This is one of the finest pieces I have read by someone who lived gay and Catholic.
I am particularly interested in this sub-genre of gay writing as I grew up Catholic and had to address that + being gay. I’ll send a longer piece, if you like.
We approach the issue from different positions — I consider myself an atheist (in apostasy, I suppose). You remain with the Church.
I had few assets barring an intellect of dubious (monetizable) market value and the ability to pass as straight, a double-edged sword if ever there were one.
Towards the end of high school, I pondered and seriously explored Jesuit life. I rarely speak of that, as it would sound inexplicable and out of character with Today James eleven years on. It was part of a personal religious putsch to assuage a crippling sense of isolation.
I’ve paid such an enormous price for authenticity to be “out” that I wonder if the product was worth the cost.
I wandered the world, not unlike you. I searched for my own answer — social and vocational belonging, validation too. I have yet to find any of them.
If there’s a point to this, it’s a hard road, whatever your approach/path is.