09/28/13

Catholic Chaplains Won’t Bury Married Gay Soldiers

File under:  For the love of Jesus!

 

“No Catholic priest or deacon may be forced by any authority to witness or bless the union of couples of the same gender. No Catholic priest or deacon can be obliged to assist at a [marriage counseling retreat] if that gathering is also open to couples of the same gender…

“Participation in retirements, changes of command, and promotion ceremonies is possible, as long as the priest is not required to acknowledge or approve of a ‘spouse’ of the same gender.

“While the tradition of the Catholic Church always tries to find reasons to bury the dead, a priest may not be placed in a situation where his assistance at a funeral for a Catholic would give the impression that the Church approves of same sex ‘marital’ relationships.”

 

Renewed Fidelity in Favor of Evangelization

Archbishop Broglio has issued a steatement which provides guidance for Catholic chaplains and contract priests and deacons who may encounter ministry situations involving Catholic or non-Catholic parties in same gender “marital” relationships.  The full text for Archbishop Broglio’s statement Renewed Fidelity in Favor of Evangelization can be found below:

pope_Broglio“As members of the Church founded by Jesus Christ to meet the needs of the baptized and to proclaim that good news about the salvation given by Him, we are also aware of His clear teaching about the danger of scandal (Mt. 18:6). This world is a pilgrimage to life without end. At the conclusion of our walk through life we must stand before the Throne of Grace to give an accounting of our fidelity.

St. Paul reminds priests to be all things to all people (1Cor. 9:22). A clear disservice is rendered if the truth of the Gospel is confused by the actions of those ordained to disseminate that truth. The current situation makes it necessary to reiterate with clarity the teaching of the Catholic Church regarding homosexuality. However, it must never be forgotten that the human condition occasions many failings. St. Paul continually reminds us of that fact in his letters to the communities of believers.

Priests ordained to minister Word and Sacrament and endorsed to serve Catholics in the Armed Forces, the Veterans Administration Medical Centers, and those who serve the US Federal Government outside the borders of the United States of America know that theirs is a twenty-four-seven vocation. By speech, action, and example they witness to the truth revealed by the Lord in all that they do (see Eph. 4:14).

Recent changes in interpretations of the laws of the Federal Government oblige me to recall what is clearly held by the Catholic Church. At the same time I am grateful to the Congress of the United States for its passage of renewed conscience-protection language, specifically for chaplains in the Armed Forces.

Ministry

No Catholic priest or deacon may be forced by any authority to witness or bless the union of couples of the same gender. No Catholic priest or deacon can be obliged to assist at a “Strong Bonds” or other “Marriage Retreat”, if that gathering is also open to couples of the same gender. A priest who is asked to counsel non-Catholic parties in a same-gendered relationship will direct them to a chaplain who is able to assist. Catholic parties will, of course, be encouraged by the priest to strive to live by the teaching of the Gospel.

Participation in retirements, changes of command, and promotion ceremonies is possible, as long as the priest is not required to acknowledge or approve of a “spouse” of the same gender.

While the tradition of the Catholic Church always tries to find reasons to bury the dead, a priest may not be placed in a situation where his assistance at a funeral for a Catholic would give the impression that the Church approves of same sex “marital” relationships (see CIC, c. 1184, §1,3º). In the case of doubt, the Archbishop for the Military Services, USA must be consulted (see CIC, c. 1184, §2).

Lay Ministries

Obviously, anyone who is known to be in a sinful relationship is excluded from ministries in the Catholic community. While this list is not intended to cover every situation, lectors, extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion, altar servers, catechists, and members of the Catholic Council immediately come to mind.

Participation

We are also mindful of the Lord’s words, “Let the one among you who is guiltless be the first to throw a stone…” (Jn. 8:7b). The Church must minister to all regardless of their sexual inclination. While the invitation to conversion cannot be diluted, the door to the mercy of Christ, obtained through His Cross, must be kept open. Priests and deacons will be guided by the principles of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (cf. nos. 2358-2359) and never forget that it is the sin that is hated and never the sinner.

In the quest for continued fidelity to the truth of the Gospel, it must not be forgotten that estimates indicate that same-gender couples represent less than half of one percent of those in the Armed Forces. While every individual is important, such a small group cannot be allowed to mandate policy for all.

Guidance for Catholics in Command Positions

I am not unaware that the faithful entrusted to my pastoral care also include those Catholics who exercise command positions. They can be faced with additional questions as they fulfill their responsibilities to those above and below them in the chain of command. Consequently in response to a doubt raised by the AMS regarding the question of a person’s possible cooperation with evil, the National Catholic Bioethics Center (NCBC) stated:

“Commanders of United States military installations/veterans’ facilities (hereafter, ‘commanders’) would not be engaging in morally illicit cooperation, but rather tolerable remote mediate material cooperation with evil by implementing federal employee benefits accruing pursuant to same-sex marriage, as required by United States v. Windsor. Our determination is contingent on the situations in which commanders are unable to avoid such cooperation without jeopardizing their own just right to their employment security for themselves and/or their families. This is also contingent on the commander making known his/her objection to being required to so participate, as well as on attempting through legal channels to continue to accomplish changes in policy consistent with the historic understanding of marriage and family as based on natural moral law. Also, if without incurring a demotion of loss or downgrade of position/rank/grade or other serious harm, there is a mechanism to have others more senior in the chain of command to carry out the implementation of such policy, this should be pursued.”

Most Reverend Timothy P. Broglio
Archbishop for the Military Services

09/25/13

Melbourne Priest Greg Reynolds Defrocked And Excommunicated By The Vatican

File under:  Nice goin’ Francis!  You talk a good line, but when push comes to shove, you’re just like your predecessor.  SHAME!

By Anne Lu

Melbourne priest Greg Reynolds has not only been defrocked, but also excommunicated by the Catholic Church over his support for women priests and homosexuals. The order came directly from Vatican under the authority of Pope Francis, who just recently said that the Church focuses too much on gays and abortion.

Fr-Greg-ReynoldsMr Reynolds resigned as a parish priest in 2011, and has founded Inclusive Catholics in 2012. He said that although he was expecting to be laicised or defrocked for his views on ordination of women and homosexuality, he didn’t know he was to be excommunicated as well.

Excommunication is a form of medicinal penalty for members of the Catholic Church. Those who are excommunicated are barred from receiving the Eucharist and other Sacraments of the church.

“In times past excommunication was a huge thing, but today the hierarchy have lost such truth and respect,” he was quoted by The Age as saying.

“I’ve come to this position because I’ve followed my conscience on women’s ordination and gay marriage.

The order, written in Latin, came from Vatican through the authority of Pope Francis, and gave no reason for the former priest’s excommunication.

The letter was dated May 31, months before the Pope told his subjects to go easy on how they deal with gays, abortion, and contraception. Mr Reynolds continued to The Age that he wants the same thing as the Pope, adding that he believes that the Church is in need of reform and renewal.

“My motivation is trying to encourage reform and clear need for renewal in the church,” he said. “I still love the church and am committed to it, I’m just trying to bring about in my own little way to help highlight some of the failing and limitations.”

Melbourne Archbishop Denis Hart, who made headlines in May after appearing at a Victorian parliamentary inquiry into a child sex abuse case of another priest, apparently was not the one who requested the order, “but someone else unknown has gone over his head and contacted the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith,” Mr Reynolds said.

Archbishop Hart explained that Mr Reynolds was excommunicated because he continued to celebrate the Eucharist publicly after his priestly faculties were withdrawn. He was also preaching contrary to the teachings of the church.

As per its official Web site, Inclusive Catholics is an evolving movement/community in Melbourne that has recognises the hierarchical nature of the Catholic Church, but opposes its views on homosexuality and the ordination of women.

Mr Reynolds said that his being excommunicated would not make a different to his ministry.

He was offered $5000 as a payout for his 32 years of service in the church when he resigned, though he claimed he should have received $48,000 as the usual payout figure is about $1500 per year.

Complete Article HERE!

09/22/13

Catholic Priest, Caught With Pantless 15-Year-Old In Pennsylvania

A Pennsylvania priest has been charged with molesting a teenage boy after police allegedly found him in a car on a college campus with a 15-year-old who was wearing no pants, according to a police criminal complaint filed Friday in Lackawanna County.

JEFFREY-PAULISHFather W. Jeffrey Paulish was charged with one felony count of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and one felony count of unlawful contact with a minor after Dunmore police say they found him and the boy on Thursday in a car on the Worthington Scranton campus of Penn State University, according to the complaint.

Paulish, 56, of Scranton, was also charged with three misdemeanor counts — indecent contact with a person under 16, indecent exposure and corruption of a minor. He is being held at the Lackawanna County jail on $50,000 bail.

Dunmore police officers say they discovered Paulish and the boy after responding to a call of a suspicious vehicle, according to an arrest warrant affidavit filed with the court.

Allegedly Paulish told police he was at the campus working on his homily when he met the teen, who he said was in emotional distress, and began counseling him.

According to the affidavit, he later admitted to police that he had arranged the meeting with the teen through the “casual encounters” section of Craigslist. Paulish told investigators that he had asked the boy three times if he was over the age of 18, the affidavit said.

A telephone message left by CNN for Paulish’s attorney, Bernard J. Brown, was not immediately returned Friday.

Paulish has been removed from his post at the Prince of Peace parish and has been suspended from acting in the capacity of a priest, according to a statement released by the Diocese of Scranton.

The diocese pledged its cooperation with the investigation, and it called on anyone who “may have been sexually abused by Father Paulish or any member of the clergy” to notify the district attorney’s office.

“I wish to acknowledge how unsettling this is to me personally and to countless others, that yet again a priest has been involved in such inappropriate, immoral and illegal behavior,” the Bishop of Scranton, the Rev. Joseph Bambera, said in the statement.

Complete Article HERE!

09/19/13

In wide-ranging interview, Pope Francis sets vision for papacy

File under: Will wonders never cease…

By Elizabeth Tenety

In an extensive interview with Jesuit publications released Thursday, Pope Francis set the framework for his papacy, calling for reform of both the attitude and the structure of the church, and addressing head-on the criticism that he has not talked enough about abortion, homosexuality and contraception.

pope francisThe leader of the global Catholic Church chided what he saw as the tendency of some church leaders to focus on “small-minded rules” and instead insisted that “the church’s ministers must be merciful.” Francis said, “the people of God want pastors, not clergy acting like bureaucrats or government officials.”

Reflecting on the response to his comment ‘Who am I to judge?‘ on homosexuality, made during his return trip from World Youth Day in August, Francis elaborated, “Tell me: when God looks at a gay person, does he endorse the existence of this person with love, or reject and condemn this person? …. It is necessary to accompany them with mercy.”

The pope also addressed some of the controversial topics inside the church, including homosexuality, the role of women, his view of a need for reform and a tendency toward legalism.

On abortion, gay marriage and contraception:

“We cannot insist only on issues related to abortion, gay marriage and the use of contraceptive methods. This is not possible. I have not spoken much about these things, and I was reprimanded for that. But when we speak about these issues, we have to talk about them in a context. The teaching of the church, for that matter, is clear and I am a son of the church, but it is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time.

On women’s leadership:

“We must therefore investigate further the role of women in the church. We have to work harder to develop a profound theology of the woman. Only by making this step will it be possible to better reflect on their function within the church. The feminine genius is needed wherever we make important decisions. The challenge today is this: to think about the specific place of women also in those places where the authority of the church is exercised for various areas of the church.”

On doubt:

“Yes, in this quest to seek and find God in all things there is still an area of uncertainty. There must be. If a person says that he met God with total certainty and is not touched by a margin of uncertainty, then this is not good. For me, this is an important key. If one has the answers to all the questions—that is the proof that God is not with him.”

On legalism:

“If the Christian is a restorationist, a legalist, if he wants everything clear and safe, then he will find nothing. Tradition and memory of the past must help us to have the courage to open up new areas to God. Those who today always look for disciplinarian solutions, those who long for an exaggerated doctrinal ‘security,’ those who stubbornly try to recover a past that no longer exists­—they have a static and inward-directed view of things. In this way, faith becomes an ideology among other ideologies.”

On how he sees himself:

“Yes, perhaps I can say that I am a bit astute, that I can adapt to circumstances, but it is also true that I am a bit naïve. Yes, but the best summary, the one that comes more from the inside and I feel most true is this: I am a sinner whom the Lord has looked upon.”

Complete Article HERE!