Thursday, July 16, 2015

Last week there was a small group of seminarians sitting around the dining table at St. Sebastian who
had been at various parishes over the previous couple of weeks and I hoped to glean some information from them.  As you know, the same-sex marriage ruling came out and I was curious to know if, how, and how much other parishes were handling the topic.  So I asked them.  By and large they reported that the only place they really heard anything said was at St. Sebastian.
So much for spying.
So now I turn to you.  There (should be) a poll in the right hand column of this blog.  If you wouldn't mind, may I spy through you?  The topic is the same-sex marriage ruling and how it is handled in your parish.
Fr. V


Anonymous said...

Hi Father -

No one ever mentioned anything or wrote in our bulletin about it (I am a parishioner of a neighboring parish in Akron in your cluster). Which is rather odd, considering we have some openly homosexual parishioners at my parish. I sort of expected Bishop Lennon to address the issue, but maybe he will in the future.

Just my opinion, but I think we parishioners throughout the Diocese can use some information about how we are to move forward as observant Catholics. We need clarification on the Church's stand on this and why we believe as we do.

I am willing and eager to follow the leadership of my good pastor, Bishop, and Pope. I am willing to die for Our Lord and the Catholic Church - really. But we need a little apologetics from the clergy, and some explanation of the logic of what we believe. We will be facing a lot of static and worse from the general public, the government, and the media. Ignoring and avoiding the issue does not make it disappear.

I want to be able to defend my Church confidently!

Thank you for letting me unload.

God bless you!

MaryofSharon said...

In his June 28 homily, Fr. Peter Mitchell of Greenville, Wisconsin, included two very challenging admonitions for all of us, clergy and laity alike, for such a time as this:

"To sin by silence when they should protest, makes cowards out of men."
~Abraham Lincoln.

"Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”
~Dietrich Bonhoeffer

I, too, heard of at least two local parishes in which nothing was said.

On the other hand, several local priests did a skillful job of leading their flocks.

I was at the Extraordinary Form Mass at St. Sebastian that day and the priest spoke of the Supreme Court decision quite directly, which I was confident he would. ( I'd love to hear what you had to say if you gave a homily about it, but I know you were gone in Ireland at the time.)

One local parochial vicar spoke beautifully of the sorrow that the decision should evoke in us. People are being deprived of truth, and thus being deprived of the opportunity to experience the gift of God's mercy and the blessing of a life of chastity. He also did a great job of moving beyond the political, calling us to truly love and pray for those who experience same-sex attraction.

Then there was the terrific June 28 homily of St. Sebastian's own former parochial vicar, Fr. Pf., now pastor of his own parish, in which he, too, spoke of sorrow as the appropriate response.

Two other great homilies from elsewhere in the country have been circulating around the web:

Fr. Peter Mitchell. "The Sin of Silence". Text version. St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception Parish, Greenville, Wisconsin. Response to Supreme Court decision to change definition of marriage. Deftly instructs about church teaching on homosexuality with a subtlety that does not harm the innocence of children.

Fr. Joseph Faulkner. "The Challenges of Same-Sex Marriage." (text and audio) Homily of June 28, 2015. St. Ann Parish, Doniphan, Nebraska. Father Talks Too Fast (blog). Response to Supreme Court redefinition of marriage. Challenges Church to the seemingly impossible call to radical love and compassion and to holding fast to truth. Presents the case for the Church's position. Concludes with guidance in how to respond by prayer, learning why the Church teaches as She does, being heroic witnesses in family life, and really loving persons with same-sex attraction.

And finally there are the homilies of two priests whose I listen to almost every week, which are almost without exception, worthy of listening:

Fr. John Riccardo: June 28 homily

Fr. Roger Landry: "Standing in the Bright Light of Truth About Marriage"

MaryofSharon said...

Can you delete my first comment, Father? I messed up a link and like it better the way I revised it.

DN said...

I was out of town, but at St. Joseph's in Covington, Indiana, the priest spoke on it briefly (two days after the decision) at Sunday Mass. He lamented the decision, and asked us to pray for healing of the American culture.

Anonymous said...

At the parish I attended that Sunday (in Ohio, not in Cleve. diocese), the pastor started his sermon by expressing his sorrow at the tragic decision, noting that many people had asked him, "What do we do now?" He said the one thing we will not do is compromise. He spent approx. a third of his sermon on the topic.

Then, near the closing of Mass when there would be announcements, a younger person who is involved in parish ministry abruptly went to the podium, announced that she supported the court decision, that the Church and Father were wrong, she has gay friends who are wonderful, etc. etc. To see this occur just after Father had us renew a dedication to the Sacred Heart amazed and angered me greatly.