OK, kiddo! Here are all the fantastically amazing posts tagged with Vatican
Last Tuesday saw some pretty big wins for equal marriage rights in the United States. Voters in Maryland, Washington, and Maine solidly supported same-sex marriage, marking the first time that a popular vote granted marriage rights to same-sex couples in the country.
As usual, whenever big steps toward equality is made, I just have to check in on the Pope to make sure he hasn’t ruptured too many eye vessels. And from the noticeably stronger language coming out of the Vatican lately, he might need some prescription eye drops.
“It is clear that in Western countries there is a widespread tendency to modify the classic vision of marriage between a man and woman, or rather to try to give it up, erasing its specific and privileged legal recognition compared to other forms of union,” Federico Lombardi, the Vatican’s chief spokesman, announced after Tuesday’s elections.
Funny, I wasn’t under the impression that Maryland, Washington, and Maine “gave up” heterosexual marriage on Tuesday, but hey, in a country where the rights of minorities are voted on by the majority, I suppose anything can happen.
“Why not contemplate also freely chosen polygamy and, of course, not to discriminate, polyandry?” Lombardi asked rhetorically.
Well, that’s a little funny, because if you look at what the bible has to say about polygamous marriages (or “traditional marriages,” as historians would be correct to call them), I wouldn’t expect the Vatican to have any strong objections about it. Right?
The Vatican released a statement on Friday asserting that their officials are not “competent” to talk about psychological matters. The unusual (but fair) assessment came after one of their cardinals, Tarcisio Bertone, declared—without sound reference—that homosexuality, and not mandated celibacy, was responsible for the church’s paedophilia scandal. (No link between paedophilia and homosexuality has ever been demonstrated.)
The comments received massive condemnation from governments and gay rights groups, including Canada’s own Egale. And from me too, why not? Because unjustly blaming an already tortured minority in order to divert responsibility for this horrific cover-up is… well, about exactly what I’d come to expect from the Vatican.
Pope Benedict, speaking to several diplomats in Vatican City last week, called gay men and women—and the laws that protect their human rights—a threat to no less than all of humankind.
“Creatures differ from one another,” he began, “and can be protected or endangered in different ways, as we know from daily experience. One such attack comes from laws or proposals which, in the name of fighting discrimination, strike at the biological basis of the difference between sexes. I am thinking,” he continued, “of certain countries in Europe or North and South America.”
Ooh, a guessing game! Which countries and laws could he be referring to, I wonder…
OK, the pope’s argument isn’t well veiled. It’s also a tired one. It basically says that since gay couples can’t biologically reproduce with each other, enough gay people will spell the death of all humankind. Except that, you know, it wouldn’t.
I’m not sure what species the pope thinks gay people are, but even if all future generations, by an astronomical coincidence, were born gay, their reproductive bits would still function perfectly well. Gay men, for example, can and do donate their swimmy things to lesbian women, making the most adorable little people in the process. And everyone involved in the process is gay. Neat, huh?
It’s a bit of a hassle, mind you, and I suppose it’s for that reason that we can be at least a little bit thankful that we gay people aren’t even close to, or anywhere near likely to become, the majority of humankind. So maybe the pope could focus a little more on some of the real threats to humanity, like, oh… say, nuclear weapons, genocide, etcetera, etcetera.
Gays are not welcome at the Vatican—not even to visit. At least, that’s the word according to Bishop Janusz Kaleta, who spoke to the media at last month’s Assembly of United Nations World Tourism Organization.
Speaking to a reporter who clarified that gay tourists are travelling for personal visits and admiration, not political demonstrations, Bishop Kaleta had this to say:
I consider if someone is homosexual, it is a provocation and an abuse of this place. Try to go to a mosque if you are not Muslim. It is abuse of our buildings and our religion because the church interprets our religion that is not ethical. […] If you have different ideas, go to a different location.
I already visited the Vatican in 2003, and I might go back. (So there.) My strongest impression, next to the sheer extravagance of its palaces, was that the Vatican was the gayest place I have ever been in my life. And that’s no surprise; the Vatican’s most famous architect, Michelangelo, is well documented to have been gay. I guess this means his type just isn’t welcome any more. Oh, well. That place is probably reaching its threshold in homoerotic artwork anyway. I mean, overdoing it is just tacky, right?
(Hat tip goes to Bruce at Canuck Attitude for alerting me to the story.)
As far as religions go, I suppose you could do worse than the Anglicans. They at least entertain discussions about how to best integrate their doctrine with reality. They bless gay couples, for example, and extend to them the same dignities as any other parishioner—including eligibility for ordination.
Of course, all this love and tolerance doesn’t sit too well with churchgoers who miss the unity that only old-fashioned judgment and condemnation can bring. Priests and bishops have split, some have been fired, the locks on church doors have been changed to keep out congregations with differing perspectives—they’ve even started suing each other. Yet, all this kicking and moaning hasn’t stopped the church from trying to stay as relevant as it can. What are bitter coots to do?
Well, the Vatican has a proposal: Join the Catholic Church! Be as rabidly anti-gay as you like! Heck, they’ll even overlook the events that caused the Anglicans to split from Catholicism in the first place (it was a disagreement over King Henry VIII’s denied divorce in 1534, for what it’s worth) and recognize differing Anglican traditions by creating a new legal entity.
Aw, isn’t that just the most adorablest thing ever? There’s just nothing like a common dislike of us gays to mend a 475 year old religious rift.
- Catholic Church reaches out to Anglicans [CBC News]
The Vatican is opposing a French-led U.N. resolution that calls on worldwide governments to abolish laws that criminalize homosexuality. Many developing countries around the world still imprison gay people just for being gay, and several even go as far to enforce a death penalty.
Celestino Migliore, a Vatican spokesperson, justified the church’s support for persecuting gay people by saying that de-criminalization would “create new and implacable discriminations.” “For example,” he said, “states which do not recognize same-sex unions as matrimony will be pilloried and made an object of pressure.”
Franco Grillini, leader of Italy’s largest gay rights group, was astonished by the Vatican’s reasoning, calling it “madness”:
The Vatican’s reasoning smacks of total idiocy and madness. The French resolution, which is supported by all 27 members of the European Union, has nothing to do with gay marriage. It is about stopping jail and the death penalty for homosexuals.
After making their statement, Vatican officials retreated back into the hall of the most amazingly homoerotic artwork ever.
- Vatican attacked for opposing gay decriminalization [Reuters Canada]
Pope Benedict visited Spain over the weekend. His mission: to “protect the family.” And, as we all know by now, this actually means something more along the lines of “attack and malign the gays.”
Spain, you see, is the third country in the world to provide its citizens with equal marriage rights, and this isn’t sitting well with Benny. But while his message for Spain was penned in the same dinosaur-ese we’ve all come to know and love, I’m very excited to announce the Vatican appears to have hired some brand new creative writers!
You see, long gone are the days where same-sex marriage is merely “an attack on the family” and “an affront to God,” according to the Vatican. Now it’s “an attack on the pillar of humanity,” “an eclipse of God,” and their shiny new gun: “anarchic freedom!” Delightfully nutty!
Regardless of the descriptions, Emilio Menendez (one half of the first gay couple to be married in Spain) shared his thoughts on the pope’s vocal opinions:
There are many different types of family. What defines a family is not my sex, my color or anything, but rather the desire to stay together, to love each other.
I’m not surprised they don’t see us as a family but it’s just a question of time. The Church is very, very, very slow—four, five, six centuries behind.
Well said. But just think: the longer the Vatican takes to catch up with reality, the greater my chance of becoming a creative description writer and living in the Vatican palace! How about this one? “A giant mirror of, uh, un-familiness to block the… beacon… of family-osity!” No?
- We are a family, says Spain’s first gay married couple [Routers Canada]