Monday, November 23, 2009

The New GLBT Pope Problem


It is time to admit that the gay community has a gigantic Pope problem. Under the leadership of Benedict XVI, the Vatican has become an implacable foe of liberalism, modernity and basic
rights for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. Rome has eagerly jumped with both feet into America's culture wars and is working on a global scale to punish or purge ideological dissenters within the church. This aggressive activism presents a formidable new front in the fight for parity - one with considerable political clout and financial resources.

Last week, a coalition of totalitarian religious activists and radical clerics joined forces to unveil the "Manhattan Declaration" at Washington's National Press Club. This rambling manifesto, written by former Watergate felon Chuck Colson, called for "Christians" to disobey laws they didn't fancy and to ignore civil rights laws that protected GLBT people from discrimination. It was a dishonest document filled with historical revisionism that promoted theocracy, encouraged anarchy and supported the dissolution of the rule of law. It falsely portrayed right wing Christians as victims, even as they pledged to work tirelessly to deny equality to those who would not adhere to their sectarian church rules.

An extreme manifesto of such breathtaking cynicism and insincerity is no surprise coming from what passes for "leaders" in today's evangelical circles. It was striking, however, that more than 15 key American Catholic leaders signed on to the "Manhattan Declaration". Signatories included heavyweights such as Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York and Donald Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington, DC. This was clearly a call to arms and a powerful signal that the Roman Catholic Church is taking the gloves off to fight political battles in America.

This hands-on involvement from Rome has passed the "trend" stage and appears to be official policy. Consider the significant involvement the Catholic Church had in stripping marriage rights away from GLBT couples in a Maine referendum held earlier this month.

In the same manner, on June 11, the Washington, DC Archdiocese threatened to abandon the homeless and quit charity work in the District if it had to comply with anti-discrimination laws. Catholic Charities had the audacity to believe it was entitled to collect $8.2 million in tax dollars meant to serve all DC residents, and then still get to handpick whom it deems worthy of assistance.

Catholic involvement with arch-conservative politics is growing by the day. In May, Catholic groups tried to stop President Barack Obama from speaking at a Notre Dame commencement ceremony because of his pro-choice position.
Earlier this month, Providence Bishop Thomas Tobin put the clamp on Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.), banning the lawmaker from communion because he is pro-choice. This was reminiscent of The St. Louis Archbishop refusing to give communion to Senator John Kerry during his presidential campaign.

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis has suddenly begun to steer GLBT Catholics to 12-step programs that promise to "cure" homosexuality or support them in a lifelong celibacy. The Catholic Diocese in Sioux Falls, South Dakota urged its 128-thousand members to oppose an attempt to bring legalizing embryonic stem cell research to a public referendum. (I guess the sacrosanct "people's right to vote" on controversial social issues only applies to same-sex marriage)

In fighting back, we must remember that the Vatican is launch
Pope Roll Eyesing these attacks from a position of weakness. It has yet to recover its moral authority from public exposure of rampant child sexual abuse scandals that cost the Church billions of dollars in legal settlements.

The Vatican appears to be acutely aware it is losing its worldwide market share. It is basically defunct in the Middle East, where the religion began, and on life-support in Western Europe, where it once prospered. In Africa, Rome competes with Islam and Anglicanism for a shrinking slice of the pie. (Who can forget that while in Africa the Pope said condoms could make the AIDS crisis worse.) South America, one of its few remaining strongholds, is losing Roman Catholics to evangelical faiths by the millions.

Instead of competing against the conservative evangelical brand, Pope Benedict has decided to embrace it, shaping a conspicuously political Catholicism that embraces extremism and drives out dissenters. The Vatican has become so doctrinaire that it recently launched an invasive probe into the lives of America's 60,000 nuns to enforce anachronistic rules. In January, Benedict welcomed back excommunicated Bishop Richard Williamson who denied that millions of Jews died in Nazi death camps.

Fortunately, Benedict is a cold, unsympathetic figure and the majority of American Catholics often ignore his edicts. The strategy for the GLBT community should be to stand up to Rome and help mobilize mainstream Catholics to fight back against an authoritarian Pontiff who is hell-bent on making the Catholic Church as unpopular and unappealing as His Holiness.

Re-posted with permission from Wayne Besen of (Nosferatu picture added for effect... that's the one on the left?)


* said...

i'm not religious or involved with organized religion, churches or whatnot at all.

so i have to say, everytime i read something about this man, he just becomes more and more unappealing to me.
he seems so cold and unfeeling and the fact that he denies that millions of jews died in death camps, wtf???

thanks for posting this and getting the word out.

John said...

Nosferatu ?

That is cool, although it is a bit insulting to vampires.

Remember, I live near two lesbian vampires, and they are cool people.

John Hosty said...

This Pope needs counseling in a big way. For one, he tries to hide the fact he is a former Nazi and that his biography as a Cardinal mentions his struggles with homosexual feelings.

We know that throughout history it has always been closeted gays that are our most virulent opponents. This Pope is not only fallible, he's not even a good role model. His leadership is sinking the Church so far into the waters of bigotry that it may never recover. This is nothing more than social Darwinism as I see it.

Honestly, how can you have so much hate and be a religion based in love through Christ, the epitome of unconditional love. Maybe it was Christ who was wrong? ;)

Have a Happy Thanksgiving Guys, see you on the other side of the holiday.

William said...

Why are you doing this? If you keep it up, many more will leave the Church. I have fought you for years. But I must admit I am tempted to give in. We are losing so much ground. Stop tempting people. I know it's wrong but I want to suck. Stop harassing Christians. What is happening? Why do I feel an intense drive to give in?

SisterTemptation said...

William, your self-loathing is showing. If you desire to be happy and healthy, you will have to acknowledge that this is the end run for the Church. Either she will freely choose to allow gay lesbian and transgendered rights or we will dismantle her. Already the dismantling is taking place. Some of us are working openly to undermine her from within and to permanently install a new policy.

If you are interested in a new Churh where our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters will be allowed to express themselves sexually email me.

Until you freely admit your desure for intimate gay sex William, you will be an unhappy repressed person. Enter the new age William. With or without you we will take what is ours.

Come join us William. Don't be afraid.

SisterTemptation said...

Amost forgot. My email:

Our group of more than 125 Catholics has been very successful. Throughout Worcester more than 80 parishes are in crisis.

Anonymous said...

LOL.....Fucking awesome!

John Hosty said...

Anonymouse, thanks for the link, I did leave a post there.

William, This issue is not about tempting anyone, it's about free will and whether we owe it to one another or not. I'm fine with your disapproval, I think you overstep yourself when we try to control me though. I deserve the same rights you do, neither of our rights interfere with the others.

The reason I have written open criticisms of the Church is in hopes that it will influence change for the better. I personally would like to the Church survive and even flourish, but it should do so in a healthy way, and that means to put it's focus back on unconditional love.

Until the Church purges itself of the evil within and it's lack of love it will continue to diminish because people know the truth.

William said...

I have to admit that we are losing in a big way. And the speed with which it is happening is something shocking. What I don't understand is why there is a part of me which finds it all so exciting. I was debating homosexuality with a gay activist a few weeks ago and at one point he told me that the Church is losing because it is based on sexual repression. I argued that he was wrong but when he said the Church would soon collapse part of me felt a shudder, a thrill. I don't understand what's happening but I am beginning to think your movement is unstoppable and I don't know why I find that so exciting.

SisterTemptation said...

Because William he hit a nerve. Deep down you KNOW that the Church is in crisis. And you also know that you are on the losing side of history. You feel a thrill because deep down there is a part of you that wants to admit your desire for gay sex. It's a new day William. Every day more and more people are leaving the Church. In Worcester, there is a group of religious committed toward introducing a gay and lesbian theology which is winning hearts and minds. You cannot win. We will achieve total victory through our irrefutable logic and the irresistible frce of love. That's what you're feeling. You fear the truth your heart already knows. The Church will either change her policies and embrace our gay and lesbian brothers or we will dismantle her and forge a new Church wher sex is openly celebrated and not repressed.

William, admit your self-loathing. Join us. You will encounter a liberation you never thought possible. Leave medeivalism behind. It's the 21st century and the new Church will be a reality.

email me William. Let's talk. What are you afraid of? That I'm right? That this IS the end run for the Church?

John said...

William, no one here wants to see the Church collapse, no one here is excited about a battle between the Church and activists.

John and I are Catholic who while disagreeing with some of the Catechism, claim the Church as our heritage.

The Church will not collapse. It may lose some luster in America, but it it is growing in Africa.

All we want is for all people, regardless of their sexual orientation, to be given their due respect and equality.

SisterTemptation said...

Results do not lie. Numbers do not lie. In Worcester we are having a deep impact. Why? Because we are changing hearts and minds through a new theology. Instead of openly confronting Christians with arguments, we are introducing a new theology of love which cannot be refuted. Churches are emptying. And, as anonymous said already, IT IS AWESOME! Seeing hardened hearts soften is an experience which is just incredible. Just recently I encountered a young man who was railing against gay and lesbian sex. But when we spoke of sex, he freely admitted he found the idea of two women together "hot." Many heterosexual men admit this feeling. We began with why he felt this way and after one hour or so, he was agreeing that same-sex marriage should be

A new day is upon us. Come work with us.

SisterTemptation said...

We are witnessing the de-construction of Catholicism:

France is de-christianising rapidly

My translation from French

The IFOP Institute has just made a survey on Catholicism in France for the daily La Croix. The result is mind-blowing:

•Whilst, in 1965, 81% of the French declared themselves as Catholics, they were no more than 64% in 2009.
•More serious: whilst 27% of the French went to Mass once a week or more in 1965, they are no more than 4.5% in 2009.
•At a doctrinal level, generally, it’s a catastrophe: 63% of practicing Catholics think all religions are the same; 75% ask for an “aggiornamento” of the Church on contraception and even 68% for abortion.
•As for communion with the Roman Pontiff, the situation is no better: only 27% of practicing Catholics consider that Benedict XVI “rather well” defends “the values of Catholicism” (personally, I don’t even understand the question, but that doesn’t matter) when 34% think he defends them “rather badly”.

Like I said William, it's a new day. The Church is in collapse.

SisterTemptation said...

The Church is deconstructing:

A New Age is dawning...And it is so fucking awesome.