So it’s wink and nod…and provide them cover….

Facebook 0
LinkedIn 0
Reddit 0
StumbleUpon 0


In an extraordinarily interesting post at, Phil Lawler raises the question “Is the New York Times protecting dissident priests?”

Lawler’s post is written in response to a New York Times article concerning religious attitudes toward so-called “homosexual marriage”in which the author, Terry Mattingly, noted:

The Roman Catholic Church teaches that homosexual behavior is a sin, but there are Catholic priests who secretly bless gay unions.

That dependent clause contain a bombshell—which Lawler describes as being treated almost as an “afterthought”—and raises a very important issue.  Mattingly observes:

If, in fact, the Times has factual material about Catholic priests blessing same-sex relationships and unions then this is clearly the most important news angle in this piece. This is a major news story, buried deep in a related news report.

However, note that this claim (which I do not doubt, by the way) appears with absolutely no context, no attribution, no clue as to the source of this information. The Times does not even claim to be printing this information based on anonymous sources who requested protection from the Vatican. This is most strange.

Assuming that Mattingly’s article is accurate, Catholic priests are blessing so-called “homosexual marriages.”

That wouldn’t surprise The Motley Monk.  But, if that is the case, Lawler notes:

…these priests are clearly acting in defiance of the Church: the institution they claim to serve. That defiance would constitute a major news story, not merely an observation to be made in passing.

Lawler asks: Why doesn’t the New York Times provide the evidence? After all, that would be news, no?  He adds:

Any Times reporter who actually witnessed a Catholic priest blessing a homosexual union, or heard a credible first-hand report of such an event, should have written a news story about it, and that story should have appeared on the front page. That didn’t happen.

Why not?

Lawler observes that the New York Times may be protecting dissenting priests from ecclesiastical discipline for three possible reasons:

  1. The New York Times reported something as fact when it had no solid evidence. (The Motley Monk thinks “Unlikely.”)
  2. The New York Times had solid evidence, but withheld it because the priests demanded anonymity. (The Motley Monk thinks “Likely.”)
  3. The New York Times knows of priests who have blessed homosexual unions, and those priests did not request.  But, the New York Times decided not to identify them anyway. (The Motley Monk thinks “Perhaps.”)

While Lawler believes the third reason provides the most likely explanation, The Motley Monk doesn’t.  The Motley Monk thinks it more likely that those priests who celebrate so-called “homosexual marriages” requested anonymity.

After all, there are many priests who dissent from a variety of Church teachings.  Think of those who “bless” the marriages divorced persons whose previous marriages haven’t been annulled.  There also are those priests who advise their parishioners that using artificial birth control is “completely moral.”  Then, too, there are those priests who participate at faux Masses celebrated by so-called “women priests.”  Why should it be any different for those priests who believe that so-called “homosexual marriage” should be a sacrament?

What many of these priests who dissent from these Church teachings absolutely don’t want is that their dissent be made public by the New York Times or any other news organization.


It would endanger their status as public ministers of the Roman Catholic Church.

So, it’s wink and nod…and provide dissenting priests cover.

And The Motley Monk wouldn’t be surprised if many of their bishops happen to know it.



To read Phil Lawler’s post at, click on the following link:

To read Terry Mattingly’s article in the New York Times, click on the following link:

To read The Motley Monk’s daily blog, click on the following link:

More to explorer

And Now, England

  King Henry II: But before we quarrel, here is some happy news. I have decided to revive the office of Chancellor

Brave New World-Trans Edition

    The madness known as transgenderism claims another scalp:     WEST POINT, Virginia, December 10, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – A large


  1. A priest can bless a homosexual relationship until he falls over. The homosexual relationship is not blessed. Save your time and money. A woman can say the words of Mass until she falls over, there is no Mass, A woman cannot espouse the Bride of Christ, nor can a woman act in “Persona Christi”. Get real. Little kids play at make believe.

  2. Prior to Christ and this period of mercy, God was quick to deal with such things severely. Let’s have a word from Leviticus 10 that shows what they would have faced back then:

    Lev.10-1 Aaron’s sons Nadab and Abihu took their censers and, putting incense on the fire they had set in them, they offered before the LORD unauthorized fire, such as he had not commanded. 2 Fire therefore came forth from the LORD’s presence and consumed them, so that they died in the LORD’s presence.

    Even post Christ, the book of Acts leaves several clues that God still can be mighty in the old sense if He chooses…His killing of Herod in Acts 12 and His killing of Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5…both incidents involved sacrilege as did the above Leviticus quote and many other deaths by God in the Bible (Uzzah, Achan, the sons of Eli, the 72 descendants of Jeconiah).

  3. I am rather suspicious of such reports. One recalls how the Rector of St Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna was misrepresented in the anti-clerical press when he invited “people with homosexual inclinations to receive a blessing for their longing for love,” on St Valentine’s day – This, despite his clear affirmation that ““Today there is no possibility in the Church to bless a union of people with homosexual feelings.”

    I would not be surprised if this turns out to be something equally innocuous.

  4. I admire your charity, but it’s more likely the NY Times simply lied as one columnist did about a super Catholic turned abortionist or racist remarks in today’s Trayvon/Zimmerman report. True in theory it wouldn’t surprise me if an amateur Freudian social worker in a collar is spreading heresy, but the NYT is above reporting facts. It is the news maker.0

  5. Mary forgive me if I sound like a smart mouth but I don’t think a priest can bless homosexual relationships as marriages at all.

Comments are closed.