A Root of Church Homophobia?

Posted by Censor Librorum on Sep 20, 2007 | Categories: Lesbian in a Catholic Sort of Way

“When the first Christian pervert, St. Paul, made nature a crime against Christianity, civilization was finished,” writes poet Harold Norse in “Nocturnal Emissions” (1973). “Had he been handsome instead of hideous, the whole course of history might have been happier.”

Norse’s opinion is shared by novelist Gore Vidal who, in Live from Golgotha (1992), presents Paul as a sexually maladroit troll obsessed with the handsome, teenaged Timothy. (Timothy, recall, is the recipient of two of Paul’s minor epistles and, in Vidal’s refashioning of Paul’s story, the possessor of “the largest dick in our part of Asia Minor.”)

In Vidal’s vision of early church history, Paul’s highly influential epistolary excoriations against same-sex love prove to be the product of a self-hating homosexual’s determination to deprive others of the pleasure that he himself feels enormous guilt over enjoying.

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