Oscar Wilde, poet, playwright, gay icon and deathbed convert to Catholicism, has been paid a rare tribute by the Vatican. His aphorisms are quoted in a collection of maxims and witticisms for Christians that has been published by one of the Pope’s closest aides. [...]
Father Sapienza said that he wanted to “stimulate a reawakening in certain Catholic circles”. Christianity was intended to be a radical cure, not a humdrum remedy for the common cold: “Our role is to be a thorn in the flesh, to move people’s consciences and to tackle what today is the No 1 enemy of religion — indifference.” [...]
[Wilde] displayed a long fascination with Catholicism, once remarking: “I am not a Catholic — I am simply a violent Papist.” He was born in Dublin to a Protestant family but fell under the spell of Catholicism at Oxford. He even made a journey for an audience with the Pope, but declared: “To go over to Rome would be to sacrifice and give up my two great Gods: Money and Ambition.” The way for Wilde’s rehabilitation was paved six years ago by a Jesuit theologian, Father Antonio Spadaro. On the centenary of Wilde’s death, he raised eyebrows by praising the “understanding of God’s love” that had followed Wilde’s imprisonment in Reading.
-- "Vatican comes out of the closet and embraces Oscar", The Times, Jan. 5, 2007
B-b-but-but...aren't Catholics supposed to hate gays? Aren't Catholics supposed to be closed-minded and incurious and unappreciative of worldly wit? Hmmm. Maybe the nuanced-base community hasn't been leveling with me about Catholics, after all...