Fr. James Martin: Ex-Gays Don’t Lead Fully ‘Integrated Life’

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by Christine Niles, M.St. (Oxon.), J.D.  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  September 23, 2017   

The pro-gay Jesuit dismisses the experience of those who've left the homosexual lifestyle

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VILLANOVA, Pa. (ChurchMilitant.com) - Jesuit Fr. James Martin, well-known for his attempts to normalize homosexuality in the Church, claims ex-gays lead a less "integrated life" than current gays.

In an August 29 interview with Brandon Ambrosino, a gay man engaged to his male partner, Martin said:

I know just for the record that a lot of the people who are critiquing me online are self-professed ... former gays. So it's a lot of former gay people. And I would say that there's a lot of conflict going on. So it's sad because what happens is their own junk inside gets focused outwards on people who are actually trying to live a more integrated life.

In the same interview, the priest praised Ambrosino's sexually active gay partnership: "Your love is beautiful."

As Joseph Sciambra, a man who left the homosexual lifestyle, remarked, "James Martin is quick to say 'I'm not a moral theologian,' but he apparently is a psychiatrist specializing in homosexuality."

Martin has made the claim that he's no "moral theologian" in response to criticism that he refuses to discuss the need for chastity, particularly in his latest book Building a Bridge.

"I am no moral theologian and did not want to enter into a discussion about church teaching on sexual activity," he said.

 

A decade ago, video testimonials of those "coming out of the closet" exploded on YouTube. Today, a query for "ex-gay" yields an astonishing number of former homosexuals who have gone on to recapture a healthy, heterosexual orientation. In fact, thousands of men and women have reported successfully leaving the homosexual lifestyle, many going on to marry and have families. Groups like PFOX (Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays) and Voices of Change document such experiences.

Voice of the Voiceless is a group that advocates on behalf of former homosexuals, even joining a massive federal complaint filed against the LGBT lobby claiming fraud for perpetuating the "born gay" myth — a myth that Fr. Martin promotes.

Resource page on Fr. James Martin

The late Dr. Joseph Nicolosi, a pioneer in gay reparative therapy, which helps those afflicted with same-sex attraction eliminate or diminish homosexual desires, said, "Homosexuality is not a sexual problem. It is a gender identity problem."
 
"Homosexuality is not about sex," Nicolosi explained. "It is about a person's sense of himself, about his relationships, how he forms and establishes relationships, his self-identity, his self-image, personal shame, his ability to sustain intimacy."
 
"Homosexual behavior is always prompted by an inner sense of emptiness," he added.

At his passing, Nicolosi was working on a project to disprove the thesis that reparative therapy is harmful. In 2016, he and Dr. Carolyn Pela presented results of an ongoing study showing that reparative therapy actually reduced stress and contributed to the client's overall emotional and physical well-being — contrary to gay activists' claims.
 
"Findings from preliminary data collected over a 12-month period indicated statistically significant reductions in distress and improvements in well-being, significant movement toward heterosexual identity, and significant increases in heterosexual thoughts and desires with accompanying significant decreases in homosexual thoughts and desires," he summarized.
 
A video project building on Nicolosi's research is being hosted at Fundingmorality.com, a faith-based alternative to secular crowdfunding. The video campaign, sponsored by the National Taskforce for Therapy Equality, aims to create a series of short explainer animation videos designed as a response to the misinformation about reparative therapy spread by LGBT activists.
 

 

In the same Ambrosino interview, Martin said lifelong celibacy is not required of homosexuals. Martin proffered the protestant notion that only those teachings "received" by Catholics are authoritative, and because the requirement of celibacy has not been "received" by the LGBT community, therefore it is not authoritative.

"For a teaching to be really authoritative," he claimed, "it is expected that it will be received by the people of God, by the faithful."

"The teaching that LGBT people must be celibate their entire lives has not been received," he said. 

As canonist Ed Peters noted

Martin might regret that, in virtue of Canon 1055 (which presents the nature of marriage itself), two lesbians cannot marry each other, nor can two homosexuals, but, if that is what underlies Martin's complaints about celibacy supposedly being imposed on such persons, he needs to take it up with the infallible Magisterium of the Church.

 

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Christine Niles, M.St. (Oxon.), J.D.

Christine Niles is executive producer and editor-in-chief at ChurchMilitant.com.

Follow Christine on Twitter: @ChristineNiles1