Salvatore Cordileone has been named Roman Catholic archbishop-elect… (Michael Short / Associated…)
Re "Choice of bishop is a Bay Area 'bombshell,'" Sept. 23
Salvatore Cordileone, archbishop-designate of San Francisco, brings his mega-voice for the Roman Catholic Church's teachings against gay marriage to a city whose liberal bent is famous. Yet by confining the concept of gay marriage to a particular box labeled "disordered sexuality," the new archbishop will preach to the choir but likely not to those beyond.
To many, gay marriage is part of the vast wave on the sea of modernity that has slowly rolled ashore these centuries. It has carried new ways of thinking about human rights, causing cultures to reconsider their monarchies, slavery, access to education and the rights of workers, women and all minorities — including the right of gay people to marry one another.
Missing that, the archbishop will miss much.
San Francisco considers it a "bombshell" when a new bishop arrives to defend the Catholic faith. And let there be no doubt: Cordileone will defend the faith.
I met then-Auxiliary Bishop Cordileone several years ago when he was at our parish. He was then, as now, a firm and persuasive presence who has a profound understanding of the teachings of the Catholic Church. Those who believe Cordileone was placed in San Francisco "to deny gay people their rights" simply do not understand the man, his faith or the church.
San Francisco should welcome the new archbishop. After all, in the home of Haight-Ashbury, Cordileone represents the new counterculture.
Gary P. Taylor
Santa Ysabel, Calif.
There is increasing acceptance of gay love and sexuality by people of all faiths. That's why Cordileone, with his rigid approach to homosexuality, will be in for tough times.
To say that gays cannot live out their sexuality in loving relationships and remain Catholics is to substitute a strict rule book for Christ's law of love. And to tell gays that they must remain celibate is to treat them with contempt, not "respect, compassion and sensitivity."
The Catholic Church, my church, was proved wrong on contraception, and it will be proved wrong on this issue as well.
The "bombshell" is Cordileone's outspoken defense of traditional marriage, something that is not bound to sit well in "a famously tolerant city." San Francisco is so tolerant that the Catholic League had to sue it in 2006 for publicly condemning the Catholic Church. The Board of Supervisors accused the Vatican of meddling in its internal affairs for merely holding to a teaching on gay adoption that it disagreed with.
I suppose San Francisco is similarly being tolerant when it allows men to walk around naked in public — provided, of course, that they put a towel under their behinds. Hygienic, yes; tolerant, no.
The writer is president of the Catholic League.
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