Monday 21 October 2019

Shock as priest likens gay people to zombies

His comments have been criticised (stock photo)
His comments have been criticised (stock photo)

Sarah Mac Donald

A bishop has been called upon to address comments made by a priest who compared gay people to infected zombies.

Brother Tom Forde spoke of “the abuse of drugs and alcohol, adultery, fornication and homosexuality, as well as in the acceptance of abortion and contraception and in the move to legalise euthanasia”.

“We sense that many of those around us are physically alive but spiritually dead, morally rotten or at least infected,” he said at the Capuchin friary in Kilkenny on Saturday.

Referencing zombies, he said: “Once you are bitten you are infected and there is no hope. The only way to deal with the monsters is to stab or shoot them in the brain”.

Acknowledging that zombies do not exist, he suggested that spiritual zombies do.

The former chaplain at UCC said the cure for “moral and spiritual infection” was Christ. Some of the congregation reportedly walked out.

The homily had been published as a blog, but is no longer online. Its contents were brought to attention by RTÉ’s ‘Liveline’ programme.

The head of Amnesty Ireland called on the Catholic bishop of Ossory to address “vitriolic and homophobic” comments. Colm O’Gorman told the Irish Independent it was up to the Gardaí to investigate if the comments constitute hate speech. A spokesperson for the gardaí said they would not discuss an individual case.

The Capuchin Orders apologised, stating: “The Capuchin Order wishes to state that all are welcome in our churches, irrespective of sexual orientation. Unfortunate comments were made about homosexuality last Saturday, which gay people would have found hurtful, and we deeply regret this.”

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