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one bread, one body?

By Diogenes (articles ) | Oct 10, 2007

Most Holy Redeemer is a truculently gay parish in San Francisco's Castro distinct, a notorious center of counter-Catholic activism, and the subject of an enthusiastic book called Gays and Grays, by Jesuit Father Donal Godfrey.

Gerald Augustinus brings to our attention the fact that San Francisco's Archbishop Niederauer visited MHR earlier in the week, and gave communion to two gays garbed in in-yo-face nun drag (view the photos here, here and the video here) -- a gesture which is regrettable but, given the individuals involved, far from surprising.


MHR would have a justification for its existence if it served as a kind of halfway house for gays on a journey into the Church -- if, that is, its priests accepted and defended Church doctrine as true and if its parishioners embraced more of Catholicism's hard teachings at the end of their sojourn than at the beginning. In fact it serves no such purpose, but rather exists as a kind of fire support base for gay activists hostile to the Church and her teaching.

A further point. If there existed in reality gays who were faithful Catholics -- that is, if the expression "Gay Catholic" were not a contradiction in terms -- it wouldn't be the orthodox bloggers who were first and loudest to cry foul. Gays themselves -- I mean the ostensibly responsible gays like James Alison and Sean Michael Winters -- would pounce on Niederauer to demand he shut down MHR, banish its clergy, and toss out the twisted sisters with them. "Don't you see," they'd argue, "that this mock-jocular sacrilege and puerile exhibitionism plays right into the hands of our adversaries? That this is exactly the kind of sexually distorted rage that conservatives are always warning the Holy See about? That our claim to be mature, sober, and pious Catholics is blown out of the water by cross-dressing psychotics who can't switch off their act long enough to take communion? Can't you see that this harms our cause worse than anything the conservatives could say about us?" Well, the fact is that we haven't heard such protests, and we won't. And the reason is that the difference between the "presentable" gays and Sister Boom-Boom is one of tailoring rather than conviction. Skeptical? Find me a counter-example.

At least one of the drag queens in Niederauer's queue for communion put in an appearance at San Francisco's Walk For Life in 2006 (view the photos here and here). What is important to note is that he turned up as a counter-protester. He was opposed to the pro-life marchers and to their cause, and even carried a coat-hanger to drive home the point.


One can't expect Archbishop Niederauer to know which of the hundreds of persons who present themselves to him for communion would be pro-abortion activists and demonstrators. Yet if he did know, would it make any difference to him? A man kitted out in nun drag is making no secret of his disdain for the Church; at the very minimum his burlesque of their habit shows contempt for women religious, on which grounds alone a man with genuine (as opposed to feigned) respect for Catholic women would reject and rebuke the scoffer. But unquestionably Niederauer knows these "nuns" and knows MHR and knows there's much more going on here, much deeper and unambiguous antagonism to the Church. Pro-abortion and pro-gay passions are just the tip of the anti-Catholic iceberg.

So why does Niederauer knuckle under and give "Sister" communion, as if he were just another pious and good-willed Catholic? As so often in circumstances of unaccountable and scandalous capitulation to the Church's foes, the most optimistic explanation is that the bishop in question is a victim of blackmail. What is worse -- much worse -- is the possibility that he truly had a choice in the matter.

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Show 14 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: - Oct. 16, 2007 4:23 PM ET USA

    Where were the ushers? Why did they allow these gay clowns to approach the priest? That a protest was to happen was general knowledge. Why not have security? The Church needs to protest to the civil authorities about such disruptive events. The Church officials remain silent. Isn't abuse of the Eucharist something of importance? We need to back up the Confirmation promises.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 12, 2007 12:37 PM ET USA

    I feel sorrow and ill beyond expression

  • Posted by: - Oct. 11, 2007 11:12 AM ET USA

    Remigius's point regarding the Nazi uniforms isn't just a good point--it's a great idea. Granted it would take a lot of guts to walk anywhere in a Nazi uniform, but imagine saying to the Priest when he refuses you communion, "Oh, so let me get this straight: if I had shown up in an outfit that spits on the church, the body of Christ, that'd be OK? Might even give you little chuckle, right?"

  • Posted by: - Oct. 10, 2007 8:56 PM ET USA

    Archbishop, our servant, I charge you to wxplain yourself! Habakkuk 1:2 O LORD, how long shall I cry, and thou wilt not hear! even cry out unto thee of violence, and thou wilt not save! 3 Why dost thou shew me iniquity, and cause me to behold grievance? for spoiling and violence are before me: and there are that raise up strife and contention. 4 Therefore the law is slacked, and judgment doth never go forth: for the wicked doth compass about the righteous; therefore wrong judgment proceedeth.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 10, 2007 7:38 PM ET USA

    double standard, example 6,487,313

  • Posted by: - Oct. 10, 2007 4:25 PM ET USA

    No offense, but a lot of ink was spilled here (or pixels wasted) to make a case for refusing communion to a couple of sodomites dressed as nuns. No offense, but why did you think you needed to explain this with such step-by-step obviousness to your readers? Do you think we are all bishops are something?

  • Posted by: - Oct. 10, 2007 3:35 PM ET USA

    The problem with the Niederauer appointment is it is based on the premise that rational dialog is possible with these people and that an interlocutor needs to be flexible to bring about the best results in a difficult situation. The truth is that a clear thinker Joe Fessio type would have marked the playing field clearly and indicated who is out of bounds and who is really a player.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 10, 2007 2:58 PM ET USA

    mariadevotee: yes, forward all to the Holy Father & the CDF (CDF chief Cdl. Levada's classmate is Abp. Niederauer & surely Levada had some say in the appt). remegius: It's clear that these 2 gays & Nancy Pelosi reject the Church's Teaching. The abp.'s comments re: Pelosi indicate that he does not care. surewish: The abp. is not the Church. Stay close to Jesus in the Eucharist & Penance & prayer, even if others are not. Please read Pope Benedict XVI's book "Jesus of Nazareth" for inspiration.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 10, 2007 12:12 PM ET USA

    A Bishop who acquiesces to gay life is already out of the Church so I guess this is a matter of emphasis for those who perpetrated it - Bishop, priest and gays. What then about the Bishop's removal? Fear of schism or heresy? But that has already occurred. I have come to think seriously that most Catholic Bishops may be homosexuals, otherwise they would condemn what Niederauer did. I for one cannot identify with a Church as he is allowed to represent it. It isn't the Catholic Church.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 10, 2007 10:55 AM ET USA

    Imagine that the two men, instead of dressing up as nuns, were dressed as Nazis, and gave a Heil Hitler salute as they approached the Archbishop... or imagine that they were dressd in the white robes of the Ku Klux Klan and were carrying a noose.... or imagine that they had on minstrel outfits, with black face and white gloves, and did a tap dance up the main aisle... or imagine they carried a large poster that said "KILL THE BISHOP".... Would they have been given communion?

  • Posted by: - Oct. 10, 2007 10:43 AM ET USA

    I suggest we forward this to the proper authorities. Holy Father email address is benedictxvi@vatican.va CDF (I know it's Lavada, but someone else there will read it first) is cdf@cfaith.va. They need to be aware asap and time and again.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 10, 2007 10:31 AM ET USA

    Shocking. Shocking. You hit the nail on the head: "A man kitted out in nun drag is making no secret of his disdain for the Church." Will anyone believe this happened, say fifty or seventy years from now?

  • Posted by: - Oct. 10, 2007 9:23 AM ET USA

    Niederauer has a long history of pro-gay activism and keeping barely enough in the closet to avoid suspician. No doubt he is agreement with the drag queens and MHR pastor Fr. Merrywether (a liberal protestant who converted to Catholicism and became a priest). I love our pope but allowing Niederauer to lead San Francisco was a big blunder (although rumour is that Levada was instrumental in placing him). In the past the likes of Quin were at least attempted to reign in.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 10, 2007 9:05 AM ET USA

    Just ask yourself, "what would Archbishop Mitty have done" if two similarly-attired communicants had presented themselves to him for communion? There is little hope for the Church in San Francisco in the hands of the current shepherd. I pray I am wrong about this and that the Abp will do something to correct this scandal. But since the scandal was a public one, the correction needs to be public also.

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