Saturday, 15 November 2008

Parish Priest at Risk of Excommunication Over Ordination of Women

From Catholic Online

Fr. Roy Bourgeois is a Maryknoll Priest, ordained to the priesthood in 1972. From the beginning of his priestly ministry he has worked with the poor and the oppressed. He has taken public and sometimes controversial stands against Latin American leaders who have not respected human dignity or demonstrated concern for the oppressed or the poor.

He founded the “School of the America’s Watch” in 1990 to call attention to what he has long maintained was American complicity in some of the very unjust activities he had dedicated his life and ministry to expose, oppose and change.

Thus far, though Catholics of various political persuasions could - and often do - disagree with him and his political leanings, he has certainly been within his rights to engage in this work. He has also not veered from Catholic teaching in so doing. However, all that changed on August 9th when Fr. Bourgeois chose to become a “concelebrant” and homilist at the attempted ordination to the priesthood of Janice Sevre-Duszynska. The attempted “ordination” occurred at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Lexington, Ky.

Now, Fr. Bourgeois has decided to engage in a new crusade, one which involves public and direct defiance of the Holy See and a repudiation of the unbroken teaching of the Magisterium of the Catholic Church concerning sacred ordination.

According to a letter which Fr. Bourgeois released to the Press, he has received a letter from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. It gave him a certain period of days within which he was to recant his “belief and public statements that support the ordination of women in our Church, or (he) will be excommunicated.” This action followed the priests public rejection of efforts from the leadership within his own religious community to return him to fidelity with the teaching of the Catholic Church.

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