Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Vanity Fair - Christmas Issue: The Vatican's Secret Life



Just about everything you have ever read about gays in the Vatican is compiled in this article.

Even the accusations against Pope Paul VI.  I dislike the tone of how the accusation is treated in the article, but I do recall the situation clearly. 
The Catholic priesthood’s contemporary gay cultural memory begins in the middle of the last century. When Paul VI assumed the throne, in 1963, by one account he took his papal name not from any predecessor but from a former lover, a film actor. That at least was the contention of the provocative gay French writer Roger Peyrefitte, whose 1976 allegations about Paul VI caused such a stir that Paul took to the balcony of St. Peter’s to denounce the “horrible and slanderous” accusations. - VF
The author writes "Paul looked a laughingstock".  I never thought so at all.  I admired his courage in denouncing such outrageous lies.  It was one of the many sufferings Pope Paul endured - even from those closest to him.

“Rumors are O.K., but not scandal”

The article perpetuates centuries of rumors - many of which may be documented and credible, yet without effect upon Catholic moral theology - in other words,  homosexual behavior never got approved.   I also think the historical accounts demonstrate there never was, nor is there now, a desire on the part of gay clergy to pursue any type of approval for homosexual acts or change in moral teaching, nor to establish any sort of gay culture as we experience it in secular society today.  It seems to me it was mostly about lust.
Tales of gays in the Vatican have been told for more than a thousand years. Pope John XII, who reigned from 955 to 964, was accused of having sex with men and boys and turning the papal palace “into a whorehouse.” While trying to persuade a cobbler’s apprentice to have sex with him, Pope Boniface VIII, who reigned from 1294 to 1303, was said to have assured the boy that two men having sex was “no more a sin than rubbing your hands together.” After Paul II, who reigned from 1464 to 1471, died of a heart attack—while in flagrante delicto with a page, according to one rumor—he was succeeded by Sixtus IV, who kept a nephew as his lover (and made the nephew a cardinal at age 17). Some such stories are better substantiated than others. Even while their reliability is questionable, they demonstrate that playing the gay card (even if you yourself are gay) is an ancient Curial tactic. “There are closeted gay priests who are vipers,” observes the theologian Mark D. Jordan, the author of The Silence of Sodom: Homosexuality in Modern Catholicism. “They are really poisonous people, and they work out their own inner demonology by getting into positions in power and exercising it” against other gay men, women, and anyone whom they perceive to be a threat. “Alongside that are suffering priests who seem sincere all the way down, who are trying to be faithful to God, and also to take care of people and change the institution. They are the ones who are always forgotten, and read out of the story from both sides.” - VF
"They may not act as a collective but are aware of one another’s existence."

The Vanity Fair piece is pretty much based on gossip and hear say - I'm not saying it isn't true - it seems fairly impossible to verify however.  Anyone who has ever been in a seminary or monastery, or who has spent a lot of time around clergy, or who has spent any time in Rome, might know the stories are true.  Gaydar is real.
One gay former priest, who still lives in Rome, describes clerical camp as “a natural way of expressing [gay identity] while celibate.” Socially, he says, it is “a key that unlocks a further element of trust.” There’s nothing earth-shattering about this—it’s what every institution does—but “the Church has a lot more experience and practice at protecting itself. As far as that goes,” he says, with a nod to Cole Porter, “they’re the tops.”
[...]
Where silence can’t strictly be kept, word games can compartmentalize the truth. In the Vatican office of a monsignor who I’d been told might have some firsthand knowledge concerning recent gay scandals in the Church, I asked, point-blank, “Are you gay?,” and he serenely answered, “No.” I replied, “I wonder, if a priest is homosexual—but does not participate in mainstream secular gay culture—could he say that he is not ‘gay’ and still think he’s telling the truth?” “What an interesting question,” the monsignor said, immediately standing up and gesturing me to the door. “I’m afraid I don’t have any more time to talk.” - VF

I knew that.

Post script:  The Vanity Fair piece - true, partly true, or not true - is a smear piece.  It is 'bar talk', gay-cocktail-party talk.  The major give-away is the vulgar speculation regarding Pope Benedict and Ganswein.  That's simply evil.  Gay priests and seminarians have always used 'drag names' for other clergy they do not like.  Likewise, 'functionaries' in Rome thrive on gossip.  Once again I'm sorry I posted this - but just remember, gays will be gays and history demonstrates that they come and go, much like the plague.

Link:

The Vatican’s Secret Life - Michael Joseph Gross


 

9 comments:

  1. “Alongside that are suffering priests who seem sincere all the way down, who are trying to be faithful to God, and also to take care of people and change the institution. They are the ones who are always forgotten, and read out of the story from both sides.”

    The good Lord never forgets his faithful ones...not by a long shot. It is because of the long suffering and righteous be they gay or not, in trying to live a holy life, according to God's holy will, that the Church has survived all kinds of scandal and will continue to do so.

    What purpose does VF have in rehashing gossip and hearsay? To ridicule and speculate? Are they lobbying some "gay bomb" in order to explode the faithful up and cause them to leave the truth, the faith? I have to snicker at such folly!
    In this day and age, and with the current Holy Father, well, guess what VF, IT AIN'T GONNA HAPPEN!

    Terry, stuff like this tripe put out by them, even if there be some truth to it, annoys me and makes me wonder about why they remain foolish and idle or even relevant.

    And another thing...about those in the Church, of long ago, who may/may not have engaged in homosexual activity...they will have to stand before the Almighty on the last day, like the rest of us, let Him alone judge them...as to where they are now...only He knows and if they be lost, I do not even want to know what awaited them.

    After reading this ... I can see the fat harlot just eating it all up and being scandalized by it all.

    Like you said before...Let's keep praying! Amen!

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  2. Stuff like that just makes me tired. Truly. Weary. Especially since everybody, his brother, and his gay dog will be rushing around me excitedly slavering, "Soooo? Did you read the VF piece. Whadya have to say to that?"

    Truly. Weary.

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  3. Yes, Burgo, I agree with you. The piece is sophomoric. Humans are forever growing up and putting behind childish things but it seems that that takes longer and longer with each generation.

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  4. Eh, they're just jealous they don't get to hang out with Ganswein. He's a beautiful man.

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  5. Wow, the breathless reporting and near hysterical tone would make even Voris proud. A bunch of innuendo and non-facts and extravagant images. Which is too bad, as there is an interesting story that should be reported. I was hoping for some insight on why these men chose to go into the priesthood, and how they can reconcile their sexual activity while publicly telling the faithful its a horrible, terrible, terrible, really, really bad sin? What about actually talking to gay priests that are honoring their vows and are celibate. What do they think of not only these people but the Church's teachings etc. As it is it reads like a bunch of gossip tossed around by a group of nasty queens at a bar..(not that it wasn't interesting reading the nasty gossip but this is not the National Examiner this is Vanity Fair!!)

    My only take away from this is that closet cases still cruise and have sex in saunas so I am bringing bleach to the gym.

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    1. And wear flip-flops in the shower! ;)

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  6. "The major give-away is the vulgar speculation regarding Pope Benedict and Ganswein."

    Been there done that and just had to nod my head and think..."wow! Is that all they can come up with?!" The worldly world cannot recognize a platonic relationship between two lovers of the Lord Jesus? Two men who have been at the service of the Church with love and great devotion?
    A father and a son in Christ? Two fellow Germans on the road to Emmaus? Smeared and with great gusto too!

    I love them both and am glad they are among the lights of Christ to be found in joyful witness to his saving power! Everytime I see beautiful Arch. Georg in the company of Papa Francis, I am all smiles. The one thing I have always admired and loved are beautiful men in love with Jesus...you are now included in that group dear Terry! <3

    "Once again I'm sorry I posted this"

    No need to apologize since the article and the sources behind it just confirm they have nothing but old news and old scandals to lobby at the Church and her servants. ^^

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  7. Yes, I think "speculating," about anyone and their relationship based on rumor and psychological analysis (i.e. the people screaming most about gay things usually have an issue themselves) really refutes this article. On rereading it there are some good insights though, such as :

    "Yet such a dualistic existence is very much a part of Church tradition. “This is almost an aspect of the Catholic religion itself,” Colm Tóibín has written in an essay on gays and Catholicism, “this business of knowing and not knowing something all at the same time, keeping an illusion separate from the truth.” The other points about the one Cardinal who of course, railed against gay as being an abomination and was against gay marriage was himself going down and dirty with guys is also interesting.

    If the author would have stayed away from speculation...is Vanity Fair like that all the time, I don't read it.

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  8. This looks like a smokescreen, using a thousand years of slander and anti-Catholic (not to mention "homophobic") bigotry to cover up what is actually going on now.

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