Thursday, November 19, 2015

The Book of Gomorrah

Oh, boy, this is a good one.

"The "cancer" of sodomy among priests threatens to bring down the wrath of God upon the Church, according to a Catholic saint and doctor who addressed a similar crisis in the priesthood over 900 years ago."

Priest banging each other 900 years ago? You don't say! Hopefully it was all adult and consensual and less like the molestation that's the real scandal today.

This Saint Damien wrote the Book of Gomorrah because of this dreaded scourge and a new translation is out.

"Following Scripture and the Tradition of the Church, Damian sees homosexuality as a “diabolical” corruption of God’s beautiful plan for sexuality between a man and a woman. It is a direct assault against God. Not only must it not be tolerated, but it must be condemned and stamped out, he writes. Homosexuality is a “lethal wound festering in the very body of the holy Church” that must first be recognized as a wound before any treatment and healing can take place."

Um, ok. You'd think if it was such a slap in God's face, he would have made it impossible or something,

“This vice [of same-sex activity] is the death of bodies, the destruction of souls, pollutes the flesh, extinguishes the light of the intellect, expels the Holy Spirit from the temple of the human heart, introduces the diabolical inciter of lust, throws into confusion, and removes the truth completely from the deceived mind.”

Wow. "Extinguishes the light of  the intellect?" I didn't know that taking it in the ass could ERASE YOUR BRAIN.

"“It prepares snares for the one who walks, and for him who falls into the pit, it obstructs the escape. It opens up hell and closes the door of paradise. It makes the citizen of the heavenly Jerusalem into an heir of the Babylonian underworld. From the star of heaven, it produces the kindling of eternal fire. It cuts off a member of the Church and casts him into the voracious conflagration of raging Gehenna.”

May I just say that "heir of the Babylonian underworld" sounds awesome!

“For it is this which violates sobriety, kills modesty, slays chastity. It butchers virginity with the sword of a most filthy contagion. It befouls everything, it stains everything, it pollutes everything, and for itself it permits nothing pure, nothing foreign to filth, nothing clean,” he states."

"Slayer of Chastity" is also an awesome title. Also, dude, if there's that much santorum, clean up beforehand, you know?

Damian is clear that homosexual activity cuts off the life of God in the soul and makes one “unworthy of receiving in his mouth the heavenly offering of the Eucharist.”


 “Arise, arise, I implore you! Wake up O man who sinks in the sleep of wretched pleasure! Revive at last, you who have fallen by the lethal sword before the face of your enemies!…Enter into a constant struggle with the flesh, and always stand armed against the importunate fury of lust. If the flame of wantonness burns in your bones, the recollection of perpetual fire should immediately extinguish it,” he said."

This part is a bit more sad and serious. This is where people are to live a life full of constant struggle and fear because of their natural desires that hurt no one.

The second part of the Liesitenews article is an interview with the translator of the book.

Damian reminded Pope Leo IX of the traditional law that was to be applied to priests who were caught in any kind of lascivious behavior with minors: they were to be publicly humiliated, their heads shorn of their tonsure, spittle rubbed in their faces, imprisoned in a monastic cell for six months and forced to fast on barley bread while they engaged in penance, and then to be held under the guard of two other monks for the rest of their lives. This very rigorous punishment reflected an understanding of the gravity of such evil that was diminished dramatically in recent decades."
Ok, that reflects a very punishment and vengeance oriented view of dealing with child sex abusers, but I can't say that I blame them.

The tough penances imposed by the Church for sodomy helped to maintain a sense of the gravity of the deed. Such penances could last for decades. Even clerics who might be readmitted to the clerical state would have to do those penances and would in fact be subject to harsher ones than those imposed on the laity.
Although the Church continues to teach that any sexual act outside of marriage is gravely sinful, its system of punishment for clerics who commit acts of sodomy and child sex abuse was relaxed very substantially following the Second Vatican Council. We reaped the fruit of that laxity in the form of a very large number of tragic sexual abuse cases that could easily have been prevented if the Church’s clerical leadership had adhered to traditional doctrine."
Um, WHAT? Did he just conflate abuse and consensual sex? Yes he did. And he implied that being lax on one correlates with being lax on the other.

Damian writes that those who are given over to sodomy are provoked to fight “impious wars against God,” and are consumed by guilt and shame. "
Yes, because it's not like being told you're evil and defiled does anything to you...

 "He also anticipates modern critiques of homosexual attraction by noting that no authentic complementarity exists between people of the same sex. “What do you seek in a man, that you are unable to find in yourself—what difference of sexes, what diverse features of members ...?” he asks. "
They want the SAME sex, that's kind of the point.

He assures those who have fallen into the sin of sodomy that they can rise to even greater spiritual heights than those from which they fell, although he is also clear in his view that those guilty of the worst kinds of sodomy cannot be permitted to return to the clerical state."

Rape would NOT be a "worst kind of sodomy" it's an entirely different thing. Christians just can't grasp consent, can they?

Damian does not regard the condemnation of sodomy as a mere technical matter of Church doctrine, as many prelates in the Church appear to do today. He sees it as “the worst of sins,” and even evidence of demonic possession. This is in keeping with the Scriptures that regard sodomy as one of the four sins that cries out for the revenge of God. His perspective on this matter is also clearly affirmed by Pope St. Leo IX, who wrote to Damian that “everything that this little book contains has been pleasing to our judgment, being as opposed to diabolical fire as is water.” It is also consistent with the Holy Office’s 1962 decree on priest sex abusers that called sodomy and child sex abuse “the worst crime.”


This is sickening. Why is homosexuality so constantly conflated with abuse? Why is it held with more contempt than virtually anything else? And again, why the erasure of lesbians? Why are the ravings of an old monk held to be important today? How can God be so offended by a thing he made? WTF?

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