Catholic Church and gays

Book Reviewer Attacked by Anne Rice Fans; Catholic School Fires Gay Teacher

A small blogger recently wrote a less than stellar book review for Anne Rice’s Pandora, and when Rice found out about this review she mentioned it on social media and Anne Rice fans ran to her defense creating the kind of firestorm that has caused many bloggers to rethink their comment policy. There’s even a familiar voice to the m/m romance community on the comment thread.

When the blogger/reviewer compared Rice to Stephanie Meyer in the review, one person lashed out with such a vituperative (I love that word) attack, wishing the blogger would get herpes, even I held my breath. And I’ve seen a lot, but I think that’s the first time I’ve ever seen anyone wish an STD on a book reviewer.

What makes this review even more interesting is that the reviewer literally chopped the book up, which created yet another topic to discuss on the comment thread.

Last night, I took a craft knife to Anne Rice’s Pandora and I took out every page. I was left with the gutted remains of the cover itself and threw that away. It’s the first time I have ever desecrated a book in such a way and I can’t deny that it wasn’t made all the more enjoyable by how much I really and truly loathed that book.

In an interesting twist, the blogger was remiss in mentioning that she’d already planned to do a craft project with a book, and she rectified this in an update to the post after Rice posted all this on social media and her fans went berserk. In other words, the blogger didn’t start out with the intention of hacking up an Anne Rice book. It just wound up that way, and she posted photos, too…before and after!!

It’s a shame people don’t know that publishers recycle print books all the time. And publishers don’t make pretty boxes out of them like the blogger did. One person pointed this out on the thread, but it didn’t seem to get much attention.

This all reminds me of the third grade. We had a teacher…Miss Clifford…who was the consummate small town spinster of her day. She wore her hair in a bun at the back of her head, half glasses on the end of her nose, and pencil skirts that kept her knees locked together at all times. Miss Clifford was the crafty type. We made Christmas trees out of cardboard and Ivory Snow, Santas out of poster board and velour paper, and what she could do with macaroni and Elmer’s glue would make you scream. And once, we even made a Christmas bell out of used copies of the Reader’s Digest through a primitive form of origami. Photo above to prove it. This is the actual bell and why I saved it I don’t have a clue.

You can read the blog post I’m talking about in full, here.

Catholic School Fires Gay Teacher

When I read things like this about a gay teacher in a Catholic school who was fired because someone read she was a lesbian in her mom’s obituary, the post about Anne Rice and the reviewer above don’t seem quite as important. Frankly, after reading this about the school teacher, I don’t really care if the blogger wiped her behind with Rice’s book, Pandora.

From what I’ve gathered so far, this is not a gay teacher who walked around carrying rainbow flags and equal rights signs. She taught there for years and no one ever questioned her until her mother died and the obit was published.

Physical education teacher Carla Hale, 57, was fired in March after her name appeared in her mother’s obituary, which also noted Hale’s longtime lesbian partner.

You see what I mean. And this isn’t something new. For those who don’t take what it is like for gay people this far, obituaries have been a long standing issue with gay people, and it’s only recently where gay people have been mentioning their partners in public. Just think about the magnitude of that for a moment. Someone in your family passes away, and you can’t even name your partner/spouse in the obit for fear of backlash like what this teacher is now dealing with.

The main reason Hale was fired, after this obit came out, is astounding, especially coming from the Catholic church.

Hale was subsequently dismissed from Bishop Watterson Catholic High School after 19 years of service, with the school citing a morality provision in the contract between teachers and the diocese.

You can read more here.

"Twilight’s" Stephenie Meyer Comments on "Fifty Shades of Grey;" Gay Catholic Released From Church Duties

I may have missed it, but I haven’t seen any public comments where “Twilight” author, Stephenie Meyer, commented on the E.L. James novel, “Fifty Shades of Grey.” The reason why I’m curious about this is because it’s been said that “Fifty Shades of Grey” originated as fanfiction under a different title and was allegedly based upon Meyer’s “Twilight.” A fact that to this day most people don’t seem to know.

And this week in Time Magazine’s “10 Questions” feature, there’s an interview with Stephenie Meyer and one of the questions is directed toward how she feels about “Fifty Shades of Grey.” I still get the print magazine in the mail, but if you’re interested in reading the interview online, you can get it here. The interview is not up yet. I’m not sure how this works, but I think Time keeps the newest interviews for paid subscribers until a certain amount of time has passed…and then they let it go public.

One of the questions gets into how Meyer deals with so much of the criticism she’s received from the literary community at large.

The literary establishment isn’t always kind to you. How do you deal with criticism?

A lot of it I really take to heart, because I know I’m not the best writer. I do try to learn from it. I feel like with each book I’ve written, I’ve gotten a little bit better. You sometimes have to tune it out, because it can be that voice in your head all the time and be really crippling.

And now here’s the question she answered about “Fifty Shades of Grey” and E. L. James. As a side note, this isn’t exactly how I would have phrased the question. This could be why Time Magazine is now about as thick as a vanilla wafer.

I have to ask you about “Fifty Shades of Grey.” E. L. James took something that you created and used it as inspiration for something that’s pretty raunchy. How does that make you feel?

It doesn’t feel that connected to me. I haven’t read it so I don’t know. I’m glad that she’s doing well and succeeding, and that’s cool. The raunchy part, I wish that wasn’t attached to “Twilight,” just because I don’t think of it that way, but, you know, it doesn’t hurt “Twilight.”

At least they didn’t say “Mommy porn.” And it’s a great answer, but I still can’t help wondering what she really thinks.

Gay Catholic Released From Church Duties

I had a much longer post about this article yesterday, but it sounded so much like a rant I decided not to publish it. This isn’t something about which I want to rant anymore, because it is what it is. I just want to post the facts for people who might not know them.

On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Coppola said he attended a mass at St. Anthony’s celebrating justice and equality. After the homily, he was summoned into the office of his pastor, Father Nicholas Lombardi, where he was told an anonymous letter complaining about his sexuality had been sent to Bishop William Murphy of the Rockville Centre Diocese, which includes St. Anthony’s Parish. Lombardi said Coppola would be banned from his parish duties, as a result of the letter.

By parish duties they are talking about the fact that Coppola did a lot of volunteer work for the church, a church for which he was a devoted member for a decade. This is part of the anonymous letter:

This letter is to inform you of a serious situation at St. Anthony’s in Oceanside. I have made numerous calls to your office which I believe have fallen on deaf ears.

Nicolas Coppola … is a homosexual. He was recently married to another man. He does not hide this or keep it silent.

With all that The Catholic Church has been dealing with and trying to stop, WHY IS THIS PERMITTED?

As a result, the church released Coppola from his duties. You can read more here.