The Changing Face of the Priesthood, author Father Donald Cozzens, the former head of a Catholic seminary, depicts the priesthood as “becoming a gay profession,” and says that homosexual culture is now dominant at many seminaries. In an interview for this story, one priest says that at his former Milwaukee seminary, an openly gay seminarian often had his “good friend” come for overnight visits—-all with the knowledge and tacit approval of the administration. Rose cites several examples in Men of gay priests and seminarians living an active, promiscuous homosexual lifestyle, including some who party together at gay nightclubs. So how does this relate to the sex abuse scandals? The generation of priests who are largely responsible for the rash of sexual abuse cases mostly entered the priesthood at an extremely early age, ushered into an ensconced environment where they never got a chance to grow up. Teenage boys are the natural objects of sexual desire for an immature homosexual who was enveloped in a promiscuous, homosexual culture in the seminary. What’s the solution to this national tragedy? Given that homosexuals are such a significant presence in the American priesthood, the Church can’t exactly run them all of out of town, nor should they. Just because someone is homosexual does not mean that he is necessarily sexually active, although Rose is skeptical that a gay priest in a sexually charged, all-male environment can adhere to the chastity discipline. Reducing the number of homosexuals in the priesthood also might prove an elusive goal, because someone who’s gay still faces a much lower personal cost to becoming a priest than a heterosexual, who actually has to forgo having a wife and kids. Rose says that many vocation offices have been actively recruiting gay men to seminary life for at least 30 years, perhaps to enhance the clout of what liberal priest Father Andrew Greeley has dubbed the “lavender mafia,” or the power structure of the gay subculture of the priesthood. The Church needs to come to grips with the situation that has developed over the past 35 years. Homosexual conduct by seminarians and priests must be absolutely condemned, and chastity must be thoroughly reinforced as a crucial element of the priesthood. The only way to achieve that goal is by altering the dominant gay culture found in many seminaries and even some dioceses. Changing the culture of the priesthood is only the first step in addressing the sexual abuse crisis, but it is an absolutely necessary cornerstone of any successful reform effort.