Thursday, 7 June 2012

Malta Today: Gay Christians disappointed at Vatican’s censure of nun’s ‘sexual ethics’ book
Thursday 7 June 2012 - 11:51

Maltese gay Christian group Drachma says Roman Catholic Church is limiting 'good news' to elite group of people.

Drachma, the Maltese gay Christian group, has joined a call by the European Forum of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Christian Groups, warning the Roman Catholic Church that it was limiting the teachings of the Christ to "a select, elite group of people within society".

The group was replying to the censorship of the book 'Just Love' by theologian Sr. Margaret Farley, which deals with Christian sexual ethics, by the Vatican's former inquisition office, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

 "We believe that the good news is universal and is to be shared with all people of good will. Sr. Farley's book 'Just Love' succeeded to reach out to such people who would otherwise think they have no place in the Church and it offered hope," Diane Xuereb, the co-president of the European forum, said.

According to the Vatican, Farley's book - now an top 20 bestseller - affirms positions that are in direct contradiction with Catholic teaching in the field of sexual morality, and has warned the faithful that her book is not in conformity with the teaching of the Church.

Farley broadly argues in her book that divorce, homosexual acts and unions, and masturbation cannot be contrary to the faith under certain conditions.

"Farley's book offers fresh perspectives and practical tools to navigate amidst the various moral dilemmas that millions of faithful may encounter, in their daily, real, day-to-day lives. It also enhances ecumenical dialogue.

"Whilst Sr Farley retains a solid Christian framework she opens up immense possibilities for those who are honest about their lives and sexualities and want to retain their Christian faith," Xuereb said.

The European forum also said the Congregation's censorship was a sign that the Vatican refuted to engage in matters on human sexuality, denying decades of scientific data and sing force against those trying to espouse faith and reason on human sexuality.

"The CDF dismisses the faith experience of thousands of LGBT Christians, our families and friends. It is interesting to note that in a time of regular scandals by the hierarchy and those at the Vatican - also about sexual matters, it is an ethicist that is being punished!" Xuereb said.

"Many people who have been censored in the past received apologies later - usually after their death, some have also been canonized. We believe that history repeats itself.  Unfortunately it seems that the hierarchy does not want to learn from its past mistakes."

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