Media Ignore Pope’s Remarks On Gay Priests – OpEd


When it comes to reporting what Pope Francis says about sexuality, the reaction of the mainstream media is stunning. Whenever he says something they consider ill-liberal, they simply don’t report it.

The cover-up continued this weekend when excerpts from a new book by the pope, The Strength of a Vocation, were made public. The Holy Father spoke frankly about homosexual priests. To say he has soured on gay priests would be an understatement. He gets it. Here is a selection of his comments.

“The issue of homosexuality is a very serious issue that must be adequately discerned from the beginning with the candidates [for the priesthood], if that is the case. We have to be exacting. In our societies it even seems homosexuality is fashionable and that mentality, in some way, also influences the life of the Church.”

That is putting it mildly. The gay subculture in the Catholic Church has done tremendous damage, and it is one that still needs to be purged.

Speaking of homosexual attractions, the pope said, “It’s not just an expression of an affection. In consecrated and priestly life, there’s no room for that kind of affection. Therefore, the Church recommends that people with that kind of ingrained tendency should not be accepted into the ministry or consecrated life. The ministry or consecrated life is not his place.”

Yes, “people with that kind of ingrained tendency,” or what Pope Benedict XVI said in 2005, those with “deep-seated homosexual tendencies,” are not suitable for the priesthood. Pope Francis could not be more clear, saying, “It’s better for them to leave the ministry or the consecrated life rather than to live a double life.”

In other words, it’s time for homosexual priests who are more gay than they are priests, to exit. That this even needs to be said—and it does—is an index of the problem.

This story made the International News component of the Associated Press, but was not picked up by its U.S. counterpart. Where was Nicole Winfield?

This story never made the New York Times. Where was Laurie Goodstein? How did she miss it?

This story never made the Washington Post. Where was Michelle Boorstein? How did she miss it?

This story never made the Los Angeles Times, but it did make the much lower circulation newspaper, the Daily News of Los Angeles. How did the Times miss it?

None of this is by accident. The reporters and sources named never miss a chance to report on any of the pope’s more liberal pronouncements. Their goal is to downplay the pope’s more conservative positions lest Catholics, and the public more generally, conclude that the pope doesn’t subscribe to the “progressive” sexual agenda that elites favor.

It is striking to note that the gay press, and pundits on the left, did not play the cover-up game. Pink News expressed its displeasure with the pope, the Advocate called his remarks a “new broadside against gays,” and the Daily Beast screamed, “Pope Francis Goes Full Homophobe, Now ‘Very Worried’ About Homosexuality in the Church.”

What the pope said is a good start. But we need those in positions of influence in the Catholic Church, beginning with seminaries, to follow through. He’s given us the green light—now it’s time to finish the job.

William Donohue

William Donohue is the current president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights in the United States, and has held that position since 1993.

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