FRONT ROYAL, VA, September 28, 2005 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Human Life International President Fr. Thomas J. Euteneuer has released a strongly worded statement praising reports that Pope Benedict is about to release, through a Vatican Congregation, a document noting men with homosexual orientation are not to be admitted to the priesthood.
The full statement from Fr. Euteneuer follows:
It appears that Pope Benedict XVI has given his approval to a policy statement that men with a homosexual orientation should not be admitted to seminary and should be barred from receiving Holy Orders in the Roman Catholic Church. The Congregation for Catholic Education has prepared the statement for the Pope’s signature which will likely be issued in the form of a standard “Instruction” at the Synod of Bishops at the Vatican in October and will be one of the first actual official documents promulgated in Benedict’s pontificate.
While this statement and position is not new-it is actually a re-statement of a clear position of the Church since the time of Pope John XXIII-it is nonetheless a controversial stance given our radically sexualized culture, and we expect the reaction from the media gay activist community and from the liberal wing of the Catholic Church to be apoplectic.
Following the priest pedophilia scandal in 2002 and following, the US bishops commissioned a study on this terrible sexual perversion infiltrating the priesthood, and the results were shocking. The John Jay study noted that fully 80% of the supposed pedophilic activity in the priesthood did not so much involve boys as adolescent males which means that the core of the problem is one of homosexuality, not strictly pedophilia. A relatively minor percentage of the abuse cases involved boys, but those were the cases that got the media attention and led to the whole genre of priests being labeled as “pedophiles” the work and authority of the Church in general and priests and bishops in particular. The Church is no stranger to attacks, but it is and always should remain vigilant about scandal in its own ranks.
Thankfully the Church’s highest authority has recognized the problem and has now taken concrete steps to address it. It is not that the Church has been silent in the past. It’s just that churchmen have not enforced the Church’s own teaching. If there have been pedophilic priests abusing their office, committing massive crimes against children and causing scandal to the faithful and society alike, then it only means that they were let through the sanctuary doors by gatekeepers who were either asleep or worse, knowingly allowing them to pass. That era seems to be coming to an end. We could not be more grateful to Pope Benedict and the Congregation for Catholic Education for their courageous guidance on this matter.
Our message to the media, to the homosexual activists and to the liberal church is clear. You can’t have it both ways: you can’t complain about church negligence in the pedophilic priest problem and also complain about the church’s diligence in addressing it. Either you grab the problem by its root and yank it out of the soil of the priesthood or you keep asking the faithful to subsidize deviant behavior and the resulting legal liability. Benedict has made his choice, and we are the better for it.