Pastor who declined gay marriage petition gets standing ovation

Earlier, I posted about parishes in Seattle that were declining to take part in the petition drive against same sex marriage.

Now, some reaction from the pews:

The congregation at Seattle’s Our Lady of the Lake Catholic Church gave the Rev.. Tim Clark a standing ovation Sunday when he announced that the parish would not gather signatures for a referendum to repeal same-sex marriage.

The parish became the sixth in Seattle to opt out of the petition drive for Referendum 74 that has been endorsed and foisted on parishes by Archbishop J. Peter Sartain.

“I am happy to report that Our Lady of the Lake parish-oners have been overwhelmingly and, thus far, unanimously supportive of the decision I made NOT to gather signatures in support of this Referendum,” Clark wrote in response to an e-mail.

“The standing ovation experienced during one of the Masses says less about me and much more about the health of this parish.  I only wished the archbishop could have experienced the sustained applause — the ‘sensus fidelium’ — of the people.  He needs to listen to this ‘voice.’ That is my prayer.”

Other parishes to shun the signature drive have includes St. James Cathedral, St. Joseph Church, St. Mary’s Church, St. Patrick Church and Christ Our Hope Catholic Church.

In several parishes, pastors have said that gathering signatures against marriage equality would, in the words of the Rev. Michael Ryan of St. James Cathedral, “prove hurtful and seriously divisive in our community.”

Archbishop Sartain, in a letter that Clark will place in his parish bulletin next week, asked the Catholic faithful in Western Washington to support Referendum 74.

Opponents of marriage equality need to gather 120,577 valid voter signatures by June 6 to block the state’s new same-sex marriage law from taking effect and put the issue on November’s ballot.

The archbishop said that all persons “should be treated with respect, sensitivity and love,” but reiterated church teachings on sexuality that are eschewed by many American Catholics.

“It is important to remember that all Christians are called to chastity, and sexual intercourse is so intimate and significant that it is intended only for a man and woman in marriage,” said the letter, cosigned by Archbishop Sartain and Auxiliary Bishop Eusebio Elizondo.

“When I first read the archbishop’s letter I was troubled by the content and his intentions,” Clark wrote.  “In conscience, I could not allow signatures to be gathered, to allow the faith to be politicized in this way.

“What troubles me is the message this whole approach sends which I find discriminatory and insensitive.  To follow through with his wishes would be hurtful, divisive and a countersign to what we are trying to foster in this Catholic community in Wedgwood.

“I deeply believe, and say this with boldness, that this approach is not in the mind of Christ.”

Read the rest.

Meantime, you can read the archbishop’s letter on Referendum 74, which will be inserted in parish bulletins, at this link.


  1. Catholic Dad says:

    I would be interested to read the archbishop’s letter that the local clergy believes to be “politicized.” If a particular parish reiterated and reinforced church teachings but simply declined to take part in political advocacy, that’s something I could at least understand. But that does not appear to be what is happening.

    If the local clergy is saying that simply announcing and defending the Church’s teachings on marriage – a sacrament, as I recall – is in itself a political act, then they have abdicated their role as Catholic pastoral leaders.

  2. Mark Greta says:

    Seems like as blatant disobedience to the Bishop’s authority as you can get. Will be interesting to see the next moves. I also find the comment that the Bishop is “politicizing” the faith to be very offensive to the Bishop. If this is not dealt with, then the authority of this Bishop and also the other three that backed this move in Washington state is gone.

  3. That’s what it’s about – applause, approbation, popularity!

    Amazing. Pray for the Archbishop – and those priests and pastoral ministers who are running a cafeteria and shepherd by applause-o-meter….

  4. Deacon Greg Kandra says:

    To be clear: the bishop left it up to individual parishes to decide whether they wanted to circulate the petition or not. He suggested that they could, but he did not order them to do it.

    In that sense, strictly speaking, these parishes are not committing “blatant disobedience.”

    Dcn. G.

  5. vox borealis says:

    The standing ovation experienced during one of the Masses says less about me and much more about the health of this parish.


  6. MarkGreta — The bishops lost their authority over the majority of even practicing Catholics quite a few years ago. And collectively they seem to be doing very little to regain it.

    And what they are doing could result in smaller but doctrinally purer congregations, which might be actually be the goal of a certain segment of the Catholic population.

    I say this not to bash the Church, but to simply state a fact and a thought.

  7. pagansister says:

    It seems that the individual parishes have minds of their own—and also apparently the Archbishop didn’t order any of them to gather signatures. If they weren’t ordered, is that disobedience? Happy to see that some Catholics are coming around to reality when it comes to those of the same gender wanting to marry. No one says the Catholic Church has to marry same gender couples. but it seems several parishes don’t find it right to have it denied to those who wish it.

  8. Good luck with that position pagan…and good luck to those parishes. God is pretty crystal clear on whether our faith is to be private and personal or …….public and evangelical.

    These parishes and the priests are schismatic…and the bishop made an error on the technicality as giving the parishes a loop hole that they took only makes him look weak.

    Problem to solve number one….a sexual compulsion is not a “personal identity” until that is taught you will have open heretics communing in parishes…….I will quote Dennis miller rants, ” on homosexuals”….”hey Rudolph….forget your nose and why don’t you join the rest of us(sinners)in our reindeer games)……deny yourself and pick up your cross

    [I wouldn't be so quick to throw around words like "schismatic." A parish declining to circulate a petition asking to repeal a law -- which, the archbishop made clear, was within its rights -- does not make one schismatic. It's not even disobedient or heretical. Dcn. G.]

  9. Paul Stokell says:

    Opponents of marriage equality need to gather 120,577 valid voter signatures by June 6 to block the state’s new same-sex marriage law from taking effect and put the issue on November’s ballot.

    “Marriage equality.” That’s journalism in Seattle, folks.

  10. Deacon Jim says:

    My guess is that this “priest” Tim Clark would have been yelling “give us Barabbas” with the people … because, after all, he would not want to be seen as divisive.

    Get a clue, “Father Clark” … you are cura animarum and you are failing in your responsibility!!!

  11. Barbara P says:

    It is not clear whether the people who stood up were applauding in support of same sex marriage or whether they were applauding the courage of this Pastor who saw this as injecting divisive politics into his parish. It seems to me the Pastor is listening to the sense of the faithful In his parish that they do not want politics to divide them in God’s house. They can sign petitions at the local shopping center. This is where they come to pray and worship God.

  12. Joanne K McPortland says:

    Deacon Greg is right. Not disobedient, not heretical, not even failing in responsibility. The pastor is printing the bishop’s letter in the parish bulletin, which he was requested to do. He is not standing up in the pulpit saying vote against the referendum. He is exercising his role of shepherding the souls in his care and making the choice he was rightly granted to make. Each of his adult parishioners eligible to vote also has the right to exercise that choice in the privacy of conscience. People who make different choices than you would, even when they get standing ovations, are not by nature heretics.

    That said, the article is typically inflammatory. A bishop’s requesting something of his clergy is not “foisting” something on them. Catholic teaching is Catholic teaching, no matter how many Catholics “eschew” it. Etc. But that’s not news.

  13. Marriage=one man, one woman, is not politics. It has to do with morality, which definitely falls within the Church’s realm.

  14. Deacon, with respect, i will surrender to your point but I will add that at its’ surface it is a mere technicality and in my life experience where this is smoke there is fire…plus I still maintain the point that by giving the parishes a knothole to squeeze through their very public media cooperation and public statements appear to be used to not only weaken and embarrass the bishop’s authority which is clearly in support of the measure but also imply their heretical views on the matter…and why do they not keep this in the family? Why no discretion? Why so public about it? ..the poition of the bishop makes sense because it upholds catholic Christian values held for thousands of years that were revealed by God? Right? This is what we believe is it not?

  15. Oh how courageous of these priests. Soak in that applause while you can. It’s funny but my parish is lead by a priest who is homosexual but who prays for a constitutional amendment every Sunday that marriage be between a man and woman. He has no agenda other than obedience to God and the Church.

  16. Wait, are those felt banners I see in the knave? I feel like I’m in a church in the northeast about 25 years ago.

  17. I can understand the pastor declining the petition. I may not agree with it, but I understand. I do not understand the congregation giving an ovation. That is distasteful, wrong, and turning their shoulder against Catholic teaching. Are these people even Catholics? Perhaps they should go over to the Episcopal Church, whatever is left of it.

  18. If a bishop is making statements to his followers about his church’s position on marriage, that’s morality. If he starts commanding people to sign and circulate petitions or donate to PACs or candidates, that’s politics. Past a certain point, that’s not within the Church’s realm, unless they want to give up their cushy tax exemptions and play by the rules all other lobbyists or partisan interests must follow.

  19. Dieter from sprockets says,

    “Your story has become tiresome…” sorry I couldn’t help myself, Joanne every day I am asked to see every possible thing I come upon , every spoon, shoe, child, position, idea, paper, everything as nuanced, special, different, or ” not as they appear to be”… For the most part i try to do these things i am constantly asked to do for the joy of pure mental aerobics…..funny thing though is that in order to analyze something there must be a standard to compare it to….THE STANDARD is the church and her reveled doctrines and the bible she interprets………a priest told me one time, Do you really think that God wants his children to be confused about who he is, about who we are, and what He wants out of us? God’s love is expressed through relatavism and chaos, is that how god loves his children? I would love to be a fly on the mind’s wall of a person who takes a heretical and sinful position and than when it’s publicly pointed out the peron cries! “Binding personal conscience! My personal conscience is Bound!”….indeed that minds eye perspective would be the most interesting piece of thoughtful compassionate analysis I have been ordered to do yet…. I wonder what I would really find if i was given that view when one retreats to this now classic defensive catholic heterodox chess move……entitled personal binding conscience….

  20. Yup the entire Parish by the mass, (no pun intended) were applauding the more nuanced position of the “injecting politics” position, rather than the more crude, uncouth, and barbaric posiion of direct support for gay marriage…..see in Seattle people are so nuanced, thoughtful and highbrow in their spirituality.

  21. There’s a couple of components to that ovation. One, about three-quarters of U.S. Catholics do not agree with the bishop’s on gay marriage. Polls say 43 % favor gay marriage, and another 31% or so favor civil unions. People will quibble about whether that is due to poor formation, brainwashing by the media or popular culture, what have you, but the fact remains these people are out there. In the eyes of most of them, the bishops have zero moral authority to dictate matters of conscience on sexual matters, largely because of the abuse scandal. On a technical basis, one can argue that one has nothing to do with the other because the authority of a bishop’s office does not derive from his personal credibility. That ain’t how things work in the real world, of course. The Church needs to make a real decision what it wants to do with these folks. They could, of course, create a real excommunication process, one which expels members rather than simply trying to shame them or scare them into repentance. The current strategy is to “play the float”. The bishops want to minimize and marginalize this majority, but on the other hand they sure don’t want to part with the money they bring in or the clout they have from being able to claim 67 million people. Church conservatives talk a big game about a leaner and purer church, but I don’t think the hierarchy is really prepared to run a church a fifth or a quarter of its current size. I think the bishops would be quite alarmed if all these folks did in fact go over to the Episcopals.
    The other component to all this is that some of those people cheering do in fact agree with the Church’s position on gay marriage. I guarantee some of them have or will help with the petitions. At the same time, Americans have some deep misgivings about pastors using the pulpit for politics. People are especially disgusted with the conflation of the culture war with religion. It is the single largest reason that “none” is becoming the fasted growing demographic in the country.

  22. naturgesetz says:

    Priests get standing ovations when they tell the people what they want to hear. Whether that is what the need to hear is another question.

  23. But is sounds like the parish doesn’t support the Catholic teaching. SO why should a parish be involved in issues on abortion or any other moral issues…..would there be a standing ovation?

  24. and why did they feel the need to applaud….maybe they should get so enthused about the MASS :)

  25. Irish Spectre says:

    Um, Joanne, did you happen to read this priest’s quote “I deeply believe, and say this with boldness, that this approach is not in the mind of Christ.”

    You think that it’s not profoundly disrespectful, not therefore failing in responsibility, for this arrogant coward, who knows the mind of Our Lord so much better than does his boss, to publicly throw him under the bus like this??

    I hope that you recover soon from your illness; lest that medical marijuana that you’ve apparently been smoking continue to play havoc with your ability to reason.

  26. But see, this one word is what bugs me most in this discussion. “…faithful…”. They are not faithful, nor is one who publicly embraces moral position in opposition to the Church “Catholic”. They are Protesters of the Catholic Faith, thus, Protestant. So go, find a Church that fits your feeling of the moment instead of trying to tear down this one.

  27. Joe Mc. Faul says:

    There was a post awhile ago about a priest that gave fiery political sermon and got a rousing ovation. It was inappropriate for the same reason that any announcement about signature drives was.

    Message to pastors: If you get applause in Church, you’re probably doing it wrong.

  28. Kenneth,

    The single reason they select “none” is because their religion is really secularism and like alcoholism it’s hard to kick it. Yes, They will leave anyways or their children will, it doesn’t matter how liberal heterodox their parish becomes…their gone. When Barney the dinosaur has better homilies and the kids understand that reruns of the partridge family have better musical choices than the weepy, dreary piano at the front of the church and a new hip up to date version of taste and see starts getting bel out…..they will just disappear……none of it has anything to do with negotiating with the times…..that is what’s killing it

  29. Catherine says:

    I think there are plenty of people who just do not like being asked to sign political petitions in church. My parish once distributed post cards at Mass, and asked us to fill them out before we left. The cards asked our state legislators to pass tuition tax credits. I did not fill one out, because I fear that tuition tax credits would give the state an opening to control Catholic schools. That didn’t make me an opponent of Catholic education (I pay four Catholic school tuitions). I would add that the petitions in the State of Washington are being distributed by a secular organization, not by the Church. It is a bit much to talk of a parish being in schism simply because they have opted out of a secular political activity.

  30. “I think there are plenty of people who just do not like being asked to sign political petitions in church.”
    I agree; I’m one of them.

  31. It’s bad enough that some of the Pastors declined to support getting signatures for the referendum; but parishioners giving the pastor a standing ovation demonstrates a lack of understanding of Catholic teaching. As Catholics, we are called to actively participate in the political process. Those that declined to get involved are misguided in their understanding of compassion. We have an obligation as Catholics to defend the common good. “Caving in” because it might be hurtful to someone is not compassion. Compassion is telling the truth on what the Church teaches and then defending it. Cardinal Dolan and Archbishop Chaput, to name two, know full well what it means to be politically involved and expect nothing less from “the flock”.

  32. “In the eyes of most of them, the bishops have zero moral authority to dictate matters of conscience on sexual matters”

    Nonsense. Just the opposite. Most church going Catholics do not think they have zero moral authority. And most Catholics do not support gay marriage. Your whole argument is built on a twiddle sticks.

  33. It’s easy to be brave and courageous when you swim with the current and the politically correct and approved stance of the world.

  34. It is the Church’s “compassionate” insistence in not only telling some people that they are intrinsically disordered but being actively engaged in preventing the same people from achieving civil equality that makes me an ex-Catholic. You may say good riddance Mary, but I count myself lucky to be free of such an institution.

  35. Ronald King says:

    Catholic teaching applies to Catholics. Christ showed us how to love others through the beatitudes and His Cross. Christ’s message was not political, it was transformational. Cardinal Dolan and Archbishop Chaput may know political strategies very well but it is the spiritual message of Christ which gets lost and twisted in the materialistic worldly strategies being used to gain worldly power in an attempt to have power over those who do not believe what the Church teaches. This referendum does not express wisdom, it expresses a desire for power and control in the earthly kingdom of the U.S. Meanwhile, suffering and death of innocent victims all over the world continue while there is passionate outcry against same sex marriage. There is something terribly wrong with this reality.

  36. Irish Spectre says:

    No, Mr. King, actually, Catholic teaching on matters of faith and morals, within which the perversion of gay “marriage” squarely resides, applies to all people. The Founder of Catholicism came for everyone; that not everyone has been introduced to and/or subscribes to the Truth is beside the point.

    I’m sorry for everyone who doesn’t see that the continuing destruction of society’s cellular structure, traditional families, is an urgent matter about which the Church has both the right and the duty to pontificate. How it does so is a matter of judgment, but trust that in this matter, the Church is most definitely a defender of the culture.

  37. Agree

  38. I ahve the utmost repsect for Archbishop Sartain as he used to be Bishop of my diocese before he was made arch bishop. I would have stood up and walked out. For those who think the Archbishop is politicizing this, I think the priest did far more to politicize it.
    I would have stood up and walked out.
    The sense of the faithful is not determined by one parish. People need to stop tossing words around so carelessly.

  39. Richard M. Sawicki says:

    As it says in 2 Timothy 4:3

    “For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.”

    Too often THIS is what is meant by those who twist around the term “Sensus Fidelium”.

    Gaudete in Domino Semper!

  40. oldestof9 says:

    “No one says the Catholic Church has to marry same gender couples.”

    Not yet……..

    I don’t personally know you BUT I know that I love you because you are a child of God, endowed with the same dignity that He gave every one of His other children. But when you and your partner can, through the power of that same God who loves us more than we could ever love Him, concieve and birth a human baby, then you can get married.
    At this point, I am going to try my best to explain that my comments are NOT meant to “slap” anyone or give them cause to feel that I have wronged them in any way, shape, or form. I truely made the above statement with (hopefully) a Christlike understanding of the love our gay brothers and sisters have for their partners.

    Peace to all

  41. Some people are clearly sitting.

  42. Richard M. Sawicki says:


    No to wear out the point, but once again:

    “For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear”. – 2 Timothy 4:3

    Gaudete in Domino Semper!

  43. I find it intriguing that so many commenters are making the same judgment – the people at Mass and Father are rejecting Catholic teaching. And all of you know this because you don’t agree with what the article reported. The Bishop gave the parishes the authority not to elect to have the petitions signed after Mass. Electing to engage in a political activity in NO way demonstrates lack of adherence to Catholic teaching. The applause may have been more to let Father know that his congregation recognized he made a tough decision and they are showing their support of his decision, not that they do not adhere to Catholic teaching. It is these sorts of judgments, in what was presented as a choice, that make it easy for the media to be so dismissive of the Catholic Church.

  44. Richard M. Sawicki says:

    Uh, yeah, well……

    Except for the fact that the Archdiocese of Seattle is a well-known hotbed of organized dissent against the Magisterium.

    I think to suggest that they were applauding a “difficult decision” by the pastor, you’re seeing what you want to see.

    For cryin’ out loud…this is the See of infamous former Archbishop Hunthausen, as well as the Cathedral rector who was so vocally opposed to the issuance of the new translation of the Missal (“What if we just said…WAIT!”)

    Additionally, several of the parishes who made public statements on the issue (including Christ Our Hope [a pity that that word, "hope" {one of the Cardinal virtues} is so often invoked by dissidents who are 'hoping' the Church will abandon Her moral teaching]) made it clear that they were doing so as demonstrations of solidarity with those whom they consider as being persecuted by attempts to oppose the redefinition of marriage by legislative/judicial fiat.

    Make no mistake about it. If it were simply a case of a pastor declining to participate then 1. he wouldn’t have gone to the trouble of making a dramatic announcement during Mass, and 2. even if he did, the reaction would have been muted or non-existent IF the assembled parishioners were faithful, orthodox Catholics who uphold Her moral teachings. This was a calculated move to draw out the approbation of the assembled. They demonstrated that they are “socially with-it”-types who have drunk the Kool-Aid of modern moral relativism, and will now undoubtedly become the “favorite Catholics” of the Seattle Times and the local Call to Action chapter.

    St. Athanasius, ora pro nobis!

    Gaudete in Domino Semper!

  45. Ronald King says:

    His Love came for everyone. Traditional families suffered long before this became an issue. It is materialism and a lack of love which eats away at the family. It is easy to use a minority group you oppose as a scapegoat for the sins we heterosexuals have committed which have directly harmed families from the beginning of time. History is crystal clear on that.

  46. If Seattle is a hotbed of dissent, then they put the right man in the chair. Archbishop Sartain is the man for the job. IMHO, he is not one who could be lumped in with the Bishops who have done nothing during this scandal. He is a good man and his orthodoxy is solid. I have no doubts he will move the arch diocese in the right direction.

  47. I am not a mindreader so I do not know the mind of the individuals involved, but as far as know none of are mindreaders. I find it offensive when we ascribe beliefs to people actions when we do not know their intent. As far “i am seeing what I want to see” you are equally as guilty – “he wouldn’t have gone to the trouble…” they demonstrated they are “socially-with-it” types… is looking at people through your own lens. As far as what other parishes did I don’t have any information on their behaviors or beliefs.
    Responding is a way that you do not care for or agree with does not put them out of communion with the Catholic Church. My message deals more with making judgments in general, using this event as an example.

  48. deacon john m. bresnahan says:

    What we are seeing now is the massive pro homosexual media brainwashing coming to fruition to the point Catholics let the secular culture shape their consciences and applaud in church –as St. Paul put it–having their ears tickled.

  49. Mike

    I am intrinsically disordered on a number of fronts….whats your beef? You think the church is full of saints do you? You just flunked Christianity 101…F…..the course has been taught for 2000 years. It is the easiest course in the curriculum. The question now is, “Who is to blame for this massive failure of understanding of wide swaths of people and than what is to be done about it?”

  50. Philip Steinacker says:

    Kenneth, your comments are a gross distortion both of history and reality. If morality as taught by the bishop’s Church is NOT practiced and applied by his flock in the real world (where politics and all other realities actually exist) then that “morality” is reduced to a meaningless shell of itself. Morality not taught and practiced is no morality at all.

    Whether you like it or not, laws against homosexuality (since thrown out by a progressive, pagan SCOTUS) and same-sex marriage are based in Christian morality, as are all just laws. It is homosexual activists who have politicized a moral question, not the Church. We are just exercising our First Amendment rights of free speech to respond by this attempt to change the moral order to a secular one.

    Your statement is a deliberate attempt to shut down our ecclesial leadership by obfuscating reality. However, Church rightly refuses to bow down before this attempt to impose a dictatorship of self-indulgence upon our right and duty to stand up and oppose same-sex marriage. We as Catholics have every right to be proactive in the public sphere to fight this and every evil.

    In your foolishness you ignore history, once again. You speak – as do many ignorant progressives – as if the link between restrictions on so-called political activity and tax-exemption for churches is solidly rooted in the U.S. Constitution and cannot be changed (repealed, actually). From the earliest days that interpretation never existed except in the fevered mind of an obstreperous atheist. The law you reference also did not exist until the mid-1950s and mandated churches refrain from political activity such as endorsing a candidate or party from the pulpit, advertising for a candidate or party, or taking up a collection for same.

    However, there never has been a restriction against preaching on issues of good and evil – and certainly none on preaching against evil as understood and taught by the church. In recent years militant anti-Catholic progressives and their political allies have sought to expand the old prohibitions to include preaching against favored and protected behaviors once illegal (in the case of same-sex marriage, it still is – mostly).

    It was Lyndon Johnson who, as a U.S. Senator (D, Texas) introduced and shepherded to signing into law a bill which for the first time imposed that link on churches. He did this not in the fervor of constitutional purity (since the Founders had neglected to agree with his view over 150 years earlier) but in response to continuous criticism from the pulpit from Baptist churches in Texas attacking his track record in political office. Johnson got all the votes he heeded to rid him and his fellow politicians of those pesky churches who would not keep quiet about how his own activities violated their understanding of morality, and they used the same nonsensical pretext you repeated here to get away with it.

    However, the Founders understood the unfettered practice of religion meant the public square of ideas must always permit the expression of religious moral views (incidentally, protected by the First Amendment, in case this has escaped your notice). It is those like yourself and Lyndon Johnson who seek to shut down voices you’d rather not hear and to prevent any such influence to make itself felt in ways which could prevent the self-gratification you clearly endorse.

    Since just before the Obama administration the groundwork has been laid to challenge and overturn this oppression of the right to full participation in the public square by churches across the land. Each year an increasing number (1,000 plus in October 2011) of Christian pastors over many denominations have openly defied this law by publicly notifying the IRS in advance of scheduled homilies in which so-called “political” issues are preached from the perspective of Christian, moral teaching. The IRS is invited to do something about it – and eagerly so.

    In response to anticipated legal action by the IRS, the plan has been to initiate a legal journey to the SCOTUS for the eventual overturn of this unconstitutional law once the IRS enforces Johnson’s bad law. Guess what? Since 33 pastors began this effort in 2008 the cowards at the IRS and their masters in the Obama administration refuse to take the bait, so fat chance you’ll see it enforced either way. They know it cannot survive judicial scrutiny, and they’re stuck between a rock and a hard place.

    So, go peddle your nonsense elsewhere; Catholics are waking up. You’d do well to heed the prescient words of Admiral Yamamoto after his Pearl Harbor victory.

  51. Richard M. Sawicki says:

    No, not exactly. I am not claiming to be a mind reader. I am merely explaining the difference between the two possible choices of action available to the pastor in question.

    It is not a case of seeing what I want to see when I suggest that an ordained priest, properly disposed toward the exercise of his priestly office, would conduct himself in one way, whereas another, demonstrably disposed toward the catering to the zeitgeist, would behave another. (Read the quotes — his own words indict him — not anything I’ve said).

    If he is filled with zeal for the salvation of souls, he would not detract the sacred liturgy to present an opportunity for a large demonstration of spiritual pride.

    There is no gray area in comparing pride versus humility.

    We are entering a very interesting period now, as the Holy father is thankfully revitalizing the American hierarchy with real bishops who are unafraid to exercise their Christ-commissioned threefold Apostolic duty to teach, govern, and sanctify.

    Gaudete in Domino Semper!

  52. pagansister says:

    FYI, oldestof9, I’ve been married for 47 years to my “partner” & husband for 47 years and we have 2 children and a grandchild. I appreciate that you say you love me as a child of God. You’re comments were not disrespectful of anyone, IMO. I have no malice toward or dislike of folks who don’t feel same gender couples should marry. However, I happen to feel that if 2 consenting adults wish to marry, it makes no difference what gender combination they are. The fact that 2 consenting adults of the same gender live together/marry doesn’t affect my heterosexual life one bit. It is totally their business. The 2 female couples I know are just regular people—they work, they eat, they sleep and they love each other, they happen to be married to a person of the same gender. As I said before, no church of any denomination should be required to marry same gender couples if it goes against their beliefs. However, some denominations do so—again their choice. No news that marriage doesn’t have to be conducted in a religious setting either.

  53. These judgments arise from partisan elements within the Church who are trying to conflate their political agenda with Church doctrine. In their eyes, being faithful to the church’s doctrine on marriage means jumping on their bandwagon. You’re a good Catholic if THEY feel you’ve demonstrated enough zeal and stridency in the service of their political cause. In their world, the GOP (and only it’s purest social conservative wing), is Christ’s sole agency in this world, and you either take your spiritual marching orders from them, or you’re out of line. Even the authority of bishops and popes is conditioned on their perceived loyalty to this “doctrine.”
    People cheered at this pastor’s decision because they are seeing through this hideous con game. It’s like in the Wizard of Oz when the dog pulls back the curtain. Culture War “spirituality” is just men pretending to speak in the voice of God, and people are seeing it for what it is.

  54. Ronald you would be correct that heterosexual promiscuity opened Pandora’s Box for all this, and those of us who have sinned in this area need to repent….however its not done emptying out yet…..My suggestion to you is to go visit an official site on the Pscyhology of Human Sexuality and observe the numerous and now categorized groups on sexual compulsions there are…its menu is larger than Baskin Robbins…..your classification of a “Minority” (Minority being used by you in the secular whoaaa is them secular connotation) is in actuality a small contingent in a Majority of Minorities of sexual compulsions/disorders. The difference is God says….In these matters you get to Y in the context of Z…thats it…everything else is a pesky fly that you should swat out of your mind and when you fail, come see me, I will forgive.

    It is wrong, theologically unsound and I would argue a “Sin” to ascribe “Sexual Compulsions” with a personal positive identity as a created human being. The Church better start delineating and teaching this concept fast. We are NOT our sexual compulsions, this is NOT who we are. This is why you hear in Catholic Circles not…”Homosexual, Gay, Lesbian Etc” but rather “Same Sex Attraction”. This point of differentiation is incredibly important.

  55. pagansister says:

    Kevin, if your priest is homosexual, then he has chosen a life path that says he can’t marry! His political view not with standing, if he was heterosexual he still has chosen a path that says he can’t marry.

  56. Andy,

    I am a Mind Reader……… and my Mind is telling me you are splitting hairs to engage in subterfuge to insert doubt in people’s mind for what is a very obvious and crystal clear issue. The idea that that these parishes applauded the technicality of the decision rather than applaud the fact that they disagree (Heresy) with the Catholic Church on Same Sex Marriage is a ridiculous assertion to hide behind. It is like questioning when I put my pants on in the morning…whether they REEEALLLLLYYY are these so-called things called “pants”…or maybe they are “stitched-cloth two hole golf club cozies”… It could go either way…because we can’t really know without careful observation in a vaccum in a lab lets not draw conclusions…so therefore don’t judge the situation. Honestly I could not get out of my house in the morning if I had to committ to the level of mental sophistry being performed here……

  57. Kenneth,
    I would like to pretend that these people are really that enlightened but I do live in the real world…..what world do you live in? The lollipop world of Tenured University Land?

  58. Pagan,
    The culture is the Church’s business. You would be wrong to believe that the apparent innocence of using government to literally change the meaning of marriage…something even the decadent Romans identified as a union of a man and woman despite rampant homosexuality….has no consequences. Pagan I wish you well but you are not thinking critically about this issue and the Church has for 2000 years…

  59. Mike – The Bible is very clear about homosexual behavior being disordered. The Catholic Church is the custodian of the truth. If you disagree, then you disagree with what God has to say.

    Marriage is not about achieving civil equality. Marriage is distinct because it is NOT just about a couple being “in love” and wanting that love validated. Marriage is much more than that. It is also procreative. Homosexuals cannot procreate. If we say that marriage is a civil right for anyone who is “in love” where does this end? The fact is, it does not. Marriage must remain distinct between a man and a woman because that it is the natural order of things….the natural law.

  60. Mr. King – Jesus was very clearly when He said, “If you love me, you follow my commandments. If you do not then you make yourself a liar.” I once heard a priest say that Jesus is not Barney. This is so true. If you read the parables it’s very clear that Jesus invites the sinner to repentance. When he told the woman at the well the man she was living with was not her husband and she had other husbands before him He made clear he was inviting her to change. People seem to conveniently “forget” that Jesus is merciful but He is also just. He forgives but there was also be a response from us to SIN NO MORE as He tells us. When we follow Him we don’t decide for ourselves what is moral or not. We look to God for that

  61. I would agree with you that he should not have announced it in any fashion at mass. I find that troubling. I am concerned about ascribing beliefs to people that is all.

  62. Tyler
    I am not engaging a subterfuge, I am asking how dare you or anyone else judge why a person responds; how dare you or anyone else judge what is in a person mind or soul or heart. You judged me and failed so please don’t give up your day job and start to work in the carnival as a mentalist.
    As far as engagement in mental sophistry, I would suggest look in the mirror. In no way did I doubt the teaching of the church, nor have I created doubt. I am speaking to judgmental actions, not based on knowledge of what people feel. For you to determine a priori the reasons for applause is equally as faulty of what you accuse me of.

  63. I am married and my spouse and I had and still have no intention of having children. The state says I’m legally married and I couldn’t give a damn whether you or your God think I’m ‘violating’ the purpose of marriage. Keep your peculiar religious restrictions on marriage to members of your church.

  64. Reality check. What proof is there that this photo was taken at that moment and not during the Gospel or Creed, when everyone should be standing?

  65. Deacon Greg Kandra says:


    It’s a photo I pulled from the parish website, to show the church and the people. It may or may not show the standing ovation.

    The fact that many people appear to be standing is, I think, a coincidence.

    Dcn. G.

  66. Any particular reason you’re hanging around here, Mike?

  67. It is ridiculous to suggest that the government will possibly require same sex marriages. Simply a scare tactic, having nothing at all to do with reality, or any of the other so-called “religious freedom” agenda of the US Bishops. Catholic marriage is a sacrament of the church with a required rite. Can you refer to any example of any government in the world scripting a particular rite and sacrament of the Catholic Church, let alone the US government? I bet you are a dues-paying ,card-carrying member of the birther movement too !

  68. You make it sound like life is a fearful and treachous path where the blind Catholic needs the hierarchical illuminatti to lead every baby step. God has endowed all of us with brains, and in case you have not read any, Church history is replete with horrendous errors of the Church, many corrected over time. However, each correction takes a great many brave souls to voice their ideas also. In many instances, these voices have been inspired by the Holy Spirit.

  69. oldestof9 says:

    Not ridiculous, Drake. I work with government regs every day in a Catholic hospital. If the government is giving you something, they want something in return i.e. you do what they tell you to do, or they take away whatever they are giving you.
    More and more “pandora’s boxes are being opened every day…..and I’m an optimist.
    Birther movement?????????


  70. Mary – I agree catholic teaching is very clear about this. Where is the bible clear about this though? From what I have read and understand Jesus is very open and accepting of everyone. He is very anti being judgmental or thinking of yourself as better. Even going so far as to say some people are born gay and that is ok I have not spent enough time going through every passage though to my detriment. I am more curious than anything where it is spelled out in the bible.
    Thanks so much,

  71. Drake you missed my point…using government to change the meaning of marriage will have an affect on the culture-at-large. The Catholic Church believes it will be a negative one…we get to vote anyway we want and want informs are vote is our business. To your point about Government forcing the Catholic Church etc etc…never happen etc etc. Where have you been the last few months……….Mars? HHS Mandate?

  72. John,

    The Ten Commandments see subjection “Adultery”


  73. Andy

    How dare I? By observation is how dare I. The smoking gun are these parishes very public statements and cooperation with the local media. Was that necessary? Of course not, engaging the media, denotes a greater agenda. The priest could have just said no in some back-office administrative function and never brought it up in mass. The only plausible outcome for the P.R Campaign is that the Bishop ends up looking bad. Why make the Bishop look bad? How does that help things?

    Andy in my world I am responsible for the investments by my shareholders, the execution of a business to the market and the take home pay for my employees families. Every day I have to make decisions & yes….Dahhh Dahhhh Dahhhhhhhh “JUDGMENTS” based on observations and data….and “Educated Guesses”. If I don’t…things break…..I don’t know, perhaps I am hell bound for this particular educated guess… however I would argue that God gave me “Reasoning Faculties” for a purpose and I am allowed to use them. I do not need a referee like yourself to tell me how, when, where and if I am using them correctly…. I am mostly immune to the knee jerk reactions about rattling the “Fine Sensibilities” of liberal or for that matter conservative people’s “Offensive, How-dare-I, Meters”.

    This is pretty cut and dry. I would lay 10 to 1 odds that their reasoning for their “Very Public Denial” is because their parishioners are open to same sex marriage more than they are open to taking a stand on the validity of petitions, regardless of their political purpose or context. If you want to get scientific on it…one should research the parishes in question to determine if they have signed petitions that were overtly political in causes of a more “liberal persuasion”. If found…and I bet you would find some. Than the logical question needs to be asked, “Why didn’t Father so-and-so turn that down?”

  74. Deacon Greg Kandra says:

    Well, here’s one petition that members of the parish signed last year.

    Dcn. G.

  75. Holly in Nebraska says:

    I almost got up and walked out of that church about 10 years ago. I moved to the area and it was the closest. During the first mass I attended, I almost walked out while the sister was giving the homily. I told myself, give them another shot in case it was an anomaly. Next week I was sure it wasn’t. I never went back, but drove past that church to go to another (which was better, but not much). I don’t know if the same people are there, but what I saw was a priest whose behavior I found to be odd (maybe he was just different, but he gave me the creeps) and a sister who was acting almost like a deacon–she wore an alb (but no stole), she walked up the aisle next to the priest, kissed the altar with him, and she gave the homily. She didn’t approach the altar during the consecration at least. I don’t like church shopping but it was too much for me. I wasn’t surprised when I saw that church’s name attached to this incident. It makes me sad more than anything else.

  76. Deacon Greg: The picture is pulled from our closed circuit feed of the Sunday morning mass as it is just beginning. The Book of the Gospels is still on the altar. I’m the deacon standing next to Father Tim. Contact me if you want the whole story here. Most of your readers’ comments are pretty hurtful and mean spirited. It’s sad really.

    Deacon Roy

  77. John, here are the passages.

    Leviticus 18:22
    “Do not practice homosexuality, having sex with another man as with a woman. It is a detestable sin.”

    1 Kings 14:24
    And there were also male cult prostitutes in the land. They did according to all the abominations of the nations that the LORD drove out before the people of Israel.

    Romans 1:18-32
    That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved.

    1 Corinthians 6:9-11
    Don’t you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don’t fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality, or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or are abusive, or cheat people-none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God. Some of you were once like that. But you were cleansed; you were made holy; you were made right with God by calling on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

    1 Timothy 1:8-10
    Now we know that the law is good, if one uses it lawfully, understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers, the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine .

  78. Mike, did it ever occur to you that your views on marriage are peculiar? Just because you have no intention of having children now doesn’t mean you are incapable of procreating (I’m assuming you are a heterosexual couple). I’m speaking about the Natural Law which is not unique to Catholicism. It is unnatural for two men or two women to be married.

  79. pagansister says:

    MaryW. It may fall in the Church’s realm, and those who choose to follow what the Catholic church teaches. Everyone isn’t Catholic.

  80. In that sense, strictly speaking, these parishes are not committing “blatant disobedience.”

    typical deacon greg kandra

  81. pagansister says:

    Mary: Marriage is so much more that just for procreation! Holy Cow! Many, many couples do not have any intention of having children (some Catholics too, I imagine) and IMO they aren’t breaking any “rules.” Making love is for pleasure and also, if a couple wishes, procreating.

  82. Luna, many members of my family who I care about and respect are still Catholic. I find the Deacon’s blog a great resource for keep up with issues in the Church. For their sake I hold out hope that the Church can still be the place for them to find spiritual peace, even if I’ve personally found that its active efforts to prevent gay couples from being married is irreconcilable with the notion of a loving God.

    Mary, why would you assume that because we are a heterosexual couple that we are capable of procreating? Would knowing help you decide whether my marriage is valid?

  83. Drake,

    On this issue obviously yes…the people need baby step guidance…because a large amount of Catholics apparently think changing the institution and meaning of marriage as It has been defined throughout all of the entire world history of human civilization across all cultures is………deal…yup count me in that the annnnciiiiennnt church In all it’s Wisdom needs to provide a little sock puppet instruction to all the kiddies here

  84. Pagansister – I never said that marriage was just for procreation. What I said is that homosexuals cannot procreate and procreation is part of marriage. Homosexuals cannot procreate.

    Mike R – When did I say your marriage is invalid?

  85. I recently stood for quite a long time at Mass because there were no kneelers. Aargh! It is next to impossible to find the Tabernacle in many Catholic churches so fewer people genuflect anymore before entering the pew. Is it any wonder that lay Catholics are confused?

  86. pagansister says:

    Tyler: The word “marriage”, IMO, shouldn’t be considered exclusive to religion. I wasn’t around in the time of those “decadent” Romans so I really don’t care how they identified the word. As for the Church thinking about the issue for 2000 years? Again, that still doesn’t mean to me that it is an exclusively religious word. The fact that marriages can be conducted by those who have no connection with any religion—a judge, a notary, a justice of the peace— means that while many may chose to have a ceremony conducted by a priest, rabbi, minister etc., they are just as married in a secular ceremony. The gender combination of those couples should make no difference. The culture may be the Church’s business, but not when it interferes with the equal rights of other lives—those who happen to be homosexuals who want to be married—an equal rights issue, IMO, just like that of the civil right’s movement. That too was very controversial at the time. Inter- racial marriage was considered wrong too, for far too long. And I repeat, the Church doesn’t have to marry same gender couples, but IMO again, it shouldn’t attempt to make it wrong for this country to continue to make it illegal. Many states have already allowed it and as far as I can see—they haven’t fallen off the face of the earth. Life seems to have continued as normal. Sorry if this isn’t critical enough. :o)

  87. pagansister says:

    Oh, Tyler, one other thing, and I know I’m beating a dead horse here, but it never seems to go away, but as to culture and how it is the Church’s business: There is yet another article here on the Bench about the, to put it mildly, misconduct of yet more priests. The Church should perhaps concentrate more on continuing to clean house, than worry about whether same gender couples should marry or not.

  88. The most overt passage that is bone chilling to me is that Sodomy is one of only four sins that explicitly cries out to heaven for vengeance….the others being murder, Oppression of widows and orphans, and cheating laborers of their due.

    “Then the Lord said, “Because the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is great and their sin is very grave, I will go down to see whether they have done altogether according to the outcry which has come to me.” (Gn 18:20-21) The inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah were guilty of homosexual activity. So far gone were they in this vice that the men of the town would not even accept heterosexual license with Lot’s daughters, both virgins, as a means of sating their lust (see 19:8-9).”

  89. Mary, didn’t you call into question the validity of my marriage when you said that marriage is procreative?

  90. pagansister says:

    oldestof9: If I’m correct, Tyler was referring to a group of people who think President Obama wasn’t actually born in the United States. I may be totally wrong, and if I am, I will be told, I’m sure. Those folks want proof that he was actually born in this country, and even his birth certificate being released didn’t convince some of them. As I’m sure you know, a person not born in the USA can’t be president.

  91. pagansister says:

    Huge correction: I mistakenly referred to Tyler in the above 6:17 PM, 18 April response to oldestof9, and the reference should have been to Drake. Sorry Tyler.

  92. pagansister says:

    Mary: Is it me, or is it harder to reply under the person’s name one wishes to reply to? I found your response to my reply to you above the place where you replied to me! ANYHOW: I did misinterpret what you said about marriage, however not all marriages also include procreation, intentionally, by the heterosexual couple. So just because a same gender couple cannot biologically (between them) procreate, doesn’t mean that they should be denied marriage rights. Obviously there are ways for same gender couples to have children—but that is another topic altogether.

  93. Ronald King says:

    I am not talking about promiscuity, Tyler. I am talking about violence on physical, emotional and spiritual levels. I know about sexual compulsions. I also know about other compulsions for violence and control over other human beings. It is violence and the hatred and fear which fuel that violence which victimizes the perpetrator as well as the object of that violence and all of us. To focus on sexual expression of love as an evil is extremely superficial and a an act of violence.

  94. Ronald King says:

    With all due respect, Tyler, you are not an expert in the psychology and neurobiology of human development and interpersonal relationships. You are an expert in the market and have opinions about human behavior. I would come to you for your knowledge of the market. I would not seek your guidance for understanding and healing the pain in human relationships.

  95. It is sad, those who give up their faith for some small pitiable self-aggrandizement under the guise of ‘civil rights’. While many nations are forced to continue banning blood and organ donations from those admitting same sex sexual contact due to the number of deaths caused by it – to both participants and the innocent, which is in line with the historical record of the behavior — these short-sighted few prefer to see the smile on the alcoholic’s face as they pass him another drink rather than fix the problem. While those caught up in the lifestyle deserve the same compassion as anyone struggling, there is a clear foolishness in encouraging people to potentially deadly behaviors, and to pretend that refusing to participating in banning gay ‘marriage’ isn’t both a condoning and implied encouragement of the behavior is simply outrageous bald-faced disingenuous lying.

  96. Ronald King says:

    Mary, It seems that you have not addressed His direct teachings in the Beatitudes and His direct teaching from the Cross. By the way, He did not condemn the woman at the well. Love God and love your neighbor as yourself seem to be the whole law. The problem is that when we love our neighbor as ourselves we tend to judge them just as harshly as we do ourselves and then end up hurting them as we do ourselves because we fall woefully short loving as God intends us to love. So everytime we do not love as God wants us to love then we make ourselves liars when we state that we love God. Justice requires that we are able to put ourselves in the position of the one we are judging and to listen to what has brought him to this place in his life. We are required to hear what is in the heart of the other and the pain that only he and God know. If we are loving as Jesus loves we will take the time to compassionately listen to those who differ from us. True justice creates healing and salvation, it does not inflict violence on others with our angry and prejudicial feelings and beliefs.

  97. Ronald,

    How many ways do you want to skin this cat? On the issue of Homosexuality, specifically “Acts”….Rome has spoken the case is closed…what more do you want? These sexual expressions of love you talk about are expressly forbidden multiple times in the bible and as I reference somewhere else in this forum….chillingly so… a particular homosexual act is one of only four sins that quote Cries to heaven for……vengeance. I didn’t write the rules…but they are their in the natural law and have been revealed to us by the prophets & aposles, the church and of course Jesus… I will make you a deal…I won’t try to get the church to bless and positivly affirm any of my personal compulsions…nor will I try to get secular society to bless them or defend them….if you do the same….

  98. Ronald,

    Have compassion on me…I suffer from Jermiah syndrome a bit,

    “Whenever I speak, I must cry out,
    violence and outrage I proclaim;
    The word of the LORD has brought me
    reproach and derision all day long.

    I say I will not mention him,
    I will no longer speak in his name.
    But then it is as if fire is burning in my heart,
    imprisoned in my bones;
    I grow weary holding back,
    I cannot!”

  99. Mark Greta says:

    Deacon, can you link to anything that shows the Bishops left it up to the parish priests to decide for themselves?

    What I saw is the bishops described the issue as “critically important” and said information on the signature drive is being sent to pastors throughout the Western Washington diocese. In their letter, the bishops specifically deny that refusing marriage to same-sex couples equates to discrimination — an argument made by Gov. Christine Gregoire, a Catholic, in arguing for marriage equality.

    “Treating different things differently is not unjust discrimination,” the bishops claim. “Marriage can only be between a man and a woman because of its unique ends, purpose and place in society. The word ‘marriage’ isn’t simply a label that can be attached to different types of relationships.

    “Instead ‘marriage’ reflects a deep reality — the reality of the unique, fruitful, lifelong union that is only possible between a man and a woman. There is nothing else like it, and it can’t be defined or made into something that it isn’t.”

    I see nothing that says handle this whatever way you want, but that getting this gravely disordered mess stopped with full support of the petition move being very important.

    I will be waiting for the link, but it appears to me to be “blatant disobedience.”

    I note that all the headlines talk about revolt of parishes and priests and open dissent. If it was optional, why couldn’t the parish simply have said nothing and igored it. Seems like you are arguing for the spirit of obedience which allows open dissent.

  100. Mark Greta says:

    They have lost some authority because they have allowed actions like this from the priests. They are indeed on the move to regain this authority and if some leave who do not believe in or follow church teaching, then nothing has been lost.

  101. Mark Greta says:

    will look for the link to “A parish declining to circulate a petition asking to repeal a law — which, the archbishop made clear, was within its rights”.

    If true, why would they have to do anything but do nothing. Why the open statement of dissent from the bishop? Why are all the stories on this talking about the parishes lining up against the Bishop, in dissent, and in revolt?

  102. Mark Greta says:

    What the standing ovation shows is the they have been poorly educated in Catholic teaching. Suspect like the Nuns above who are in open dissent on Catholic teaching, I think a new solid JPII priest needs to get into this parish fast. I note that the Vatican assigned this same Bishop to oversee the Nuns above to get that mess cleaned up so they must have confidence in this Bishop to clean up open dissent. Will be interesting to see how he handles these parish priests and the nest of open dissenters they have in various positions in the parish. This nail is in bad need of a hammer.

  103. Mark Greta says:

    I suspect this parish would have applauded many other areas of open dissent.

    Protecting the family is a non negotiable position clearly laid out by the Church and again by both Pope JPII and Benedict XVI. Marriage is between one man and one woman. It has been thrust into the religious domain by a runaway government and judges who are pushing their perversions as part of the godless secular religion and foolish Catholics are selling their souls to protect the perverted godless democratic party.

  104. Mark Greta says:

    Joanne K McPortland
    “He is exercising his role of shepherding the souls in his care and making the choice he was rightly granted to make.”

    He does not have the choice to disobey the Bishop. If I print something and then do not obey it, I cannot claim I obeyed by printing but doing the opposite. This sounds like the arugument one might get from a six year old. Please show me where he was “rightly granted” to dissent and disobedience. Did he take a vow to obey the bishop?

    It seems to me that some screaming about bringing the SSPX into the church without a total agreement to the authority of the Catholic Church are arguing for the ability of any priest to disobey the authority directly over them they have vowed to obey. Call it what you want, but please send along where the bishop gave each parish the option to not only ignore it, but to refuse to allow anyone in the parish to collect signatures on parish property.

  105. Mark Greta says:

    If the government is passing a law that is gravely evil, if the Church does not speak out to try to stop it, they will be accused later of not doing enough to stop grave evil. The reason the founders put religious liberty first in the bill of rights was becasue they knew that the religious leaders in the country were essential to be able to speak out without constraint to protect the government from going off track morally. Why else would they prohibit government from doing anything to infringe on religious liberty and prohibit government from creating their own religion as they have with this secular godless state religion they are promoting? The government needed to have a free and vibrant and outspoken religious foundation.

  106. Mark Greta says:

    pagan, the church has the right and obligation to stand up for moral issues that the government is getting wrong. They have the right in the first amendment. We have the right to speak out on all issues as does the perverted. Then we vote. If it is something like abortion, then the perverts who want abortion can get a constitutional amendment passed to change the laws of the land. If the bigots want to say that the Church no longer has religious liberty and the government can created a godless secular state religion and force it on everyone, get an amendment to the constitution. The reason that people across the country are pushing back is because the constitution is being violated by courts and government hacks who should be defending it as written. If the founders wanted judges to legislate, they would have given them the power. They did not because it puts power in the hands of lifetime appointed unelected judges, especially when they invent words not there or take amendments for specific purposes and distort them for other desired impact.

  107. Mark Greta says:

    If he has chosen to be a Catholic priest, he needs to obey his vow of obedience and to the teaching of the Catholic Church. If he has issues of obedience, he should set up a meeting with the bishop to discuss them for clarification, and then obey or leave the priesthood. The Church has clearly stated that anyone who has serious issues with same sex attraction should be evaluated before they are allowed into the seminary and that they have control over this weakness and that they will agree with the Church teaching. The same should be true of priests already ordained. Who would hire a shepherd for their flock who does not support bringing the flock home to the desired destination, but decides to lead a few of them to hell with his dissent.

  108. Mark Greta says:

    It does not matter what they decide to believe if they are Catholics on non negotiable issues. That is what so many Catholics can’t seem to get their hands around. There are places where Catholics are allowed to disagree and form their conscience while taking the Chuch position into account. Abortion we have to agree. Birth control we have to agree. marriage only between one man and one woman. Only men can be priests.
    None of these are negotiable nor will they ever change.

    we can disagree how the method to help the poor, we can disagree on war and what is a just war, we can disagree on the death penalty, we can disagree on immigration versus illegal immigration. None of these are magesterial teacing. I make sure I listen to the Church on what they are teaching and pray that my conscience when well formed will lead me to obey, but if I end up in a different place than the church after this process, it is OK. priests who vow obedience to their bishop when ordained have a special requirement for that obedience, even in areas that are negotiable if the bishop tells them what they are supposed to do.

  109. Mark Greta says:

    wide road to hell paved with parishes applauding a priest in open dissent. Shame on the priest. He is leading his parish away from the Church founded by Christ. He is saying he should have been given the keys, not the Pope and Magesterium. What arrogance.

  110. Mark Greta says:

    massive difference. One was in agreement with the entire USCCB and done with the support of those bishops and in agreement with Church teaching. This one was done by a dissenting priest being inobedient to his bishops clear message that the bishop had labeled as very important and against non negotiable Catholic teaching. Joe, if you can’t see that difference, something is clearly lost in bias.

    Having said that, I would prefer to have no applause because the Church in unity does what the Church teaches and Catholics support all of Her non negotaible teaching and gives strong consideration to other teaching to form our conscience.

  111. Mark Greta says:

    It does not have to be done in Church. This type of thing is usually handled in the parking lot before and after mass. It can be talked about in church in line with non negotiable church teaching and religious liberty and the people can be requested to support this teaching for the good of the essential family culture in America of one man and one woman as parents. All they have to do is read what the Pope has said about marriage and that government is trying to thrust perversion on everyone and the petition is needed to at least give people the right to say no.

  112. Mark Greta says:

    Mike, you are shutting God out of your marriage. If Mary had said no to the angel, we would not have had a Savior. I think it is sad when people in marraige so no to God and being open to life. You might find that God chooses not to grant you a child since it is his right to create all life. I have couples we work with trying hard to have children and unable and now turning their love toward other children born without loving parents. Saying no is simply a form of selfishness and probably leads to other areas where you cannot find a way to surrender to God. In the end, that will be up to each of us to answer for. But you seem to be turning this selfish attitude into saying the Church has no right to teach those who want to be part of Christ Church and that is also very wrong. When Christ gave the keys of the kingdom to Peter and his successors and gave the priests the right to forgive or retain sins, it does not extend out to ourselves. I suspect you might also have a problem with the sacrament of reconcilliation with God. Denying the right of the Church to teach is not acceptable and against the very core of the rights we have in the Constitution.

  113. Mark Greta says:

    John, the Catholic Church goes on both the Bible and Tradition. We are not sola scriptura and never will be. We are Christian and more. For 1500 years before the printing press, the Catholic Church taught all Christians for all Christians were Catholic. The Catholic Church kept and maintained the Bible for all these 1500 years (of course the old testament predated Christ by about 1000 years) and understood that much of what was passed down came from oral teaching of those who were with Christ to those they taught. Tradition does not contradict what is in the Bible, but it expands it with the promised protection of the Holy Spirit giving infallibility to the Pope and magesterium in matters of faith and morals. Of course all protesting christian churchs have their roots in those 1500 years of the Catholic Church and in their protest, they soon broke up into endless denominations with each moving off to their own interpretations or the latest fad. The Catholic Church cannot simply change anything, but has to make sure that it does not damage the fabric of truth only found in its most complete perfection in the Catholic Church teaching.

  114. Mark Greta says:

    Pagan, when a couple chooses to leave God out of their marriage by denying him his right to create life, they are doing something very much against Catholic teaching. Since the gravely disordered homosexual acts does this by nature, it is wrong and against natural law. Shutting God out of marriage should not make sense to any Catholic and could be why so many are so out of whack on following Church teaching. You might say the election of democrats is a direct result of people not following Catholic teaching in their marriage and lives by shutting God out and thus opening their heart soul and mind to other evils such as supporting the party of death and the holocaust of babies. That is why it is so important to understand that to vote for a pro abortion candidate requires the Catholic to find something that is proportionate to 54 million dead babies. I have yet to have someone tell me what that is that is remotely close to being reasonably proportionate.

  115. Mark Greta says:

    Ronald, I suspect Jesus would not be wildly happy with someone supporting a party that has given us the holocaust of 54 million babies. hard to talk about the wonderful teaching of the beatitudes to those killed by abortion or those women forever condemned unless they find reconcilliation with God. And Jesus was a pretty radical person in his life and his teaching for his time. You ought to watch the wonderful series Catholocism to see just how radical. If anyone does not think America will pay a horrible price for its support of the evil party called democrats since our founding through slavery, lynching, gay marriage, and abortion, they are smoking somehing that has distorted reality. 54 million dead infants are the most grave evil in all time and we add 4,000 more each and every day.

  116. Mark Greta says:

    Kenneth, So you are saying the Pope’s JPII and Benedict XVI are both operatives of the GOP? They laid out non negotiable teaching. The GOP platform and actions have been in line with those non negotiable church teaching.

    The party of death, the democrats abortion party has chosen to be against all non negotiable Catholic teaching. That is their right. But to try to make big government a Catholic teaching, taxes to take private property from one by force and give it to another is not Catholic teaching, centralizing power to as far away from the person is not Catholic teaching, being against all war is not Catholic teaching according to St Augustine and what has been Catholic teaching for centuries with Just war. The party of death is also the party of lies trying to give aid and comfort to the prince of lies to distort areas of Church teaching where dissent is acceptable against 54 million babies is a joke to anyone who is not closer tied to the democratic party than to their faith.

  117. It’s unfortunate that the pastor decided to make public sport of this with a big announcement during Sunday Mass. If he didn’t want to participate in offering the faithful the opportunity to support the referendum, the archbishop allowed him that. But, he didn’t have to shove the abp’s face in it, or play the rebel, by announcing the decision from the pulpit. I suspect he knows the political and social leanings of his parish, so he knew he would receive their support, knew he would be seen as a champion in their eyes, and very much enjoyed the standing ovation.

  118. Absolutely the are being disobedient! Let us not mince words. When priests take it upon themselves to determine what is the higher good.. “sensivity to the community” versus the divinely inspired teachings of the Holy Magisterium of the Church as promulgated by their Bishop then they are being disobedient. There is NO American Catholic Church. These priests need to be brought to task. They are confusing the teachings of the Church to their parishoners in whom God entrusted their care and development. That is a sin.

  119. Come back home to the true Mass, the traditional Mass. The fog will lift.

  120. Ronald King says:

    Tyler, sodomy as referred to in 1Timothy 1:8-10 and from there sodomy is referenced to 1Cor 6:9 notation “…translated sodomites would then refer to adult males who indulged in homosexual practices with such boys(boy or young men who were kept as prostitutes)”. This is certainly sexual abuse and it was an institutional evil in the Greco-Roman world. It had nothing to do with love but had everything to do with using an innocent human being for one’s own selfish pleasure without concern for the other.

  121. Ronald King says:

    Mark, It is not one part which is responsible for abortion. Abortion is the end result of each of us living our lives detached from the suffering and violence which we support each day through our desire for comfort and security. Abortion is a desperate act of violence which evolves from a constant intrusion of violence into the spiritual and emotional life of those who are most vulnerable.

  122. Since when has popular opinion superseded God’s ways as held by the apostolic teaching and tradition of the magisterium of the Catholic Church. I think the bishop should clearly send the laity the message that their pastors are wrong and their action are not in the best interest of the congregation

  123. Much of the USCCB has reduced the Church to little more than an operational wing of the GOP as have most conservative Catholics. They have moved way beyond legitimate concerns about deep conflicts with one parties platform to an absolute, uncritical and deferential support of the other. They are eyeball deep in moral relativism and consequentialism. Anything their side does – torture, pre-emptive murder (post partum of course), predation of the poor, is “not that bad” because at least they’re not the “Party of Death.” In adopting this posture, the bishops and their entourage have become just another partisan interest group, like the petroleum or prescription drug lobbies or public employee unions. They have no special moral authority because they carry water for someone bigger than them, and because they have no moral bottom line beyond the belief that “their side” deserves secular power.

  124. pagansister says:

    Sure, Mark Greta, in a perfect world those who would have problems with obedience and staying celibate (no matter whether they are homosexual or heterosexual) would not be accepted into the seminary. However, this isn’t a perfect world, and I suspect there are some who have been admitted who will have problems with both obedience and celibacy, in the future after they are ordained. Some will meet their bishop and some won’t. Some will not leave because they like being a priest. Some will find that they totally disagree with their bishops once in a while (which I guess is against the rules) and will do as the priests in the article—-who according to what has been posted here by Deacon Kandra, aren’t disobeying because the boss didn’t say “DO IT!” IMO, Some rules are meant to be broken.

  125. pagansister says:

    Mark Greta: You have listed what you think are totally non-negotiable issues if one is a Catholic, including only men priests, and ABC and the rule that only a man and woman can marry. It seems many Catholics these days disagree and feel the personal decisions regarding ABC and that only guys can lead a church are several hundred years out of date. As to terminations and male/females only allowed to marry– if they agree with the Church, they still feel it isn’t correct for them to tell other folks what to do. Just my 3 cents. I’m not in favor if abortion (and yes, I know, 54,000 or so happen constantly) but it is not my job to tell another woman what to do with her body. In the article here—several parishes decided not to pass out a petition saying that equal marriage rights shouldn’t happen for those of the same gender. That doesn’t mean the Catholic Church will all of a sudden start marrying same gender couples.

  126. pagansister says:

    Mark Greta: Somehow I have had a very happy 47 year marriage and we chose to only have 2 children, and IMO, all couples should be making the choice of how many children they want to bring into the world, if any. A particular faith didn’t tell me to take my chances with my reproduction.

  127. pagansister says:

    Really, Mark Greta—the” Party of Death”? And it is all because of who happens to be president at the moment or are all those who happen to belong to the Democratic party murderers? I know that that is your favorite cause for reasons you have mentioned many times, but just what does all the repeated stuff have to do with a few parishes NOT offering the petition to their members, as per REQUEST of the bishop, not ORDER of the bishop?

  128. I sent this to a friend of mine in Seattle. She lives 5 blocks from the Cathedral. She made two comments. The first was that, in Seattle it wasn’t wise to be bigoted towards gays and lesbians. The second was that she was shocked at how many posters on this blog seemed to be from the 15th century.
    Me? In MOST Western countries, religious marriage isn’t recognized.. All marriages are civil in the eyes of the law and a contract. In that light, I think that, at it’s base, with all the emotion etc scraped away, marriage IS a contract and 2 consenting adults should be allowed to make such a contract. Call it whatever you want, but that’s what it is. CAN it be more than that? Of course, but it’s up to the 2 people involved to make it so.

  129. Mark Greta says:

    Pagan, “I’m not in favor of abortion (and yes, I know, 54,000 or so happen constantly) but it is not my job to tell another woman what to do with her body.”

    Many said the same thing in Nazi Germany. 6 million Jews were slaughtered after years of persecution witnessed in every city of Germany where Jews were not considered human. The Catholic Church has been bashed to high heaven for not doing more to condemn that holocaust. In the USA, 54 million babies have been slaughtered, nine times the number of Jews in Nazi Germany. This is not telling a woman what to do with her body, but telling the woman that killing human life is a grave evil and destroys her soul. Supporting the party of death that supports this grave holocuast of human life to the tune of 4,000 more a day in the abortion mill death camps demands all humanity to say no more. If you do not feel compelled to stop this slaughter, that is between you and God and I would strongly urge prayer to see how God instucts you on this position. That Catholic voters have held firm to the party that since its founding has been wrong on every major moral consideration from slavery, to the civil war to keep slaves, to the KKK terror arm of the party, to Jim Crow and lynching blacks and burning churchs with kids inside, to fighting attempts to stop any form of civil rights legislation and also anti lynching legislation, to supporting and keepig alive the legal holocaust nine times worse than the Jews, and with it stance attacking the basic family unit, they have been on the wrong side of these major moral issues. For anyone to say that their big government solution centralizing power has been good for the poor or the country as some kind of justification for killing 54 million babies and adding 4000 more a day is simply insane. Some say they are good on war, but this does not match history where most of the wars from the civil war on have been with a democrat in charge. To say they are right on immigration does not work either as the Republicans have been for immigration reform, but not tied to breaking existing laws or rewarding those who broke the law to cheat those waiting in line. Stop the illegal activity and then look at what needs to be done to meet the needs of the country and to be far to everyone who wants to come to America to help us build a better nation. In other words, the prince of lies seems to be closely aligned to the party of death, slavery, lynching, and abortion and thus it is not surprising to see lies and distortion being used to justify supporting grave evil.

  130. Mark Greta says:

    Pagan, saying no to God in our marriage is our choice as it is in every other area of life. I think it is most important in life to try to be holy even if this means we are not quite as happy by this worlds standards. Couples do not bring children into the world, God creates life and gives it to parents out of his love for them and his love of children. Limiting God is a clear choice many make today and the stats on Catholic families with their large acceptance of shutting God out of their marriage by saying no to Him on life has not lead to fewer divorces or better results in life. No faith tells you to take chances, but to be open to God and place all your trust in Him. He will give us what we can handle if we place our trust in Him. The same is true of all aspects of our life. Of course it depends on our desired destination and goals. If it is to reach heaven with God over whatever the world has to offer, it is easier to trust in God. If it is things of this world, at the cost of saying no to God, it seems like a very bad choice. I do not in any way say it is easy and I have said no at times and paid a price for doing so. We never taught our kids that the goal was to be happy, but to be holy and to make choices based on their desired goal of being with God. Living our life with this in mind, will in the end give us peace that choices for this world happiness will never provide.

  131. pagansister says:

    Mark Greta: I know about Nazi Germany, but thanks for the refresher.

  132. pagansister says:

    Mark Greta, with all due respect, your reply is just what I would expect from you.

  133. Pagan

    No problem in the mix up…we aren’t going to agree but God be with you sister

  134. pagansister says:

    Tyler, with this new set up I’m not sure where this will end up in the posts. BUT thank you for your good wishes, and I agree, we won’t agree, but I enjoy the interaction of words.

  135. Eddie Martinez says:

    Bravo to the church and pastor for doing the right thing. As a Latino Catholic, I am getting tired of these conservative faith leaders who think they can speak for us. the majority of catholic are progressive thinkers. They do not speak for us and its time we respond back.

  136. Uh, Bob, I grew up with “smells & bells” and “pray, pay & obey” as seminiarian. At nearly 60, I’m NOT going baack there, ever again. It was LITURGY, not FAITH. Or as we used to call it, the 3M’s. Mystery, magisty and magic. I remember the rosary banging during Mass as well. For me the “new” Mass is the difference between “hearing Mass” as in the old days and particiapating at Mass.

  137. Pagan, Do you think two sisters who want the “right” to be married should have that “right”?

  138. pagansister says:

    Ty, they’re already related by law due to birth, so why should they? To be married to your brother or sister is called incest. No, IMO not a good move, but if some person agreed to perform such a ceremony—oh well. I can’t imagine a person with legal authority to perform marriages would agree.


  1. [...] Harrington, from Our Lady of the Lake Catholic Church in Seattle, dropped me a line in response to this post and the comments it provoked.  I reprint his e-mail here with his permission.  Dcn. G.+++Fr. Tim [...]

  2. [...] Interestingly, many churches refused to repeat Sartain’s political/religious opinion, to the approval of many churchgoers. [...]

Leave a Comment