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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Mouse That Squeaked

The 2009 Heresy Tour rolls on. The bus has pulled out of Boston following a Sunday speech delivered to a whopping 100 attendees.

That ex-communicated Roy Bourgeios sure packs 'em in!

From the Boston Globe.com: Excommunicated Priest Takes Catholic Church to Task For Not Ordaining Women"

WESTON - A prominent priest whose support for women’s ordination has him in trouble with the Catholic Church ratcheted up his confrontation with the hierarchy yesterday, calling the church’s refusal to ordain women a “scandal’’ and “spiritual violence.’’

“I will not be silenced on this issue,’’ said the priest, the Rev. Roy Bourgeois, to about 100 people in Weston at an event hosted by the congregation of Jean Marchant, a former staffer for the Archdiocese of Boston who claims she was ordained as a priest in an unsanctioned ceremony four years ago.

The Catholic Church views Marchant and Bourgeois as having been automatically excommunicated for participating in unsanctioned ordination ceremonies.

Yesterday Bourgeois said he remained unclear about his status because he has had no formal communication from his order, the Maryknoll Fathers, or from the Vatican, which last fall told him he would face excommunication if he did not recant.

“If they choose to kick me out of the church because I believe that men and women are equal, so be it,’’ Bourgeois said. “I will never be at peace being in any organization that would exclude others.

“What’s going on in our church today is spiritual assassination, it’s spiritual violence being done that’s inexcusable. That is a scandal,’’ he said.

Squeak, squeak, squeak. As in a mouse, not a rusty wheel. You just gotta love the Little Guy vs. The Big Bad Church scenario the article establishes. Rather laughable, actually.

And notice the common factor in the following three pulls from the article (emphasis mine):

...In an interview yesterday, Bourgeois, 70, a Louisiana native...

...Another attendee at yesterday’s event was Joe McLaughlin, 60,...

...Roberta Robinson, 60, of West Roxbury,...

I bet Joe and Roberta were two of the younger attendees.

Yes, the furor over women's ordination can be frustrating. However, the Church has spoken, and has delivered Her ruling: women's ordination is impossible, and those who persist in supporting/attending/encouraging women in following through with the charade will be ex-communicated. These people know what the Church teaches, and they are making the conscious choice to ignore and complain. I doubt they are gaining many adherents. At least those still enjoying the sunshine years of their lives.

Still, scandal is occurring here. Prayers have to be said, and reparation has to be done. According to the article, He (Bourgeios) said five priests around the country have agreed to go public with their support for women’s ordination, and yesterday’s gathering drew at least three archdiocesan priests, none of whom would comment publicly. That's the scandal part. Their attendance at such events and support of such people can and does confuse people who aren't knowledgeable of Church teaching - some of the comments following the article clearly demonstrates that. As faithful Catholics, we have to cogently explain what the Church teaches and why. As laity, we reach areas of society the clergy doesn't have access to. A little apologetics can go a long way to helping weak Catholics understand that this isn't an issue of gender discrimination, but divine will ordered to the proper role of the ordained priest. Reducing the argument to mere sexism is not only incorrect, but makes mockery of the sacraments of Holy Orders and Holy Communion, and is very misleading. It might make for good copy, but it's false copy - another scandal, by the way.

The Archdiocese of Boston remained mostly mum on Bourgeios' talk, only issuing a statement repeating Church teaching, probably because the event wasn't being held on diocesan property. Although a short formal statement on Bourgeios, either from the Maryknolls or the Vatican, would be nice to see.

Oh - Squeaky's next scheduled stop is in Columbus on October 1 - brought to you by the dissenters at Call-to-Action.