Fr. Peter Daly, pastor of St. John Vianney parish in Prince Frederick, Md., knows just how to find a sympathetic audience when one wants to protest a decision upholding Catholic morality and identity in the Church.
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Yesterday he recounted his recent trip to The Catholic University of America to speak at a meeting of CUAllies, the unrecognized LGBT student organization. CUA recently made news by denying official recognition to the group, citing a concern that it could become an “advocacy group.” Because of that decision, Fr. Daly wrote that “the students in CUAllies have more charity toward the [C]hurch than the [C]hurch, which once again this December, refused them recognition, has toward them.”
Fr. Daly compared the unrecognized student club to being a Christian in ancient Rome.
I felt like I was in a spy novel. Or maybe like a Christian in ancient Rome, trying to make contact with the [C]hurch of the catacombs. The email told me to stand in front of the student union building. Someone would meet me there and escort me to an undisclosed meeting room somewhere on campus. The location could not be announced ahead of time because the group itself did not even know where they would meet. They just had to find an empty room somewhere. As it turned out, the room we used was a lecture hall where I once taught a class on estates and trusts.
Despite the arrangements, this was not a spy rendezvous in a John le Carré novel. It was an ordinary meeting of CUAllies, the gay student group at The Catholic University of America.
He pointed out that the students use social media like Twitter to communicate “just like the pope.”
He wrote that at the meeting he told stories about gay people who had been mistreated and said of the gay couples, “they paint a picture of authentic love. Those relationships do not seem ‘intrinsically disordered.’”
Then he wrote:
They also show how the [C]hurch or the society was more concerned about rendering judgment than showing compassion. How can followers of Jesus be so cruel? Why does cruelty pass for orthodoxy? French essayist Anatole France said, “It is the certainty that they possess the truth that makes men cruel.”
At the end of my talk, one of the students asked, “What does the Catholic [C]hurch have to teach gay people?” I was touched that he would care what we have to say. I thought for a moment.
“The [C]hurch can teach gay people the same thing we want to teach all people. Love is the measure of our lives. When we speak about love, we also want to speak about commitment, fidelity, respect and dignity in human relationships. Also, everyone is asked to carry a cross at times. Everyone is asked to be chaste at times in their life.”
The students in CUAllies have more charity toward the church than the church, which once again this December, refused them recognition, has toward them.
The Catholic University of America is recommended in The Newman Guide to Choosing a Catholic College.
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