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Catholic Cardinal who mocked ‘faggot’ US ambassador retires without being punished

Nick Duffy July 5, 2016

A militantly anti-gay Cardinal who branded a gay diplomat a “faggot” has retired – though no Vatican official has publicly condemned his comments.

Cardinal Nicolas de Jesus Lopez Rodríguez, the head of the Catholic Church in the Dominican Republic, has made a string of hateful homophobic remarks about the US ambassador to the country, Wally Brewster.

He said of Brewster: “That man needs to go back to his embassy. Let him focus on housework, since he’s the wife to a man.”

Rodríguez also referred to Brewster as a ‘faggot’, claiming: “Diplomacy is not for that sort of thing, an absolutely negative propaganda”.

The Cardinal resigned this week, one day after Santo Domingo’s annual Pride celebration.

A statement from the Vatican announced Rodríguez’s resignation as an Archbishop after reaching the Church’s optional retirement age – but did not explicitly condemn his comments.

It says: “The Holy Father[Pope Francis] appointed Bishop Francisco Ozoria Acosta of San Pedro de Macorís, Dominican Republic, as metropolitan archbishop of the archdiocese of Santo Domingo (area 4,032, population 3,821,278, Catholics 3,490,035, priests 402, permanent deacons 159, religious ), Dominican Republic.

“He succeeds Cardinal archbishop Nicolás de Jesús López Rodríguez, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese upon reaching the age limit was accepted by the Holy Father.”

It is understood that Rodríguez will keep his title of Cardinal of the Dominican Republic, despite his resignation as an Archbishop.

A senior US Senator recently wrote to the Pope to urge him to publicly condemn the Cardinal.

Democratic Senator Dick Durbin, the party’s second-ranked official in the Senate, wrote: “Ambassador Brewster is gay and was married under the laws of the United States to his partner, Bob Satawake.

“Even before Ambassador Brewster’s arrival in Santo Domingo in 2013, Cardinal Rodriguez launched a personal attack against him with public statements quoted in the popular press.

“The Cardinal used the hateful slur ‘faggot’, which he continues to use to this day.

“In a recent interview Cardinal Rodriguez again described the Ambassador as a ‘faggot’ and falsely claimed the Ambassador was setting out to promote ‘faggotry’ in the Dominican Republic.

“The Cardinal described the Ambassador as a ‘wife’ who ‘should stick to housework’.”

He added: “Since your selection as Pope, you have shared a message of compassion, tolerance, and love.

“I remember distinctly when you spoke to us at the joint session of Congress in September and reminded us of our responsibility to ‘defend and preserve the dignity of your fellow citizens in the tireless and demanding pursuit of the common good’.

“I accept that challenge and I am calling on you to ask nothing less of the hierarchy of the Church.”

However, the Pope and the Vatican did not issue any such condemnation.

More: Americas, Catholic, Dominican Republic, leader, love, Pope, Pope Francis, Religion, US

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