Brilliant commentary from Leah Mickens of the blog Extra Ecclesiam Est Libertas: Leah's writing in response to my previous posting today, which ends by pointing readers to a surrealistic conversation the blogger who maintains Questions from a Ewe had recently with several African priests about matters of priestly celibacy (they don't necessarily heart it) and the synod and holding the line on the gays and divorced folks (they do heart holding that line).
A.W. Richard Sipe's findings suggest that only two percent of priests are truly celibate. This is the same percentage of the population that is believed to have an asexual orientation, which suggests that the small number of priests who thrive as celibate probably wouldn't be having sex whether they were in the priesthood or out of it. Oddly enough, the Catholic church claims not to "believe in" asexuality, but demands "compulsory asexuality" on its ordained class, while at the same time asserting that a priest needs to have a conventional heterosexual desire for a wife and children. With such conflicting and contradictory views on sexuality and vocation, is it any wonder that so few people respect the hierarchy these days?
I think that the real reason why feminists and LGBT people get so much crap from the hierarchy and their conservotrad enablers is because they demand honesty in sexual issues, while everyone else is lying about it or engaged in a "don't ask, don't tell" situation. The deal appears to be that heterosexual Catholics will pretend that priests and bishops are celibate, while the priests and bishops will pretend that heterosexual Catholics are following Humanae Vitae. Aside from a handful pious conservotrads and traditionalists, who think that they are "dying to self" by having a quiverfull, few Catholics, lay or ordained, really believe in the church's sexual teachings. How can they when they flout them so openly? LGBT people and feminists not only refuse to participate in this bizarre mutual admiration fest, but they call out the hypocrisy of this arrangement. Thus, the same straight Catholics who see nothing wrong with their own contraceptive use or priests who have women or men on the side will clutch their metaphorical pearls to see feminists demanding insurance coverage of birth control or gay couples demanding recognition of their relationships. Thus when white middle class Catholics use birth control (and pay for it out of pocket; no insurance or Medicare for our rugged individualists) or Father has a "housekeeper" to keep him company, it's "normal" and "natural," but when feminists and LGBT people demand some honesty, well that's just wrong.
I find the graphic used at many different blog sites, with no indicator of its origins.