I guess I’m supposed to admire Dan Savage [September 3]. Like his friends, who are too sensible and modern enough to “believe in much of anything either,” he’s freed himself of the oppressive yoke of religion. He’s transformed the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost into Beer, the Cubs, and Family, and has rejected the impossible notion that the sacrament of baptism could be anything more than something that’s done to satisfy the demands of family and cultural tradition. Best of all, he’s bighearted enough to be “great about the Catholic thing” by insisting that his son receive the sacrament but worldly and witty enough to mock the church at every turn.
But as one who is critical of the Catholic Church’s stance on a number of issues, including homosexuality, I was surprised to find myself having a lot of sympathy for the church while reading Mr. Savage’s confused and self-serving account of his son’s baptism. I found it ironic that the only adult in the whole story who I found the least bit admirable was a representative of the very church that Savage seems to detest–a priest who made the bold and courageous move of disobeying his church while following the dictates of his God and his conscience by blessing the union of two gay men.