A group of California Catholics has questioned their diocese’s plan to host a dissident priest to keynote a lay ministry event.
Jesuit Father Greg Boyle is scheduled for a presentation on October 14 at the Diocese of Orange Institute for Pastoral Ministry Diocesan Ministries Celebration.
The Diocese of Orange expects 1,500 people to attend the daylong “Encounter, Connect, Evangelize” event at which Father Boyle will appear. It is sponsored by the diocese’s Institute for Pastoral Ministry, which trains lay ministers.
Some Catholics decided to draft a petition after expressing their concerns to the diocese and getting insufficient response. Their hope is that Bishop Kevin Vann will reconsider inviting Father Boyle to its event for catechists. Vann has served as bishop since 2012, having been appointed by Pope Benedict XVI.
The local concerned Catholics have been told by various diocesan representatives that the issue was being dealt with, that Father Boyle’s appearance had been scheduled last year, and that his topic would not be gay “marriage” or women’s ordination.
LifeSiteNews inquired with the diocese regarding Father Boyle’s appearance and received the same statement issued to the concerned local Catholics.
In the statement, the diocese admitted that Father Boyle’s comments were “indeed disturbing,” but downplayed his remarks. It said in part:
We understand that there is concern about video footage in which he appears to contradict Church teaching on women’s ordination and same-sex marriage. While this is indeed disturbing, Rev. Boyle will not be speaking on these topics. In fact, he has frequently participated in events in Orange County to promote the good work of his ministry and to inspire others in their ministries.”
In a 2010 interview during the debate on California’s Proposition 8 referendum banning same-sex “marriage” he criticized the U.S. Bishops’ opposition to homosexual “marriage.” He also described opposition to gay “marriage” as “demonizing people.” Father Boyle said that what the Church teaches on same-sex attraction and gay “marriage” was the opposite of what God says.
The priest stated in the interview that the Church’s teaching on women’s ordination was “shameful, “nonsense” and not “honest.” Father Boyle said those opposed to women’s ordination were “frightened that women will be ordained.”
He also mocked Church teaching on reception of the Eucharist for individuals married outside the Church in the television interview.
Full story at LifeSiteNews.