The September issue of Playboy features an article by an ex-Jesuit priest, Charles J. O’Byrne, on his tortured experience with the Catholic Church.

We took the occasion to comment to the press that “There’s nothing worse than an embittered Irish Catholic who is at war with the Church.” Indeed, we said, “O’Byrne is only the latest to join this losers’ club.” This explains why we dubbed him “a Bobblehead of an ex-priest” (the reference is to the bouncing-head miniature dolls made of famous persons).

In his article, O’Byrne made clear his hatred of the Church’s teachings on celibacy, contraception, fornication, homosexuality, etc. He even conjectured that Jesus, Joseph and Mary had sex. Regarding Jesus, he offered what he no doubt considered to be a particularly profound remark, commenting, “Jesus liked women and they liked him.”

Bobblehead also blamed Saint Augustine and Irish Catholicism for promoting sexual repression; he even said natural law was another force for sexual repression. If the next pope doesn’t get with it, he remarked, the U.S. church will break with Rome. Or so he wishes.

In our news release, we mentioned that there was an illustration accompanying the article that showed a man kneeling under the robes of a priest with his face at the priest’s genitals. “This provides more evidence that the piece is not a contribution to critical analysis,” we said, “but to hate speech.”

Our final observation dealt with the source of the article and with the author himself. “Playboy,” we opined, “is a rather curious choice of publications for an article like this. Moreover, the author has never published before and has no institutional affiliation. But what Playboy and Bobblehead have in common is a vested interest in maligning the Catholic Church. This is surely not a marriage made in heaven.”

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