Monsignor Krzysztof Charamsa, the Polish priest and theologian who came out as both gay and partnered on the eve of the Family Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, has inside knowledge of the workings of the Vatican, and of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in particular.
In a lengthy interview with the Spanish Religion Digital, he has delivered a damning indictment of the Vatican culture, of CDF machinations to undermine Francis’ papacy, of compulsory clerical celibacy, of Church persecution of the LGBT community, and of closeted, gay priests, who take out their anger and self-loathing in hatred of openly gay people.
The interview is well worth reading in full, but is available only in Spanish (here). In the absence of a complete translation, I present below, a summary helpfully provided to me in email correspondence.
When Charamsa, a leading theologian of the CDF who came out the day before the Synod began, was asked if he had been called a traitor, he answered that he would be a traitor if he had not come out. To lead a double life is also treachery, to masturbate yourself regularly or be dependent on masturbation as many priests are.
His response to the question if the Church was persecuting homosexuals was affirmative and included LGTBI persons in general. Unfortunately, Charamsa said, there are no persons in the Church capable of having a serious discussion, free from dictatorial ideology. Also, he added, his experience in the CDF showed him that the intellectual level is not very high. How can one discuss human issues with a Church that allows Sarah’s words? He should be sued for slandering a social group. The CDF thinks like Sarah. They are obsessed by homosexuality.
Asked about Cardinal Mueller, who is head of the CDF, Charamsa said that the CDF is the center of paranoid and irrational homophobia. It works on the basis of stereotypes. “I had the impression that in the Congregation, faith in God was not promoted, we do not concern ourselves with Christology or Mariology, we only battle against gays and other sexual minorities. It is an obsession. This is our real faith: anti-gay paranoia. That’s all. It’s our favorite subject. There are meetings in which, of every three cases we discuss, two are against gays. We have invented an imaginary enemy and battle against it with all our strength. There can be no discussions, we think that this gender can only promote sex changes. That is the level of paranoia which prevails in the Congregation.
“Cardinal Müller has promoted this ignorance, this extremism, this obsession among the top staff. Instead of sponsoring studies, the Congregation is a political agency to sabotage Pope Francis and his synodal discussion. It is the agency which combats gender, which it doesn’t even know now to define. It is of utmost importance (to the CDF) to combat gender in such a way as to scare people. Obsessive homophobia and misogyny are a drama for this Congregation whose members are not all heterosexual. Like any other place, there are homosexuals. The truth is that the Congregation hates gays even though it is known that there are homosexuals among its members.
Asked if the CDF is one of the main opponents of Francis’ “spring,” Charamsa replied:
“Undoubtedly. The Congregation is experiencing its darkest period. What is important is to maintain our taboo: homosexuality and sexuality in general. With Francis’ ‘spring,’ the Congregation has a new enemy: gays and now Pope Francis. Now, together with homophobia there is ‘Francis-phobia.’ The contempt for the Pope in the Congregation is enormous. From the things I have heard about the Pope in the Congregation, it should be denounced for offending the primacy of Peter.
“In the past, we have destroyed the careers of theologians who reflected with respect and intelligence on the new forms of the exercise of the primacy. Now the Congregation is against the Pope and his primacy in an irrational manner.”
Toward the end, when Charamsa was asked if he thought the Vatican acted very quickly in his case and not so in cases of pedophilia, his answer included the following:
“It is also true that pedophilia continues to be protected by the Church to savee its image and not pay for the damage caused. I am going to give you ann example. Toward the end of lst summer, the Polish Nuncio, Archbishop Weesolowski, tried by the Congregation as a pedophile, died. That man had a funeral which lasted 10 days, between the Vatican and Poland. A 10-day funeral for a prisoner who had already been tried by an ecclesiastical tribunal for sexual abuse. That funeral started with a sung mass celebrated by the closest collaborators of the pope and ended 10 days later in Poland with the reading of a letter in which it was said that the acusations of pedophilia were only inventions of the Dominican Republic mafia. The Vatican allowed this spectacle instead of thinking of how to immediately indemnify the victims of thiss pederast bishop.
“Seeing all this, one can reach the conclusion that there is a pedophile lobby in the Vatican. Yes, many pederast priests and bishops get special treatment and many go scot free. In the light of this Vatican reaction to a gay priest who ttells the truth is a shameful automatic reaction. But that is the logic of the Church: everything must be hidden “for the good of the Church.” While it is covered up, nothing happens. But for the Church, “the devil” is the priests whoo tells the truth, who comes out in the light, out of the closet.”