I can not fathom why the Catholic Church would be more hostile to gay clergy than to clergy who raped children and protected rapists. If the Church wants to continue to be catholic (small c), I'd suggest it choose a liberal from the Americas as the next pope. Conservatives think they're saving the Church by preventing change, but they're achieving the exact opposite. If they don't watch out, I think we could end up with an American Orthodox Church consisting of people who have lost confidence in Rome.
Vatican shifts tone on cardinals linked to sex scandals
By Jason Horowitz
February 25, 2013
ROME — Before the election of Pope Benedict XVI, the Vatican circled the wagons around cardinals ensnared in sex abuse scandals. As the church prepares to pick Benedict’s successor, those embattled cardinals increasingly find themselves under the wagon wheels.
In a wide-ranging news conference on Monday, the Vatican struck a markedly blase tone when asked about the decision by British Cardinal Keith O’Brien not to attend the conclave to elect the next pope. Hours earlier, the Vatican had accepted O’Brien’s immediate resignation over sexual harassment accusations.
Whereas the Vatican made clear in 2005 that disgraced Cardinal Bernard Law of Boston was expected to report to the Sistine Chapel, on Monday it said it had nothing to do with O’Brien’s announcement.
In other words, he was on his own.
“The cardinal can say what he wants to say,” the Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, told a packed briefing room.
“There is a clear shift in rhetoric,” said John Allen, a leading Vatican observer and correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter. “In 2005, the Vatican stated that it was a clear duty for cardinals to participate in the conclave. It appears that they are now shifting the burden for making that decision onto the cardinals themselves.”...