“I realized that it was good old fashioned c\Catholic prejudice towards homosexuality, or those who seem to be homosexual.”
By Melanie Nathan, March 20, 2013.
After Ugandan Catholic cleric Fr. Anthony Musaala authored an open letter To Bishops, Priests and Laity, entitled “The failure of Celibate Chastity among Diocesan Priests” accusing his Catholic Church colleagues in Uganda of sexual immorality and crimes, and was suspended by the Archbishop of Uganda, he spoke to me, noting “I am afraid the Archbishop has done his worst.” ( See the letter at http://oblogdeeoblogda.me/2013/03/20/ugandan-catholic-priest-suspended-for-speaking-out-against-sexual-immorality/)
The Archbishop of Kampala Dr. Cyprian Kizito Lwanga retaliated against Fr. Musaala with a Ferendae sententiae penalty as prescribed by Catholic Can.1314., suspending Father Anthony Musaala because he made his accusations public in the media, where, according to the Archbishop, he allegedly “damaged the good morals of Catholic believers and further expressed a wrong teaching against the Catholic Church’s teaching.”
Father Musaala, a man who is deeply committed to his religion, told me that he decided to write the letter after he had experienced years of unjust accusations and blackmail at the hands of the Archdiocese in Uganda. “One key reason I had to speak up was because of the subtle blackmail I was undergoing at the hands of the church.”
Fr. Musaala explained that every time a decision had to be made about a new posting, or a permission needed to travel somewhere, “the Archbishop would gently remind me of all the allegations of homosexuality made against me in 2009, and according to him still being made now.”
Father Musaala became a target of homosexual accusations back in 2009, and his popular Gospel music was always frowned upon by the Church.
He told me that he had been posted by the Church to a way out of town parish, where he would find it difficult to do all his regular work with youth, music and refugees in the city. Fr. Musaala quoted the Archbishop as saying: ”you know there is so much stuff about you on the internet, its up to you to prove that its not true”.
Fr. Musaala reflected on the others in the Church. He told me “I thought of all the priests who I knew who had girlfriends and children and even live in lovers. There must be hundreds. Why is it that year after year I am branded as the priest who caused the most shame to the Archdiocese?”
Fr. Musaala noted that he was moved by the double standard. That the Church was giving a pass to heterosexual pedophiles and non-celibates, while targeting those it believed to be homosexual. “I realized that it was good old fashioned catholic prejudice towards homosexuality, those who seemed to be homosexual. The unspoken text was ‘You really do not belong here, but can be tolerated.”
Fr. Musaala went on to say; “Needless to say in the present hullabaloo, it has come up again. During the course of a one hour blast by two bishops and a vicar-general over exposing catholic ‘secrets’ in the media, the Archbishop reminded me that two young men had appeared at his office accusing me of having had homosexual acts with them. I said that I needed to confront my accusers. He said that they were too scared to do so.”
Again they are scape-goating the one man perceived to be homosexual who has had to live with years of accusations. Fr. Anthony is willing to face his accusers. He is a slight man. One can hardly imagine why the two accusers would fear him. There have been many cases of false accusations. These accusations have haunted Fr. Musaala for years and he is willing to flush out the truth.
“Well anyway now the gloves are off, “ Fr. Masaala told me. “I’ve had enough and I think that some hard truths are coming out. Lines are being draw for this battle against heterosex abuse and the power abuse of the catholic hierarchy.”
Today on Ugandan TV, Fr. Musaala disputed the lawfulness of his suspension under Canon Law.