Growing up in the Roman Catholic Church, I learned that celibacy was both a charism (a particular spiritual gift) and an act of heroic self-sacrifice made by priests on behalf of God’s Church. Growing older in the Episcopal Church, I increasingly hear people argue that God calls homosexuals–every single one of them–to lives of celibacy.
Are these positions compatible? Is lifelong celibacy for heterosexuals a rarely-issued invitation to acts of spiritual heroism, while lifelong celibacy for homosexuals the only alternative to damnation? If so, has anyone worked out a plausible theory on what God’s intention may have been in ordering creation in this fashion?