Benedict and Warren

John Aravosis has noted that the Saddleback website posting that  “someone unwilling to repent for their homosexual lifestyle would not be accepted as a member at Saddleback” has been removed. I have to say that this did not strike me as in any way notable, especially since the note also insisted that gays were always welcome to attend services. And one wonders how that makes Warren different from any Catholic bishop let alone the Pope. My own church teaches that I am barred from full communion because of my civil marriage to another man, although it does not bar me from attending mass.

And Benedict has gone out of his way to issue what can only be called calculated affronts to the dignity of homosexual persons. Yesterday's statement that humankind needs "saving" from homosexuality, the way the rainforests need saving from being raped and pillaged is his latest provocation. His first-in-history attempt to ban even celibate gay seminarians is easily the most draconian and hateful anti-gay policy of any church, stigmatizing them even if they agree to obey every stricture the church places on them. His own complicity in covering up the abuse of children and evil protection of Father Maciel make his attacks on the dignity of homosexuals all the more repulsive.

And yet those of us born into this Communion and in love with the Jesus of the Gospels have to find a way to live in this place with our fellow Catholics in charity. At least Warren appears open to dialogue, rather than recoiling in fear and loathing. In that he is somewhat more Christian than this Pope.