Catholic Culture Liturgical Living
Catholic Culture Liturgical Living

St. Mychal the Martyr

By Diogenes ( articles ) | Sep 05, 2003

Pastoral Outreach fans will remember Father Ken Waibel's rookie season (throws left, bats left) back in 1997. He penned a letter to his Diocese of Lexington (Kentucky) parish protesting the purity of his apostolic itinerary:

As I returned from vacation, I discovered that someone had received a copy of an article published in a national newspaper. ... Because of this article my sexual orientation has been questioned. I have been accused of being a sexual pervert and some members of our assembly have even removed their sons from the servers list in fear that I may be a "child molester". The article mentioned that I had attended a meeting of the National Association of Diocesan Gay and Lesbian Ministries and that I had made comments in my talks that were derogatory toward the Blessed Mother and straight men. The only truth in the article was that I attended the conference. Why did I attend such a thing? Because I was invited. Because I have a Master's Degree in Spirituality and because they felt that I could offer some light for those ministering to gays and lesbians as how to help them see Christ in their lives and know that they are still welcomed in the Catholic Church.

Score that a fielder's choice. He resumes:

Perhaps I should have told you that I was going to California to attend this conference. I didn't because I was afraid of the repercussions that fear and prejudice around this subject often produces. I was obviously justified in my fear, but feel a need to apologize to the gays and lesbians of our congregation for my lack of courage on your behalf. Before I left for vacation I was asked to bless dogs, cats, turtles and fish in honor of St. Francis of Assisi. Because I was willing to do this I got a pat on the back. Because I went to California to minister to these sisters and brothers of ours who feel abandoned by the Church and God, I get stabbed in the back.

Not All Star material yet, but shows good potential. The turtle blessing line was especially promising. Then a September 8, 2002 story in the Lexington Herald-Leader reports that Waible was arrested in 1998 for masturbating and exposing himself in front of a police officer in a Fayette County park. Again, he picked up the pen to bewail his persecution:

Waibel, in a letter to parishioners that was distributed at yesterday's Mass, called the incident at Jacobson Park a "serious mistake" and said he will tell them his side of the story soon. "I would have never imagined that I would need to ever do public confession before 500 people, but the media has demanded this and I will offer you my confession next weekend and seek your absolution," he wrote.

OK, he's prone to errors, but we have to look at on-base percentage, which brings us to today's WKYT news release:

The Catholic Bishop of Lexington says a Kentucky priest is excommunicated from the Roman Catholic Church. Father Ken Waibel has advertised he'll say mass this Sunday in Lexington at a new church called St. Mychal the Martyr. The church is affiliated with the Orthodox Catholic Church of America which is not connected in any way to the Roman Catholic Church. Excommunication means Waibel has separated himself from the church and is not a priest in good standing. He says Sunday's service will be similar to a Roman Catholic mass, and he welcomes all people. Waibel has spent the last year on an involuntary leave of absence after pleading guilty last year to exposing himself in a park.

Mychal Judge, you remember, was the New York Fire Department chaplain claimed as a gay hero by the Village Voice. Now isn't it sad to think how judgmental the laity was about NADGLM?

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