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Report: Pope Approves Gay Priest Ban


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Report: Pope Approves Gay Priest Ban

by 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff

Posted: September 20, 2005 5:00 pm ET

(Rome) Pope Benedict XVI has reportedly approved a recommendation that gays be barred from the priesthood.

In a report from Rome the conservative Catholic publication Catholic World News says that bishops will be directed to exclude gays from seminaries.

The recommendation is contained in a document prepared by the Congregation for Catholic Education and Seminaries - the body that oversees all Catholic seminaries.

It was delivered to Pope Benedict earlier this month (story) but was not made public because the Vatican did not want it to conflict with the papal visit to Cologne.

Since that time there has been considerable speculation whether it would gain approval.

Catholic World News is an independent publication but has close ties to the Vatican. There has been no independent corroboration of the report.

CNW reports that the document says that gay men should not be admitted to seminaries even if they are celibate, "because their condition suggests a serious personality disorder which detracts from their ability to serve as ministers."

Priests who have already been ordained "if they suffer from homosexual impulses, are strongly urged to renew their dedication to chastity, and a manner of life appropriate to the priesthood."

The publication, quoting sources in Rome, says that the document is expected to be made public after the Synod of Bishops, which meets in Rome from October 2 through 23.

The report comes as a Vatican ordered investigation of America's 229 seminaries to identify gays gets underway. (story) Last week the New York Times reported that it had obtained documents on the instructions investigators had been given.

The document shows the investigators will seek to have priests turn in suspected gays. The Times said it received the document from a priest "who was granted anonymity because he feared retribution".

It shows that the inquisitors will conduct confidential interviews with every faculty member and seminarian, as well as everyone who graduated in the last three years.

Among the questions all seminarians and teachers will be asked are: “Is there evidence of homosexuality in the seminary?" and "Are there signs of particular friendships.” Both questions must be answered the document says.

LGBT Catholics say that the Church is attempting to lay blame on gays for the child abuse scandal that has rocked Roman Catholicism.

©365Gay.com 2005


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