Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Your Thoughts?

As the release below is a big thing -- and, yet again, another break for this outlet (I don't need to recount the other stories which got there legs here, I hope) -- I'm opening comments to get your collective mind on it....

Knock yourselves out.



Blogger Gregg the Obscure said...

The language in the purported instruction is generally fitting and proper, if somewhat susceptible to being interpreted to meet the reader's preconceptions.

There is some vagueness in at least two of the three disqualifications:
1. actively homosexual (pretty clear, if not always readily discernable to an outsider);

2. deep-seated homosexual tendencies (some wiggle room there); and

3. support for the so-called gay culture (lots of room for interpretation).

For example, would support for "civil unions" qualify as support for the so-called gay culture? If not, why not?

If this is really the document, it doesn't answer more questions than it raises.

22/11/05 18:04  
Blogger BarbaraKB said...

Ditto to Greg above. Lots of questions still. Not the "hammer" that Catholic blogs, web sites and MSM said it would be but still lots of questions. Gosh, I guess we are allowed to do that, huh, esp. in areas like homosexuality.

22/11/05 18:30  
Blogger Unknown said...

This document does not refer to male and female non-ordained religious. Will there be another document relating to them? Will there be a document relating to the employment of homosexuals by the Church?

The primary harm done by the Church's homosexuals would be that done to their victims.

Secondary damages are the financial liability and public relations harm that has been created for a Church and its religous and educational institutions that have been unwilling to properly discipline ministers and employees who have been accused and convicted of homosexual activity?

These damages have greatly contributed to a loss of vocations and decreases in Church membership and financial contributions.

How much more of this must the Church continue to assume in the name of human rights?

22/11/05 20:18  
Blogger Unknown said...

Liz said:

"Homosexual persons are obstructed in proper relationships with men and women? This is not only an insult to homosexual persons, but resolutely un-Christian. Are they not made in the image and likeness of God? (Even if homosexual acts scar the image of the divine, this image is surely present before any act is comitted)."

If someone, whether pedophilic or ephebophilic, commits a crime by violating the body or person of a minor, must the Church wait til it happens and then is reported one, five or twenty years later?

Give me a break! Many thousands of children have been and still are being put at risk because people with statistically known predilictions for such crimes are given the opportunity to commit those crimes.

There is no right to be a priest! We're not talking about equal employment opportunity. We're talking about children's lives.

And we're talking about the organizational, political, social and economic health of the Church, though nobody seems to want to talk about that.

How much have YOU increased your contributions to the Church to pay for the cost of the defense of and financial liabilities of Church ministers and employees who have harmed children?

23/11/05 06:05  
Blogger Ecclesiastes said...

The document sends out a clear signal that men with a definite homosexual orientation are not suited to be priests. That is all any document could ever be expected to do. Ultimately it is up to the candidate himself, and not to you or me, to be honest with himself and his director in coming to terms with the Church's teaching. Such regulations as these cannot be policed. One suggestion: anyone who thinks this document too lax should please present us with an alternative text, and let us make our comments.

23/11/05 07:09  
Blogger A. Carlton Sallet said...

Great comments; I have also done a thorough analysis and reached some interesting results. I will post them by 7PM tonight (Nov. 23).

23/11/05 09:27  
Blogger Fred said...


You ask some excellent questions, questions that I have wrestled with for a number of years - despite (or perhaps because) being male.

I'm not so sure that God as bridegroom and Church as bride is inherently tyranical. Jesus told the apostles:

John 15
12 This is my commandment: love one another as I love you.
13 No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends.
14 You are my friends if you do what I command you.
15 I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father.

In Christianity, the groom/bride image is well developed by St. Paul, but the imagery is also deeply rooted in the New Testament (the Song of Songs, Hosea, etc.). Drawing deeply on the Holy Scriptures, the Fathers of the Church continued to contemplate these images. To demythologize the church at this point would be to de-Christianize the church.

If you are interested in exploring gender more profoundly, I would recommend the writings of Hans Urs von Balthasar, which elude easy summary.


23/11/05 10:01  
Blogger Fred said...

correction - above I said:
"To demythologize the church at this point would be to de-Christianize the church."

I see that this sentence is ambiguous, suggesting that I mean at this point in time. No, to clarify, to strip the church of this imagery would be to lose what is distinctive to Christianity: the universal revelation of God in the particularity of one man who lived in a certain culture at a certain time.

23/11/05 10:08  
Blogger Gregg the Obscure said...

The documents that I work with on a day-to-day basis generally include definitions for the most important terms. In this document there are two terms that ought to be defined. Of course I can’t say that my suggested definitions are those that the Dicastery would choose, but they seem like reasonable starting points.

Deep-seated homosexual tendencies would include situations such as the following: a man for whom one of the primary foci of the spiritual life is resisting temptation to homosexual behavior; a man who, despite diligent efforts to the contrary, has repeatedly succumbed to homosexual temptations; or a man whose associates are predominantly homosexual.

Support for the so-called gay culture would include any of the following: membership in organizations that identify as specifically homosexual organizations, unless such organization exists to help such persons live a chaste and holy life in Christ; advocating political and legal structures that facilitate the practice of homosexual acts; and public statements regarding homosexual acts that contradict, ignore or minimize the Church’s teaching regarding the moral status of such acts.

23/11/05 10:59  

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