In a summary document published at the end of their plenary assembly, the Polish Bishops’ Conference [Konferencja Episkopatu Polski] (KEP) is causing controversy, calling for the opening of medical centers specializing in the treatment of homosexual tendencies.
“A grotesque document.” The progressive Italian daily Linkiesta does not have enough harsh words to describe the “position of the Polish Bishops’ Conference on the LGBT issue.”
The 27-page document was presented on August 29, 2020, at the conclusion of the 386th KEP Plenary Assembly, held at the Jasna Gora Marian Shrine in Czestochowa.
If the prelates on the banks of the Vistula use the usual precautions of language so as not to be accused of discrimination against the homosexual nebula, they nonetheless remind us that the Church cannot accept the extension of the concept of marriage and family to same-sex couples. Nor allow them to adopt a child, stigmatizing at the same time the sex education provided in some schools.
But the proposal, which has created shock waves in progressive circles, reads in paragraph 38: the KEP exposes there the need to create centers practicing the famous “conversion therapies” which are controversial both in Europe and in the United States.
“It is necessary to create clinics to help people who wish to regain a natural sexual orientation,” explain the bishops, who are not unaware of supporting a practice condemned by several international bodies—such as the UN and the WHO—and which in France is the subject of a bill that would prohibit the therapies since June 3, 2020.
The position of the Polish episcopate on homosexuality thus contrasts with that expressed by other European episcopates.
In Germany, the recent Synod of Bishops in 2020 chose the card of absolute relativism: homosexual orientation is now, according to the prelates from across the Rhine, “a normal form of sexual predisposition” which “is fixed at puberty and must not be changed.”
In France, as on many ethical issues, the bishops are struggling on the question: “there is a diversity of sexual inclinations in the human family.… We must not discriminate against homosexual people.… The Catholic Church invites us to welcome them and accompany them on their journey to God. But it is not possible to put same-sex relationships on the same level as the relationship of a man and a woman.”
This can be read in the document “What is man? Elements of Catholic Anthropology,” published by the Bishops’ Conference of France (CEF), April 23, 2019.
On the side of the Holy See, there has not yet been a public reaction to the synthesis document of the Polish episcopate: as of September 3, the KEP declaration is neither published, nor referenced, nor mentioned officially.