South African Cardinal Wilfrid Napier went out on a limb on social media last week in commenting on the importance of the controversial subject of reparative therapy.
The cardinal tweeted that he had begun reading “Reparative Therapy of Male Homosexuality: A New Clinical Approach,” and he called the work a “challenging book on a subject of great importance.”
The late Joseph Nicolosi (1947-2017), a psychologist and pioneer of reparative therapy, wrote the book that Cardinal Napier has been reading. Nicolosi passed away in March.
The book’s description reads:
“This book explores a reparative psychotherapy based on an understanding of the development of gender identity, offering to help the non-gay homosexual, that is, one who is unhappy with his sexual orientation.”
Reparative or conversion therapy assists people to resist acting upon, to minimize, or change their same-sex attractions.
The therapy is contentious among the LGBT movement and the left for its rejection of the premise that sexual attraction is immutable. Individuals and groups within the mental health field are divided politically as well on the issue. A number of U.S. states and at least one Canadian province have laws prohibiting the therapy.
He referenced “all three great pioneers of psychiatry … ,” then clarified, “The ‘the great pioneers’ mentioned above are Freud, Jung and Adler.”
Catholic Culture pointed out as well how Cardinal Napier has also expressed support on Twitter for Australian Cardinal George Pell and Bishop Thomas Paprocki of Springfield, Illinois.
Cardinal Pell, who has been working to clear up the Vatican’s finances, is known for his defense of orthodoxy in Church teaching. He is facing allegations of sex abuse in Australia in a case where details remain undisclosed and some speculate may be a political scapegoating of the cardinal, who vehemently denies the charges.
Bishop Paprocki has recently faced a liberal media dust-up over his reiteration of Catholic doctrine in regard to Catholics living in objectively sinful situations and reception of Holy Communion within his diocese
Cardinal Napier has also criticized the Supreme Court’s decisions legalizing abortion (Roe v. Wade) and same-sex “marriage” (Obergefell v. Hodges) on Twitter.
Cardinal Napier has been vocal in defense of the Church and her principles via his Twitter account in the past.
In January, the South African cardinal raised the issue of Communion for those living in “irregular situations,” suggesting that allowing Communion in these situations would put the Church in Africa in a difficult situation in its ongoing battle against polygamy.
“If Westerners in irregular situations can receive Communion, are we to tell our polygamists & other ‘misfits’ that they too are allowed?” Cardinal Napier tweeted at the time.
Last year in response to German Cardinal Reinhard Marx’s assertion that the Church must “apologize” to homosexuals, the cardinal tweeted,
“God help us! Next we’ll have to apologise for teaching that adultery is a sin! Political Correctness (PC) is today’s major heresy!”
Shortly thereafter, Cardinal Napier suggested on Twitter that an apology was more warranted toward black women in the United States due to disproportionate number of abortions performed on African-American women.
The cardinal queried on the social media platform, “Isn’t that also something we should be apologizing for?”