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Gay priests

Teresa R. Tunay, OCDS

…and that’s the truth


NOW that Pope Francis has reiterated the Catholic Church’s ban on homosexuals entering the priesthood (through the document “The Gift of the Priestly Vocation” written by the Vatican’s Congregation for Clergy and signed by the Pope himself), expect anti-popes and Church bashers to wag their tongues anew.  LGBT groups had at the start of Pope Francis’ papacy rejoiced over what they presumed to be a “refreshing open mindedness of this pope.” With his now-famous line “Who am I to judge?”, and his ground-breaking statement that “the Church should apologize to the LGBT community…” the pope was universally hailed as a gay-friendly Church leader who would bring a whiff of fresh air into Vatican’s musty corners.  And now, this document.

The document says the Church cannot admit those “who practice homosexuality, present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called gay culture” to seminaries or holy orders.  “One must in no way overlook the negative consequences that can derive from the ordination of persons with deep-seated homosexual tendencies.”   It feels like ice water thrown at the face of advocates for “LGBT equality” in the Church.   In the USA, they have even gone so far as to demand the Pope’s retraction, or at least an explanation on where he exactly stands, “given the blatant contradiction between ‘Who am I to judge?’ and this most recent document.”

With netizens reacting to this, social media are already abuzz with angst and sarcasm, only proving once more how misunderstood or unknown the Church teachings are to so many people.  But I like bringing the discussion on such lofty matters down to the level the “un-theologized”—ordinary church-goers and cafeteria catholics who are unaware that they are such simply because they hear Mass on Sundays.  So I get the ball rolling and ask them what they think of this new document barring gays from the priesthood.

“Bawal o hindi bawal, walang diperensiya yon.  Yung parish priest naming bakla at okay naman siya, basta hindi siya nadadawit sa iskandalo.”  (Ban or no ban—makes no difference.  Our parish priest is gay and he’s ok as long as he doesn’t get involved in a scandal.)

“Kami rin, ‘malambot’ yung parish priest namin for six years.  Maganda mga sermon niya, maayos ang patakbo sa parish, at at ang galing mag-decorate ng simbahan pag Christmas.  Kagalang-galang naman siya, kaya lang pag nakaharap ng pogi, nagniningning ang mga mata.”   (We also had a ‘soft’ priest in our parish for six years.  He gave good homilies, ran the parish well, and was especially good at decorating the church for Christmas.  He was generally respectable, but around good-looking men his eyes would light up.)

“Hindi ko maintindihan kung bakit ipagbabawal ng pope ang mga bakla, eh kalahati yata ng mga pari ngayon, bading.  Tutukan na lang niya sana yung mga pedophiles at magnanakaw.”  (I don’t see why the pope has to ban gays, when half of the priests now are already gay.  He should instead focus on the pedophiles and the thieves.)

“O, di tama nga ibawal niya, para kumonti na ang mga pedophiles at magnanakaw na mga pari.  Binibiktima ng mga baklang pari ay mga boys, tsaka kailangan nila ng datung para makaakit nila ang mga biktima, ha ha ha!” (So it’s a a good move; it will minimize pedophilia and thievery among the priests.  Gay priests victimize boys, and they need money to lure victims, ha ha ha!)

“Pabor ako sa ban.  Hindi ko papayagang pumasok ang anak kong lalaki sa seminaryong tumatanggap ng bakla.  Ang isip at damdamin ng bakla parang sa babae, paniwala pa nga niya siya’y isang babae na nakukulong sa katawan ng isang lalaki, at sexually attracted sila sa lalaki.  Mantaking mong payagan ang isang bakla 24/7 sa tirahang puno ng ng mga lalaki?  Lalo lang mababakla yon sa seminaryo!”   (I’m all for the ban.  I wouldn’t send my son to a seminary that takes in homosexuals.  A gay man feels and thinks like a woman, he even believes he is a woman trapped in a man’s body, and he is sexually attracted to men.  Can you imagine exposing a gay man 24/7 to males?  He will just get worse in the seminary!)

“Oo nga, gaya ng nangyayari sa mga prison pag may napahalong bakla.  Pwedeng mangyari iyon sa seminary; taong lang tayo.”  (I agree, see what happens in prison when a homosexual man is around.  That can happen in seminaries, too; we’re only human.)

“Bakit naman kasi gugustuhin pang mag-pari ang bakla… ang dami naming puwedeng gawin sa buhay.”  (I don’t see why a gay man would want to become a priest…there are so many other things to do in life.)

“Eh kung tingin ba nila tinatawag sila ng Diyos eh.  Hindi naman sila puwedent magmadre!”  (What if they think God is calling them?  They can’t be accepted as nuns!)

“I mean, hindi ba nila alam na mahihirapan lang sila at ang ibang seminarista?  O baka naman kaya gusto nilang pumasok sa seminaryo ay precisely because sa tingin nila maraming men doon na mababait at hindi sila pagsasamantalahan?”  (I mean, don’t they realize that it would be difficult for them and other seminarians?  Or do they want to enter the seminary precisely because they think there are many good men there who won’t take advantage of them?)

“Hindi problema sa Pilipinas yan—abroad lang maingay ang mga LGBT.  Dito, tanggap na tanggap ang mga bakla.  Sa dami ng mga successful na bakla, gaya ni Vice Ganda, Boy Abunda, mga film directors, couturiers, etc., popular na, milyonaryo pa.  Bakit gugustuhin pa ng mga bakla na magpakahirap sa buhay bilang pari?”  (That’s not a problem in the Philippines—it’s only abroad that the LGBT make noise.  Here homosexuals are so accepted, like Vice Ganda, Boy Abunda, film directors, couturiers, etc. who are popular besides being millionaires.  Why would gay men want to be suffering in life as priests?)

(To be continued)

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