Sunday, September 25, 2005


The Closeted Cloister

What could be the possible fallout of the Vatican's proposed ban on gay priests?

If Steve Clemons is
implying what he seems to be, things could get very ugly.

This line,

When I asked whether homosexuals would be better served under Pope Benedict XVI than under John Paul II, he responded, "Don't think that we will be any better served under a gay pope than a straight one."
seems pretty, ahem, "straightforward."

Steve is calling for an overt outing campaign which I think is unfair. However, I can certainly understand why gays currently in the priesthood and remaining true to their vows would feel differently. Besides, the connection between being gay and having a propensity toward pedophilia is hardly exact. And -- even if it were -- what would stop closeted gays from entering the priesthood and lying about their orientation? So, we have a variation of "don't ask, don't tell" in the priesthood?

Meanwhile, along the lines Steve is discussing, could
this unusual breach of the conclave's traditional secrecy be seen as something of a shot across Pope Benedict's bow?

The implication is clear -- while Ratzinger led in the voting throughout -- his ascension was not secure until Argentine Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio wavered in his desire for the papacy. Of course, another reading of this is that Ratzinger's allies became nervous and spread the story to convince Bergoglio's allies that he didn't have the fortitude for the position.

Either way, it doesn't exactly reflect well on Benedict -- particularly in contrast to his predecessor John Paul II. This type of leak doesn't occur by accident.

So, does the fact that it exists suggest that the new Pope had best beware of "Benedict Arnolds" that are ready to play hardball if he continues with his plan to root out gay priests? Particularly if Steve's unidentified source is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg.

Meanwhile, this
cartoon is as funny as it is on-point...

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