A Spanish priest launches a campaign against homophobia in the Church

He was episcopal vicar, professor at the Faculty of Theology in Seville, one of the clergymen with the greatest projection for the future in the Spanish Church. But Jesús Donaire admitted his homosexual condition and decided not to hide it. Then, the praise turned into spears: "I was even told that he could keep me in the ministry but without affirming my status. And he was not willing to put me back in the closet." This May 17, 32 years after the moment in which the WHO withdrew homosexuality from the list of mental illnesses –for which the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia is celebrated– Donaire launches a signature collection campaign on a platform and also through of your blog, to demand from the Church "a pastoral care of diversity".

It is an international appeal addressed to Pope Francis, to whom the LGTBIQ+ collective wants to "lend a hand" in his task of reforming the Catholic Church. With a key date: June 5, the day on which the reform of the Vatican Curia comes into force.

"In the context of this reform and driven by the spirit of change that Francis himself has brought to Catholicism since his arrival in the papacy, I propose [...] a process of reconstitution of the discourse that the institution itself maintains against homosexuality in particular and sexual and gender diversity in general, with the active participation of the constitutive body of the church: the faithful", says Donaire.

Specifically, it urges the Vatican to "foster the creation and growth of an LGBTIQ+ ministry in the Catholic Church"; second, to "explicitly support LGBTIQ+ Catholic individuals and groups that already exist and work for inclusion in the church, even against the will of the local bishops and priests in which their ministry is inserted." Finally, he asks Bergoglio to "bring together theologians, authorities, academics, pastoralists, biblical scholars and translators, to guide them towards reflection and rethinking the doctrinal, moral and canonical position of the church regarding sexuality, the role of women in society and the church, and the diverse LGBTIQ+ realities".

The campaign, which can be accessed from here, includes a video in which Donaire explains the initiative, and concludes: "You are unique and unrepeatable, God has created you like this, dare to be yourself."

And it is that, the Sevillian priest maintains, "unfortunately, the Catholic Church not only does little to combat hatred against LGBTIQ+ people, but also, through its discourse, doctrine, canonical discipline and moral norms, strengthens hatred against people with sexual and gender diversity.

"Sadly, it shelters and protects those who, exercising a ministry within it, promote aversion against the LGBTIQ+ community through homilies, sermons, speeches, magisterial pronouncements or other types of statements," criticizes Donaire, who as an expert in Canon Law regrets the "wrong and decontextualized interpretations" of biblical passages that have reached the doctrinal corpus, the very Catechism of the Catholic Church, which qualifies relationships between people of the same sex as "serious depravities" and acts "intrinsically disordered and contrary to the law natural" that "cannot receive approval in any case." For the Catechism, homosexuality is "an objectively disordered tendency or inclination."

"After hearing such nonsense, I ask myself: is it reasonable and legitimate that, in the 21st century, the church continues to defend and teach that LGBTIQ+ people are depraved, abnormal and of an incurable pathological constitution? Should we continue to consent that in the Catechism It is affirmed that homosexual relationships are intrinsically and objectively disordered, and that they do not proceed from a true affective and sexual complementarity? Should the Catholic Church continue saying that homosexual people have a tendency that comes from a false education, from a lack of normality in the development of our sexual evolution, of a contracted habit or of the bad examples that we have received at home, or in the environment in which we have been educated?" Donaire underlines in his petition.

"Should we keep our arms crossed, tolerating that the statement cited by the Catechism says that homosexuality is a pathology, in some cases curable and in others irremediably incurable?", he asks, stressing that, according to the percentages, "there are some 1,400 million Catholics in the world, of which some 200 million are LGBTIQ+ people, practically the same number of inhabitants as Brazil has today If we add the members of their families to the 200 million, more than 400 million Catholics in the world we suffer directly because of the hatred, stigmatization and rejection that exists in the Catholic Church, and that is protected by its doctrinal teachings. Should we remain silent in the face of the hatred and rejection that we find on the part of the Catholic institution? It's time to do something about it!"

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