Jul 29, 2009

Papa Luciani and Tolerance for Gays?

Taken from Wikipedia:

(Note: These quotes were removed from Wikipedia, August 15, 2009, then restored in an enlarged section, entitled, The Moral Theology of John Paul I. They are currently under review, awaiting confirmation through appropriate citations.)

Sexual orientation

In 1941, he wrote a thesis, Strategy of a Strange War (currently in the Apostolic Library), in which he discussed human sexuality after observing the sexual behavior of Italian prisoners. He concluded that sexual orientation was essentially unchangeable, and that it was not uncommon for heterosexual male prisoners to engage in same-sex acts, thus illustrating a distinction between sexual behavior and sexual orientation. During his time as Patriarch of Venice he became particularly outspoken on issues of sexuality, and controversially advocated greater tolerance and acceptance in the Church for gay men and women.

LGBT adoption

He permitted the adoption of children from orphanages in his diocese by homosexual couples reasoning in a letter to a colleague, "that we have found that homosexuals will take handicapped and less than healthy and attractive children. Most importantly they will take bastards." It was his lobbying in the Italian Parliament that made it legal for single persons to adopt children in Italy, directly accepting that this would include homosexuals.In a letter to his mother he bemoaned that "There is something terribly wrong with a society that thinks one's sex is what makes one a good parent".

Gay civil unions

Before his death Pope Paul VI even permitted Luciani to address the Vatican cardinals on the possibility the Church might encourage homosexuals to enter into long-term loving relationships. This received a poor reception, but in conclusion he stated that, "The day is not far off when we will have to answer to these people who through the years have been humiliated, whose rights have been ignored, whose human dignity has been offended, their identity denied and their liberty oppressed. What is more we will have to answer to the God who created them"

A spirited discussion of these quotes and their implications can be found at the Wild Reed Blog here.


Terence said...

Thanks for posting this. I did not know of this man previously: now I will have to find out more.

Welcome to the community of gay bloggers on religion: our numbers are small, but will surely grow - as will our influence. Thanks for linking to "Queering the Church" - I will do the same for you.

God bless your endeavours - and hang in there.

Viagra said...

That's interesting for him to have views like these.

Paul said...

I have recently received some more information on Luciani's attitudes as bishop towards homosexuality, and will be adding it to my greatly enlarged revision of 'God's Candidate' that will hopefully be published in Italian this year or next. I will post further, and still seek further input on this issue... and anyone who wants to correspond - in confidence - on gay sexuality in the Church in general, share experiences etc, email me at spackmanpaul@yahoo.co.uk , thanks!

Richard Demma said...

Well, exciting news, Paul. I look forward to 'reading' the new edition, though my Italian is rudimentary at best. And I'm certainly intrigued by this.

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