Earlier today, I wrote,
4. The Catholic media have often colluded and continue to collude in permitting gay human beings to be treated as objects, as nonentitites, in the Catholic conversation about human sexuality — in not giving openly gay Catholics a voice in that conversation that defines their lives and identities without even permitting their voices to be heard.
5. As has the Catholic academy, and as the Catholic academy continues to do.
And then I wrote,
7. Tribalism is at the very center of the problem as we talk about the shortcomings of the Catholic conversation regarding human sexuality. The Catholic media and Catholic academy (and organizations of gay Catholics working for acceptance within the church) need to do everything in their power at this point in the history of the church to create open, inclusive, and safe conversation spaces that intentionally invite the testimony of openly gay Catholics into the Catholic conversation about human sexuality.
And now I read Michael O'Loughlin reporting for CRUX, in an article entitled, "Catholic University of American Cancels Screening of 'Milk,'"
A planned screening of the biopic chronicling the life of gay-rights pioneer Harvey Milk was scrapped at the Catholic University of America Wednesday after administrators said showing the film violated a campus policy banning events that advocate for positions contrary to Catholic teaching.
And so I rest my case.
As I said earlier today and must continue to say, the Catholic academy is a serious part of the problem in American Catholicism, when it comes to keeping the Catholic conversation confined, narrow, parochial, tribal, and unconvincing to just about anyone outisde the tribal perimeter, especially as the conversation talks about human sexuality. As I also said, this behavior radically undercuts the credibility of Catholic moral teaching and its claim to represent an authentically catholic tradition and viewpoint.
I continue not to see a great deal of positive change on the ground in the U.S. Catholic church under the current pope, when it comes to these issues, particularly the issue of homosexuality. To the contrary: in many places, the battle lines are now drawn more clearly than ever, and appear only to have hardened under Pope Francis.
And this is happening right on the eve of the synod on the family, with its ostensible promise of open, fruitful conversation about these issues . . . .
(Thanks to Jim McCrea for sending me and others the CRUX article by email.)