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  #16  
Old Feb 23, '12, 1:54 pm
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Abba Abba is offline
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohana View Post
In fact, a male with SSA could well become a fine priest. Gay friends I have had have said that their orientation has allowed them to love more completely, and they were not talking about the sexual expression of loving. Rather they were talking about having kind of a dual nature - a more developed masculine and feminine principle- that helped them relate to people. This would seem to be an excellent basis for pastoral care.
This is understood as a problem by the Church not an advantage. The relation of a priest to the laity is that of a spiritual father.

Instruction Concerning the Criteria for the Discernment of Vocations with Regard to Persons with Homosexual Tendencies in View of Their Admission to the Seminary and to Holy Orders
Congregation for Catholic Education



"Such persons, in fact, find themselves in a situation that gravely hinders them from relating correctly to men and women. One must in no way overlook the negative consequences that can derive from the ordination of persons with deep-seated homosexual tendencies."
http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/co...uzione_en.html
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  #17  
Old Feb 24, '12, 6:24 am
MPSchneiderLC MPSchneiderLC is offline
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abba View Post
This is understood as a problem by the Church not an advantage. The relation of a priest to the laity is that of a spiritual father.

Instruction Concerning the Criteria for the Discernment of Vocations with Regard to Persons with Homosexual Tendencies in View of Their Admission to the Seminary and to Holy Orders
Congregation for Catholic Education



"Such persons, in fact, find themselves in a situation that gravely hinders them from relating correctly to men and women. One must in no way overlook the negative consequences that can derive from the ordination of persons with deep-seated homosexual tendencies."
http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/co...uzione_en.html
Exactly. Here the Vatican just leaves it at "deep-seated tendencies" which caused some problems. (It lacks the clarity and decisiveness Americans would like, but instead gives a general guideline each bishop can apply prudently.) A few days after this document, the WSJ had an editorial attacking the Church for banning all with SSA from the ministry. As far as I can see, Deep-seated tendencies would refer to someone who identifies himself as homosexual to the extent that:
a. the bishop / superior can't trust he will remain chaste, or
b. his dealings with others are as a HOMOSEXUAL in a way that hinders his complete imagining of Christ as an Alter Christus.
It does not seem to ban all with SSA.

Those are my thoughts; I am by no means an expert.
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Last edited by MPSchneiderLC; Feb 24, '12 at 6:26 am. Reason: typo
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  #18  
Old Feb 24, '12, 1:05 pm
ssa fellow ssa fellow is offline
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

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Originally Posted by MPSchneiderLC View Post
Exactly. Here the Vatican just leaves it at "deep-seated tendencies" which caused some problems. (It lacks the clarity and decisiveness Americans would like, but instead gives a general guideline each bishop can apply prudently.) A few days after this document, the WSJ had an editorial attacking the Church for banning all with SSA from the ministry. As far as I can see, Deep-seated tendencies would refer to someone who identifies himself as homosexual to the extent that:
a. the bishop / superior can't trust he will remain chaste, or
b. his dealings with others are as a HOMOSEXUAL in a way that hinders his complete imagining of Christ as an Alter Christus.
It does not seem to ban all with SSA.

Those are my thoughts; I am by no means an expert.
Couldn't some interpret "deep seated" as not being able to change or something. As in: if someone felt they could become heterosexual, or described themselves as "bisexual" these people might be eligible to the priesthood? Whereas people that felt SSA was a cross they would bear their entire lives might not be eligible, because it is deep seated?

Personally, I would definitely not fit into either of those 2 things you list. I'm still a virgin, I've never had sexual or romantic encounters of any kind for that matter. And at this point I'm committed to keeping it that way. And I do know what you're saying. Some people are so blatantly homosexual about everything that they are that it just rubs off in EVERYTHING they talk about or do. But, for myself most people have no reason to not think that I'm straight.

Am I right to think that the intent of this is to keep out progressive priests who might secretly want the Church to change its position on homosexuality? or God forbid, even gay marriage? As well as people they can't trust to be celibate? Do those people have "deep seated homosexual tendencies"... or do all the people with SSA that follow under my first description fall under "deep seated homosexual tendencies?"
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  #19  
Old Feb 24, '12, 3:09 pm
Debora123 Debora123 is offline
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

Thanks for the responses everyone!

I always thought they could be priests, but I went to a different Church last Sunday and the priest there made a crass remark.

...So it got me wondering. Thanks again for everyone's input!
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  #20  
Old Feb 24, '12, 3:41 pm
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Contra Mundum Contra Mundum is offline
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

No.

Seminaries opened their doors to homosexual men a few decades ago and it resulted in a disaster. I've read a study conducted in the US (I've lost the link to it so can't be more precise) that about 80% of homosexual priests were sexually active. The study revealed that most of them never intended to be celibate. Of course, such studies cannot possibly take into account every single priest with SSA, but it nevertheless points to a trend. And that is horrifying. I 100% support current rules that seek to weed out problematic candidates, homosexual or not. The church doesn't need such problems, it has plenty on its plate already.
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  #21  
Old Feb 24, '12, 11:05 pm
MPSchneiderLC MPSchneiderLC is offline
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssa fellow View Post
Couldn't some interpret "deep seated" as not being able to change or something. As in: if someone felt they could become heterosexual, or described themselves as "bisexual" these people might be eligible to the priesthood? Whereas people that felt SSA was a cross they would bear their entire lives might not be eligible, because it is deep seated?

Personally, I would definitely not fit into either of those 2 things you list. I'm still a virgin, I've never had sexual or romantic encounters of any kind for that matter. And at this point I'm committed to keeping it that way. And I do know what you're saying. Some people are so blatantly homosexual about everything that they are that it just rubs off in EVERYTHING they talk about or do. But, for myself most people have no reason to not think that I'm straight.

Am I right to think that the intent of this is to keep out progressive priests who might secretly want the Church to change its position on homosexuality? or God forbid, even gay marriage? As well as people they can't trust to be celibate? Do those people have "deep seated homosexual tendencies"... or do all the people with SSA that follow under my first description fall under "deep seated homosexual tendencies?"
Such issues would be too complex to deal with in this forum. I would suggest talking to a vocation director or good spiritual director. To answer your question, I think either would need to speak with you about this issue in a way that is inappropriate here.

Some comunities and dioceses have stricter rules. For instance, I am almost sure my community (the Legion of Christ) would not accept you - nothing personal, we have just chosen to be more cautious about this issue than the Vatican puts as a minimum standard. We are not alone, the diocese of Alexandria, VA would say the same.
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  #22  
Old Feb 25, '12, 5:20 am
havana1 havana1 is offline
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

Why do threads like this always have to be muddled with terms like "SSA" when the term in the Catechism is "homosexuality"? Why do so many Catholics have a problem with the word "homosexuality"? The OP correctly described the men in question as homosexual. The wariness of the h-word is really getting old. Things would be so much easier if we'd stick with the verbiage used by the Catechism and not invent our own new words and concepts - and, yes, the notion of "SSA" is certainly a 'made-up' concept - intended to alleviate the discomfort some people have calling them "homosexuals."
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  #23  
Old Feb 25, '12, 5:32 am
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

The Bishop (and his team) would have to decide and look at each invidual 'case' seperately. So I suppose if the Bishop is in favour then yes, but if against, then no.
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  #24  
Old Feb 25, '12, 8:00 am
Debora123 Debora123 is offline
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

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Originally Posted by havana1 View Post
Why do threads like this always have to be muddled with terms like "SSA" when the term in the Catechism is "homosexuality"? Why do so many Catholics have a problem with the word "homosexuality"? The OP correctly described the men in question as homosexual. The wariness of the h-word is really getting old. Things would be so much easier if we'd stick with the verbiage used by the Catechism and not invent our own new words and concepts - and, yes, the notion of "SSA" is certainly a 'made-up' concept - intended to alleviate the discomfort some people have calling them "homosexuals."
Agreed. It is bizarre indeed...
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  #25  
Old Feb 25, '12, 1:32 pm
Cristiano Cristiano is offline
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

Quote:
Originally Posted by havana1 View Post
Why do threads like this always have to be muddled with terms like "SSA" when the term in the Catechism is "homosexuality"? Why do so many Catholics have a problem with the word "homosexuality"? The OP correctly described the men in question as homosexual. The wariness of the h-word is really getting old. Things would be so much easier if we'd stick with the verbiage used by the Catechism and not invent our own new words and concepts - and, yes, the notion of "SSA" is certainly a 'made-up' concept - intended to alleviate the discomfort some people have calling them "homosexuals."
The use of SSA is not something invented here on CAF. I think that its origin is from the Bishops in Canada. I do not see it as a politically correct term but as a simple manner to discuss the topic while making the distinction between an involuntary attraction and a voluntary behavior. Using the same term for such different scenarios can create confusion and misunderstanding of the Church teachings among non educated people. Please remember that the Catechism of the Catholic Church is written for the Bishops that have a clear understanding of what the CCC is talking about because of their specific education .
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  #26  
Old Feb 25, '12, 1:44 pm
ssa trad cath ssa trad cath is offline
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

Quote:
Originally Posted by havana1 View Post
Why do threads like this always have to be muddled with terms like "SSA" when the term in the Catechism is "homosexuality"? Why do so many Catholics have a problem with the word "homosexuality"? The OP correctly described the men in question as homosexual. The wariness of the h-word is really getting old. Things would be so much easier if we'd stick with the verbiage used by the Catechism and not invent our own new words and concepts - and, yes, the notion of "SSA" is certainly a 'made-up' concept - intended to alleviate the discomfort some people have calling them "homosexuals."
The following quotation is taken from the website of Courage, the organisation founded by Cardinal Cooke to support those people with same-sex attraction to live according to the Church's teaching on chastity:
There is more to a person than one's sexual attractions. Even if one experienced same-sex attractions for most of one's life, he or she is first and foremost a child of God created in His image. To refer to that person as "gay" or "lesbian" is a reductionist way of speaking about someone. We are even trying now to avoid using the term homosexual as a noun, or as an adjective directly describing the person (i.e. homosexual person). Although it takes more words, we prefer to speak of "persons with same-sex attractions". Fr. Harvey has said that, if he could, he would rename his first book "The Homosexual Person" to something else like "The Person With Homosexual Attractions".
I should point out that I have same-sex attraction, but I am trying to practice chastity. Describing myself as either "gay" or "homosexual" may be seen by some people as either indicating that I'm sexually active with other men, or that I define myself according to being attracted to other men. As already mentioned, I'm not sexually active and I don't think of myself primarily in terms of being sexually attracted to other men. It is something I happen to have rather than something that defines me or describes what I am.

I only make these comments in response to a specific question, not because I want this thread to disappear down a rabbit-hole of discussing terminology.
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Last edited by ssa trad cath; Feb 25, '12 at 1:52 pm. Reason: Addition.
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  #27  
Old Feb 25, '12, 4:33 pm
havana1 havana1 is offline
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

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Originally Posted by ssa trad cath View Post


The following quotation is taken from the website of Courage, the organisation founded by Cardinal Cooke to support those people with same-sex attraction to live according to the Church's teaching on chastity:
There is more to a person than one's sexual attractions. Even if one experienced same-sex attractions for most of one's life, he or she is first and foremost a child of God created in His image. To refer to that person as "gay" or "lesbian" is a reductionist way of speaking about someone. We are even trying now to avoid using the term homosexual as a noun, or as an adjective directly describing the person (i.e. homosexual person). Although it takes more words, we prefer to speak of "persons with same-sex attractions". Fr. Harvey has said that, if he could, he would rename his first book "The Homosexual Person" to something else like "The Person With Homosexual Attractions".
And this following quotation is from CCC paragraph #2359:
2359 Homosexual [adjective; emphasis added] persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.
That's "homosexual persons," not "SSA persons." Preceding paragraph # 2358 refers to "homosexual tendencies", which is also an adjective.

Speaking of disordered (pun intended), as far as I can tell, the only reason "SSA" became a term is because someone apparently thought it would be cute and creative to switch around the words in paragraph # 2357 - "sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex" - to "same sex attraction" - however, the word in paragraph # 2357 (sexual, not "sex") is also an adjective.

There's not one usage of the term "SSA" - not one - anywhere in the Catechism, in any edition, in any translation, in any version. It's not in the Catechism. I again submit it causes more confusion, not more clarity of proper Catholic orthodoxy.
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  #28  
Old Feb 25, '12, 8:15 pm
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

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Originally Posted by havana1 View Post
There's not one usage of the term "SSA" - not one - anywhere in the Catechism, in any edition, in any translation, in any version. It's not in the Catechism. I again submit it causes more confusion, not more clarity of proper Catholic orthodoxy.
If we're going to split hairs, will you at least admit that there is a substantial difference between the phrases "homosexual inclination" (or "homosexual desires") and "homosexual activity"?

SSA is just the first one, that is that one is attracted to persons of the same sex (Same Sex Attraction, or homosexual desires if you prefer).

It is really an issue of dignity. To call someone a homosexual is to define them by their sexuality, which isn't really fair. They may be an artist or an engineer or even a loving husband (it's happened). They may be a computer geek or an olympic athlete or many other things. The point is that by labelling them as a "homosexual" is really denigrating them, it's defining them by 1 and only 1 attribute.

I think that's why you usually read that "deep-seated homosexual" would include someone who defines themselves as gay (homosexual), because they are personally emphasizing that over everything else, or they are defining everything else in relation to being homosexual. It's become their baseline. Jesus should always be your baseline, the centre of your life (as CCO puts it in their Faith Studies).
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  #29  
Old Feb 25, '12, 11:03 pm
ssa trad cath ssa trad cath is offline
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Default Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

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Originally Posted by havana1 View Post
And this following quotation is from CCC paragraph #2359:
2359 Homosexual [adjective; emphasis added] persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.
That's "homosexual persons," not "SSA persons." Preceding paragraph # 2358 refers to "homosexual tendencies", which is also an adjective.

Speaking of disordered (pun intended), as far as I can tell, the only reason "SSA" became a term is because someone apparently thought it would be cute and creative to switch around the words in paragraph # 2357 - "sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex" - to "same sex attraction" - however, the word in paragraph # 2357 (sexual, not "sex") is also an adjective.

There's not one usage of the term "SSA" - not one - anywhere in the Catechism, in any edition, in any translation, in any version. It's not in the Catechism. I again submit it causes more confusion, not more clarity of proper Catholic orthodoxy.
The Catechism was written in the early 1990's before the term "SSA" came into use. And your trying to make the use of the term "homosexual" into a matter-of-faith issue, which it isn't. I'm not going to respond to any further posts you make on this issue. As I said earlier I don't want this to become a rabbit-hole about correct terminology, when the OP's original post was about discussing the priesthood. You can read whatever interpretation you like into my lack of response because frankly, your opinion isn't really important.
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  #30  
Old Feb 26, '12, 1:02 am
MPSchneiderLC MPSchneiderLC is offline
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Exclamation Re: Can homosexual men become priests?

Usually, on such issues of language it is better to defer to the other as long as they understand what is meant.

Someone with SSA or homosexual attraction is one thing; actively engaging in homosexual activity is another. Just like one with hetrosexual attraction and adulteror are two different things. I think we all agree here
I am happy to use either linguistic mode of speaking as long as this distinction is maintained. Let's discuss substance rather than split hairs on terminology.
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