Art Moore entered the media world as a public relations assistant for the Seattle Mariners and a correspondent covering pro and college sports for Associated Press Radio. He reported for a Chicago-area daily newspaper and was senior news writer for Christianity Today magazine and an editor for Worldwide Newsroom before joining WND shortly after 9/11. He earned a master's degree in communications from Wheaton College.More ↓Less ↑
Editor’s note: Descriptions of sexuality classes, books and techniques in this story may be offensive to some readers.
The U.S. Catholic bishops’ latest proposal to create “safe environments” for children through an “Office of Child and Youth Protection” offers little comfort to some members who closely monitor the Church’s gatekeepers.
For lay activists who have documented corruption in the church hierarchy over the past several decades, it comes as no surprise that the radical, anything-goes philosophy of famed “sexologist” Alfred Kinsey, a reputed pedophile, has triumphed over traditional teaching in Catholic institutions across the U.S., creating a flourishing environment for priests who abuse teens and children.
“It’s like fighting cancer with a topical medication,” said Stephen Brady, president of the lay group Roman Catholic Faithful. “They are not addressing the problem – but they can’t because many of these bishops are compromised and waiting to be exposed [for abuse] themselves.”
The influence of the “father of the sexual revolution” on the Church can be easily illustrated in a course called “Sexual Attitude Restructuring,” which urges participants to rethink “restricting attitudes” acquired in their religious upbringing and adopt a lifestyle of free sexual expression.
The course is a staple of an institute started nearly 30 years ago by Kinsey disciples that directly or indirectly influences nearly every sex education and therapy program in the country. The San Francisco-based Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality, or IASHS, requires its students to complete the SAR, where participants have been known to strip down and interact sexually with each other while surrounded by multiple screens that display hard-core pornographic films.
In her book, “Kinsey, Crimes and Consequences,” Judith Reisman, a noted researcher of Kinsey’s legacy, documents the IASHS leaders’ characterization of the course contents as the “f—orama.”
The SAR and its X-rated theater – perhaps missing only the in-class “lab work” – was offered to parishioners for 10 years by the Milwaukee Archdiocese under Rembert G. Weakland, who recently took early retirement after admitting to a $450,000 payment by the archdiocese that settled a complaint by a young man with whom he had an “inappropriate” relationship.
Lay activists, including Roman Catholic Faithful, have documented Weakland’s legacy of amoral values and homosexuality in diocesan schools and in pastoral and lay training.
Activist Thomas Phillips says in the preface to a dossier he collected on the archdiocese: “It is within this climate of lax sexual mores set by Rembert Weakland that proclivities toward sexual abuse have grown and festered, until giving rise to an explosion of pedophilia cases, criminal convictions and lawsuits.”
That was written nearly 10 years ago when seven priests had been accused of abuse. Since then, more cases have arisen, leading up to the present media focus on a crisis that afflicts not only Milwaukee, but the entire U.S. Church.
Brady states what is obvious to fellow Catholics who have connected the dots between the kind of environment created by Weakland and the current sex scandal.
“When you break down sexual barriers and open people to not being sensitive or ashamed, then you start to make them vulnerable to sin,” he told WorldNetDaily.
How many dioceses have inculcated the kind of amoral atmosphere seen in Milwaukee?
About 90 percent, according to Paul Likoudis, the author of an upcoming book that examines the origins of the current scandal and a news editor of the Catholic newspaper The Wanderer.
In “Amchurch Comes Out: The U.S. Bishops, Pedophile Scandals and the Homosexual Agenda,” Likoudis asserts that homosexuals and pedophiles controlled the post-Vatican II liturgical reform in the United States and Canada.
Along with Weakland, he names Archbishop Roger Mahony of Los Angeles, Bishop Matthew Clark of Rochester, Bishop Howard Hubbard of Albany and Bishop John Cummins of Oakland as among the biggest promoters of homosexuality in the U.S. Church.
“I think some of the bishops in this country are so committed to social acceptance of homosexuality that they don’t care about anything else,” Likoudis told WorldNetDaily. “That’s their No. 1 thing in life, because that is what they are spending most of their resources on.”
Weakland is among six or seven U.S. bishops who have been exposed for same-sex abuse, said Brady.
“You can bet there are probably 15 or 20 more waiting for the shoe to drop,” he said. “One can only imagine how nervous [Weakland] was when this [national scandal] started breaking. A lot of bishops are sweating bullets. There is probably a lot of check-writing going on.”
At the Milwaukee Archdiocese’s Cousins Center, participants in the course “Reassessing our Sexual Attitudes,” held in the 1980s, watched a National Sex Forum film of “leisurely and active lovemaking” in which a couple moves “freely from one activity to the next, engaging in several positions, some with a vibrator.”
The National Sex Forum (earlier known as the National Sex and Drug Forum) is the group that launched the San Francisco Institute on the Advanced Study of Human Sexuality in the 1970s. Other NSF film titles include “Jim and Vern,” which shows a “wide range of homosexual activity,” and “Reflections – Sexual Patterns with Multiple Partners,” a “discussion starter showing what group sex is like and how some people feel about it.”
The institute says its “films, slides, audio and videotapes are used by more than 8,000 professionals and institutions throughout the world.”
Explicit films are common in Church institutions, said Brady, noting the showing of a production at a Notre Dame all-girls school that included sadomasochism.
One of the founders of the Institute on the Advanced Study of Human Sexuality was Wardell Pomeroy, “dean of American sexologists” and co-author with Kinsey of the 1950s tomes regarded as the textbooks of the sexual revolution. Researcher Reisman has documented Kinsey’s and Pomeroy’s pedophiliac predilections, as demonstrated by their notorious sexual experiments on children, the vast majority of whom were boys.
Kinsey taught that children are sexual from birth but are hindered from freely engaging in sexual activity with their peers or adults because of Judeo-Christian repression. Pomeroy publicly sought funds from the pornography industry to produce child porn, says Reisman.
The IASHS website spells out the institute’s assertion of “Basic Sexual Rights,” which include “freedom of any sexual thought, fantasy or desire” and “the right to sexual entertainment, freely available in the marketplace, including sexually explicit materials dealing with the full range of sexual behavior.”
It further calls for “The recognition by society that every person, partnered or unpartnered, has the right to the pursuit of a satisfying consensual sociosexual life free from political, legal or religious interference. … ”
Lead us not into temptation
A brochure for the Milwaukee-run “Sexual Attitude Restructuring” course said the program begins with “examining how we were trained (or not trained) to hold restricting attitudes about our sexuality. Rev. Andrew Nelson will trace the influence of our religious tradition on this thinking and some current attitudes toward sexuality.”
A parishioner who completed the program wrote to Weakland, wondering if the prelate knew what was going on in the classes.
“I asked Father Andrew Nelson if watching those four films with nude men and women demonstrating various sexual actions is an occasion of sin,” he wrote. “His reply was, ‘No.’
“Why then do we pray in the Our Father ‘and lead us not into temptation … ‘ I ask you, archbishop?”
Weakland largely ignored such complaints, which were strong and frequent, according to Roman Catholic Faithful.
Brady says that while the SAR program itself may not be replicated among many Catholic institutions, the explicit, amoral teaching is common.
“They serve the same purpose – to break down inhibitions and resistance, making them more vulnerable for abuse,” he said.
“Valuing Your Sexuality,” a sex education course Weakland initiated for Catholic schools, teaches there is “no right and wrong” regarding sexuality and marriage and that “each student decides on his/her own” the “appropriate” age to engage in “masturbating … having intercourse before marriage, having sex with a family member.”
An activity called “charades” was listed in a course content schedule published by the archdiocese in 1980. It asks students to draw depictions of words for students to guess, such as orgasm, vagina, penis, sexual intercourse, homosexual, masturbation, erection and clitoris. All of these “human sexuality” instruction “techniques” for breaking down inhibitions, says Reisman, can be found to have originated first in Kinseyan training seminars for teachers, clergy, military, law enforcement and other health professionals.
Weakland served as co-chairman of the Milwaukee AIDS project, a co-sponsor of events such as the Gay/Lesbian Film Festival and distributor of condoms and information on “safe sex.” A brochure on the subject suggests “Bright Ideas” homosexuals can enjoy without fear of AIDS, such as “massages, fantasy, videos, phone sex, romance” and “mutual masturbation,” which “spreads nothing but happiness.”
The Milwaukee archbishop received repeated protests over a four-week course offered in the 1980s by Father James Arimond, called “Homosexuality and its Impact on the Family,” said to be a “factual, nonjudgmental presentation about homosexuality,” according to a March 1, 1987, article in the Milwaukee Journal.
Arimond, the Journal said, defined a pervert as someone who goes against his or her sexual tendency. If a homosexual acted heterosexually, that would be a perversion, he said, asserting that homosexuality is “God’s gift.” All of these views are fully expressed in a 1977 sexually explicit photo book entitled “Meditations on the Gift of Sexuality,” featuring IASHS faculty, staff and students, says Reisman.
On July 23, 1990, Arimond pleaded no contest to charges of sexual contact with a teen-age boy and was sentenced to 18 months probation and 45 days in the House of Correction.
Weakland was warned in writing about Arimond twice before the priest is alleged to have abused the boy in the summer of 1988, according to documents obtained by the group Roman Catholic Faithful.
In February 1987, a group of lay orthodox Catholics wrote to Weakland, urging him to stem the “pro-homosexual movement within the Catholic Church in the Milwaukee Archdiocese,” singling out Arimond for his class on homosexuality and his statements.
The lay group got the opposite response it desired. On Dec. 19, 1987, Weakland promoted Arimond to pastor of St. Frederick Parish, Cudahy.
In his recent groundbreaking book, “Goodbye, Good Men,” Michael Rose shows how homosexuality has become an orthodoxy among the gatekeepers at Catholic seminaries, drumming out priests who believe in traditional morals.
Rose argues that most were kicked out by psychologists who evaluated the priests as being sexually repressive, based on “scientific data” that invariably comes from Kinsey and his successors, Reisman’s research shows.
Likoudis notes that two of those gatekeepers, for seminarians in Seattle, are Sister Fran Ferder and Father John Heagle, co-directors of Therapy and Renewal Associates. The counselors, who treat abusive priests, have ridiculed the Church’s traditional teaching on sexual purity, dismissing it as evidence of the Vatican’s fixations at an adolescent psychological level.
Not a moral weakness
Weakland acknowledged in 1995 that a raft of abuse cases had cost the archdiocese $5.5 million, depleting its financial reserves. About half a million was designated for therapy. Richard Sipe, a psychologist and ex-priest, estimates the Church has spent
at least $50 million to treat abusive clergy in the past 25 years, according
to the Boston Globe.
What kind of therapy are many priests getting? Again, the link to Kinsey can be found.
The church’s most well-known center, the St. Luke Institute in Maryland, was founded by the Rev. Michael Peterson, who died of AIDS in 1987. Just two years before his death, Peterson co-authored a report with Father Thomas P. Doyle and Ray Mouton that warned of the problem of clergy abuse.
Peterson cites the Johns Hopkins Hospital Sexual Disorders Clinic, then run by Dr. John Money – a Kinsey devotee and adviser to Indiana University’s Kinsey Institute – and Dr. Fred Berlin, as “probably the ‘authority’ (in the) scientific community” on the subject of pedophilia.
“I know personally both of these highly respected scientists, and I am very appreciative of their efforts to bring this psychiatric disorder out of the shadows and into the ‘scientific daylight’ so that we can begin to see the disorder as a psychiatric disease and not a moral weakness,” Peterson wrote.
Hailed as a cornerstone of 1970s feminism and “gay”-rights liberation, Money gave an interview in 1991 to the Amsterdam-based PAIDIKA: The Journal of Paedophilia.
A Rolling Stone article said of him: “Having lost his faith in his early 20s, Money increasingly reacted against what he saw as the repressive religious structures of his upbringing and, in particular, the anti-masturbatory, anti-sexual fervor that went with them. The academic study of sexuality, which removed even the most outlandish practices from moral consideration and placed them in the ‘pure’ realm of scientific enquiry, was for Money an emancipation.”
The professor emeritus became a cause celebre for orchestrating a sex change for a boy whose genitals were damaged at birth, supposedly backing his assertion that nurture trumps nature. That assertion took a hit, however, when the boy, named Brenda and raised as a girl, later – having exposed Money’s claims as fraudulent all along – insisted on being David, became a husband and adopted children.
Money said in his Journal of Paedophilia interview: “If I were to see the case of a boy aged 10 or 11 who’s intensely erotically attracted toward a man in his 20s or 30s, if the relationship is totally mutual, and the bonding is genuinely totally mutual … then I would not call it pathological in any way.”
Berlin, director of the Johns Hopkins clinic, testified in the infamous Jeffrey Dahmer case in Milwaukee that the cannibal killer could not control his conduct because he was suffering from paraphilia, a mental disease.
According to Reisman, it was Money who promoted the word “paraphilia” in order to refer to “aberrant sexual conduct such as necrophelia, sexual sadism, bestiality, coprophilia, urophilia and pedophilia in a manner less clear and offensive to readers.”
Berlin has defended St. Luke’s therapeutic use of the “penile plethysmograph,” a device attached to the penis that measures arousal when the subject is shown pornographic images.
Same old same old
When the U.S. bishops meet tomorrow in Dallas, the hierarchy’s promotion of homosexuality and sexual deviancy will not be on the agenda, which means the problem will only grow, insists Brady.
“I don’t think we are anywhere close to rock bottom yet,” he said. “Nothing will change until we get new bishops in there. The same old boys causing the problems are wanting us to accept them as the ones to solve it.”
A longtime observer of the church – a political and social activist in California who asked that his name not be used – summarized the upcoming bishops’ conference this way:
“The church is like a sick man who has a terribly ugly wart on the end of his nose,” he said. “All of this posturing and correction is related to the wart and not to the cancer, heart disease, tuberculosis and diabetes he is suffering from, which is being simply ignored.”
The shocking but still relatively small percentage of priests abusing young people is a serious problem, but it is only a symptom, he says, of something much deeper.