Pastor Apologizes After Priest Compares Black Lives Matter’s LGBTQ Support to Terrorism

Livestream of Fr. Paul Graney preaching on September 12, 2020

The pastor of a Michigan parish has apologized after another priest assigned to that parish compared the Black Lives Matter movement to terrorists, in part because of the group’s support for LGBTQ equality.

Fr. Bob McCabe, pastor of Church of the Divine Child, Dearborn, posted the apology on Facebook shortly after Fr. Paul Graney’s egregious homily last Saturday afternoon. McCabe said the live-streamed homily by Graney initially posted on that same parish Facebook page had “brought forth division, anger, confusion and chaos.” The pastor added:

“Every person is sacred in the eyes of God regardless of their race, religion or sexuality. At different times we need to focus in on different groups and their particular needs. Right now, the murder of countless persons of color demands a clear response. The entire human family needs to unite in confronting these injustices. We must protect the lives of persons of color and be the voice for people who do not have one.”

The response was necessary after Graney attacked Black Lives Matter for its support of LGBTQ equality. In his homily, he condemned protesters as terrorists. The Detroit News reported:

“After mentioning the 19th anniversary of 9/11, the associate priest described how al-Qaeda ‘came with the goal to destroy America, little by little, with acts of terror. … But in 2020, many of our own people are now out there in the streets wanting to remake America into something else by destroying what it is today. Little by little. There’s no great army, but it’s riot by riot, really.’

“Graney singled out two groups he said intended ‘to implement communism: a stateless, classless society.’ One was antifa, or anti-fascists, a range of far-left militant groups. The other was Black Lives Matter, which protests discrimination against African Americans.

“The associate pastor called the first ‘an anarchist, terrorist organization’ and rejected the second as ‘working against the traditional family structure’ by supporting LGBTQ people, he said, reading aloud from the BLM website from the pulpit.”

Graney cited specific passages from the Black Lives Matter Global Network’s website, which states the group’s values that include being queer-affirming and working against heteropatriarchy. Toward the homily’s end, after condemning same-gender relationships, the priest said:

“‘Al-Qaeda’s goal was to come to the United States and kill Americans. Really just wanted to wipe America off the map. And they would’ve done it if they could,’ he said. ‘But today, those who we see wanting to bring down American are Americans and they want to do it under the facade of justice, freedom and love. But it is all a big bunch of baloney. It’s anti-Christian. It’s anti-family. It’s evil.'”

A full video of the 12-minute homily is available here.

I have argued previously on this blog against those who claim BLM’s support for LGBTQ equality undermines its work for racial justice, and therefore prohibits Catholics’ involvement in such work.  Fr. Graney’s anti-Black, LGBTQ-negative rantings from the pulpit, which were totally divested from the day’s Scriptures, require a sanction from the archdiocese. Yet, so far, Detroit’s hierarchical leaders, who expelled pro-LGBTQ groups from church property just months ago, have remained silent. A statement from Archbishop Allen Vigneron is necessary to make clear the church affirms Black Lives Matter and the dignity of LGBTQ people.

Robert Shine, New Ways Ministry, September 16, 2020

6 replies
  1. Thomas Ellison
    Thomas Ellison says:

    A priest in Carmel,Indiana said something similar and caused a stir a few months ago. His language was even more demeaning. Reading this now, I was reminded of something I saw recently. “Racism is so ingrained in America that protesting against racism is sometimes seen as protesting against America.”

  2. Linda Karle Nelson
    Linda Karle Nelson says:

    Thank you, Bob Shine, for demanding that Archbishop Vigneron reject this ignorant and hateful message by a priest in his archdiocese. This is one action that could be taken by a church leader in Detroit to take a very small step toward healing its dismissal and disconnection with the LGBTQ community and their families.

  3. Mary Jo
    Mary Jo says:

    Hard to believe self respecting folks, particularly LGBTQ folks, friends and family, stay when this is what they hear. Take your wallet and run.

  4. Ryan Sattler
    Ryan Sattler says:

    Thank you NWM for your passionate response to the Church of Detroit. During these challenging times, I remain hopeful with the actions of Pastor McGabe. He was called to do the right thing and he didi it. May we find the same courage. And now it is Archbishop Vigneron’s time to do the right thing and support his pastor. Let’s pray that he does.


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