By Patrick B. Craine
QUEBEC, November 6, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) – On a Quebec news program aired Wednesday, infamous pro-abortion and homosexualist Catholic priest Fr. Raymond Gravel argued that homosexuals cannot overcome their homosexual desires, claiming that homosexuality is natural.
“I think we can't come out of homosexuality,” stated the priest and former Bloc Quebecois MP, who stepped down from political life last year following an order from the Vatican. “And those who have tried to come out of homosexuality, nature has caught up to them.”
Fr. Gravel was speaking on Dumont 360, hosted by Mario Dumont, the former leader of the Action démocratique du Québec party. Dumont led Fr. Gravel and Laurent Leclerc, a former homosexual who insists that he successfully underwent reorientation therapy, in a discussion about the possibility of reorientation.
The debate was sparked by a session being held by a Catholic parish, in which parents were supported in developing their children's “heterosexual potential.”
Leclerc explained that when he was still homosexual he could not believe that he was born that way. “At a certain point in my life, it became impossible to me that I was born homosexual,” he said.
“I underwent a therapy that is called reparative or restorative,” he continued. “It exists. There are thousands of homosexuals, of people who experienced homosexuality who have undergone this kind of therapy.”
But Fr. Gravel dismissed Leclerc's claim. “And these thousands of people who have come out of homosexuality, where are they?” he asked. “I have never met any of these people. You're the only one I've ever met.”
Rather, the priest insisted that “We have to help [homosexuals] to come to terms with themselves and help them live according to what they are.”
Fr. Gravel explained that, in his experience, any man he knew who tried to “come out of homosexuality” had been unsuccessful.
When Leclerc explained the therapy he underwent, Gravel responded by accusing him of calling homosexuality a disorder in need of being healed. “Therefore we come back to say that homosexuality is a deficiency, therefore a sickness, therefore we can come out of it,” he said.
Fr. Gravel went on to claim that sessions encouraging heterosexuality were “dangerous” because they could lead, for example, to a sixth grade child feeling harassed by his parents suggesting that his homosexual feelings were not normal.
Leclerc criticized Gravel's comments, however, as an example of the prejudice against ex-gays within the homosexual community that prevents some people from identifying as having left the homosexual lifestyle. “There are few people who accept to identify as ex-gay because the homosexual community comes down on us and tells us: no, you're in error. And that's the new religion,” he said.
“My only goal in going to the meeting, and my only goal in coming here tonight was to give hope to people who say to themselves 'I'm not comfortable with this, and there are ways of getting out of it',” he said.
The Catholic Church teaches that “deep-seated homosexual tendencies [are] objectively disordered,” as the Congregation for Catholic Education explained in their 2005 instruction denying ordination to men with such tendencies.
A significant body of evidence, including the personal testimonies of numerous men and women, confirm that reparative therapy can indeed be effective.
In June, a meta-analysis of research going back over 100 years was released by the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH), revealing that treatment for unwanted homosexuality most definitely can be beneficial. Despite Fr. Gravel's claim, and that of the American Psychological Association (APA), the analysis showed that reparative therapy is effective and generally not harmful. It also demonstrated that pathology has been found to be significantly greater in the homosexual community.
Commenting on the APA's August decision to officially reject reparative therapy, NARTH Vice-President of Operations David Pruden insisted that a neutral look at the research forces one to conclude that “homosexuality is not invariabl[y] fixed in all people, and some people can and do change, not just in terms of behavior and identity but in core features of sexual orientation such as fantasy and attractions.”
See the video (in French) here.
To respectfully present your concerns to Fr. Gravel's bishop:
Most Rev. Gilles Lussier
Bishop of Joliette
2, rue Saint-Charles-Borromée Nord
E-mail: [email protected]
See related LifeSiteNews.com coverage: