Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Times: Homosexuality and the Catholic Church

Tuesday, 30th December 2008 by Daniel Bartolo, Qawra

December 2008 will be remembered as the Pope's month of shame when Pope Joseph Ratzinger decided to increase his dose when speaking about the gay community around the world.

First, the EU declaration at the United Nations calling for the universal decriminalisation of homosexuality was strongly opposed by the Vatican, on the grounds that this would open the way for "states that do not allow gay marriages to be persecuted".

That is, the Pope would rather have gay individuals persecuted in more than 80 countries worldwide than have states face up to gay relationships. Malta signed up to the declaration, along with all other 26 EU states and more than 30 other self-respecting democracies, where homosexuality has been decriminalised for decades now.

Then in his Christmas message to the Church's Curia, the Pope decided he had to centre his message on what surely is the biggest joke of 2008, stating that saving humanity from homosexuality and transexuality was just as important as saving the rainforest from destruction. If this were not a direct and aggressive attack on lesbian, gay, transgender and bisexual people around the world, I don't know what is!

I still have to see humanity destroy itself as it slowly turns to homosexuality. What with us humans already above the six billion mark, more than 90 per cent of whom are heterosexual, and homosexuality being an integral part of human nature (has been so for thousands and thousands of years), the Pope's position is absurd and grotesque, to say the least.

I have also become convinced that the Pope still does not quite understand that controlling reproduction is an essential part of human civilised behaviour.

And what about transgender people who are born in a male or female body but who feel it in their skin (with all the mental, physical and emotional pain) that they were born another sex? Is the Pope so insensitive to their plight? What would Jesus have said? Would He have said they were intending to destroy the human race?

There were so many pressing issues the Pontiff could have talked about: from the poverty brought about by the credit crunch, the millions of unemployed people, the pitiful state of human rights, the rights of children and women abused and beaten around the world... but priority number one for Pope Ratzinger was the condemnation of homosexuality and transexuality in a style that is eerily reminiscent of the condemnation of Jews, astronomers etc. and all those whom the Church found as convenient scapegoats during its history.

I therefore strongly appeal to all Maltese Catholics and to the Maltese Church, in particular, to speak up against this attack on our fellow brothers and sisters. I, for one, no longer feel part of this homophobic machine that the Pope has turned the Catholic Church into.

I have heard comments in the same sense from scores of friends, gay and not gay. We are ready to protest, to move out of this Church if there is no stop to this madness!

[Click on hyperlink above to view the comments.]

Comments by Bernard Muscat which have been censored by the Times Website. Only the black bold text was posted:
'It is high time that people within the church who want nothing to do with this hatemongering start speaking up and making it clear that they dissociate themselves from what the bureaucratic hierarchical institution they form part of occasionally decides to blurt out.'

Comment #2:
Joseph Aquilina: You seem to derive great pleasure in speaking about other people’s sexuality, which mesmerizes me particularly since your words clearly and repeatedly show you have not the slightest grasp of what you write about. Most people would be very embarrassed speaking about a subject they have no clue about, but you charge on valiantly. But do not worry, we forgive you, and so does the god in whose name you speak so confidently, because as he was dying on the cross he did ask for forgiveness for those who knew not what they were saying or doing.

As I wrote to another person who shares your name and your views on the subject, I suggest you channel your energies to write against greed, corruption, terrorism, violence, rape, ostracism, xenophobia, hostility, famine, prejudice and a plethora of other social ills which are indeed - contrary to gay couple's love for one another - at the centre of what makes today's world a very sad one.

A very pleasant new year to you too, Joseph – hoping you haven’t passed out from the ‘stink’ of my gayness.

P. Attard's Note: I thought only my comments were censored (and my letters shortened or not published at all) on the Times' website because I was in Alternattiva Demokratika.

This letter was also published on Malta Today on Sunday 28.12.8:

No comments:

Post a Comment