An Indecent Proposal

A Comment on the Editorial

I believe it is pathological, let alone sinful, for a man to desire to do to and with another man what the organic structure of their bodies and the entire masculine psycho-physical makeup were never meant to do. One of the secondary reasons I believe this is illustrated, unintentionally, by Fiducia Supplicans and its embrace by Catholics who experience the desire I have described.

Where you find one severe pathology, you are likely to find others, too, bound up in parasitic symbiosis. There are several such accompanying pathologies in the case of homosexual desire. The one I have in mind is a profound and engrossing narcissism. Set aside whether two citizens of Sodom should present themselves as a couple to be blessed by a priest in church. Why would they want to do so? Ordinary decency should forbid it. So should a modicum of charity for those in the congregation who will be scandalized by the blessing, even if you believe, as I do not, that for a priest to bless them as a couple is permissible, even rational. So should a care for the universal Church, which, as the couple must well know, will be threatened by a worldwide fracture if such blessings are made common, and if they prove to be but a preparation for the total abandonment of Catholic sexual morality.

It is, within the embrace of the Mass, a kind of Pride Parade in miniature, in this sense: the proceedings are all about the pair and their paraphilia, and nobody else. Some “queer theorists,” as they call themselves, are frank in their wish to see the Christian faith rotted out from within and heterosexual relations as the ordinary way of nature lose their normative force. They desire the destruction.

But what can explain the more typical Johnny and Joey? They appear psychologically incapable of entertaining the most obvious of questions, such as, “What will approving my actions imply for approving other less questionable actions?” They are blind to the harm of the collapse of married life in our midst. They show no tender care for the innocence of children. They do not feel for the loneliness of young people who refuse to fornicate in order to “meet” someone of the opposite sex. Heaven and earth are to revolve about themselves.

Fiat fellatio, ruant fides et ratio.

Anthony Esolen is the author of over thirty books, including Real Music: A Guide to the Timeless Hymns of the Church (Tan, with a CD), Out of the Ashes: Rebuilding American Culture (Regnery), and The Hundredfold: Songs for the Lord (Ignatius). He has also translated Dante’s Divine Comedy (Random House). He and his wife Debra publish a web magazine, Word and Song (, on poetry, hymnody, language, classic films, and music. He is a senior editor of Touchstone.

Print &
Online Subscription

Get six issues (one year) of Touchstone PLUS full online access including pdf downloads for only $39.95. That's only $3.34 per month!


Get a one-year full-access subscription to the Touchstone online archives for only $19.95. That's only $1.66 per month!

bulk subscriptions

Order Touchstone subscriptions in bulk and save $10 per sub! Each subscription includes 6 issues of Touchstone plus full online access to—including archives, videos, and pdf downloads of recent issues for only $29.95 each! Great for churches or study groups.

Transactions will be processed on a secure server.

more from the online archives

32.1—January/February 2019

Surprised by Delight

Divine Love & the Love of Man & Woman Surpass Mere Consent by Anthony Esolen

32.3—May/June 2019

Editing Jesus

on the Implications of Changing the Pater Noster by John M. McCarthy

21.8—October 2008

Weed Free

on Tending a Child’s Garden of Influences by John Thompson

calling all readers

Please Donate

"There are magazines worth reading but few worth saving . . . Touchstone is just such a magazine."
—Alice von Hildebrand

"Here we do not concede one square millimeter of territory to falsehood, folly, contemporary sentimentality, or fashion. We speak the truth, and let God be our judge. . . . Touchstone is the one committedly Christian conservative journal."
—Anthony Esolen, Touchstone senior editor

Support Touchstone