Skip to comments.Archbishop Refuses Eucharist to Homosexual Activists
Posted on 05/20/2002 12:32:00 PM PDT by ninenot
Catholic Bishops Refuse Communion To Homosexual Activists
By Patrick Goodenough
CNSNews.com Pacific Rim Bureau Chief
May 20, 2002
Pacific Rim Bureau (CNSNews.com) - "God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve," the Roman Catholic bishop of Australia's largest city told his congregation Sunday morning, minutes after refusing to give communion to homosexual and lesbian activists.
"Homosexual acts are contrary to the natural law, they close the sexual act to the gift of life," Archbishop George Pell told Catholics gathered for Pentecost Sunday Mass at St. Mary's Cathedral in Sydney.
In an orchestrated move, 20 members of a group campaigning for the church to give full recognition to homosexual Catholics had earlier gone forward for communion, while another 12 did the same St. Patrick's Cathedral in another major city, Melbourne.
Each member of the Rainbow Sash Movement (RSM) wore a rainbow-colored sash over their clothing. In both churches they were denied communion, although in Melbourne, Archbishop Denis Hart did offer the sash-wearers a blessing.
Although the bids failed, a spokesman for the group said Monday they were heartened to hear that similar attempts made by RSM members in several cities in the U.S. Sunday had met with success.
In New York, Chicago, Minneapolis and Rochester, spokesman Michael Kelly said, homosexual and lesbian members wearing the sashes said they had received communion. RSM was formed in Australia, but now has chapters in a handful of U.S. cities, too.
Kelly, a former Franciscan seminarian, attributed the discrepancy to "confusion" in the church hierarchy about how to handle the issue of homosexuals.
Because some priests had knowingly given communion to homosexuals, while others had refused to, the organization was now considering "an appeal to Rome."
"Refusal to give communion is the second most serious sanction in church life, after excommunication. So it's a very rare and very important sanction that's been imposed on us."
Kelly, who was part of the Sydney group in Sunday's protest, said the group had donned their sashes during the introductory hymn, as a symbol of their desire to "embrace our sexuality as a sacred gift."
They then participated in the service as usual, but when they had approached the altar for communion, Pell had told them, "I can't help you."
The bishop had not offered them a blessing either. If he had done so, it would have been seen as a "token gesture," Kelly said, but nonetheless one that would have said to the group: "We don't completely reject you."
They then returned to their pews, where they stood "in silent protest" while other communicants returned to their places and knelt, as is traditional.
A short while later, Pell read out a prepared statement, he said.
In the statement, a copy of which was provided by the Archdiocese of Sydney Monday, Pell said he deeply regretted that people professing the Catholic faith would mount "an ideological demonstration" during Mass, and particularly at communion time.
Any Catholic who publicly defined himself as "supporting or practicing activities contrary to church teaching in a serious matter is not entitled to receive Holy Communion."
The same would apply to a married person living in adultery, he added.
Pell said church teaching on sexuality was "clear and unequivocal, and derives from natural moral law, which we believe is unchanging ... God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve, and important consequences follow from this."
Kelly said Monday he found the comment "childish" and "unhelpful," not something worthy of a major church leader.
He charged that the current child-sex abuse scandal in the church in the U.S. and elsewhere was the result of the church hierarchy's refusal to bring matters of sexuality out into the open.
The RSM would continue to campaign to be allowed to participate fully and openly in the life of the church, Kelly said. Homosexuals had been involved in the church for centuries, he added, but their participation had taken place under a "code of silence and invisibility."
Although Kelly said church leaders had ignored nine written appeals for dialogue over the past five years, Pell in his statement said he would "continue to dialogue privately and publicly with those who think differently" about church teaching on marriage and family.
He also said he would pray for the protestors.
"Although human weakness is universal and God's mercy infinite, the path to happiness and heaven for a Catholic does not lie in seeking to re-interpret what is right and wrong," the bishop said.
"Rather, one should commit oneself, in good faith, to the church and its teachings and work towards following these teachings as closely as possible."
Nothing is going to change until they acknowledge that the problem in the US is not just the pedophilia but is rooted in the homosexuality and the expression of this type of sexual urge. However, there are probably so many homosexuals in church leadership that they fear reprisals if the pot calls the kettle black.
But the act of wearing a special gay-activist sash while receiving communion is, ipso facto, an act of defiance of the Church and an insult to Christ. Also, as the old Anglican Book of Common Prayer used to warn, like the Tridentine Mass, anyone who receives Communion unworthily is "eating and drinking damnation unto himself."
It's the same principle as St. Patrick's Day parades. No one is going to stop homosexuals from marching with everyone else, as long as they don't call attention to themselves with political statements or special costumes.
But it is good to see somebody willing to stand up and do something. Perhaps it will give others hope and become a movement to take back the Chruch from the evil that has infiltrated it.
These folks are going to have to take their complaints to GOD, the Author of Life. It's not a Roman Catholic Church decision.
And so the participating priests are absolved of responsibility? The "church hierarchy"? As if no divine guidence were at hand.
And you know this because you talked to Jesus
when he popped out of your toaster this morning,
From the official Diocese of Cleveland Website - Its Gay and Lesbain Logo:
Note, for example, the claimed 'success' in Rochester, Chicago, NYC...
I am not Catholic, I am Lutheran. I go to take communion with a heart for change fully intending to live more Christ like and to go in sin no more. I do fail many times, but I go in with a heart for change. Those rainbow sashers go in direct defiance of God...they don't even have the humility to have shame in thier sin and instead parade it as a badge of honor at the Lord's table. It's really pitiful. May God forgive them.
On O'Reilly Factor tonight, a professor of theology, Rev. Richard McBrien, criticized Rome....said that the Vatican was biased against the US, then went on to say that there was nothing wrong with homosexuality....if, he qualified, it was between two concenting adults. ??????Where do they teach this lie?
The worst thing is there are many catholics,who haven't a clue and even worse they continue to blather on thinking that they know what they are talking about.And the final straw is that others think they do. Its like a scene from a nightmare only its the real thing. And,the Church just reflects the way things are right now in this country and in the world. God save us,please!!!!
He did not say that. He did criticize Rome for saying that the current crisis is an American crisis, and that there is a certain anti-Americanism in the Vatican. Frankly, that's true.
But, he said that homosexuality is an orientation that, in itself, is not sinful. Homosexual acts are sinful. That is consistent with Catholic theology.
You were "already listening" that he would say what you thought he said, so you didn't actually hear what he said.
He said, I wrote it down, "there is nothing wrong with homosexuality"..
This is a true statement, as it applies to orientation.
McBrien can be slimy at times, but he wasn't slimy tonight.
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