Rorate Caeli

The "homosexualization" of the clergy in Latin America

Colombian weekly Semana publishes in this week's edition an interview granted by Father Germán Robledo, former president of the Archdiocesan Tribunal of Cali - the third largest diocese of Colombia. Will the great wall of silence which covers the fast and unimpeded homosexualization of the clergy in Latin America be brought down at last? When will other priests in other Latin American dioceses come forward?

SEMANA: Why are you writing a book on the sex scandals of the Archdiocese of Cali?

Germán Robledo: Two years ago, I presented some very serious accusations to Archbishop Juan Francisco Sarasty, regarding most grievous acts of ecclesiastic indiscipline, and which have increased during his tenure due to the lack of control and vigilance. All these accusations went nowhere.

SEMANA: Isn't the title of your book, 'Towards a gay clergy' [Hacia un clero Gay] very harsh and unfair?

G.R.: It is harsh, but real. What it does is to denounce a tendency which is presenting itself within the Catholic Church. My experience of 45 years of priestly life gives me moral authority to make this analysis.

SEMANA: What kind of accusations do you compile in your book?

G.R. Of homosexuality, of pedophilia; priests with children, with demands presented before the ICBF [Children's Council] for alimony; corruption... that is, all kinds of direct violations of celibacy.

SEMANA: Why do you say that your book is an "Anti-History of a Centennial"?

G.R.: Because we will celebrate the first centennial of the Church in Cali in 2010, and I will make use of this event to tell how, in the past 30 years, the Church has leaned towards priests with profiles with effeminate traces, sweet, obedient, submissive, uncritical, and who always accept the authoritarian role of the bishop and of the other superiors.

SEMANA: How grave is the matter of homosexuality in the Archdiocese of Cali?

G.R.: 30 % of its 120 priests are homosexuals.

SEMANA: How was it that some priests used donations to pay for homosexual favors?

G.R.: I describe in the book, without names, these episodes which took place in the Cathedral. There were priests, for instance, who asked for money for the poor, and then gave it to those who joined them in their homosexual tendencies.

SEMANA: Do you believe that celibacy is the root of the problem?

G.R.: No. Being a priest is attractive for homosexuals because they can lead a double life. It is the refuge of those who do not dare face their families. The Catholic Church is the closet of gays.

SEMANA: What do you think of homosexuality?

G.R.: I have no problem with homosexuals, on the contrary, I believe that they have full rights, and, as a priest, I have received them. But they are in the wrong place when in the clerical state.

SEMANA: What is your situation within the Catholic Church?

G.R.: When I turned 65, I declared myself a priest emeritus, with no parish responsibilities. Even though here in Colombia only bishops have the right to be emeriti.
Tip: Le Forum Catholique