On Monday March 16, KALW radio’s City Visions will host a program “Can Bay Area Catholics and Archbishop Cordileone find Common Ground?” Scheduled guests are the Reverend Vincent Pizzuto; Most Holy Redeemer parishioner and teachers’ union representative Ted DeSaulnier; and Santa Clara professor Sally Vance-Trembath. Representing the Catholic Church is Father Anthony Giampietro, interim director of development for the archdiocese of San Francisco.

Father Pizzuto left the faith and founded his own religious community, New Skellig. In 2007 he was ordained a priest of the Celtic Christian Church, a church not in communion with Rome. On December 9, 2014 he (and the community he founded) was received as a priest into the Episcopal Church of California. The last time Pizzuto was on KALW radio (San Francisco’s branch of National Public Radio), the program was “Far from Rome: being gay and Catholic in the Bay Area.”  Pizzuto was joined by “Roman Catholic Womandeacon” Christine Fahrenbach,  and homosexual activist priest Father Donal Godfrey, S.J.

Pizzuto was open about his aims:  He described efforts to change the Church’s teachings as a “battle very much under way” and said that “the Bible, as we understand it really does not address current issues… what we need to change is not so much the scriptures, which of course we cannot change, but the interpretation that has been given to them. And that’s going to take a lot of theologically and biblically interpretive work to move us forward.”  In addition to his ministry at the Episcopal Church, Pizzuto currently is an associate professor of religious studies and theology at University of San Francisco. He is director of USF’s Catholic Studies and Social Thought minor.

The second scheduled guest is Ted DeSaulnier. KALW identifies him thusly: “Union Representative, CFT Local 2240 and religion teacher at Archbishop Riordan High School; former religion department chair at Marin Catholic and Cheverus High School.”

A number of online resources verify that DeSaulnier is a religion teacher at Riordan; in an online letter he identifies himself as the chairman of the religion department and as a campus minister. However, neither his name nor biography currently appears on the faculty webpage for Riordan’s department of theology/religious studies, although all the other listed members of that department do. In fact, there appear to have been some recent changes among Riordan’s theology/religious studies faculty: as of February 22, 2015 there was no department chairman identified, but by March 13, a teacher named Ken Swan had filled the position.

According to parish bulletins, DeSaulnier is a longtime member of San Francisco’s notorious Most Holy Redeemer Church. Pizzuto, too, has a long history with San Francisco’s “90% gay” parish. He was a guest speaker at the parish as far back as 2006 and he was a guest speaker as recently as February 21, 2015. He was apparently dis-invited from the parish under all-too-brief pastorate of Father Brian Costello, when Father Costello found out Pizzuto supported and was willing to celebrate same-sex marriages, but that ban has been lifted by the new management.

The third anti-Catholic speaker is Professor Sally Vance-Trembath, from Santa Clara University. In 2005, Vance-Trembath gave the keynote speech at a San Francisco meeting of Voice of the Faithful. Vance Trembath told the San Francisco Chronicle “Fifty years from now Voice of the Faithful will be remembered as the tiny pebble that rolled down the hill and became the biggest thing to hit the Church.” The organization no longer exists in Northern California.