By John-Henry Westen

TORONTO, November 30, 2005 ( – The new Vatican document on homosexuality and the priesthood, states that there are three categories of men who may not be admitted to seminaries and may not be ordained priests, they are: “those who practise homosexuality, present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called ‘gay culture’”.Â asked Dr. Suzanne Scorsone, spokesman for Toronto Cardinal Aloysius Ambrozic, what was meant by the prohibiting ordination of men who support the ‘gay culture’.

Dr. Scorsone explained that the meaning is open to interpretation in various cultural settings. However, she stated, “Obviously if a person is frequenting gay bars, or something like that, as a participant, obviously this would not bode well for the person’s vocation to the priesthood.” Adding, “But I’d say the same thing would be true of a heterosexual man who made rather a habit of going to strip joints.”

She stressed that “It is quite possible for an individual of a same sex orientation to be a saint,” but that does not mean they are called to the priesthood.

Also commenting on the new Vatican instruction was Calgary Bishop Fred Henry, the most fearless Canadian bishop regarding public commentary on controversial matters of morality. In comments to, Bishop Henry wrote:

“The latest instruction is in continuity with previous church teaching. Contrary to much of the alarmist rhetoric preceding the document’s release, the instruction is not a witch hunt, nor does it engage in ‘gay-bashing.’ It re-iterates church teaching. It states that men who practice homosexuality, manifest deeply rooted homosexual tendencies or support the gay culture should not be allowed to enter the seminary or to be ordained priests. A candidate cannot exhibit a lifestyle incompatible with Church teaching.”

Bishop Henry concluded, “The instruction underlines the significance of human formation and affective or psycho-sexual maturity. The concern with respect to a candidate is for the demonstrated peaceful and personal integration of sexuality with the whole person-body, emotions and soul and its manifestation in leading the person to the gift of self in love in accordance with the teaching of the Church.”



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