Vatican Promoting the Mortal Sin of Homophobia (still)

An 85-year-old Irish (once Catholic) woman from the Boston area sent me this headlined article last night: “Vatican excludes gay union blessings because God ‘can’t bless sin.’”

“The Fight for Equality.” Straight ministers stand up for gay marriage. Photo by Bev Sykes on Flickr.

The woman’s response?  Very succinct and to the point: “Who gives a damn WHAT they say—or bless—or don’t bless?”

How many (more) gay or trans youth will commit suicide over this “religious” pronouncement? 

How many more will go into deep depression?

How many will act out their self-hatred?

Saint Thomas Aquinas, doctor of the church, warns us that “a mistake about creation results in a mistake about God.”  This declaration insults the Creator who knows all about sexual diversity. 

Excerpt from an info sheet released by

Aquinas also says that those who choose to be ignorant of something important are committing a mortal sin.  Sexual diversity is true and important.  The information that homosexuality exists in about 8% of our species as well as 464 other species has been there for all to see since the 1970’s when the American Psychiatric Association removed homosexuality as a disease from their books.  For a minority, it is perfectly normal and healthy.  What rock as the Vatican been choosing to hide under all these years?

“Book on Gays in Vatican Makes Link to Sex Abuse.” Author Frédéric Martel says the Vatican culture of secrecy that has hidden the double lives of clergy is “intrinsically mixed up” with the culture of cover-up about sexual abuse of minors. Posted to YouTube by AP Archive

What is particular cheeky about this homophobic proclamation from is that a book by French journalist Frédéric Martel detailing the truths and hypocrisy of gay life in and around the Vatican has come on the market for all to see.  Called In the Closet of the Vatican: Power, Homosexuality and Hypocrisy, the book tells us among other things that 12 of the twenty clergy of the CDF are gay, 12 are practicing, 5 live with their boyfriends and 3 visit prostitutes regularly. 

And it is not so much the heterosexuals in the Vatican but self-hating gay prelates who make all the fuss and noise and laws against homosexuals (See my review of that book HERE).

Anthropologist Natalia Reagan explores the many species in which homosexual behavior is common. Uploaded to YouTube by Seeker

Let me repeat: the gay issue today is the Galileo case of our time.  Once again, we have religious prelates pontificating about a scientific issue without studying the science—Aquinas calls this a mortal sin.  “Mistakes about God” are at stake here as well.  Is God homophobic?  It seems not, since creation has birthed it.  Sexual diversity seems to be a big plus for history—why else would it be so prevalent?

This declaration is a very sinful one.  It sins against truth; against creation; against our responsibility to study science before pontificating about peoples’ lives and loves.

Photo by Shingi Rice on Unsplash

It sins as hypocrisy—something Jesus thunders against in religious leaders; it contributes to hatred, killings and suicides that are sure to follow; it sins by encouraging self-hatred of homosexuals (of whom many live and work in the Vatican). 

And it sins against the rising number of young people who have learned to accept the diversity of sexual expression in themselves and their siblings, friends, and co-workers.  Much has been learned about sexual diversity in recent decades and it is a pity that people in the Vatican have chosen ignorance.  Shame on them.

Will they notice when still increased numbers abandon organized religion and leave it to the homophobes? 

See Matthew Fox, Letters to Pope Francis, pp. 17f.;

Fox, A New Reformation, Theses 70-73;

Fox, Sins of the Spirit, Blessings of the Flesh: Transforming Evil in Soul and Society, pp. 259, 377;

Fox, Confessions: The Making of a Post-denominational Priest, pp. 142f., 184, 202, 255f., 345f, 382.

Banner Image: “Gay Marriage, Copenhagen.” Photo by Nick Karvounis on Unsplash

Have you moved beyond churches that preach homophobia?  What woke you up to that sickness?

Letters to Pope Francis

Matthew Fox challenges the new Pope to live up to the promise of his namesake St. Francis and reshape a church that has been mired in corruption and bereft of authentic spirituality and rigorous theological debate. Former Dominican priest Matthew Fox presents a series of heartfelt letters to his brother in Christ about the great challenges facing the church today, drawing from the deep spiritual and theological sources that have been suppressed since Vatican II, and implores him to restore the sensus fidelium (the sense of the faithful) and reshape a church with justice and compassion.

A New Reformation: Creation Spirituality & The Transformation of Christianity

A modern-day theologian’s call for the radical transformation of Christianity that will allow us to move once again from the hollow trappings of organized religion to genuine spirituality. A New Reformation echoes the Reformation initiated by Martin Luther in 1517 and offers a new vision of Christianity that values the Earth, honors the feminine, and respects science and deep ecumenism.
“This is a deep and forceful book….With prophetic insight, Matthew Fox reveals what has corrupted religion in the West and the therapy for its healing.” ~Bruce Chilton, author of Rabbi Jesus: An Intimate Biography

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10 thoughts on “Vatican Promoting the Mortal Sin of Homophobia (still)”

  1. Avatar
    Jeanette Metler

    What awakened me to the Catholic Churchs homiphobia was its own hypocricy, that being the attempt to hide and deny the reality of many gay men within the institution itself along with the years of cover-up regarding sexual abuse, which has been exposed and well documented through investigative reporting, documentaries and published books. My sense is that celibacy, the oppression and suppression of a human beings sexuality as well as the segregation of the sexes along with an ignorance and misunderstanding of human sexuality by patriarchal rule is the root cause of such homophobia and hypocrisy, and the many sins that this has led to within the Catholic Church itself and it’s leadership.

  2. Avatar

    Yes, mortal means deadly. It fragments the psyche if a Roman Catholic, or any other person, goes by “love your neighbor as your self’ but has to exclude gays. This type if cognitive compartmentalization blocks the free flow (tao) of energy inside of our bodies and causes diseases. The fragmented or excluded truth can linger in us unconsciously, depending on how conscious we have become, and as a conscious struggle. This is a psychological block. We hear the statement “He’s a block head.” This blocked energy can morph into tumors within the body because it is not integrated ( energy kept out) with the free flowing energy of our organisms. The misunderstanding, misinformation, meddling from someone else, or possible hatred can form a dis-ease. The Ten Commandments, the Deadly (mortal) Sins have been presented for us as guidelines to keep us healthy and growing. The obituaries that we read have an underlying stench of mortal sins that cause us to experience lives that could be much healthier in many ways. We do not just have to learn through pain. Ideally, we learn through the love of our parents or guardians and all of our teachers who we sense we can trust.

    1. Avatar

      Thank you, Gary. Yes. Cognitive dissonance, as you say–or “cognitive compartmentalization.” I believe many people right now on the religious right are in terrible pain because of the dissonance between their stated beliefs and the new nationalistic views they have adopted. So many of the things Jesus taught us are being ignored and/or twisted so that these people can support policies antithetical to Jesus’s teachings. That being said, I have to look at myself too. Jesus told us to give all we have to the poor and to follow him. He said that if we have two coats to give one away. Well, I have about six coats, and I still have them. I wonder how much my life and light is hindered by the cognitive dissonance within me as well. Thank you so much for your insights. I often value the things you say here.

  3. Avatar

    I connected this meditation with the recent murder of the Asian women in Atlanta spas. Your phrase “self-hating gay prelates who make all the fuss and noise and laws against homosexuals” also applies to self-hating heterosexual men whose sexuality has been weaponized into attacks on women and blaming them afterwards for being seductive. Added into this mess is the projection of hyper sexuality onto women of color. The projections bounce back and forth, escalating until violence seems like the only way out.

  4. Avatar

    All the confusion and misunderstanding can be cleared up by embracing one simple truth that exists- Love has no gender.

  5. Avatar

    Interpreting divine will is clouded by egos; people often disagree on what “God wants.” That is true of the Vatican too. A good gay person is better than a not so good straight one.

  6. Avatar

    I have been blessed by coming from a tradition–Congregational/UCC–that was non-dogmatic and simple, based on the Golden Rule, the great commandment. I was not taught to exclude anyone. And then, I had 4 family members who are gay–my stepson died a few years ago. When my cousin Bill “came out” to me it was no surprise, and it was also easy to reason that I had always loved him, so what could change that love. My stepson also taught me what love and devotion are when he nursed his partner at home, full time, as he died of AIDS. Bill also nursed many friends through their last passage through life. I concluded that there simply is not enough love like that in the world, and those who call it sinful are mortally and tragically full of sin themselves and projecting their own brokenness and repression about sex onto others. Bill knew he was gay as a child and went through the hell of self doubt and self loathing to the point of considering suicide several times. He is now 70, and things have improved in general, but this kind of pronouncement from the Pope is a deep disappointment and will cause untold grief to many.

    1. Richard Reich-Kuykendall
      Richard Reich-Kuykendall

      I too have felt deep disappointment over Pope Francis’ pronouncement. Making this a mortal sin, means that it can ultimately end in damnation. And it seemingly becomes the eighth deadly sin. May God bless you…

      1. Avatar

        And God bless you.—— “Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged; and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again” seems to indicate that the damnation will come back on them, does it not? I just love the old King James language. It is too bad that so much of organized religion completely ignores the Sermon on the Mount, and I grieve at the damage that has been done against so many who are “other” in some way.

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