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Of the total cliental, forty adolescents reported experiencing childhood sexual abuse. Only six of the forty had ever told anyone about the abuse before being asked by the clinic personnel. Johnson and Shrier speculate that many of the victims may have been unwilling to admit being molested.

Even though nearly half of our adolescent male clinic population is under fifteen years of age, all the adolescents who admitted to sexual molestation were over fifteen years of age. Since all the reported molestations occurred during the preadolescent years, we can only speculate that our young adolescent males did not report earlier sexual victimization. It is also interesting to note that of the forty reporting sexual abuse, Did the abuse cause confusion about sexual identity?

Were boys who already had gender-identity problems more likely to be targeted by molesters? Were heterosexual boys even less likely to admit abuse? Not admitting abuse may be the norm for boys. Michael Reagan in his book Twice Adopted tells how after being molested and photographed nude at age seven, he experienced so much shame and guilt that for thirty-five years he never revealed his secret to anyone and lived in fear that the pictures would be made public.

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He believed that if his family found out they would instantly disown him and that God would never forgive him. The John Jay report considers only victims eighteen years of age and younger, in spite of the fact that sexual relations between a priest and any person of either sex or any age is an abuse of a relationship of trust. The researchers examined the files of accused clergy and found that the records of fourteen hundred of the clergy offenders contain reports of other problems. For example, 5. There is no way to know if these proportions are representative of the activities of offending clergy.

However, since the proportion of men with other-sex attraction to men with SSA in the general public is 97 percent to 3 percent, this would suggest that clergy offenders are disproportionately same-sex attracted and that at least of the offenders had been involved sexually with adult men. This suspicion is confirmed by Dr. The notorious Paul Shanley, a defrocked priest convicted of abusing children, openly identified with the gay community, while publicly rejecting Church teaching on homosexuality. It is also true that the members of the gay community are more likely to have a positive view of sexual relations between adult and adolescent males.

The following quote from Larry Kramer, gay author and activist, reveals an attitude common in the gay community:. In those instances where children do have sex with their homosexual elders, be they teachers or anyone else, I submit that often, very often, the child desires the activity, and perhaps even solicits it, either because of a natural curiosity that will or will not develop along these lines, or because he or she is homosexual and innately knows it. But, as with straight children anxious for the experience with someone of the opposite sex, these are kids who seek.

And unlike girls or women forced into rape and traumatized, most gay men have warm memories of their earliest and early sexual encounters; when we share these stories with each other, they are invariably positive ones. It seems, therefore disingenuous to argue that the clergy with SSA were not a significant part of the problem, yet the researchers from John Jay College would have us believe that sexual orientation is irrelevant.

Karen Terry, a researcher who worked on the John Jay report, suggested that factors such as greater access to boys could explain the skewed ratio. If these offending clergy had been sexually attracted to women, it is a tragic reality that they would have no difficulty finding women willing to engage in sexual relations with them.

Fitzgibbons found that the offending clergy and seminarians he counseled suffered psychological and spiritual problems:. In treating priests who have engaged in pedophilia and ephebophilia, we have observed that these men almost without exception suffered from a denial of sin in their lives. They were also unwilling to admit and address the profound emotional pain they experienced in childhood of loneliness, often in the father relationship, peer rejection, lack of male confidence, poor body image, sadness, and anger.

Rejecting the Church's teachings on sexual morality, these men for the most part adopted the utilitarian sexual ethic which the Holy Father John Paul II so brilliantly critiqued in his book Love and Responsibility. They came to see their own pleasure as the highest end and used others—including adolescents and children—as sexual objects.

They consistently refused to examine their consciences, to accept the Church's teachings on moral issues as a guide for their personal actions, or regularly avail themselves of the sacrament of penance. These priests either refused to seek spiritual direction or choose a spiritual director or confessor who openly rebelled against Church teachings on sexuality. Tragically, these mistakes allowed these men to justify their behaviors. According to the John Jay report, many of the records of clergy accused of sexual abuse of a youth under age eighteen contained evidence of a history of substance abuse, questions about fitness for ministry, or behavioral problems.

The argument proceeds along the following lines:. Therefore, the crisis is no reason to exclude men with deep-seated homosexual tendencies from the priesthood. The question is not: Are immature and troubled men more likely to take advantage of adolescent boys? They are. But: Are men with deep-seated homosexual tendencies more likely to be immature and troubled and take advantage of available adolescent boys?

While some priests with SSA are committed to a chaste celibacy and use all the spiritual psychological tools available to overcome temptations in thought and deed, others think it is sufficient to restrict their sexual activity to masturbation and relations with males over age eighteen. These priests do not regard their same-sex attraction as intrinsically disordered, nor do they support the church teachings on sexuality. Those who view SSA as intrinsically disordered believe that while not all priests with SSA offend against minors, a significant percentage have problems which could make them less able to resist the temptation to take advantage of the availability of teenage boys.

In order to be a truly healthy and mature priest—a man is ontologically changed and configured to Christ by the sacrament of Holy Orders and is also spouse to the Church and a spiritual father to everyone—it is necessary to achieve a strong interior life and affective maturity, that is, a healthy personality.

Numerous well-designed studies published in peer-reviewed journals have found that men with SSA are more likely to suffer from numerous psychiatric disorders and STDs.

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To understand the reasons for the higher prevalence of psychiatric disorders in those with same sex attractions, it is necessary to understand the process of healthy psychological development in men, as well as problems inherent in the homosexual lifestyle. At birth a baby needs to attach securely to his mother. In the first months of his life, she must be available to appropriately meet his needs, to show physical affection, to smile on him, and to delight in his smiles.

He learns to trust mother-love. Then as her son matures, she must allow separation. She encourages his growing competence. The baby crawls away from the mother and then looks back, checking for her presence, her approval. At some point in the first two years of life, the baby realizes that there are two sexes and one to which he naturally belongs. He then identifies more with his father. The mother must not stand in the way of the child's developing in a secure relationship with his father.

The father should be emotionally giving, affirming, and fully open for identification. In this process he helps his son appreciate the goodness of his masculinity that is essential to the development of male confidence and happiness. Joseph Nicolosi speaks of the importance of shared delight, moments when father and son engage in an activity that is mutually pleasurable. At first the boy is a little frightened, but then realizes that he is safe and this is fun and wants the activity repeated again and again. It is in moments like this that the boy takes the first steps on his journey to manhood.

His relationship with his father becomes the foundation on which he builds his masculine confidence. The next stage in male development involves interaction with and the development of secure relationships with brothers and male, age peers. The development of a healthy masculine identity is also dependent on the experience of being accepted and affirmed by males of one's own age.

A major way for bonding with a brother or male peers is through engaging in games, in rough-and tumble play and in sports. The lack of secure attachments to a father, brother, or same-sex peers results in varying degrees of sadness, loneliness, male insecurity, and anger. By successfully experiencing secure attachment relationships as a son, brother, and good male friend, a boy's emotional needs for male acceptance and love are met, and he incorporates a positive view of himself. Then, as he matures, he will naturally develop romantic and sexual attractions toward women.

Psychological healthy experiences with a father, a brother, and same-sex peers facilitates the ability of priests to receive and be comforted by the love of God as his father, Mary as his mother, Jesus as his brother and friend, and the Church as his spouse. While each man with same-sex attraction has his own unique personal history, in general he experiences significant conflicts in his emotional development.

Often there are difficulties in the attachment period. Mothers of men with SSA are more likely to be troubled. Some mothers are narcissistic and not able to respond appropriately to their babies' needs; instead they expect their baby to meet their needs. Some are fearful of masculinity. Boys, who are particularly sensitive to maternal affect, can become anxious and fearful. Kenneth Zucker and Susan Bradley, experts in gender identity disorder, which is often a precursor of SSA, noted that of ten consecutive boys brought to their GID clinic for evaluation in every case the mother was suffering from some problem which made attachment to her son problematic.

These beliefs are related to parents' experiences within their families of origin especially tendencies on the part of mothers to be frightened by male aggression or to be in need of nurturing, which they perceive as a female characteristic. If the father tries to toss the son up in the air or engage in other rough-and-tumble play, the mother may grab the boy out of his father's hands.


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The boy receives the message that his father is not trustworthy. In other cases, the father is cold or unavailable to the son. The boy, who is highly sensitive to maternal signals, perceives the mother's feelings of depression and anger. Because of his own insecurity, he is all the more threatened by his mother's anger or hostility, which he perceives as directed at him. His worry about the loss of his mother intensifies his conflict over his own anger, resulting in high levels of arousal or anxiety.

The father's own difficulty with affect regulation and inner sense of inadequacy usually produces withdrawal rather than approach. The parents have difficulty resolving the conflicts they experience in their own marital relations, and fail to provide support to each other.

This produces an intensified sense of conflict and hostility. In this situation, the boy becomes increasingly unsure about his own self-value because of the mother's withdrawal or anger and the father's failure to intercede. This anxiety and insecurity intensify, as does his anger.

Irving Bieber and collaborators conducted a comprehensive study of homosexual men in therapy. A boy's fear of rough-and-tumble play cuts him off from his peers. Such a boy grows up feeling different from other males. He may or may not identify with females, but he longs for male attention and affection; and in adolescence this need becomes sexualized and he begins to fantasize about relationships with males. Eventually, he may engage in sexual activity with other males. Fighting the inner sense that he is not sufficiently masculine—not a real man—he is attracted to their masculinity, and sexual activity is a means to incorporate some of that masculinity into himself.

He may also harbor significant anger toward his father, whom he sees as failing him, and his male peers, who rejected him. This can lead to ambivalent feelings to men, to authority in general and male authority in particular. View Clips. Nacho Libre Nacho is a young man who was raised in a monastery in Mexico and now works there as the cook. Surf's Up Follow prospect surfer, Cody Maverick, as he leaves his cold and dreary hometown to compete in the greatest surfing competition on Earth. Sign Up or Buy Clip Credits. Jun Integrity is doing the right thing, even when no one is watching.

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We have the same Spirit now. And we live in a time where women have more rights and opportunities than ever. But how are things trickling down? Should women be doing less for the church now than they did in the first century? Should we be satisfied with being separated in our own ministries with unequipped teachers? Do we no longer belong in the world of rich, theological teaching that benefits the whole church? Friendship between men and women is a taboo topic in the evangelical subculture.

It makes us uncomfortable. Apparently, we are all time bombs on the brink of having an affair—or of being accused of having one. Because of this, men and women often feel uncomfortable around each other, even in innocent contexts, and we impose strict hedges on behavior in order to avoid the threat of sexual impropriety. Most of us instinctively know what constitutes sexual impropriety in conversation and action—but, due to influence from our overly sexualized culture, we tend to scandalize ordinary acts of kindness and business.

It becomes suspect to give someone a ride, share a meal with a coworker in a public place, or text the other sex without copying our spouses or another third party. Prohibitions of these acts are couched in language of protecting our purity, honoring our spouses, or wisely avoiding the threat of temptation. Challenge any of these suggestions, however, and the language of danger is invoked. If these ordinary acts are dangerous, it must be downright foolish to use a meaningful term like friendship to describe a relationship between the sexes.

Do ordinary acts of kindness and business give you anxiety? Have you been reluctant to introduce someone of the other sex as your friend? Even in something as simple as a conversation with someone of the other sex, there seem to be too many ambiguous factors. Am I holding eye contact too long? Is my body language sending the wrong signals?

These can be noble questions in certain situations. There are plenty of distinctions between men and women, and cross-sex friendships are different from same-sex ones. But distinctions are special qualities, and we should never be reductive about them. A healthy dynamic between men and women engages the whole person.

In my family, I was raised with a proper understanding of distinction between the sexes without reduction. Having a brother helped me to understand an aspect of my own sisterhood and femininity that was distinct from what I learned about my sisterhood and femininity in my relationship with my sister. In all my family relationships, I had a sense that my mind, body, and soul were valued, and I thrived. When Harry Met Sally is the cultural icon of this mindset—Harry representing every man, and Sally every woman.

Our holistic personhood is not valued—friendship is merely a conduit to sex. Savvy Sallies may as well accept the facts and maximize on this outlook by using their sexual appeal to get what they want. Reduced to objects of physical pleasure and consumption, women become a commodity.

Decades before When Harry Met Sally came out, Sigmund Freud reduced all affection to erotic desire— to our genitals—meaning that every look, gesture, touch, and thought holds sexual motives. That sounds jarring and crude, but it is in our history, so we need to talk about it. These are genitally-oriented stages showcasing a male superiority, in which females go through an anxious stage of penis envy before reaching mature sexual identity. This view reduces friendship, whether it is same-sex or cross-sex, to role-playing for sexual gratification. We associate all intimacy with the bedroom, so we expect every meaningful interaction between a man and a woman to be laden with repressed sexual desire.

That means that all intellectual, creative, entertaining, or conversational enjoyment with someone of the other sex needs to be fulfilled by our spouses. As one person responded to me, saying and doing are two different things. Your body is a threat to me, and I must protect myself from you.

Of course, this is pitched as an act of protection for both parties. Men and women are reduced to a temptation and a danger to each other. Acts of friendship are all suspect; therefore it feels much safer for us all to keep them taboo. Viewing one another holistically means we will consider all our faculties that reflect the image of God—our minds, bodies, wills, emotions, and souls.

All these need to be rightly ordered toward God in communion with him, because they all matter. Having another lover would dishonor and diminish a marriage, but additional friends actually enhance the friendships that we already have. God has fashioned friendship in such a way that we can learn different facets about one friend from another see C.

Lewis, The Four Loves, For example, my elder Dave Myers has a shared interest with me in friendship between the sexes, since his roles as a Christian counselor and a church elder deal with relationships. We had many fruitful conversations on this topic as he read my manuscript and offered his insights.

Additionally, we look up to Dave and his wife, Dawn, for encouragement and advice in parenting, as all their kids are grown. I get to know more of Dave through other friends. While Scripture directs us to act in loving service toward all our siblings, we enjoy investing extra time with some of them, sharing joys, struggles, interests, and counsel more deeply.

Some we will hold as closer friends. And these closer sibling relationships should benefit our godly marriages, not the reverse. This is not only a warning for male-female relationships. Friends and siblings should never come in between a marriage unless abuse, addiction, or adultery calls for advocates to step in. This is especially true with male-female relationships.

I would never want another wife to feel threatened by my friendship with her husband. I would never want to step into their exclusive inner circle—not just physically, but emotionally as well. My aim for my brothers in Christ is that my friendship with them would encourage them to love their wives even more, and I expect the same from my brothers with whom I invest my own time in friendship. Friendship is not exclusive like marriage is, so there is no need to behave as if it were. Marriage is exclusive, and therefore we should care for it in that way.


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  • Exclusivity in a marriage relationship does not mean that our spouses will fulfill all our relationship needs. While Matt and I have a lot in common and enjoy doing many things together, there are areas in which we are not as compatible, and we are both happy that we have numerous other people in our lives, both single and married, with whom we can still grow and can share those separate interests.

    Or sometimes I need the kind of conversation that I can get only with another sister, as wonderful as my husband is to talk to. While my husband is the only one I look to for romantic affection, it is unfair of me to look to him alone to fulfill all my social, emotional, and intellectual needs. We need good friends. Matt and I share most of our friends in common. I am thankful that my sisters and brothers in Christ spur Matt on in his love for me— whether through razzing him, encouraging him, or praising him.

    They look at us not as singles but as two people joined together in the covenant of marriage. Likewise, we honor our marriage by speaking well of each other to our friends. We want to build each other up to our siblings, and our siblings reciprocate the respect we have for each other. Matt and I do a good bit of socializing in groups and sometimes double-dating. We also open our home to friends often. So our brothers and sisters are familiar with more than just whichever one of us they may feel closer to; they are familiar with our marriage dynamic as well.

    Friendship welcomes others into our circle who share our convictions. This is particularly special in the context of spiritual friendship, as Lewis points out, highlighting the joy of adding others into friendship while we all reflect Christ in different ways. Additional friends do not diminish our existing friendships.

    Rather, we get to know more of Christ through our various Christian friends. The Plus Factor. This was a popular prayer attributed to the first century rabbi, Eliezer, during the time after the Mishnah but before the Talmud. Instead, he will sacrificially employ those benefits and privileges to empower Ruth and to benefit Naomi. And the incredible faith of a Moabite woman works actively to fulfill the vow she made to her mother-in-law, against all odds.

    She challenges the letter of the law put in place to help widows like her and Naomi by making the bold request to glean in a more productive area among the harvesters Ruth How does Boaz respond? At mealtime that day, he does something amazing. James calls it the plus factor. He treats her as one of the best employees rather than a gleaner on welfare.

    Ruth was on the losing end of all three categories, but Boaz refuses to maintain those boundaries. Now they are embracing her. TGR, While we don't share the extreme reductive views of women as the patriarchs in Ruth's day, or the rabbi contemporaries of Jesus, this book of the Bible gives us a picture of manhood and womanhood that is radically different than we see in much of contemporary evangelical teaching.

    Boaz recognizes this and grows in response. In this scene, we see the plus factor at work. He serves her a meal, and instructs his workers not only to permit her to glean with the harvesters, but to leave extra stalks for Ruth to pick up. He commands them not to touch, rebuke, or embarrass Ruth , And he makes sure that his workers do the same. As a matter of fact, they gave The Gospel of Ruth a negative review , concluding that it was not good news after all.

    Complementarians may be challenged by the spirit of the law, and see where they have added to the letter of itthe minus factor. Praised be to God that he has created me his daughter in Christ. Praised be to God that he has placed me in his household among my brothers and sisters in Christ. That is quite a caricaturization! I am to be equated with a seductress sexual predator. And so is the idea of friendship. I know that Hutchinson is taking some poetic license here with the point he is trying to make, but I am flummoxed at the portrayal of this biblical account and the straw man that he sets up in which to warn others about my book.

    First, let me affirm that there are both male and female sexual predators out there, and that we are all to use discernment and wisdom in our relationships. Pushing back against the Pence Rule does not mean that we throw caution and common sense out the window. These are all reasons that would hinder any possibility of friendship. But we all know that is not what she was suggesting.

    This account found in Genesis 39 is not about friendship or men and women setting up boundaries. We see that God is with Joseph, even as he is sold into slavery. We see the divine providence of an aristocrat acquiring him, finding favor in him, and setting him over his household.

    We barely ever see a male described this way in Scripture. Women may lean in a little here because we know the tension of being described this way in the work place. It makes you a target in these kinds of stories. The reader is not thinking about the possibility of friendship here. And, Joseph could not just avoid her. He had to do his job. But he was in a situation where he had to endure the harassment. Joseph is virtuous even as she continues to harass him.

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    And when she finally gets him alone, as predators have a way of conniving, he shows integrity. This is like MeToo in reverse. Yes, men and women can both be sexual harassers and predators. But as we see in this account, usually the consequences are different. A similar situation ends differently for Bathsheba. Joseph seems to have a bit of bad juju when it comes to coats. But Joseph is stronger and he flees this attack, leaving his garment behind. This is when she cunningly works out the scheme to turn the tables on Joseph as the attacker. Yes, that does happen.

    And it is ungodly and very bad. His Ode on the Pence Rule contrasts my so-called voice with that of reason,. I do write against the prevalent evangelical morality of individualistic self-protection that places a purely negative responsibility in our relationship before God and with others. Joseph is anything but boring and self-protecting in this account. He exercised character and virtue, taking the hits to his reputation while trusting in the Lord.