Steve Grand, an openly gay country singer, who became an internet sensation after his YouTube video single for the song “American Boy,” which featured partial nudity and male on male kissing, went viral this summer. Steve Grand, who was baptized a Catholic, and has been singing in his local parish, was praised by his Illinois church pastor, as “a model Catholic.” Father Kurt Boras said: “I think he's changing our community, he's changing us…I've never seen this before. It's opened up conversations with me that are unbelievable, really,” he said. “A lot of folks have come to me and said, ‘I have a gay daughter, a gay son.’ This young man has really opened up some conversations that maybe I would never have had as a pastor and they're coming and saying, ‘Can we talk to you?’”
While I agree with the Father - that the conversation is good, I strongly disagree that Grand is a good role model. Of his experiences in the Church, Grand said: “Ten years ago, I was sitting in those same pews, and if I'd seen an openly gay musician leading the songs of worship in church, that could have really changed my life and saved me many years of feeling that I was somehow wrong.” Sadly, Grand has completely embraced his sexual dysfunction. He no longer fights against it, but has given in. It’s his identity. That’s reflected in the intentionally sad and melodramatic music video were he constantly drinks alcohol, pines over a straight friend, and looks tormented throughout. It’s an exercise in shame aimed at those who disagree. After outing himself at Mass, he received a note from a church-goer: “she no longer felt ashamed to be part of the greater Catholic church.” It worked. Blind acceptance as false egalitarianism.
Grande’s new music video “Stay” goes way beyond “All-American Boy” with more male on male kissing, men body-grinding each other, and Grand in bed shirtless with another man; one top of each other. Here is the gist of the song: “old mans out of town for a few days…” Therefore, he wants his lover to “stay;” hence the title. The song simply celebrates gay sex, fornication, and careless free-love relationships. This sightless acceptance of the gay lifestyle, as one long joyous beach-party, is also reflected in the numerous publicity shots, mostly near-naked, of Grand that are featured on the internet: Grande in bulging underwear pictures and pulling his pants down to reveal pubic hair. This is not a model Catholic, but just another lost young man who got hurt somewhere along the way, and gave into his woundedness. Father Boras: you should be helping this boy, not celebrating his destruction.
Note: I can not imagine the influence this man is having on the minds of impressionable young men and women in the Catholic Church who may be hurt, confused, and questioning their sexuality.