PopeWatch: Gay Thought Police

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Judging from this article, originally written for Foreign Policy by Michael O’Loughlin, the Gay Thought Police are disappointed that Pope Francis hasn’t cracked down on bishops in regard to the gay agenda.

But bishops, not a centralized Roman bureaucracy, are the men supporting campaigns against same-sex marriage in the United States, and they’re the ones supporting laws that imprison gays in Africa. Liberal Catholics, in other words, are seeing both the good and the bad of what they wished for.

Now, many human rights advocates say silence from the pope, regardless of internal church issues, isn’t acceptable, that human dignity should trump bureaucratic reform. In October, Human Rights Watch published a letter to Pope Francis asking the church to use its influence “to protect people in sexual and gender minorities from further abuse.” HRW wanted the pope to “[p]ublicly condemn violence against people in sexual and gender minorities” and support the “decriminalization of consensual, sexual relationships and support the repeal of other unjust criminal penalties for people in sexual and gender minorities.”

As for whether his voice would matter, it’s certainly possible for the pope — especially this pope — to use his global platform to drive a conversation, perhaps even sway opinion. He led a massive protest against Western military intervention in Syria last September, for instance, rallying Catholics for a worldwide day of prayer. He has showed the world that he knows how to mobilize believers.

What’s more, even during the hostile climate created under Pope Benedict, there were some positive rumblings at the Vatican that show Pope Francis likely wouldn’t have much to lose in speaking out against egregious violations of LGBT rights. Responding to protests against its unwillingness to back a U.N. resolution on sexual orientation, Rome said in 2008 that it would support eliminating criminal penalties for homosexuality (even while it would not support same-sex unions and some other policies). More recently, Pope Francis’s personal representative to Uganda, Archbishop Michael Blume, expressed concern about Uganda’s anti-gay bill and wrote that he hoped the Holy Spirit would give Mr. Museveni “wisdom” as the president considered signing it into law.

Given his own public comments, Archbishop Blume’s words and other signals, it’s probable that Francis is against repressive, anti-gay laws. And already, in his first year as pope, he has taken an important step toward a new dynamic around LGBT issues in the church.

Yet if he truly wants to move forward, he will have to build on his initial outreach and ask, publicly, that Catholic bishops and other leaders keep up. If the pope truly wants the Catholic Church to chart a course for social justice around the world, his leadership on this issue must demonstrate that his powerful institution is a genuine voice for the oppressed.

PopeWatch believes that the Gay Thought Police will continue to be disappointed in Pope Francis.  However Bishops and other Catholics speaking out on behalf of traditional morality will likely also be disappointed.  Pope Francis has clearly indicated that although he is a loyal son of the Church he has no stomach for this fight, preferring to focus on what he perceives to be greater evils like youth unemployment and lonely geezers.


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  1. The Foreign Policy article is a crock.

    Where is the proof that Catholic bishops are “supporting laws that imprison gays in Africa?” Every news story I have seen on the subject shows that the bishops are criticizing the imprisonment penalties, so the bishops of the Church are already “protecting sexual and gender minorities” from true abuse. The only stand that bishops have taken against the thought police are 1) that African nations have the right to make laws that are at some variance from the thought police, and 2) that it is morally wrong for the thought police to use Western humanitarian aid to coerce African nations to change their laws on this matter – i.e. ‘starve some kids to free a gay’. The conflation of stands 1) and 2) with “supporting laws that imprison gays in Africa” is largely a lie and is a typical bullying tactic of the thought police.

  2. The gay-activists are demanding Divine Providence from the God through the Pope. The gay agenda is an atheist agenda, rejecting God and the human soul and demanding from the state and the Pope the freedom and grace bestowed only by God.

  3. Father Martin also thinks that what the pope has said should make bishops around the world reconsider how they engage on gay issues. “In countries where [gays] are in fact judged, and judged harshly, one of the most important moral voices of our time is saying, ‘Stop.’ It’s a critical step forward,” he said.

    Gee, Fr Martin, should the Holy Father MAKE bishops deny Communion to pro-abort politicians, or force “catholic” universities to fire heterodox professors?

  4. “Who am I to Judge?” Refers of course to judgement on persons, not acts. Only God can Judge a person. We can of course judge acts, especially as they are illuminated by the catechism.

    I was initially disappointed in the Pope for not elaborating, but now I realize that the Pope was/is being “wise as a serpent and simple as a dove”. A full explanation by him would have been received as a frontal attack by the progressive forces inhabiting the media, and would not have been wise. Besides this has already been explained. Francis’s point, as the most visible member of the Church, is to get people thinking; I do think that he wants other members of the Church to indeed be on the war front as it were, where ever it is prudently needed.

  5. Should not the Bishops and the Pope also speak out against the onslaught by the Gay Agenda on people and businesses that are suffer if they do not bow down to it, fully aided and abetted by liberals and the press? It is indeed a tyranny of the few to subdue the many; justice is not a one-way street.

  6. We are not, in being, our sexual desires/orientation; regardless of ancestry, desire, or consent, a man is a man, a woman is a woman. Any act that does not respect the personal and relational Dignity of the human person as a son, daughter, brother, sister, husband, wife, father, mother, in private as well as in public, is not ordered to authentic Love, and thus is not an act of Love. Love requires that we desire to be chaste in our thoughts, our words, and our deeds because Love Wills only that which is Good for one’s beloved.

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