Gays priests fear a witch-hunt – Religion – Brief Article

The mid April Vatican summit of U.S. cardinals called to discuss the sexual abuse scandals with Pope John Paul II has many Roman Catholic clergymen deeply concerned about calls to bar gay men from the priesthood. Christopher Bellitto, a church historian and academic editor of the Paulist Press in New Jersey, said gay clergy have told him they are terrified they will be made scapegoats as the scandal drags on. And Marianne Duddy, executive director of the gay Catholic advocacy group Dignity/USA, said she has been fielding calls from many gay priests who are so frightened about the prospect of losing their jobs that they can’t sleep at night and have sought counseling.

Of course, it didn’t help when Monsignor Eugene Clark on April 21 delivered a homily in New York’s St. Patrick’s Cathedral saying homosexuality is a “disorder” and that the U.S. is “probably the most immoral country in the Western Hemisphere” because it is “very protective” of homosexuality.

“I think most Catholics see this for what it is,” Duddy said, “an attempt to deflect attention away from the horrible mishandling of the situation by church officials and the decades of cover-up.”

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