An old joke:
Did you hear about the gay Pope? He thought he was infallible, but he was simply divine!
A new limerick:
The pope has a nifty new hobby,
Which the Curia sniffs is too snobby.
With silks and organza
He's refurbing St. Peter's gay lobby!
Pope Francis's recent off-the-cuff remark about the Vatican's "gay lobby" has me wondering whether the pontiff was just musing idly on his city-state's problems or was harking back to an era when there was a sodomite under every pew.
Francis has been known for his eye-popping spontaneous remarks. He got the atheists excited that they might go to heaven, a rumor quickly walked back by the ever-so-theologically-correct paradise-poopers at the Curia. But the pope's gay lobby comment, while curious, still lingers in the ether, like a whiff of clove cigarette smoke.
The pope has reason to wonder about gays at the Vatican:
Gay priests in the Vatican are not exactly a new revelation. Allegations of a powerful “gay lobby” in the Vatican’s governing body known as the Roman Curia have been floating around Rome for years. There have been ample examples of priests in compromising positions dating back to 2010 when Carmello Abbate, an undercover reporter for Panorama magazine, caught priests strutting around in panties and fornicating on church property with a hidden camera. He painted a shocking portrait of how priests in Rome blatantly disobey their vows of celibacy, complete with rumors of steamy Turkish baths where top-ranking cardinals and prelates met up for some not-so-holy horseplay.A gay churchman is a target for blackmailers, of course. But these fellas seem to have gone a little over the top in their frolics. If a priest is supposed to keep it in his pants, that should go for hetero and homosexual priests, am I right?
More worrisome to me than gay sex among priests though is the atmosphere of hypocrisy that it breeds. If priests (gay or no) are preaching abstinence and continence to their flocks, all the while flaunting their naughty bits to each other, there is a problem. Come clean, padres: either drop the celibacy charade or man up and lead the life of prayer and self-abnegation that you promote!
The secrecy of sex among prelates means that we might be failing to grapple honestly with the burdens that we are asking our pastors to bear. Maybe it's time for all of our priests to come out of the closet and bare the sexuality as well as their souls.