Rorate Caeli

Homosexuality? De facto unions? "Time to open up to diversity," says Italian archbishop

Yesterday, the Archbishop of Lucca (Tuscany, Italy) received a group of religion journalists for his annual chat, and the talk was moderated by a famous Vaticanist in Italian public television and radio network RAI, Raffaele Luise.

The following excerpt is from Lucca in diretta:

The evening concluded with a debate in depth on the matter of homosexuality. Both Luise and the archbishop praise, in substance, the opening of the Church regarding gays and de facto couples. Particularly for Luise, it is necessary on this theme, "a cultural revolution, that contemplates the fact that homosexuality is not a deviancy, but a human attitude, and not just that, considering that almost 500 natural species display homosexuality." "The new paradigm - says bishop Castellani - is that every diversity is richness. In my life as a parish priest, I saw and lived so many situations [and he describes a few]; and I am convinced that the time has come for Christians to open up to diversity."

Snack table at the "Archbishop's Evening with Journalists", Lucca (source)

From "who am I to judge" to "bravo" to "every diversity is richness"... Is it pointless? Have we arrived at a point where it is pointless to argue? Is much of the hierarchy willing to leave us alone defending what the Church (the Apostles whose successors they are!) has always taught? That is the situation of the defense of Christian faith and morals today: every man for himself...? 

The point is however, whether we want to admit this, dispute and denounce it, or whether we want to play smart and hide behind the “Who am I to judge”. The point is also whether this worldwide Sodom and Gomorrah merit the language of mercy and comprehension.

Well, then, I wonder, why don’t we also reserve the same mercy for the traffickers of chemical weapons, the slave-traders and financial embezzlers? Aren’t they also poor sinners? Right? Or do I have to ask Schönborn to meet them for lunch and evaluate their purity?

Dear Director, the situation by now is very clear: any Catholic politician, intellectual or journalist even if he wants to fight on the homosexualist front, will find himself spiked in the back by the mysticism of mercy and forgiveness. We are all completely de-legitimized, and any bishop, priest, theologian, director of a diocesan weekly or politician of the Catholic-democratic-type can shut us up with that “Who am I to judge”. We would be riddled with shots like a farm pheasant in a hunting chase ... .

Dear Director, our problem is not Matteo Renzi [now Prime-Minister and in favor of homosexual civil unions].

Our problem, my problem, is that the other day the Holy Father said the Gospel “is not proclaimed with doctrinal beatings, but with sweetness.” Also here, I would please ask “normalists” and timewasters to abstain. Even I know that effectively the Gospel is announced like that – apart from the fact that John the Baptist had rather brusque methods himself, and the Lord defines him “as the greatest among those born of woman”.

But you know very well that with that little sentence, we have both been spiked like codfish.

We have ... been fighting against legalized abortion, divorce, in vitro fertilization, euthanasia, homosexual unions and cunning politicians like Matteo Renzi, who are promoting and spreading all that stuff. But there you have it, we are both irremediable doctrinal bashers, people without charity, ethicists, “theologians”, as some journalist from Communion and Liberation calls us. ...

[O]ur problem and the problem of Catholics and ordinary people is not Matteo Renzi.

The problem is our Mother Church, who has decided to abandon us in the jungle of Vietnam: the helicopters have taken off and we have been left where we’ll let ourselves, one at a time, be spiked by the “Vietcong relativists.” I am not protesting for myself, and you know the reasons why. And besides, I prefer a thousand times, to stay down here waiting for the Vietcong, rather than ever get into one of those helicopters, in which perhaps there is the promise of a little seat in some clerical conference of the type “Science and Life,” under the illusion that one is a part, in some way, of the official power, together with all the other ecclesial movements. Or with the crazy idea - written in black and white - that, Gnocchi and Palmaro were perhaps right, but they shouldn’t have said it, because certain truths should not be uttered, rather they should be somewhat denied publically in order to confound the enemy.

No, I am not protesting for myself.

However, I still have the problem of that seven-year-old son of mine and three older ones too. ... Because last night I couldn't sleep. And because I’d like to understand – and ask the readership ... a question: What more has to happen in the Church for Catholics to stand up, once and for all, and shout their indignation from the rooftops? Attention: I am addressing individual Catholics, not associations, secret meetings, movements, sects which for years have been managing the brains of the faithful for the benefit of third parties, dictating the line the followers have to take. These groups seem to me to be placed under the care of those minus habens [of lesser intelligence] and headed from afar by more or less charismatic individuals, who are more or less trustworthy. No, no: here I am making an appeal to individual consciences, to their hearts, their faith and their virility. Before it is too late.
Mario Palmaro (R.I.P.)
January 8, 2014