Lesbian and Gay Ministry Forbidden by the Vatican

On Tuesday, the Vatican denounced a priest and a nun’s teachings on how to “reconcile church doctrine with the realities of gay life” as failing to uphold the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. The Vatican has cited their work as “erroneous and dangerous.”

Sister Jeannine Gramick and Rev. Robert Nugent are “permanently prohibited from any pastoral work involving homosexual persons and are ineligible, for an undetermined period, for any office in their respective religious institutions.” The notification brings to an end the work of prominent lesbian and gay rights activists within the Catholic Church. It is considered a rather extreme punishment by the Church, especially because of the amount of publicity it has attracted.

Gramick and Nugent have been working with gay and lesbian Catholics for more than a quarter century. Despite several warnings from the Church, they refused to give up their work and fully comply with the Catholic Church’s teachings on the “intrinsic evil of homosexual acts.”

As a result of this ruling from the Vatican, both will have to choose whether or not they will obey the teachings of the Catholic Church of if they will continue their vocation advocating gay and lesbian rights.


Washington Post - July 14, 1999

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