Employing gay priests ‘works exceptionally well’ for the Catholic Church, a German theologist has said.
David Berger, an openly gay academic who formerly worked for the Vatican, said the number of gay men working in the Catholic Church was well above average – even more so in the papal state.
‘In the Vatican, I experienced the number of gay men to be even higher,’ he said in an interview with German magazine Stern.
‘I guess around half [of the men working there].’
In the interview, Berger also said employing gay men worked ‘exceptionally well’ as they guilt-trip themselves into being better priests.
‘On one hand it’s down to homosexuality being demonized in the Church. It’s a very severe sin,’ he said.
On the other hand, the image of a celibate priest, who is never questioned about not having a wife, was very attractive for gay men, Berger continued, as they wouldn’t have to explain themselves and wouldn’t be bothered into marriage.
‘So you have the advantage of having many gay men with a guilty conscience. They do their best to be especially smart, loyal to the pope and hard working,’ he said.
‘Which is why they have the best chances for a career and, through this, get into the Vatican.
‘There, they find a network of gay men in which people help each other out.’
Berger also said the biggest rule in the Vatican was while people could have gay sex, in public they should always remain true to the Church’s principles and not talk about it.
‘I think that may be down to being gay being an important apparatus of power,’ Berger told the Stern.
‘After a coming out, those in power don’t have anything left with which to hold you down. That’s a disaster beyond all expectations.’
David Berger worked as an academic at the Pontifical Academy of St Thomas Aquinas in Vatican City; when he came out as gay, he was forced to leave.