Mar 25, 2013

Gaymystic to be archived in US Library of Congress.

I've just been informed that Gay Mystics has been chosen to be archived in the US Library of Congress, for my coverage of the resignation of Pope Benedict and the election of Pope Francis. Of course most - or much of - that coverage is in response to more in depth coverage at Enlightened Catholicism, On Bilgrimage, Queering the Church. Still, it's nice to be noticed, and gives me incentive to keep developing the blog. I tend to be sporadic in my attention to it, since I'm also trying to write a Christian centered gay teen love story/murder mystery/espionage thriller centered in Prague. Nothing like trying to do too much at the same time in the same book!

Meanwhile, I was gratified to read at Clerical Whispers that a young Catholic high school girl in Philadelphia has won her fight to be allowed to play football in the CYO 'all-male' CYO football league. After sputtering a bit about the girl's contacts with the media-including Good Morning America and The Ellen DeGeneres Show (that lesbian person, gasp, horror,) Archbishop Chaput of the Capa Magna fame, relented and gave the girl -and any other girls-permission to play. The Clerical Whispers team suggests that this change of heart on the archbishop's part is due mainly to the election of Pope Francis. And so the revolution has already begun!

As for myself, I'm actually reading Father Francis's sermons for spiritual inspiration, the first time I've been able to do this without cringing since the death of Pope John I of holy memory (Albino Luciani, not his Polish successor!). I'm still waiting for the shoe to drop on the issue of LGBT rights, condoms and AIDS. But I strongly suspect any such utterances from Father Francis will not be accompanied by the beating of the tom toms.

Why "Father" Francis? Because this is how he is addressed by Hebe de Bonafin, the leader of the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo (who continue to cry out for news of the disappeared during Argentina's "dirty wars"), and one of Cardinal Bergoglio's fiercest critics until he became Pope Francis.  Hebe began hearing many testimonies in his favor from Argentina's poor and says she was deeply moved and impressed. So yet another fierce and determined critic has been won over and now hopes for change from the Vatican. Read the whole story here at Vatican Insider.

For myself, I'm waiting to hear Father Francis' comments to the young at the World Youth Rally to be held in Rio, Brazil in July. I would like to hear him define the "filth of the world" he believes young people should resist. I hope it will not include any direct negative references to gay unions, marriage and such. Hoping he would include homophobia as one of the filthy ills of the world is probably hoping for too much.

However, we already know he is on record as saying the church should not be attacking the civil rights of minority groups like LGBT folks (he's in favor of civil unions, but was overruled by Argentina's bishops in making that public) and he's come out in favor of gays adopting children, in certain circumstances. So a man of contradictions and only time will tell. However, he has already popped the balloon of papal mystagogy, and whatever pronouncements he may make on sexual and ethical issues, he's really only making them as Father Francis, one voice among many.  "The pope needs to be put in his place," my revered professor of sacred scripture, Father Edward Malatesta, S.J., said many years ago (43 years ago to be precise). Father Francis, as can be seen from this marvelous photo from Whispers in the Loggia, has already decided to ride in the back of the bus.

Meanwhile, life goes on and I'm back to doing my own work writing for gay  teens, which in part includes providing them with the spiritual resources to establish their own lived connection with the Divine in their hearts, a living Presence who loves them unconditionally and who blesses their attempts to love each other in a sexually expressive way. We simply can't wait around for any religious figure-however benign-to experience a conversion of heart, though Father Francis remains in my prayers in this regard, and I continue to experience deep peace and joy in my heart at the wondrous mystery of his election. I doubt few of the Cardinal electors fully realized what they were unleashing on the Church.


Philomena Ewing said...

Congratulations Jayden. I'm delighted you have received this acknowledgement of all your efforts.

Jayden Cameron said...

Thanks so much Philomena. I'm still a little taken aback by the news. But it has given me a renewed sense of 'vocation' as a spiritual blogger. And blessings to you for Holy Week and Easter.

colkoch said...

Congrats Jayden. Both you and Bill Lyndsey deserve this recognition.

Richard Jayden Cameron said...

Thanks, Colleen, though you and Bill deserve it more. I'm pleased, of course, but I'm left wondering who makes these selections and by what criteria. Meanwhile Father Francis continues to surprise and confound. Singling out Muslims for compassion on Good Friday! To borrow Bill's wonderful phrase, a lot of tightie whities are in a twist at the moment.