mental, emotional or sexual problems. There is, after all, no heavy lifting, save the Bible and a cross once in a while. Other than the scheduled Masses, confessions, baptisms, weddings, funerals and other odds and ends, the pastor of a local parish is pretty much free to make his own hours and set his own schedule.

Having been a boarder in a parish rectory, I can say that is just plain bunk. Sure Father may have some time off, but shouldn’t anybody? More likely there are meetings most nights of the week, people hanging on the bell at all hours of the day and night, and only priests can administer the sacrament of the sick. It’s a busy and lonely life, especially now when many parishes now have only one priest.

    There is, according to the Holy Scriptures, a moral law written in the hearts of all men, including those to whom the words of Scripture have not been revealed. “For the wrath of God,” Paul wrote in his Epistle to the Romans, “is revealed from Heaven against all ungodliness and wickedness of men who by their wickedness suppress the truth.”

    Surely that applies to those who, despite the moral law and thousands of years of Judaic and Christian teaching, both hold and teach that in matters sexual ;orientation” are less than wholesome role models for young men who may some day be called to the priesthood? Even if the gay priest can suppress his unnatural desires, how effective will he be in counseling young Catholics not called to religious life to channel their own sexual drives toward marriage and procreation?

Here he hits the nail on the head. A man who embraces his vices and does not seek purity and holiness is going to have a very difficult time trying to represent the person of Christ to his parish. Why start out with two strikes? Why should the Church ordain a man with two strikes against him?

Kenny may be on to something with his thesis that much of the Scandal could be explained by a loss of faith among bishops and priests. Perhaps many of them have lost the zeal of their ordination and no longer see the supernatural nature of the Church. Perhaps many of them just go through the motions even as they act as if the Church were another manmade institution in which they try to manuever to thrive and survive.