The Anonymous Widower

Cardinal O’Brien In The Doo-Dah

I can’t say I hold a brief for the views of Cardinal O’Brien, as what right does anybody have to deny anybody a proper marriage, be they straight, gay, divorced or widowed.

So I was rather pleased that Stonewall’s bigot of the year, has got dropped in it, from a great height by a former priest and some other complainants. The priest left the priesthood and got married, which probably sums up the real fault of Catholic doctrine. Being denied your instincts, like wanting to have a meaningful relationship with someone that might lead to marriage, surely causes more problems than it solves.

The full story is here on the BBC.

I do fear that if people like O’Brien are choosing the new Pope, what sort of dinosaur will they choose?

February 24, 2013 - Posted by | News | , , , ,


  1. It is a problematic situation and goes, of course, much further into the heart of the Roman Catholic Church than Cardinal Keith O’Brien. The fact of the matter is that, without a personal vocation and an ability to remain celibate, the imposition of celibacy by a “higher authority” can only lead to trouble. Small wonder, then, that the Church cannot keep its clerics in line. Perhaps the option of marriage (which Cardinal O’Brien himself has mentioned) for priests is one solution. The early Church didn’t impose celibacy on the priesthood, even if St Paul considered it preferable.

    I am a Methodist – we face no such problems – and my family are Greek Orthodox, which offers an interesting combination, in that Orthodox priests are allowed to marry but, if they are ambitious and wish to climb within the hierarchy and become archimandrites and bishops, etc. they need to be single and celibate, so they have to choose between a family life and personal ambition. It isn’t perfect but the compromise does give them a choice.

    As for Cardinal O’Brien, he may very well wish he had shown more Christian charity to those with other sexual orientations if he is prosecuted and found guilty of “inappropriate behaviour”.

    Comment by Janice Mermikli | February 24, 2013 | Reply

    • I have a friend, who’s a married vicar. We have talked about various problems he’s been saddled with and some are very difficult. I get the impression, that he uses his wife as a sounding board to get more views on the difficult problems. I also used to play tennis with a vicar and told him about the problems my family had with a granddaughter born with a hole in her diaphragm. Most die, but she didn’t and she’s a normal child now! But the vicar had the problem of what to do with a parishioner, who was going through a pregnancy with a baby with the same condition. My chat with him helped sort out his mind.

      Comment by AnonW | February 24, 2013 | Reply

      • Having families of their own seems to make priests more empathetic and understanding when advising parishioners. The examples you give are excellent illustrations of that.

        Comment by Janice Mermikli | February 24, 2013

  2. By the way, I too wonder who will be elected as the new Pope. Will he be enlightened about, for example, contraception, given the terrible ravages of AIDS (particularly in Africa) and the pressures of an over-populated world?
    I doubt it and am not holding my breath!

    Comment by Janice Mermikli | February 24, 2013 | Reply

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