All of them witches.*
Many will disagree - or will they?
Again, I know what Fr. Martin is saying. Yes gay men can embrace chastity and live celibately, and are not pedophiles and or ephebophiles or any other kind of abuser. We know this. I know this. And, this would be why we never hear of normal people abusing others.
So anyway, why did the Cardinal get by with it? Who promoted him and who didn't object to his promotion and fund-raising? Who was invited to his beach house and joined him for cocktails and vacationed with him, and so on? Of course they completely normal, well balanced, emotionally healthy and psychologically mature, deeply spiritual faithful members of the clergy.
From Fr. Martin's FB page:
Dear friends: Some comments on the connection between sex abuse and homosexuality in the Catholic priesthood, in the light of the Cardinal McCarrick case, and some recent ill-informed and outright homophobic commentaries.
Being gay (or, more broadly, being LGBT) does not make a person a pedophile, an ephebophile, or any other kind of sex abuser. How do we know this?
Answer: the example of millions of emotionally healthy and psychologically mature LGBT people who have never abused anyone--and never will abuse anyone.
Moreover, we have the example of many healthy, faithful and dedicated gay priests who live out their promises of celibacy and vows of chastity and are beloved by their parishioners. I know scores, maybe hundreds, of them. And many of you do as well.
Then why does it seem like such a high percentage of gay priests are abusers? Because healthy celibate gay priests are usually not permitted to be open about their sexuality. (There are several notable exceptions: Fred Daley in Syracuse and Gregory Greiten in Milwaukee.)
Why are most of these men not “out” yet? There are many reasons: Often their bishops or religious superiors will not give them permission; they are private people; or they are afraid (of stereotyping of the kind I’m discussing).
Thus, in the absence of any other examples, the only public examples of gay priests ends up being notorious abusers, like Cardinal McCarrick.
By analogy, imagine if the only stories permitted to be published about one ethnic or religious group were about the criminals in that group. Soon the public would, quite naturally, see them as always and everywhere criminal. (We know examples of this.)
A significant number of Catholic priests are gay—and chaste, in religious orders; and celibate in the priesthood. They lead lives of healthy service in the church. To paint them all as abusive or potentially abusive is a dangerous stereotype.
(Also, to say that gay men are incapable of living chastity or celibacy is to go against the Catechism, which requires celibate chastity for gay men.)
In short, to say that being gay means being an abuser is the worst kind of stereotyping and should be avoided. - Fr. James Martin, S.J.
Fr. Martin is right - stereotyping is really, really bad.
Once, sitting in a cafe in Rome, with a couple I met in Lourdes, a priest and his lover stopped to talk to us - he made fun of us for our traditional devotion and our reverence for the Holy Father, Paul VI. As he was leaving he told us we would be surprised at what goes on in the Church. It's a very vague anecdote, but my friends and I knew what he was getting at. We knew then what Fr. Martin and Sr. Gramick have been saying about 'gay clergy'. They are everywhere.
I knew that when I tried to get a Courage chapter erected here in St. Paul/Minneapolis. I knew it when Bishop Bullock told me he wasn't aware of any gay priests in this diocese, and when he told me that he'd look into the Courage thing. Not promoting Courage used to be a sort of telltale signal that the priest or bishop was among those 'millions of emotionally healthy and psychologically mature LGBT people who have' no problems with their sexual orientation. Just like straight people.
While it is true, those who make the news maybe an exception, or simply had a lapse in judgment, made a mistake, fell into sin, but are not necessarily sexual abusers - the ones who show up in the news are the only ones 'outed'. The stuff they are outed for is usually perverted, but it's the exception to the rule?
Gay people don't normally engage in sexual misconduct?
So it is a rare exception in Washington, DC for men to cruise the restrooms? I had a friend from religious life who told me how cool it was to get a BJ in a public restroom in front of other guys. That type of behavior used to be considered shameful and remains illegal, but it's acceptable in the 'gay community'. Truth be told, it's almost innocent compared to the stories Joe Sciambra has told.
So here is the deal.
The promotion of all things gay is against Catholic teaching - it isn't a benign condition. I'm not recommending shaming or unjust discrimination against gay people, but the promotion of gay is good goes against Catholic teaching. To suggest Cardinal McCarrick is just a sexual anomaly, despite the fact that he used his position of power to take advantage of young men and boys is hypocritical. You people know that. You know it.
The priest in the bondage gear and mask knows. The naked runner priest knows. The drunk priest in jail knows. The priest in the park masturbating knows. The priest who laughed at me in Rome knows. Monsignor Meth knows. All the priests I've ever written about on this blog knows. You know.
McCarrick with a group - I posted it
because the young priest next to the Cardinal looks
The cover-up is institutional and widespread. The shaming is done by all sides.
Years ago I was in the baths and went into a guy's room ... he had a religious medal on. I asked him about it. Turns out he was a priest, a Norbertine, he was in town to give a retreat to cloistered nuns - I got off of him, pulling away in shock. I asked him, "How can you do this - what about your mystical life?" He laughed at me. He was able to compartmentalize his behavior. Just like the NY priest who slept with a novice sister he was directing, he'd still get up from being in bed with her, to keep his hour of adoration as Bishop Sheen always recommended for faithful priests.
That's so normal.
I used to say you are damned if you do, damned if you don't. Catholics are so like that - but actually, they can't damn you - they can only shame you. They shame you when you do, and shame you when you don't. That's my experience. Don't say gay - that's bad. You can't live celibately and chastely with another man - that's bad. You can't be gay and Catholic - that's really, really bad.
And yet, as Fr. Martin and others point out, there are scores, hundreds, many, many gay priests. Evidently everyone else knows that too. And that's okay? Is everybody gay then?
I guess I've been doing it wrong all this time.
I don't know who I am, or what I'm gonna do
Been so long I've been hopelessly confused...
I embrace the shame then. I will rejoice in my outcast state.
Therefore, Jesus also suffered outside the gate, to consecrate the people by his own blood.Let us then go to him outside the camp, bearing the reproach that he bore. - Hebrews 13:13