Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Roman Catholic Church Sticks It To Us Again

Is it any wonder why I'm still a recovering Catholic?

Here's a little tidbit I found in a local newspaper today:

Homosexuality to blame for pedophilia

It is homosexuality, not celibacy, that is linked to pedophilia, the Vatican's Secretary of State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone said Monday on a visit to Chile, seeking to defuse the sex scandal that has battered the Roman Catholic Church.
"Many psychologists and psychiatrists have shown that there is no link between celibacy and pedophilia but many others have shown, I have been recently told, that there is a relationship between homosexuality and pedophilia," he told a news conference in Santiago.

(Source:  24H Vancouver, Tuesday, April 13, 2010, p. 9)

Let's be perfectly clear.  There is no direct connection between homosexuality and pedophilia.  According to statistics, most pedophiles are straight, not homosexual, although there are some homosexuals who are pedophiles.  The terms are not interchangeable.

What disturbs me most about Cardinal Bertone's words is that he continues to perpetuate the stereotype that causes people, who believe what the Catholic church has to say--and there are plenty of those, believe me--to deplore gay men. As long as we continue to have this kind of misinformation put out there, gay men will have to bear the negative and unfair judgements held against them as a result.

I'm angered that the Cardinal, grasping at any explanation for the unforgivable conduct of so many Catholic priests around the world, would attack gay men, and claim that we're the cause of a truly sick disease.  But I'm not surprised, considering the Catholic church's historical and unwavering position on homosexuality.  The good Cardinal needs to get his facts straight before he flaps his gums about something is obviously knows so little about.

In the meantime, all we gay men can do is continue to live our lives as the best example of who we are, and what we're not.  One step forward, two steps back.


  1. As a Catholic myself, I'm appalled, but not surprised. Pedophilia is pedophila, straight or gay, and is deplorable, period. To put the blame on gay men is to quietly sweep the straight men under the carpet, while attempting to shift the focus off the fact that they did nothing to solve the problem. Can you say 'spin doctor'?

  2. Jeanette, I agree. I'm not Catholic, but I've followed these stories with interest for years, thinking it's only a matter of time before the Catholic church implodes upon itself. Sad for the "real" Catholics who truly have a heart for God and mankind.

  3. What the church is trying to do here is take the focus off the whole celibacy issue. Since all the cases of child sexual abuse at the hands of Catholic priests have recently come to light in Europe (and other parts of the world), again, the church has been asked to reconsider its position on celibacy. Since that will never happen, it has made the decision to show that pedophilia has its origins not in celibacy but in homosexuality. So why would the church allow priests to marry, in order to eliminate the threat of sexual abuse of minors, if that's not the cause of the problem?

    It occurs to me that the Catholic priesthood attracts an inordinate number of homosexual men to its ranks because of the church's position on homosexuality. I think a lot of Catholic men become priests because they think devoting themselves to God will free them from any inclination to be sexual with other men. I have long suspected there are lots of homosexual priests who engage in sex with each other (and those who are straight who engage in sex with nuns).

    But these men are not to be confused with pedophiles. That's a whole other ball game altogether.

    Honestly, I don't think allowing priests to marry and have sex with women would change what's going on. For some reason, the priesthood seems to attract a whole other animal--repressed homosexuals, as well as homosexuals who are also pedophiles.

    On the other hand, could the situation in the priesthood be similar to that of male prisoners who are confined together? After a while, male sexuality being what it is, men engage in sex with each other because that's the only outlet available to them for sexual relief. Would dropping the celibacy requirement change that to any degree? Perhaps for some, but not for all. Pedophiles are pedophiles. There are plenty of pedophiles among regular citizens who have access to sex with females, yet they still engage in illegal sex with minors. There is something else going on in their lives that prompts them to gain from innocent children what they can't get in any other way, including having sex with other men or women.

    What a complex issue, but, yes, I agree with Wendy. The Roman Catholic church is imploding before our very eyes. It probably has been for centuries--I don't think this is a new problem--but, as Jeanette writes, it's always been swept under the carpet. It's impossible to have any respect for this institution under the circumstances. (Although, to be fair, I'm sure there are many priests who are completely faithful to God and don't engage in any kind of sex at all. Unfortunately, they find themselves in the company of many colleagues who make the church look bad for everyone).

    My thanks to both of you for your ongoing interest in my blog and for your comments. You know I appreciate it.