Friday August 04, 2017
ENCORE | Vatican expert says homophobia in Catholic Church due in part to high numbers of gay priests
The former doctrinal official, and now defrocked Polish priest, worked for a decade or so under Ratzinger, when language describing gay people as "intrinsically disordered" made headway.
"It was horror to think that I can be gay, that I can be this thing for which we have no name," says Charamsa of his early years in the seminary and priesthood.
"I remember the continuous stress that people might understand you are gay."
But after falling in love with a man, Charamsa made a move that few other gay priests have dared.
In a blistering denunciation of what he called the Vatican's "paranoid homophobia," in late 2015 Charamsa stepped out of the closet at a news conference, with his gay partner by his side.
"It was desperate, my coming out," he said, "because I wasn't able to simply say, 'We need to study sexuality. We need to get informed.' But you know everybody at the Vatican knows if we begin to get informed [about sexuality], we'll have to change the doctrine. Because it's incoherent with human sexuality."
Charamsa, who now lives in Barcelona with his partner, says Pope Francis's softened tone toward LGBT Catholics gives him hope.
Yet, the Church's opposition to gay marriage remains unchanged, as do Charamsa's charges of the Vatican's paranoid homophobia...