A footnote to what I posted earlier today mentioning Deacon Jim Pauwels's defense of Paprocki's exorcism idea at the Commonweal blog site: Pauwels has now posted a statement, that, though Paprocki's exorcism may be a "little quirky," an "odd little idea," he finds nothing objectionable in this proposal.
He wonders why such an odd little idea would elicit a thread of "32 comments and climbing," and why his fellow Catholics don't let things like this roll off their backs.
I find Deacon Jim's inability to understand how offensive Paprocki's proposal is to people who happen to be gay and to people who love and support those who are gay odd in the extreme. Has he ever given thought, I wonder, to how it might feel to be told repeatedly by the leaders of one's church that one is in league with the devil? Does he ever think about the prejudice, hostility, and violence we might fuel against targeted minority groups when we tar them with the brush of devil-talk?
Perhaps Deacon Jim would benefit from walking a little bit in the shoes of those he counsels to let this kind of stuff roll off their backs. Or from actually talking to a few gay and lesbian Catholics for a change, instead of inviting them to email him and explain why they feel unwelcome in his church . . .
and then simply ignoring their response to his invitation and treating them as if they just aren't in the room. And don't count at all.