The Furrow reaches Rome. Priest banned from writing.

It is an entirely predictable event that the Vatican’s doctrinal office should order the censorship of fairly conventional opinions on homosexuality expressed by a priest. Homosexuality is a reality in more than 500 species. Therefore, it is natural. Fr O’Sullivan is being silenced for being correct. This is more entertainment from the flat earth society. Viva il Papa! I assume that Herr Ratzinger thinks that comments such as mine constitute aggressive secularism. Wrong again pal. Religion may soothe the spirit but it may also damage. I’m into damage limitation.
PATSY McGARRY, Religious Affairs Correspondent

AN IRISH Catholic priest has been banned by the Vatican from publishing any more of his writings after he suggested homosexuality is “simply a facet of the human condition”.

This follows an article on homosexuality by Capuchin priest Fr Owen O’Sullivan, published in last March’s edition of the Furrow magazine. Described as “a journal for the contemporary Church”, the Furrow is published at St Patrick’s College Maynooth.

Commenting on teachings that “homosexuality is unnatural”, Fr O’Sullivan wrote that “nature is a loose peg on which to hang a theology of human relationships”. The Concise Oxford Dictionary listed nine meanings for “nature” and 14 for “natural”, he said.

He noted it was argued that the natural purpose of sexuality is procreation “and that, since homosexual relationships are not procreative of life, they are therefore unnatural”.

Throughout history “same-sex attraction and acts have been a consistent feature of human life . . . Same-sex attraction is simply a facet of the human condition,” he said. He recalled church teaching says it is not wrong to be gay, ‘‘but it is wrong to act gay”.

He suggested: “Imagine someone saying… ‘There’s nothing in itself wrong with being Irish… But that doesn’t mean you may act on it. So, no more Guinness, going to Croke Park, singing rebel songs into the early hours of the morning, waving Tricolours, no more craic.”

The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith at the Vatican contacted the Capuchin secretary general in Rome with an instruction Fr O’Sullivan was no longer to write for publication without first having his articles approved by it.

Capuchin headquarters in Rome contacted Fr O’Sullivan’s superiors. Contacted by The Irish Times , Fr O’Sullivan did not feel free to discuss it nor did Fr Ronan Drury, editor of the Furrow .