The document is a reaffirmation of a 2005 statement by the Church that gay men should not be admitted into seminaries.
The Vatican has angered the LGBTQ community yet again by reiterating its stand against the ordination of homosexual men as Catholic priests. The sweeping reforms that Pope Francis has been introducing also include a more accepting stance towards people of the LGBTQ community. However, gay marriage and ordination of gay men are still going to remain church mandates that will remain unchanged.
When Pope Francis said, “Who am I to judge?” in 2013 in relation to gay priests, the whole world, especially the LGBTQ, assumed that the church would be open to accepting the ordination of gay men as Catholic priests. However, the church just released a new document that confirms the church’s non-acceptance of homosexuals into the clergy.
The church had officially issued a statement in 2005 announcing that gay men were not allowed in the seminary. Today, the Congregation for Clergy has declared that seminaries cannot allow gay men to be priests and that bishops, and rectors of seminaries and other authorities should make sure that no gay men are admitted into the priestly vocations. The document established once and for all the men who have “deeply rooted homosexual tendencies” should not be allowed to be Catholic priests. Seminaries have also been directed to examine the candidates for homosexual tendencies and bar them from continuing ahead on the basis of their judgment.
The fight to allow gay men to be Catholic priests, however, cannot bear much fruit. The church, in fact Christianity itself, is intrinsically against homosexual behavior. As such, the appointment of gay men as priests would essentially be a refusal to accept the directives of the Bible, thereby rendering the credibility of the Church questionable to both, Catholics as well as non-Catholic Christians.
The document, dated December 8th, clearly exhorts church authorities that they cannot appoint anybody with “deeply-seated” homosexual tendencies or practice homosexuality. In fact, the document also declared that candidates who as much as support the “gay culture” should not be considered for Holy Orders.
Although experts suggest that the way the document is worded may leave gaping holes that can be used as loopholes which will allow gay men to enter the seminary, the fact remains that the Church seems as opposed to homosexuality as it always was. The gay community that was hopeful only a few months ago that the Church is moving towards a more liberal stand towards them will be greatly disappointed, especially since it has the approval of the Pope himself.