NEWS NOTES: April 15, 2013

News NotesHere are some links to articles you may find of interest:

1) A federal court has supported a pregnant lesbian woman’s right to a trial after she was fired from her jobs at two Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati when it became known that she became pregnant by artificial insemination, reports the LGBT Bar Association of  Greater New York.

2) Scranton, Pennsylvania’s Bishop Joseph Bambera has criticized U.S. Senator Bob Casey, a member of his diocese, for reversing his position to support marriage equality and calling for the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The York Daily Record reports that Casey “had decided over time that the Defense of Marriage Act – the federal law that defines marriage as one man and one woman – should be repealed, and determined that such a belief could not be separate from the overall question of gay marriage.”

3) Chicago’s Cardinal Francis George joined with African-American church leaders in his city to speak out against the “redefinition of marriage,” reports The Chicago Tribune.

4) Fr. Jose Nicholas Alessio, a priest of the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires, Argentina (Pope Francis’ former diocese) has been expelled from the priesthood for his continued support of marriage equality. reports that Fr. Alessio had been suspended in 2010, and had been offered an opportunity to retract his support, but he refused to do so.

–Francis DeBernardo, New Ways Ministry


2 replies
  1. tomfluce
    tomfluce says:

    This posting of yours today, Frank, only reinforces what I’ve been saying all along. Despite “changes” by introducing his personal piety practices into his new role, Brother Bergoglio and so many others you have posted about recently are still the product–pretty much consistent–of the Church under Brothers Wojtala and Ratzinger. A monarchical, fundamentalist, and a nasty, persecution-oriented ecclesiology. Brother Fox documents this in his “The Pope’s War”.

    I’m still honestly surprised that there hasn’t been a better approach to changing church teaching on us LGBT folks–as well as on many other issues– than what I’ve seen reported in change organizations like NWM’s “Bondings.” Basically–and this is totally admirable and contributing substantially to change–I’m hearing the change approach being personal stories that certainly change individuals. A hope that eventually the change will occur. I’m hearing less impressive approaches like expecting “surprises” from a Pope.

    What will change church teaching on LGBT’s, and reduce more quickly the agony of murders, suicides, etc ?

    1. FEAR:Well first of all we have to shed the “fear” approach–fear of being excommunicated, fired, silenced, and still maintain our position in the church.
    2. OPEN UNITY: And at the same time the “we” has to be all of us, not just LGBT folks, but all our allies, including all levels of authority–certainly the cardinals and bishops who have shown some opening to change, and all the rest of the “majority” of Cathholics who accept our version of the Catholic teaching on sexuality.
    3. GALILEO RECONCILIATION COMMISSION (GRC): Next is a straightforward, loving, but persistent, series of actions toward implementoing a doctrinal change plan for the 21st century, “The Galileo Reconciliation Commission-GRC” No more discussions/debates proving right and wrong, however civil or even loving. No more targeting “the hierarchy” as the problem. The GRC is about how to handle “dissent” lovingingly.
    4. COALITION OF CHANGE GROUPS: All doctrinal changes: women, sexuality, church governance… Alone LGBT people will not get the needded change. Only with all the other groups will this work.
    5. POLITICS NO LONGER AS USUAL: Having been ordained in Rome, now 50 years ago, with degrees from the same place as many of the hierarchy, and having submitted myself lock, stock, and barrel to a life time service to the Church, yet totally thrown out because I espoused “married priests”, I think I do understand the ecclesiology in force now in contradiction to Vat. II. We have to stop ignoring the politics of Church reform and the minions of people who want to adhere to “orthodoxy”. We have to get into the politics of change. And that takes loving unity, forcefuness (moral), yes, and even some money. But above all it has to be direct, personal witness within our church structures, no longer on the periphery.

    The GRC is a mechanism that can deal with the extremely conflicting commandments to love one another, and (#6) “not commit adultery”. Trying to pressure officials and their entrenched, “orthodox” adherents to change doctrine isn’t going to work as fast as a GRC. We can engage devout Catholics opposed to our changes and include authorities–not just the hierarchy but pastors, diocesan/parish pastoral councils–who will help indirectly and more quickly. We are not asking opponents to change their position. We’re asking everyone, under the chief commandment to love one another, to create a new “loving dissent” mechanism. Historical experiences throughout all Church history show how“dissent” –what some might call “sensus fidelium”– has changed things. Problem is that most of history has used murderous ways. Yes recently it has been the way of “silence”, threats of excommunication, but still murderous. And we will ask that we do the ”least harm” to one another–no more hateful pronouncements that engender violent persecution.

    The GRC is asking people to be loving, not killing one anotherm recognizing that the church’s humanity simply demands a better way. Please contact me if anyone is interested in trying this!

  2. Thomas F. Luce
    Thomas F. Luce says:

    Addendum: 6. NORMS: A comprehensive set of norms to which we–lGBT’s–adhere in unity that is developed into a comprehensive education program . Not theological treatises that can ‘t be used by ordinary people let alone students K-12. These have to clearly remove us from the stereotypes, “anything goes” identity.


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