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Monday, July 29, 2013

Pope Francis' definition of gay clergyman

It's hard to know from this article what Pope Francis' definition of gay clergymen is

Or, for that matter, what the writers' definition of key terms he uses is either.
 
Another pesky word to define – judge.


I’ve done several studies on judging is and what it isn’t biblically.  I wonder what Pope Francis is thinking when he says he won’t judge.

What does the biblical concept of an individual person judging mean?  How is this different than the idea of judging from the standpoint of a defense or prosecuting attorney perspective?  As Christians are we as people ever to be more than lawyers and be court room judges?  From my study, I do not think so. 

But these writers, John Bacon and David Agren,  had to put the word, judge, in quotes; so much like how writers feel compelled to put the word, cure, in quotes when they refer to counseling approaches. 
 
What is Pope Francis’ definition of the terms: gay, searches, good will and judge?
 
No.  What Pope Benedict’s document said is that if the person with same-sex sexual attractions finds those attractions to be a major part of their life, (their language is "deep-seated homosexual tendencies") that they should not enter Catholic seminary to become a priest.  So, what would this writer consider the orientation of a bisexual person to be?  How about the bisexual person who is more toward the heterosexual end of the Kinsey Scale?  What is this writer’s definition of the term, gay clergymen?  Is he referring to identity, orientation, sexual attractions, behavior?  I know what Pope Benedict meant.  I might even know what Pope Francis means.  But I sure don’t know what this writer means.  

However, this document is not clear in the use of this concept, "...such tendencies must be clearly overcome at least three years before ordination to the diaconate."  Now, we encounter another of those pesky terms - overcome.  Is this about behavior, attractions, identity, orientation...?  Why can't people be clear?  The precise section of the document is:
If a candidate practises (sic) homosexuality or presents deep-seated homosexual tendencies, his spiritual director as well as his confessor have the duty to dissuade him in conscience from proceeding towards ordination. 
What is the definition of the term, homosexuality, used here?  Is it about attractions or behavior?  Identity or orientation? 
 It would be gravely dishonest for a candidate to hide his own homosexuality in order to proceed, despite everything, towards ordination.  
Pope Francis didn't say whether when he supported civil unions, that what he meant might have been those who are not Catholics who desired to enter a same-sex civil union.  I believe what he was referring to was honoring those who were not Christians who wanted to enter into same sex civil unions.  I don't sense that what he meant was that he was referring to Catholics who wanted to enter into same-sex civil unions.  And again, there is a profound difference between the words: support, and respect and accept. 

Even the writer of this second article gets it wrong when he uses the term, gay tendencies.  The accurate terminology, again, is: "deep-seated homosexual tendencies."  And the accurate term refers to both men and women. 


Most writers do not understand the topics that they are writing about to the degree that they could be clear, even if they wanted to.  I have not found that most writers want to be clear.  It is hard for them to resist trying to present their own agenda in the articles that they write.