The Catholic Church puts forward to the laity the example of many many saints, in their different dimensions (charity, chastity, prayer, sacrifice, etc), as inspiration to our own lives and challenges.

Relatedly, the Catholic Church asks homosexuals to be celibate, so as not to commit sin contra natura (and, given the more recent sexual abuse scandals, partly involving homosexual priests, the Church is more vocal against those who see the religious life merely as an alternative to an active homosexual life).

Are there examples of openly homosexual Christians who have taken the suggestion of the Church and "successfully" lived a celibate and fruitful Christian life, examples that the Church has put forward to others to imitate?

It is common to get into trouble when defending the position of the Church, not the least because it is considered unreasonable by non-Catholics. Yet, the existence of examples could help to "defend" better such position, in my view.

PS: the stress on "examples that the Church has put forward" is important here. It is not enough that others beside the Church (e.g. the "LGBT lobby") state that a given saint was homosexual (here?). What matters is that the Church takes a stance on this. Hence the "according to the Catholic Church" qualification.

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    To be "openly homosexual" (to boast about one's temptations or vices) is a sin of pride. To be truly successful, one needs to conquer sin with grace.
    – Geremia
    Commented Jan 17, 2019 at 15:54
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    Also, there are myriads of examples of saints successfully conquering sins against purity, e.g., St. Benedict throwing himself in a thorny bush when tempted.
    – Geremia
    Commented Jan 17, 2019 at 15:58
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    @Geremia "To be "openly homosexual" (to boast about one's temptations or vices) is a sin of pride." 1) Your definition of openly homosexual is not mine (which is merely that of openly acknowledging to be gay). 2) Even if that is a sin (which I do not think and afaik the Church hasn't declared a sin), in your own words, a successful Christian is a person who conquers sin. I.e. is an invitation to sinners (e.g. someone that, in your view, might have declared to be gay publicly). Or are you perhaps suggesting that openly gay people are not open to the grace of God?
    – luchonacho
    Commented Jan 17, 2019 at 16:11
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    Why is this question downvoted? It is knowledgeable, builds upon church tradition, describes significance, and is well defined. Commented Jan 17, 2019 at 18:46
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    "Are there examples of openly homosexual Christians who have taken the suggestion of the Church and "successfully" lived a celibate and fruitful Christian life" The command (not 'suggestion') to be chaste doesn't apply only to homosexuals but to heterosexuals, and all humans. That you have homosexual desires specifically wouldn't mean you are exempt from living chastely. And even married people are expected to live chastely, observing the teaching of the Church that sexual intercourse (only capable between a man and a woman anyway) must always and in every case be open to life. Commented Jan 17, 2019 at 20:00

1 Answer 1


I'm sure there are tons of examples, but if you want one notable one, there's Andy Warhol, who the Catholic Herald did a write-up about a few years ago:

Religion kept Warhol from going over the brink. He attended Mass almost daily. Other days he would just slip into St Vincent Ferrer on Lexington Avenue, drop into the back pew and pray. He spent his Thanksgivings, Christmases and Easters volunteering at a soup kitchen, and befriended the homeless and poor whom he served. He put his nephew through seminary. Though openly gay, he endeavoured to remain celibate throughout his life. When he refused to support the gay rights movement, many of his friends blamed his faith.

He lived with his mother until she died, and every morning they would pray together in Old Slavonic before he left for the Factory. He always carried a rosary and a small missal in his pocket.

Lifesitenews occasionally publishes articles from people with homosexual desires who don't act on them. The whole point of chastity is to live according to your conscience, not follow your passions - it's how we were intended to live whether you're married, single - gay or straight.

“To love is to will the good of another.” All other affections have their source in this first movement of the human heart toward the good. Only the good can be loved. Passions “are evil if love is evil and good if it is good.”

CCC 1766

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