Gay priest ban stays

The gay priest ban will continue.

The Vatican has updated and reaffirmed its 2005 policy that “persons with homosexual tendencies” cannot be admitted to Catholic seminaries.

Spiritual directors “must ‘dissuade’ gay candidates from pursuing ordination”.

Pope Francis approved the current policy. It is included in a newly updated document The Gift of the Priestly Vocation

Among its  instructions, the new document says: “the church, while profoundly respecting the persons in question, cannot admit to the seminary or to holy orders those who practice homosexuality, present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called ‘gay culture.'”

Groups supporting LGBT Catholics are disappointed the policy will continue.

They cannot reconcile the ban with Pope Francis who said “who am I to judge?” in relation to homosexuals.

The document also says gay men “find themselves in a situation that gravely hinders them from relating correctly to men and women.”

One LGBT support group said: “These guidelines are a tremendous insult to the thousands of gay men who have served and continue to serve the Church with honor and dedication.

“They undermine decades of commitment by these men, and they fail to acknowledge that God calls a great variety of people to the priesthood.”

As individual bishops, seminary rectors and the superiors of religious orders are allowed to screen candidates, the approaches for implem,enting the Vatican’s rules vary.

One group forbids all gay men from entering seminaries. Another allows gay men, unless they have primarily identified as homosexual or openly supported the “gay culture”.

A third group allows gay men to enter so long as they live chastely – that is, so long as they “do not act on their desires, and maintain their vows of chastity or promises of celibacy”.


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News category: World.

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