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By Diogenes (bio - articles ) | Dec 19, 2004

Would you mind terribly if I asked you some leading questions?

In an article that's comically toadying even for a paper that has raised toadying to an art form, Deborah Solomon conducts a three-hanky interview with de-somethinged Methodist minister Elizabeth Stroud in the New York Times Magazine. Some highlights:

Why did you decide to be ordained as a minister in a denomination that is so disdainful of gays?

I felt profoundly and deeply called by God to become a minister. Which is not to say that I haven't said many times, 'God, what were you thinking?'

Have you considered switching to the Episcopal Church, which recently ordained the world's first openly gay bishop?

I definitely considered becoming an Episcopalian during my first two years as a minister, when being in the closet was making me a little crazy. I would literally come home many nights and just cry.

I would guess that lesbians are viewed as a menace by a patriarchal institution like the church because they take men out of the equation, or at least make men feel less important.

I think it's because we have chosen to tell the truth. I could have remained closeted or refused to answer questions about my sex life. But I felt that not telling the whole truth about who I am was compromising my faith.

Love these girls. Stroud "definitely considered" becoming Episcopalian in the past, with no more sense of doctrinal angst than Roger Clemens might have felt in switching to the National League. Yet any hesitation in pursuing her politico-sexual agenda would be "compromising her faith." Frivolous in a layman, this conduct is bizarre in a cleric. It's hard to see how Solomon intends us to take Stroud seriously as an ordained minister of religion -- but then again we have to bend our categories to accept Solomon as a journalist:

Is all this the subject of 'The Congregation,' a documentary film that will be shown on PBS later this month?

I won't blunt the shock by giving away Stroud's stunningly candid reply.

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  • Posted by: - Dec. 20, 2004 10:08 AM ET USA

    Whatever else Stroud may have, it isn't a "sex llife". Two donators can give in a sexually perverted way, totally wasting the gift. But two receivers have nothing sexual to receive. While the relationship is perverted in more ways than one, and pace to equality of perversions, it isn't sex. It is possible to do Physics or Chemistry and ignore or even dispute any or all of Catholic Tradition. But you cannot credibly do Psychology and ignore, dispute, or reject Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas.

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