Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Tempest in Verona, WI (??!!)

You can expect a large hue and cry over this one.

After decades of honing his musical skills, Charles Philyaw landed his dream job in 2004 as the full-time director of music liturgy at St. Andrew Catholic Church in Verona.

The church, with 1,643 adult members, was more than just a place to work for Philyaw. He and his partner, James Mulder-Philyaw, joined the parish and participated fully in the religious community.

Then in June, it all collapsed. Philyaw said he was told by the parish priest, the Rev. Dave Timmerman, that he would no longer be retained because he was living an openly gay life. He was given two weeks' notice

It's the next sentence which is going to be played big:

"Absolutely, Chuck lost his job because he's openly gay," said Jo Ellen Kilkenny, one of the five whose inquiries triggered Philyaw's dismissal

Not exactly true.

Rev. Monsignor James Bartylla was asked about the Diocese' position on the matter.

While same-sex attraction is considered a disorder by the Catholic Church, it is not a sin in and of itself, Bartylla said. "It is acting on the attraction that makes it a sinful act, a grave depravity," he said.

People with same-sex attraction must control their desires and live chaste lives, he said. If they do so, they can participate fully in church life, including in leadership positions, he said.

Because of this distinction between same-sex attraction and acting on it, it would be a mistake to say the Catholic Church dismisses anyone from employment simply for their sexual orientation, King [spokesman for the Diocese of Madison] said.

It should be no different at all in a case of heterosexual co-habitation.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wondered when this might make it's way beyond the Madison paper. It's still generating scary letters in the paper: