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leadership

By Diogenes (articles ) | Feb 20, 2004

When the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court gave the green light to gay marriage, everyone, pro and con, realized that the Catholic Church was the only institution in the Commonwealth with a chance of mobilizing sufficient opposition to force a parlay. Lay Catholics instantly threw themselves into combat, only to look over their shoulders to find their commanding officers

in seclusion.
AWOL.
retired.
for illness or other grave reason.

Yes, yes, one of the bishops who'd been publicly making the case that gay marriage was bad turns out to have a sordid history of homosexual encounters himself -- another stinging humiliation, visited upon orthodox Catholics by the men anointed to govern, instruct, and sanctify them, with a prospect of more and worse defeats in the future.

One of the unidentified accusers said he was going public because he was offended by Dupre's prominent advocacy against gay marriage in recent months. "The level of anger and feelings of hypocrisy" pushed the victim, who is gay, to speak out, said attorney Roderick MacLeish Jr.

So how do Catholics respond? It's eminently plausible that Dupre was the most important contributor to this man's sexual problems, and the charge of hypocrisy is unanswerable. At present, Dupre is said to be at the St. Luke Institute in Maryland. Doubtless he'll get the conventionally rigorous therapy -- twelve weeks with a Tickle-Me-Elmo doll and a bottle of Bushmills -- and will be back on the Southwest Confirmation circuit, tanned and fit, in three or four years. We're about healing and reconciliation, remember?

Back in September a group of prominent bishops wearily agreed to give a hearing to conservative Catholics as a sop for having rigged a closed-door listening session for fellow liberals. When good guys present mentioned that Jesuit James Keenan had testified at the Massachusetts State House in support of gay unions, the bishops feigned shock and horror. Off The Record found this act extremely unconvincing at the time, and laid down this challenge: if the USCCB president were truly surprised by and out of sympathy with Keenan's plea for gay marriage, he could pick up the phone and dial the Nuncio, who could get a public retraction from Keenan (or his superiors) by the end of the week.

Five months have passed. Notice any changes for the better?

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  • Posted by: Bernadone - Feb. 21, 2004 9:36 PM ET USA

    Of course, Bishop Dupre is against gay marriages. as a Bishop, he's not permitted to marry, is he?

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