Faced with the Catholic Church’s disordered teaching on homoerotic relationships, gay Catholics have adopted many different strategies to survive, from attempted compliance, to outright rejection of the teaching, and the entire Catholic Church along with it. As my contributor Bart is showing in his excellent new series, the issues are even more complex for gay priests.
David Berger is not a priest (he says he could not accept the requirement of celibacy), but a theologian. In an attempt to secure a career while still living with a male partner, he found himself increasingly drawn into a life of hypocrisy, collusion and dishonesty.
David Berger, 42, was Professor of the Pontifical Academy of St. Thomas Aquinas. The theologian published and editedTheologisches (Theological Issues), a conservative Catholic monthly magazine in Germany from 2003 until this year, and had contacts with various arch-conservative groups within the Catholic Church. He resigned from all his offices after outing himself as a gay man in April 2010. He is now a high school teacher and has written a book about his experiences in the Catholic Church in Germany. “Der heilige Schein. Als schwuler Theologe in der katholischen Kirche” (The Holy Illusion: A Gay Theologian in the Catholic Church), was recently published by Germany’s Ullstein Verlag. It has not been published in English.
In his book, Berger argues that the external homophobia of the church is a cover for a homoerotic culture within. (Surprised? No, I thought not).Read the full, depressing article on the compromises that this required, and what it revealed of the homoerotic inner culture of the Church, at Der Spiegel.
- Vatican’s Homophobia Rooted In The Many Gay Priests It Has (lezgetreal)
- Dear Catholic Church: You’re Basically A Gay Social Group, Why Not Come Out? (Queerty)
- “What is a Gay Priest to do?” (Queering the Church)