Transsexual women are presenting themselves as men to infiltrate Catholic seminaries, a US bishop has said.
Bishops should now order physical examinations or DNA tests for candidates for the priesthood, Archbishop Jerome Listecki of Milwaukee advised members of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops in a memo.
He said that on more than one occasion women who have undergone sex changes have applied to the priesthood and have been accepted into seminary.
“Recently, the Committee on Canonical Affairs and Church Governance was made aware of instances where it had been discovered that a woman living under a transgendered identity had been unknowingly admitted to the seminary or to a house of formation of an institute of consecrated life,” said Archbishop Listecki in his memo.
In one case “the individual’s sacramental records had been fraudulently obtained to reflect her new identity”, said Archbishop Listecki, the chairman of the USCCB’s canonical affairs committee.
He said: “In all instances, nothing in these individuals’ medical or psychological reports had signaled past treatments or pertinent surgeries.”
“Luckily, each case was discovered prior to a celebration of Holy Orders,” continued the archbishop.
He added that he was “encouraged by the committee to alert you to these occurrences so that you will exercise special vigilance as a new year of seminary formation begins”.
The memo was silent on precisely which seminaries had been infiltrated or where they were located.
Archbishop Listecki, a doctor of canon law, reminded his brother bishops that only men “who possess the requisite physical and psychological qualities” may be admitted for training to the priesthood.
He went on to quote the sections of the Code of Canon Law that require bishops to establish moral certitude that such criteria are met.
“Some members of the Committee on Canonical Affairs and Church Governance observed that a bishop could consider requiring a DNA test or, at a minimum, certification from a medical expert of the bishop’s own choosing, to assure that an applicant is male,” the archbishop said.
Having been unable to sell in churches for well over a year due to the pandemic, we are now inviting readers to support the Herald by investing in our future. We have been a bold and influential voice in the church since 1888, standing up for traditional Catholic culture and values.
Please join us on our 130 year mission by supporting us. We are raising £250,000 to safeguard the Herald as a world-leading voice in Catholic journalism and teaching. For more information from our chairman on contributing to the Herald Patron's Fund, click here
Make a Donation
Donors giving £500 or more will automatically become sponsor patrons of the Herald. This includes two complimentary print/digital gift subscriptions, invitations to Patron events, pilgrimages and dinners, and 6 gift subscriptions sent to priests, seminaries, Catholic schools, religious care homes and prison and university chaplaincies. Click here for more information on becoming a Patron Sponsor. Click here for more information about contributing to the Herald Patron's Fund