Former Dominican Friar On Vatican Gay Sex Scandal: Homosexuality A 'Ticking Time Bomb' (VIDEO)

Posted: Updated:

A former friar believes that homosexuality is a "ticking time bomb" for the Catholic Church.

Days before Pope Benedict XVI is officially set to resign from papal office, two bombshells rocked the Catholic Church.

First, On Feb. 21, an article published in Italy's La Repubblica newspaper alleged that Benedict was influenced to resign by an unsourced report claiming the Vatican has been influenced by multiple internal lobbys, including a gay one. The report also claimed members broke the Sixth Commandment, which is "linked in Catholic doctrine to the proscribing of homosexual acts," according to The Guardian.

Then, three days later, Cardinal Keith O'Brien, known for his anti-gay rhetoric, was accused of "inappropriate" behavior with other priests and offered his resignation.

Mark Dowd, an openly gay man and a former Dominican friar, spoke on Monday with CNN's Christiane Amanpour about the recent gay sex scandals to hit the Catholic Church.

"Homosexuality is the ticking time bomb in the Catholic Church," Dowd said. "On the one hand, the Catholic Church teaches that the condition of same-sex attraction is 'intrinsically disordered' -- those are Ratzinger's own words from 1986. And yet we know that actually about half, if not more, of all the people attracted into seminaries and the priesthood are gay themselves."

He added, "When you have this culture of secrecy and guilty and oppression, you have conditions there which foster the potential for blackmail and for manipulation."

Dowd researched homosexuality in the Catholic Church as part of a U.K. special called "Queer and Catholic," for which he interviewed seminary rectors and leaders of the Church. These individuals claimed that possibly more than 50 percent of men in the religious order are homosexual. Dowd told CNN that "gay men are massively, massively overrepresented in Catholic life."

In a piece published by The Guardian, Dowd details interviews held with clergymen for the special. He also describes a pattern of some "known" gay members of the Church also numbering among those with the fiercest anti-gay beliefs.

Via the Guardian:

We interviewed two men from the English College in Rome who had fallen in love while training for the priesthood. In seminary they had tried to have open and frank discussions about homosexuality but were told by staff and many fellow students alike that this was not the done thing. In the TV interview, one of them reported on the fact that it was frequently the very men who were out and about in Rome engaging in casual sexual acquaintances in the Monte Capitolino, a nearby park, who were often the most vehemently homophobic in the seminars on sexual ethics.

Despite Dowd's personal research, both the Vatican and Cardinal O'Brien have denied the allegations circulating in the media.

The Vatican's chief spokesman, Father Federico Lombardi, dismissed reports about Benedict's resignation as "gossip," "slander" and "misinformation."

"Whoever has money, sex and power at the forefront of their mind sees the world through these parameters and cannot see beyond, even when looking at the Church," he told the BBC, without addressing any rumors specifically. "Their view cannot look to the heights or go in-depth to understand the spiritual dimensions and motivations of existence."

Related on HuffPost:

Close
13 Things The Bible Forbids (That You're Probably Guilty Of Doing)
of
Share
Tweet
Advertisement
Share this
close
Current Slide

Suggest a correction

Around the Web

Cardinal O'Brien gay sex scandal: this was a hit job that succeeded beyond the ...

Gay sex scandal rocks Vatican

Cardinal Peter Turkson blames gay priests for abuse scandals facing Catholic ...

Vatican hits out at claims Pope quit over explosive dossier on gay sex scandal

The Skeletons in Benedict's Closet

Cardinal Favored to Become First Black Pope Blames Gay Priests for the ...

Cardinal O'Brien and the church's sexual confusion