November 14, 2011
Daniel Avila

Daniel Avila

A policy adviser to the U.S. bishops has resigned following a controversy over an opinion piece he wrote suggesting that same-sex attraction could be the work of the devil.

Daniel Avila, policy adviser for marriage and family to the U.S. bishops' Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage since June 20, offered his resignation Nov. 4 and it was accepted, effective immediately.

Avila's opinion piece was published in the Oct. 28 edition of The Pilot, Boston's archdiocesan newspaper.

In it, Avila attempted to explain the cause of same-sex attraction.

He pointed to possible explanations such as "random imbalances in maternal hormone levels" which he said could have "disruptive prenatal effects on fetal development."

But he said Catholics need to look for spiritual answers to this question.

And as he sees it, "the ultimate responsibility, on a theological level, is and should be imputed to the evil one, not God," he said.