As the College of Cardinals meets to elect a new Pope and as the US Supreme Court meets to address marriage equality, Confessions of a Gay Married Priest: A Spiritual Journey (Maurice L. Monette, Vallarta Institute, 2013) puts a human face on millions who will be impacted by their decisions.
Monette belonged to a Roman Catholic order of priests for 30 years, authored numerous books, and directed graduate programs in church leadership and organizational psychology. He and his husband of 24 years live in Oakland, California.
According to a CBS News Poll released on March 5, 66% of US Catholics favor letting priests get married, 66% favor letting women become priests and 62%believe same-sex marriage should be legal.
Franciscan priest and best-selling spirituality author Richard Rohr says of this book, ““This story illustrates one of the most counter intuitive messages of world religions, how our failings, heartbreaks and disappointments can be stepping stones to the spiritual joys of the second half of life.”
Sister Jeannine Gramick, a Huffington Post contributor with a longtime ministry to gay and lesbian Catholics, says, “Through little cameos in prose and poetry, Monette’s faith journey shows the triumph of the human spirit over religious messages to suppress sexuality. This is a story of self-discovery and self-acceptance that brings about freedom for a more authentic God-relationship.”
Former marketing director for the National Catholic Reporter Dan Grippo says, “It’s the one book I recommend for each Cardinal before he casts his vote for the next Pope. The lessons Monette shares are lessons for the future church where all women, men and children are appreciated in their diversity.”
In reference to the Church’s transition, Monette comments, “My story and the stories of so many others offer healthy alternatives to a Church that has become better known for its sex scandals and cover ups than its spirituality and social justice. A mature sexual ethics would go a long way to healing this wounded Church.”
On the upcoming Supreme Court decisions, Monette adds, ”There are lesbians and gays of all faiths and we already have LGBT priests who are married. My book demonstrates religion and religious freedom don’t have to be obstacles to equality for our families.”
Author and Catholic priest Robert Nugent says “Each reader will discover unique healing in this personal account of discovery and growth — the ‘good little Catholic boy,’ the priest who struggles with self-love and institutional sins, the gay man who embraces monogamy, the believer who finds transcendence in the most ordinary realities of human life — and we will all be the better for it.”
Confessions of a Gay Married Priest was published by the Vallarta Institute on January 23, 2013 and is available on Amazon.com in paperback for $14.99 and digital format for $9.99. Proceeds support various human rights organizations. The author is available for interviews, excerpts, or columns related to his experience and story. Contact Jeff Jackson to request a review copy.