Gay is Gay and Priesthood is Priesthood. Should Gay People be admitted to the Catholic Priesthood?

Polemic Paper, 2021

31 Pages, Grade: 1.0


Table of content

1. Introduction

2. A Change of Register on Homosexuality

3. Stating my Position

4. My First Encounter with a Gay Catholic priest

5. My Argument

6. When a Heterosexual Priest met a Self-Identified Homosexual Priest

7. What the Bible says About Homosexuality
i. Homosexuality and the First Testament
ii. Homosexuality and the Second Testament

8. Nature vs. Nurture: The Biology of Homosexuality

9. Homosexuality and the Priesthood: The Magisterial Position

10. What the Lavender Mafia has to do with Homosexuality and Ordination

11. Clarifying My Personal Position

12. Markers of Human Maturation and the Formation of Catholic Priests

13. Conclusion

14. References

1. Introduction

On one level, the answer to the question whether gay men, and by extension gay women, should be admitted to the Catholic priesthood or not is a straightforward affirmative. They should. This is probably a left of centre position. It is my position. Carlo Maria Viganò calls it “an anti-Church of heretics, corrupt men and fornicators” who include “the Vatican Sanhedrin” or what he calls “the deep Church”1 as I have mentioned below. It would argue with evidence in bucket loads that there are already gay clerics — both high and low — in the Catholic priesthood but only men, I hasten to add. I know a handful. In my erstwhile career as a Catholic seminary lecturer, I personally knew a gay priest colleague, an amiable fellow if ever there was one. There was queer talk about him wherever he had been posted but nothing concrete until at his last post he was reported to the Zambian police for sexual abuse of two teenage boys. May be if it had not been for the age of his victims, he might still be in the gay closet. The chief of police was probably a Catholic. He contacted the priest’s superiors and suggested he be put on the first available plane home to Europe. Even when he had left the putative scene of the crime, I still gave him the benefit of the doubt until we met at a rehabilitation centre in the United Kingdom, he for sex addiction related to paedophilia and I for alcoholism. We played tennis together every after lunch. One afternoon, he gently reminded me in our Bemba vernacular of which he was more fluent than me, although he was not a native speaker, “Taata, ifi mwamona kuno tefyakushimika ku mushi” [what you see here is not to be broadcast back home] in his version of Chatham House Rule. I met my erstwhile colleague twenty-five years later in Europe when I was doing my research for my doctorate and he was archivist of the facility which housed documents from North-Eastern Zambia. I could not recognise him. Neither could he remember me. By all appearances, he had turned his life around including, picking up a doctorate from the School of Oriental and African Studies on Missiology. Unlike me, he was still serving as a Catholic priest. My prayer is that he has made adequate reparation, both moral and financial, for sexually abusing the two minors. His superiors seemed to have been complicit until the day the two boys he was sexually abusing fought over him for affection and all hell broke loose.

On another level, a right of centre position, the missionary position, whether gay men should be admitted to the Catholic priesthood or not is a straightforward negative. At the forefront of justifying this position is appeal to the Bible, both the First and Second Testaments. This is already the position of the Congregation for Catholic Education (2005), “Instruction Concerning the Criteria for the Discernment of Vocations with regard to Persons with Homosexual Tendencies in view of their Admission to the Seminary and to Holy Orders”2 summed up as follows, “In the light of such teaching, this Dicastery, in accord with the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, believes it necessary to state clearly that the Church, while profoundly respecting the persons in question, cannot admit to the seminary or to holy orders those who practise homosexuality, present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called ‘gay culture.’”3 There is something untrue about all this, particularly in the USA where heterosexual seminarians at times felt like an endangered species. Seminaries were Theodore McCarrick’s favourite grooming parlours or hunting grounds. The McCarrick Report is not for the squeamish — all 449 pages of it in the English version.

In this article I set to tear down the Catholic Church’s indefensible and ambivalent oak tree on homosexuality vis-à-vis the Catholic priesthood and gay people. I conclude that while its teaching is clear, in my view erroneous, its practice is ambivalent due to the many gay priests among its ranks, even some would say, up to the highest level of cardinals as the recent McCarrick Report (2020) by the Vatican Secretariat of State revealed.iv There appears to be a deep state or what Carlo Maria Viganò describes as the “deep Church” at the Vatican which is in cahoots with the Lavender Mafia. I have noted that the deep Church and the Lavender Mafia are united by at least two obsessions: opposition to both married priests and women priests in the Catholic Church. Both of these are driven by male clericalism and patriarchy.

In the process of examining the gay-priesthood intersection, I have attempted to debunk the official Catholic Church’s hypocrisy on the matter of homosexuality and the Catholic priesthood. In the process I argue, and this has been my main point, that being gay does not, de iure or de facto, preclude one from plying one’s trade as a good Catholic priest. Unfortunately, the bar for the Catholic priesthood is probably the lowest for any profession I know. According to the Code of Canon Law, “Sacram ordinationem valide recipit solus vir baptizatus” [A baptised male only receives sacred ordination validly] (Can. 1024). But as far I read the tea leaves, there is no qualification that such a male be heterosexual. All that one needs is that “Habet duos testiculos et bene pendentes” [he has two testicles and well-hung ones] (De Souza 2007: 16). Chastity is an added advantage but not necessary.

2. A Change of Register on Homosexuality

In general, Pope Francis’ approach to homosexuality has been more pastoral and compassionate than his predecessors. His position was caricatured in a throwaway comment on a plane from Dublin back to Rome. The Pope asked about whether there was a “gay lobby,” in the Vatican, he took the Press Corps by surprise, “If a person is gay and seeks God and has good will, who am I to judge?” By the way, he also said he wanted a greater role for women in the Church, but insisted they could not be priests. But that got swallowed up in the Chinese whispers of Media “Pope Francis: Who am I to judge gay people?”v

From a magisterial point of view, although theologically, Pope Francis does not differ significantly from his predecessors, his tone is somewhat softer and compassionate. Each time he meets victims of sexual abuse or gay activists, you get the impression he is genuinely listening to them. Pope Benedict XVI seemed to lack empathy. He may be rightly referred to as anti-homosexual in his position. This was already made clear when he was perfect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. This is what he had to say in 2003 when he was addressing himself to the question, “Considerations Regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions between Homosexual Persons.”

There are absolutely no grounds for considering homosexual unions to be in any way similar or even remotely analogous to God’s plan for marriage and family. Marriage is holy, while homosexual acts go against the natural moral law. Homosexual acts “close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be

The second sentence could have come straight out of Rom 1. 18‒32. In contrast, in his post-Synodal exhortation, Amoris Laetitia, Pope Francis had the following to say about gay people.

We would like before all else to reaffirm that every person, regardless of sexual orientation, ought to be respected in his or her dignity and treated with consideration, while ‘every sign of unjust discrimination’ is to be carefully avoided, particularly any form of aggression and violence. Such families should be given respectful pastoral guidance, so that those who manifest a homosexual orientation can receive the assistance they need to understand and fully carry out God’s will in their lives (Amoris Laetitia 2016: par 250).

As far as I am aware, he has not ruled, either positively or negatively, on the ordination of gay people. His famous statement on a flight back to Rome from Ireland cited above went viral, “If a person is gay and seeks God and has good will, who am I to judge?”7 Interviewing Pope Francis in July, Italian journalist Andrea Tornielli asked the Pope how he might act as a confessor to a gay person in light of his now famous remarks in a press conference in 2013. Part of the answer was to anticipate what he would say in Amoris Laetitia, “I am glad that we are talking about ‘homosexual people’ because before all else comes the individual person, in his wholeness and dignity. And people should not be defined only by their sexual tendencies: let us not forget that God loves all his creatures and we are destined to receive his infinite love. I prefer that homosexuals come to confession, that they stay close to the Lord, and that we pray altogether. You can advise them to pray, show goodwill, show them the way, and accompany them along it.”viii The recent statement, in my view badly represented, that Pope Francis was in favour of same-sex unions, was meant to carry his view that in light of the marginalisation of children in such families, it was better to accept the lesser evil: same sex unions. The Pope did not actually use this expression. He chose the Spanish “Convivencia civil” which is best translated as “civil cohabitating” rather than the popular Press term “civil union.” Commenting on “Francesco,” the documentary that carried the “same-sex union” shockwaves, Francis X. Clooney, Parkman Professor of Divinity and professor of comparative theology, had the following to say in answer to the question “Does this change anything about the Church’s overall doctrine?”

Probably not, because he hasn’t pushed it that far in terms of recognising gay marriages. But implicitly, it’s undercutting the rhetoric that being gay is a grave disorder or that being gay and living out a gay commitment is something that God disapproves of. Francis is taking a positive attitude and therefore changing the climate, even if there are going to be Catholics who resist this greatly.ix

When I was scouring the internet on Pope Francis’ views on homosexuality, I had a bit of a pleasant surprise when I searched for “Pope Francis + Convivencia civil,” my article was first among the almost half a million results, “Pope Francis on ‘ Convivencia Civil ’ and a Movie called ‘ Francesco.’ Is there a Change in Catholic Church Teaching on Same-Sex Unions?”x This is what I said about Pope Francis’ views.

The teaching of the Catholic Church on marriage and same-sex civil unions is unlikely to change any time soon. As Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Jorge Mario Bergoglio opposed the legalisation of same-sex marriage in Argentina in 2010. As Monsignor Víctor Manuel Fernández explained, ‘ lo que ha dicho el Papa sobre este tema es lo que sostenía también cuando era el Arzobispo de Buenos Aires” [what the Pope has said on this subject is what he also maintained when he was the Archbishop of Buenos Aires]. The future Pope Francis was already proposing to the Conferencia Episcopal Argentina (CEA), as a lesser of two evils but ultimately without success, if I might add, what is now making news 10 years later, thanks to the movie Francesco — civil union or same-sex partnerships. As the Pope would say, “nada ha cambiado” [nothing has changed] substantially. What has changed is the pastoral approach both to civil law and to gay couples as well as some of the homophobic language of yesteryear, particularly associated with the 2003 statement from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith under the leadership of Joseph Ratzinger, the future Pope Benedict XVI (Mukuka 2020c: 2‒3).

3. Stating my Position

I intend to argue for the first position as I indicated in my introduction. My African and Zambian readers may be excused for dismissing both the question and my position as a Western problem. Not anymore. I hasten to add that I am a former celibate and heterosexual Catholic priest, now married with a grown-up son sired during my active ministry but this is another story which I have dealt with in a Zambian newspaper interview on 18 December 2019.xi The phenomenon of gay seminarians and priests is now entering even African dioceses and seminaries. How it got to that in Zambia is a subject no one seems to have appetite for. As a Zambian Catholic bishop, a former student of mine, warned me, my Facebook contributions on the subject were the equivalent of bringing bedroom pillow talk into the sitting room. It sounded better in the vernacular, “cimo nokuleta ifya kucipinda pabwelu” [It’s like bring bedroom matters into the open].

My hunch about the entry of a gay culture in at least two Zambian seminaries, and I have no proof of this, was the handing over of the propaedeutic or spiritual year in Zambia to American Sulpicians in the mid to late 1990s. The first staff of the Zambian propaedeutic year was almost hand-picked by the Association of Zambian Catholic Clergy. Apart from the Rector, the late Jack O’Leary, the rest of the staff were almost all indigenous including my former seminary class-mate. The American Sulpicians had first been attached to the theologate before being handed the propaedeutic year. The fruits of that faux pas are still in gestation. I am basing my hunch on a tip I received from a seminarian who knew of colleagues who boasted of inappropriate liaisons and suddenly turned into financially well-heeled seminarians.

4. My First Encounter with a Gay Catholic priest

I first came across the phenomenon of gay Catholic priests from a Jesuit priest who had been my lecturer in the mid-1980s, a couple of years after my ordination to the Catholic priesthood. At one time, I was visiting my colleague who had come down with malaria, when he attempted to touch me inappropriately. I quickly fobbed him off and gave him a stern lecture. My gay priest — and I hasten to add that he never self-identified as one — was a missionary and therefore not indigenous. I have yet to meet one of the latter. My hunch that the American Sulpicians may have been the conduits of incipient gay culture was confirmed by a former propaedeutic year student who knew students who suddenly became well-heeled financially. A former Zambian seminarian who claims to have whistle-blown on the phenomenon in two of Zambia’s seminaries was given the boot and the matter swept under the ecclesial carpet. For obvious ethical reasons, I am not at liberty to divulge the identities of the propaedeutic year student and the seminary whistle-blower with whom I am still in contact. He appears to my untrained psychological eye to have been deeply traumatised and four years later, he is still unable to settle down and like a dog that returns to its vomit, he tells me he wants to go back to the seminary. We begged to differ when I told him that he was going back for the wrong reasons. He couldn’t hack it in the jungle that is the real world. He probably rues the three-square meals a day with two coffee breaks to boot. His bishop just told him he was not ready to recommend him to go on pastoral year leading up to diaconate because he did not know him well enough. The letter of dismissal reminded him to surrender his cassock and sash and to refrain from frequenting priests’ houses. How the getting to know each other was to materialise was any one’s guess. I surmise not even his bishop knew.

5. My Argument

This article examines the Catholic Church’s position on homosexuality vis-à-vis the Catholic priesthood. I conclude that while the teaching is clear — in my view erroneous — its practice is glaringly ambivalent due to the many gay priests among its ranks, even some would say, up to the level of cardinals as the recent McCarrick Report (2020) by the Vatican Secretariat of State revealed. There appears to be a deep state, which Pope Francis’ arch-nemesis Carlo Maria Viganò refers to as “the deep Church” at the Vatican which is in cahoots with the Lavender Mafia united by at least two preoccupations: opposition to married priests and women priests in the Catholic Church. This polemical paper seeks to debunk the official Catholic Church’s hypocrisy on the matter of homosexuality and the Catholic priesthood. In the process I argue that being gay does not, de iure or de facto, preclude one from plying his trade as a good Catholic priest. The fact is that the bar for the Catholic priesthood is so incredibly low that any buffoon can clear it and many a buffoon has, as long as he can prove valid baptism and male gender. According to the Code of Canon Law, “Sacram ordinationem valide recipit solus vir baptizatus” [A baptised male only receives sacred ordination validly] (Can. 1024). There is no qualification that such a male be of the heterosexual variety. All that one needs is that “Habet duos testiculos et bene pendentes” [he has two testicles and well-hung ones] (De Souza 2007: 16). My gay priest-friend’s added spice into the mix, which I now describe below regarding whether a gay priest can also be a married one opens up another can of worms which I can only deal with in passing here to the effect that marriage in principle, whether as a heterosexual or homosexual is not a bar to holy orders. We have Catholic priests who are married among Maronites and in the Orthodox Churches, not to mention former Anglicans who were let in by the front door by Pope Benedict XVI, who ironically is opposed to married priests. The only canonical requirements are clear as I have mentioned, valid baptism and male gender, as long as the “duos testiculos” are “bene pendentes.”

6. When a Heterosexual Priest met a Self-Identified Homosexual Priest

It was the autumn of 2011 with the London weather warranting at least a light coat — thankfully, it was not raining — when I travelled to an unusual rendezvous. I had travelled by train from Twickenham to Waterloo, an hour’s journey and from Waterloo station to Marylebone station by tube, another half-an-hour. I was waiting for a Catholic priest I had not met since 1974 — almost 40 years before. He was about 25-years-old and I was 14-years-old back then. Back to my 2011 meeting, I was then 53-years-old and he was 64-years-old. I have not spoken to my friend since that autumn 2011 encounter. That encounter, now acts as a point of departure for this article, coming 10 years later back in the country I first met my riend 50 years ago.

After the above nine-line narrative setting, you are probably wondering what it has to do with this article. The short and long answer is, everything. Bernard Lynch — that is his real name and his self-identification as gay is something he does not hide — is a Catholic priest. He told me that the worst day of his crusade was to explain to his aged father the meaning of an Irish Times headline to the effect that a gay Catholic priest had returned home. You can just imagine a conservative Catholic parent, probably in his late 80s asking his son, “Is it true that you are gay, son?” Bernard lynch was a young missionary to Zambia on his very first post to a sub-urban parish in my home town when we first met. He was my parish priest and I was one of his altar boys, already being drawn to the priesthood like him and largely due to his example. Every Wednesday afternoon he played football with us and every Christmas he taught us Christmas carols. It was from him that I first learnt “Little Drummer boy” one Christmas. My future wife-to-be, then a 12-year-old innocent virgin was in the audience when I was the lead singer intoning “Little Drummer boy” for my Juliet in the audience. When I went to the minor seminary at the age of 14, it was Bernard Lynch who directed our first African play, “The Last Laugh” at Lowenthal Theatre in Ndola in 1974 when I won best actor. We were meeting at a Café at Marylebone train station in London because I had read in the British papers that in 2010, the year that Pope Benedict XVI visited the United Kingdom, Bernard Lynch had organised a protest march advocating for the open acceptance of gay priests in the Catholic Church. Meeting 39 years later, we had both succumbed to wear and tear, both of us had chosen the easier bald tonsorial style and had it not been for the fact that I was the only black man in the Café, mutual recognition would have been a challenge. But there was something about his gait that had never changed. As teenagers who had recently discovered libido and girls, we often poked fun at his effeminate walk. 39 years later, he had not lost it.

I will now cut a long story short — we talked for three hours. He told me he still considered himself a Catholic priest even though his Society of Missions to Africa had long thrown him under the proverbial bus. He was married to a gay psychotherapist and the two were living together. I asked him curiously what they referred to each other. “Husband,” of course. Was he gay when I knew him? He told me he did not know and neither did he abuse any of us. He told me by hindsight that at the age of 19 when he went to the seminary in Maynooth, he always felt there was something unusual about his gender. He confessed it to his spiritual director who upbraided him sternly not to ever mention any such thoughts unless he wanted to kiss the priesthood goodbye. When he went on studies to the USA, many years later, that is when he came out of the closet. The Archdiocese of New York did not take it kindly. I believe they and the FBI concocted a plot to get rid of him by paying a 17-year-old boy money to accuse him of sexual abuse of a minor. His lawyer gave him two options: a new identity or flight back to Ireland his home on a false passport, otherwise he was looking at a long time behind bars. He refused both. I asked him whether he was guilty. He told me he was not. As luck would have it, the boy decided to come clean and the rest is history. There was a final twist. After the sexual abuse case was dropped, one day he received a trans-Atlantic call from his former spiritual director. He was in his late 80s and wanted to visit him. The first thing he wanted was to apologise for his anti-gay advise all those years ago. Then came the bombshell. His erstwhile spiritual director was gay and needed advice about coming out of the closest.

In the context of this article, the question I am addressing is: Should a gay person be admitted to the Catholic Priesthood or if he is already a priest, should he still remain a Catholic priest? I am going to go out on a limb here and answer yes and if you will indulge me, the rest of this article sets out my case for the defence and since the Bible is often wheeled in as proof, that is where I am beginning. It is also my comfort zone, being a biblical exegete by training.

7. What the Bible says About Homosexuality

This is a tricky issue. The Bible says very little about homosexuality. The Bible does not address homosexual orientation per se or as an ontological state although it forbids men to lie with other men as if they were women. It will come as a surprise that the texts do not address homosexual orientation but what may be described as homoerotic sex, probably by men with wives and children who by the side engage in what may be described today as homosexual acts almost of a recreational nature. But let us display the texts before we start arguing about who is right or wrong or even what they mean. There are seven texts often cited by Christians right of centre to condemn homosexuality as if God would care: Noah and Ham (Gen 9.20–27), Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen 19. 1–11), Levitical laws condemning same-sex relationships (Lev 18. 22, 20.13), two words in two Second Testament vice lists (1 Cor 6. 9–11; 1 Tim 1.1‒11), and Paul’s letter to the Romans (Rom 1. 24–27). After examining each of these references, I demonstrate that these references do not refer to homosexual relationships between two free, adult and loving individuals who self-identify as the third gender. The contexts were completely different — proscribing what we call homosexual acts of men or women who were otherwise married. They describe sexual voyeurism in the context of ethnic aetiology, attempted rape or gang rape in the context of the sacrosanct ethic of hospitality (Gen 9. 20–27, 19. 1–11), the sacred duty of procreative heterosexual copulation (Lev 18. 22, 20.13), male prostitution and pederasty (1 Cor 6. 9–10; 1 Tim 1.10), and the sin of idolatry in Rome (Rom 1. 24–27). The biblical authors assumed homosexuality per se was evil for reasons indicated below. The language of homosexuality had not even been invented. It is hermeneutically foolhardy to theologise off of ancient cultural mores to fix our moral conundrums. We theologise off of the texts we have in the canon and what context they referenced. We ask whether our context is analogous or not before we throw the book at those we consider “disordered.” I attempt to buttress my arguments into this long-standing and passionate debate. The way most right of centre Christians pontificate, you would think homosexuality is the biggest obstacle to their path to perfect celibacy or perfect marriage and holiness. How what others do with their crown jewels hampers their path to holiness is anyone’s guess.

i. Homosexuality and the First Testament

Here are the four texts often cited by Christians right of centre to condemn homosexuality from the First Testament.

a) Noah and Ham

20 Noah, a man of the soil, was the first to plant a vineyard. 21 He drank some of the wine and became drunk, and he lay uncovered in his tent. 22 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brothers outside. 23 Then Shem and Japheth took a garment, laid it on both their shoulders, and walked backwards and covered the nakedness of their father; their faces were turned away, and they did not see their father’s nakedness. 24 When Noah awoke from his wine and knew what his youngest son had done to him, 25 he said, ‘Cursed be Canaan; lowest of slaves shall he be to his brothers.’ 26 He also said, ‘Blessed by theLordmy God be Shem; and let Canaan be his slave. 27 May God make space forJapheth, and let him live in the tents of Shem; and let Canaan be his slave’” (Gen 9. 20‒27 NRSV). How anyone can see homosexuality in the text is beyond me. This is an aetiological tale about the fraught relationship between the Hebrews and Canaanites. The author uses alcohol as the trigger and throws in a bit of sexual voyeurism. The aetiology is so badly told that we do not even know how Noah discovered that his youngest son had seen his ancient crown jewels unguarded. If the ancient Hebrews were like the Africans, telling your father that your brother had seen your testicles would have earned you an immediate curse. The text has no scintilla of connection with homosexuality that it can be dismissed with the contempt it deserves. If this story had been about homoerotic sex, Noah would not have been the protagonist.

b) Sodom and Gomorrah

19 The two angels came to Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gateway of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he rose to meet them, and bowed down with his face to the ground. 2 He said, ‘Please, my lords, turn aside to your servant’s house and spend the night, and wash your feet; then you can rise early and go on your way.’ They said, ‘No; we will spend the night in the square.’ 3 But he urged them strongly; so, they turned aside to him and entered his house; and he made them a feast, and baked unleavened bread, and they ate. 4 But before they lay down, the men of the city, the men of Sodom, both young and old, all the people to the last man, surrounded the house; 5 and they called to Lot, ‘Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us, so that we may know them.’ 6 Lot went out of the door to the men, shut the door after him, 7 and said, ‘I beg you, my brothers, do not act so wickedly. 8 Look, I have two daughters who have not known a man; let me bring them out to you, and do to them as you please; only do nothing to these men, for they have come under the shelter of my roof.’ 9 But they replied, ‘Stand back!’ And they said, ‘This fellow came here as an alien, and he would play the judge! Now we will deal worse with you than with them.’ Then they pressed hard against the man Lot, and came near the door to break it down. 10 But the men inside reached out their hands and brought Lot into the house with them, and shut the door. 11 And they struck with blindness the men who were at the door of the house, both small and great, so that they were unable to find the door.

First, the small matter of translation. “The two angels” who visited Sodom to give its inhabitants a heads-up about the city’s imminent destruction is best translated as “the two messengers.” Angels is an inaccurate translation giving the impression of heavenly figures. They were as earthly as Lot, their guest. The story is about the ancient practice of hospitality. The messengers play the humility card and offer to spend the night in the public square. This was unacceptable to Lot. A mob shows up outside Lot’s house demanding to gang rape the two messengers. The context here is what you would expect in a battle where the worst punishment was not loss but gang rape from the victors. It was a way to demasculinise and shame your opponent, not an occasion for fulfilling your homosexual tendencies. The moral of the story is that one should never ever compromise the sacrosanct ethic of hospitality. This story is not about homosexuality. So, we can throw this text too out of the window. The next two texts from Leviticus are probably the closest one can come to the prohibition of same-sex or homoerotic sex. They are clearer than the Second Testament texts we shall see below from the letters of St Paul. But in my view, not even the evidence of Leviticus clinches the argument for the proscription of what today we call same-sex partnerships or unions. The contexts of the levitical condemnations are completely different from the contemporary context.


1 Carlo Maria Viganò (3 November 2020), “Viganò reveals details — including names — about homosexual lobby in the Vatican,” (Accessed on 09.01.2021)

2 Congregation for Catholic Education (2005), “Instruction Concerning the Criteria for the Discernment of Vocations with regard to Persons with Homosexual Tendencies in view of their Admission to the Seminary and to Holy Orders,” (Accessed on 09.01.2021)

3 Ibid

4 Secretariat of State (10 November 2020), “Report on the Holy See’s Institutional Knowledge and Decision-Making Related to Former Cardinal Theodore Edgar McCarrick (1930 To 2017),” Vatican City, (Accessed on 21.01.2021)

5 BBC News (13 July 2013), “Pope Francis: Who am I to judge gay people?” (Accessed on 21.01.2021)

6 Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (2003), “Considerations Regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions between Homosexual Persons,” (Accessed on 11.01.2021)

7 BBC News (29 July 2013), “Pope Francis: Who am I to judge gay people?” (Accessed on 11.01.2021)

8 Joshua J. McElwee (10 January 2016), “Francis explains ‘who am I to judge?’” National Catholic Reporter, (Accessed on 11.01.2021)

9 Colleen Walsh (22 October 2020), “Pope may support same-sex unions, but that doesn’t mean the Vatican does,” The Harvard Gazette, (Accessed on 11.01.2021)

10 Tarcisius Mukuka (2020c), “Pope Francis on ‘Convivencia Civil’ and a Movie called ‘Francesco.’ Is there a Change in Catholic Church Teaching on Same-Sex Unions?” Munich: GRIN Verlag

11 Jack Zimba (23 December 2019), “‘I’m your father, but don’t call me dad.’ The secret a Catholic priest could no longer keep,” The Sunday Mail, (Accessed on 11.01.2021)

Excerpt out of 31 pages


Gay is Gay and Priesthood is Priesthood. Should Gay People be admitted to the Catholic Priesthood?
Kwame Nkrumah University
Catalog Number
ISBN (eBook)
ISBN (Book)
priesthood, should, people, catholic
Quote paper
Dr Tarcisius Mukuka (Author), 2021, Gay is Gay and Priesthood is Priesthood. Should Gay People be admitted to the Catholic Priesthood?, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


  • No comments yet.
Read the ebook
Title: Gay is Gay and Priesthood is Priesthood. Should Gay People be admitted to the Catholic Priesthood?

Upload papers

Your term paper / thesis:

- Publication as eBook and book
- High royalties for the sales
- Completely free - with ISBN
- It only takes five minutes
- Every paper finds readers

Publish now - it's free