Over the years, there has been rumors within private settings that Catholic Priests could be Gays considering the environment in which they operate both as a Deacon and once Ordained as a Priest. They take pride in living a celibacy life, signifying purity and holiness and I being a Catholic too and a staunch one, having been an altar boy, I relate more to these doctrines.
One thing I must say is, I never imagined I would ever meet a Gay Catholic Priest but I did, not one but two, the shock was real.
It was in early 2016, I received a Facebook inbox from Father James ( Not real name) "I greet you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" . I quickly went to the profile to check the timeline as being the norm with anyone within Facebook who receives a message from a stranger. I quickly noticed a few things like: He was a Priest, we had been FB friends for 3 years now. Never had he liked my photo or updates and vice versa and we had 347 mutual friends. To me this was not therefore a pseudo account so I gladly replied " Amen and receive more greetings from me and my family"
" Am Father ....... , from ......Parish. I am currently attending a seminar here in Kisumu for the next 2 weeks. Part of my assignment is to meet former Catholic altar Boys to get few insights. I understand you are in Kisumu unless you shifted? If so, I was requesting to meet you, any day of your choice and time for this discussion. "
This to me sounded noble and after a few chit chat, we exchanged numbers and settled to meet on Friday 2 PM that week at Kisumu Hotel. He asked if I needed a taxi but I told him I had a car so he sent me ksh 3000 through MPESA for fuel without requesting. I felt like refunding but convinced myself that sending money back to a Priest doesn't seem right.
On Friday, I arrived at Kisumu Hotel at 1:30pm precisely to sit somewhere I could see everyone who gets in without being noticed. I did this for my security purpose considering my kind of work ( LGBTI Activist where security is Paramount) and him being a stranger. At 1:55 pm, he drove in a Red Xtrail vehicle , parked and come out. They were two people. I noticed they are the ones because they were removing the white priest robs into nearly dressed black official clothes. Considering ,they were two as opposed to one, at the same time in Priest Robs ,I got more confidence. They went in, sat next to the pool and ordered for soft drinks. For 30 minutes, they seemed to be in a deep conversation before finally calling me on phone at 2:30 pm. I picked up and asked to join them in a few. When I walked out of the building I was in, they seemed shocked. " You mean you were here? I thought this is the only entrance? " asked James. " Nah, you can use this route too." I said, having thought of the lie already.
" OK, am father James who you have been in communication with, and this is Father Tim, a good friend of mine, Tim, meet Douglas, my Facebook friend and former altar boy" Father James.
" Pleasure meeting you Douglas, please have a sit." Father Tim.
Shaking hands, " Thank you gentlemen " I said.
As we sat, the waiter took my order and for a moment I realised some tension within the table, so I broke the silence. " Father James, what's this assignment about altar boys that you doing? Am actually curious to know how I can be of Help."
He started to explain and being a good body language expert having studied psychology at University Of Nairobi , I realised he was fumbling. I studied Tim too and I got the feeling that he was also trying to imagine " Like really, where is this whole explanation from"
From this I realised I had the power somehow to control this meeting. " How comes you dont have even a diary, notebook or even a write up! " I asked and that's when Father James started sweating and so Tim interjected, " No Douglas, can I call you Daggy? Its an insight we need from you to be able to develop some research paper"
" What Research? Who are you people? Am not a kid, I can already detect something ain't Right, if I don't see any proof of what you saying, am either going to scream or run away!" Trying to show authority I said.
" Please don't " Said James.
"Don't What? 1...2..." Douglas.
"OK OK OK, Douglas , we are Gay Priests, I know that is shocking , but we realised you work in Gay Organization and James here loves you, we not sure if you one but at least, one thing we know is you are friendly, please don't embarrass us. We come in good faith...Please, so if you not interested in this meeting, I think this the point , we pay the bill and walk away in harmony." Said Tim, breathing so fast.
My good People I was shocked, said nothing for a while. I then asked to be excused to go have time to think about that revelation and I would get back to them the next day.
" Fair enough." exclaimed James. I sipped my passion juice then walked away, confused more than I come, jumped into my car and drove off to the nearest Restaurant to grab a cold beer just to think straight again. " You mean we have Gay Catholic Priests?" That was my biggest question through out the night as I come to terms with reality.