This past week’s announcement by the Vatican that the Congregation for Priests has reaffirmed the 2005 ban on gay men being ordained priests has caused quite a storm of criticism from Catholics in the pews. Here on Bondings 2.0 alone, the Comments from two of our posts on the topic have been numerous, insightful, and angry. It’s worth taking a moment to read the comments from the first post and the second post.
To add your own voice to protest the Vatican’s ban, please sign New Ways Ministry’s statement “The Gift of Gay Priests’ Vocations.”
In addition to New Ways Ministry’s response to the Vatican’s document, other Catholic organizations concerned with LGBT and sexuality issues have also strongly critiqued the ban on gay priests. The following are excerpts from some of the statements, with links to the full statements:
Call To Action:
” ‘Call To Action remains deeply disappointed in the Vatican’s on-going rejection of the LGBT community,’ said David Saavedra, Transitional Co-Director of Call To Action, an organization of Catholics working for justice in the Church.
” ‘This document not only reaffirms old Vatican policies, it reaffirms the harmful rhetoric against seminarians and priests who are gay and already successfully serving the Church. Moreover, the document’s language and implications harm the entire Church that is denied the gift of ministry from the good and holy service of gay men who may be turned away,’ said Saavedra.”
For full text of Call To Action’s statement, click here
” ‘This document is extremely disappointing in its approach to gay men called to be priests,’ said Marianne Duddy-Burke, Executive Director of DignityUSA, an organization of Catholics committed to equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people in the Church and society. ‘It is not at all what anyone expected from the “Who am I to judge?” Pope.’ “
” ‘These guidelines are a tremendous insult to the thousands of gay men who have served and continue to serve the Church with honor and dedication. They undermine decades of commitment by these men, and they fail to acknowledge that God calls a great variety of people to the priesthood,’ said Duddy-Burke.”
For full text of DignityUSA’s statement, click here.
Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC):
“We, the GNRC, stand for inclusion and justice for LGBTI lay people and their families in the Church. We also declare that all religious men and women that followed God’s call to dedicate their life for the construction of the Church deserve the same treatment. ‘There have been tragic instances within our GNRC family where some members who had previously been in seminaries, sadly had to give up on their chosen vocation after their sexual orientation was discovered. And in a few cases, they were very publicly exposed,’ states Ruby Almeida Co-chair of the GNRC and Chair of Quest (England).”
Pushing LGBTI people out of the Church, rather than them being treated with respect and dignity whilst on their vocational calling, has set a dark and reactionary tone. ‘The Church states in many documents that LGBT should live in celibacy, without needing to express their sexuality, yet later says that priesthood is not an alternative. This double-bind message distorts the credibility of the church. And we should not miss the language of a subtle homoerotic seduction into an intimate and exclusive relationship between the priest and Christ that the Congregation for the Clergy uses several times in the document,’ explains Dr. Michael Brinkschroeder Co-chair of the GNRC and project-manager of Homosexuelle und Kirche (Germany).
The Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC) brings together organizations and individuals who work for pastoral care and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, questioning, and intersex (LGBTQI) people and their families
For full text of GNRC’s statement, click here.
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests director David Clohessy (SNAP):
“Scapegoating some adults protects no children. Behavior, not orientation, is what matters.
“Half of our 20,000 plus members are women who were sexually assaulted as kids by priests, nuns, bishops and seminarians. It’s just wrong to assume or claim that most victims of child molesting clerics are boys.
“This will almost certainly have no impact whatsoever on the church’s continuing child sex abuse and cover up crisis. Those who hope this will make kids safer will be disappointed.”
Bondings 2.0 will report on other significant reactions to the Vatican document as they become available.
–Francis DeBernardo, New Ways Ministry, December 10, 2016
Religion News Service: “Outcry greets Vatican decision to reaffirm ban on gay priests”
The Advocate: “Pope Reiterates Catholic Church’s Ban on Gay Priests”