How to Bring Matter to Cardinal's Attention

I don't know if you can help me, but listen and if you have an idea please let me know.

I'm a catechist at St.Francis deSales Church. I was helping with the RCIA program this last March 7th where the priest who was leading the session informed the group of mostly catechumens that the Church's teaching on homosexuality "was not based on any interpretation of scripture." He illustrated this assertion by saying that it was hospitality that brought down God's wrath on Sodom as told in the book of Genesis not homosexuality and asserted that the bible's other references to homosexuality could be similarly explained. The significance of this fact, he informed the group, was that, unlike the Church's teaching on divorce, which can't be changed because it is based on sacred scripture, Church teaching on homosexuality is quite subject to change. Although he had been asked about the Church's teaching on homosexuality, he never did state what that teaching was, only that it was "not based on any interpretation of sacred scripture."

I wrote the priest the very next day asking to meet with him on this issue. In the note I quoted the Catechism of the Catholic Church which insists that Church teaching is based on sacred scripture. I also brought to his attention a letter to all bishops On the Pastoral Concern for Homosexual Persons from the Congregation on the Doctrine of the Faith which found this assertion that the Church's teaching was not based on scripture was "gravely erroneous". The priest, who is in residence at our parish, refused to meet with me, and insisted he said nothing wrong. He stated that there was nothing I could say that would change his mind, and he did not believe that anything he would say would convince me to change mine, so there was no need to meet. I then discussed this matter with the pastor, who is a close personal friend of this priest and the pastor said that there was nothing that he could do. I took the matter up with the Director of the Office of Religious Education for the diocese and he felt that this kind of matter was up to the pastor. Then I took the matter to the Secretary for Education who did not respond and then I finally wrote to the Cardinal, who assigned the matter to a Vicar who found that since the priest had not directly contradicted Church teaching on homosexuality there was nothing that needed to be done.

Like the parable of the widow and the unjust judge (Luke 18: 1-8) I want to continue to press this matter. It seems like a small matter, an injustice to the few catechumens that attended RCIA on that particular night. But it is in taking care to correct small errors that larger problems are avoided. It is not only what the priest told the RCIA that night that is the problem but the inability of those vested with institutional authority to put the genuine interests of the Church above their personal feelings for certain individuals that needs to be addressed.

So I'm asking you to give me the name of someone who might be able to bring this matter back to Cardinal's attention. I believe that if the Cardinal really understood the issue, he would take the necessary action to see that catechumens are properly instructed.



Dear Todd,

Thank you for your email - an important and delicate subject which you have handled well.

The appropriate Scriptural comparison for you is not so much the widow and the unjust judge, but rather Ezekiel 33 (the watchman).

My counsel at this time is that since you have brought the matter to the attention of appropriate authorities that you now dedicate yourself to prayer for those involved, including yourself. If people could be won over by a simple exposition of the truth, we would not be in the mess we are. However, the problem is much deeper and requires conversion of hearts, including ones own. Do you see what I am saying, Todd? Now is the time to imitate the widow, who Jesus presents a model of untiring prayer.

Let me know how it goes. God bless,

Fr. Phil Bloom

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