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Article contents

Catholicism & Sexuality: The Sounds of Silence

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 September 2014

Patrick T. McCormick
Affiliation:
Gonzaga University

Abstract

The episcopal silence and secrecy associated with the recent pedophilia scandal echoes a larger inability of the Catholic episcopal hierarchy to enter into open and honest dialogue about a wide range of sexual issues. For more than three decades the chasm between official teachings on sexuality and gender and the belief and/or practice of the majority of Catholic laity, clergy and theologians (and an unknown number of bishops) has been growing. Still, attempts to address or bridge this divide have met with a fourfold silence. It is a silence that has kept bishops from speaking their true minds, a silence sought by restricting, investigating and sanctioning theologians, a silence that renders pastors mute or covert on sexual matters, and a silence that ignores the experience and voices of women. Such a silence undermines magisterial authority and deprives Catholics of a useful and persuasive sexual ethic, while marginalizing those willing to speak out and demoralizing those who feel they cannot.

Type
Articles
Copyright
Copyright © The College Theology Society 2003

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