The Boston Pilot, the nation's oldest Roman Catholic newspaper, has withdrawn and apologized for a column by Massachusetts attorney Daniel Avila, who also serves as Policy Advisor for Marriage and Family to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage, which suggested that homosexuality is caused by Satan interfering with 'typical' biological development.
Wrote Avila in the column:
“…the scientific evidence of how same-sex attraction most likely may be created provides a credible basis for a spiritual explanation that indicts the devil. Any time natural disasters occur, we as people of faith look back to Scripture’s account of those angels who rebelled and fell from grace. In their anger against God, these malcontents prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. They continue to do all they can to mar, distort and destroy God’s handiwork.
Therefore, whenever natural causes disturb otherwise typical biological development, leading to the personally unchosen beginnings of same-sex attraction, the ultimate responsibility, on a theological level, is and should be imputed to the evil one, not God.”
Said Avila, in a retraction: "The teaching of Sacred Scripture and of the Catechism of the Catholic Church make it clear that all persons are created in the image and likeness of God and have inviolable dignity. Likewise, the Church proclaims the sanctity of marriage as the permanent, faithful, fruitful union of one man and one woman. The Church opposes, as I do too, all unjust discrimination and the violence against persons that unjust discrimination inspires. I deeply apologize for the hurt and confusion that this column has caused."
Wrote the paper's editor: "In addition to echoing Mr. Avila's statement of regret, The Pilot also wishes to apologize for having failed to recognize the theological error in the column before publication."