Cardinal O’Malley & Boston. Aux. Bishop Fail to Correct Transgender-Advocating Pastor

November 12, 2018

In case you are wondering what Cardinal O’Malley and Aux. Bishop Robert Reed did in follow-up of learning this bombshell news, Boston Parish Promotes Transgender “Rights” and Men Accessing Women’s Bathrooms. the answer is simple.  Next to nothing.

In that October 24 post, we reported how St. Ignatius in Chestnut Hill, MA had a full-page letter from their transgender parish administrator in the October 21 bulletin pushing opposition to a ballot question that would have restored sanity in the state and repealed an absurd law saying it was OK for men to use women’s restrooms.  More than 500 people signed our Change.org petition asking Cardinal O’Malley to fire the pastor and ensure a correction was issued in the bulletin, and to also speak out and tell Massachusetts Catholics to vote No on ballot Question 3.

None of the Massachusetts bishops said a peep about Question 3, freely letting people commit a sin by voting to preserve the evil law, and it was defeated by a huge margin.  And, all the pastor at St Ignatius did under pressure was issue a lame clarification buried several pages into the Nov. 4 bulletin, essentially backing the previous message   Here’s what he said:

Dear Parishioners,
As you know, in the bulletin on October 21 on the bottom of Michael Sennett’s courageous and beautiful letter to the parish, there was a YES on Proposition 3 symbol. That was Michael’s personal, heartfelt plea to you, our parishioners.

Of course, as pastor, my duty is first and foremost to encourage parishioners to inform their own conscience and make decisions for themselves. Fr. James Keenan, S.J., a Boston College moral theologian, recently wrote in an article on “Conscience and Synod on Youth” referring to the teaching of his late mentor, Fr. Klaus Demmer, “the first moral task for the church is to teach loud and clear, early and often, that we each have a conscience…The second task is to remind us that we must form and follow our consciences.1

It is important, therefore, to clarify that my, or any of our parish staff ’s, endorsement of a particular candidate for elected office or our express desire for a vote for or against a given proposition or proposal is not to be taken as a reflection of an official position of the Church or the Archdiocese of Boston.

Let us honestly share with one another our views and feelings, respectfully listening and learning from each other, so that justice and the protection of human dignity from womb to tomb – our Gospel values – will win out in this and every time we exercise our democratic right to vote.

Please remember to vote on Tuesday.

Peace,
Fr. Joe

This is wrong in so many ways. All transgenders have (or had) gender dysphoria, which is most often caused by psychological issues which are treatable and should be treated. They need help. The pastor’s duty is to be a shepherd of souls, to help the souls under his care to avoid sin and get to heaven, not just to let people make up their own minds however they choose.  Can. 528 §1 says:

“The parish priest has the obligation of ensuring that the word of God is proclaimed  in its entirety to those living in the parish. He is therefore to see to it that the lay  members of Christ’s faithful are instructed in the truths of faith…With the collaboration of the faithful, he is to make every effort to bring the gospel message to those also who have given up religious practice or who do not profess the true faith.”

This pastor, Rev. Joseph Costantino, S.J., Pastor <pastor.st.ignatius@bc.edu> is doing the opposite of his duty.  And Cardinal O’Malley, Vicar General Bishop Peter Uglietto, and Aux. Bishop Robert Reed are looking the other way pretending nothing is wrong.  We would invite BCI readers to contact Bishop Uglietto <vicar_general@rcab.org>, and Bishop Reed at 508-650-3545 or <reed(at)catholictv.org> and let them know what you think of the inaction.  And pray for the pastor and parishioners.

St. John Chrysostum said “The road to hell is paved with the skulls of erring priests, with bishops as their signposts.”  Does anyone believe this to not be the case here in Boston?

 

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Boston Globe’s Jeff Jacoby: Three Reasons to vote No on Question 3

November 6, 2018

While Boston’s Cardinal Sean O’Malley and the other spineless MA bishops let people be led into sin by not telling them to vote No on Question 3, and the Boston Pilot remained silent on the issue as well, at least we have the Boston Globe’s Jeff Jacoby putting himself out there with a courageous a voice of reason on the issue in his column yesterday, “Three reasons to vote No on Question 3.”  Here it is:


QUESTION 3 on the Nov. 6 ballot in Massachusetts asks voters whether they want to retain or repeal a 2016 state law that makes it illegal to discriminate against transgender people in places of public accommodation. That law specifies that any place with separate facilities for males and females, such as bathrooms and locker rooms, must allow access to individuals on the basis of their “gender identity,” regardless of their biological sex.

The measure doesn’t appear to be very contentious. If a Suffolk University/Boston Globe poll released on Monday is correct, 68 percent of Massachusetts voters intend to vote Yes on Question 3, to keep the law on the books.

I’m with the 28 percent who plan to vote No. In my view, there are at least three reasons why the transgender-identity law was a mistake and should be rejected.

1. When anti-discrimination laws are expanded, freedom of association — a core human liberty — is infringed.
I oppose laws that force private businesses or organizations to serve customers or accept patrons against their will. Private vendors, employers, and places of public accommodation should have broad legal freedom to decide for themselves whom they wish to deal with. The only exception I support is banning discrimination based on race, since American law for so many generations mandated racial repression and discrimination. Otherwise, there should be no “protected” categories at all. Where liberty and free choice flourish, bigotry and xenophobia tend to recede. Society should rely on the power of markets and public sentiment to eliminate invidious discrimination, not the iron fist of regulators and prosecutors.

Granted, this is theoretical. The wholesale repeal of anti-bias statutes is not in the cards. But at least the pressure to expand those laws by adding more and more demographic groups to the already lengthy list of protected classes should be resisted.

Transgender individuals should always be treated with respect — that should go without saying. But Massachusetts should also respect its citizens’ freedom of association, and trust them to use their own judgment when gender identity is at issue.

2. Massachusetts has already shown that it can routinely accommodate transgender access — no law required.
Addressing Question 3 in a statement last Monday, the University of Massachusetts assured the “100,000 students, faculty, staff, and guests” who are on UMass campuses each day that regardless of the referendum result, bathrooms and changing facilities will continue to be open to anyone who wants to use them.

”We will retain our present policy on restroom and locker room access on our campuses by allowing transgender and gender-nonconforming students, faculty, staff, and guests to choose facilities consistent with their gender identity,” the statement said.

What is true of UMass is true of every establishment in Massachusetts: They can sort this out for themselves. Supporters of the Yes on 3 campaign include many of the largest corporations, sports teams, labor unions, police organizations, and colleges in the state. None of them needs Beacon Hill to tell them how to operate their bathrooms or other intimate spaces.

Everyone in Massachusetts goes to the bathroom, and 99.9 percent of the time, people use the facilities suited to their needs without causing problems for anyone else. They were doing so before the 2016 law was passed. They’ll do so if the law is overturned.

That leaves the 0.1 percent of instances when the presence of an anatomical male in a space meant for females does cause genuine distress, and leads to my third argument for voting No on Question 3:

3. The transgender-identity law ignores sensitive issues of privacy and vulnerability.
Opponents of the 2016 law didn’t mobilize to put this referendum on the ballot because they object to transgender people being served in coffee shops, bookstores, or hotels. The opposition is fueled solely by concern about the tiny fraction of cases in which the mismatch between someone’s bodily sex and gender identity is not only obvious, but makes women or girls uneasy.

Such cases may be rare, but they are real. In December 2017, a biological male who identifies as a woman sought out a women’s spa in Milton for a “full Brazilian” waxing. When the spa was unwilling to perform a pubic waxing on a customer with male genitalia, the customer filed a complaint under the public accommodations law with the Attorney General’s office. (The complaint was withdrawn before the case went to litigation.)

When the Legislature added “gender identity” to the public accommodations law, it could have exempted private spaces that are routinely segregated by sex. Its refusal to do so is the sole reason the law is now being challenged. The 2016 law rides roughshod over the discomfort, reserve, and modesty of women and girls at the presence of male bodies in a place meant for females only.

This is not an illegitimate concern. Indeed, Massachusetts legislators acknowledged as much, when they passed a 1998 law exempting women’s gyms from the state’s public-accommodations law. Normally there is no justification for discrimination by sex or gender. But it is only common sense that bathrooms, showers, waxing salons, and other intimate environments require special sensitivity.

The gender-identity law jettisons that sensitivity. Voters, in response, should jettison the law

(Jeff Jacoby is a columnist for The Boston Globe).


MA Bishops, Cardinal O’Malley Cop-out on Transgender Bathroom Bill

November 5, 2018

Here it is, one day before election day, and Cardinal O’Malley, Boston Aux. Bishops Robert Reed and Mark O’Connell, and all of the MA bishops have completely caved and copped-out on voicing even a word of opposition to the transgender bathroom bill.  Not a peep! A good friend of BCI said yesterday that’s exactly what they would have expected, but BCI and other faithful Catholics are still mad.

It’s simple–there’s a ballot question people worked hard to get on the ballot that would reverse a law that says men can use women’s restrooms and locker rooms whenever they want.  The arguments against it are simple:

  • It’s bad for women. Even prominent homosexuals are coming out against it.  The first lesbian reinstated to the U.S. Army, Miriam Ben-Shalom, has come out against transgender bathrooms saying, “the current law regarding bathrooms in Massachusetts, which allows transgender people to use opposite-sex facilities, is not a matter of civil rights.” Instead, “it’s a matter of unspeakable oppression against females.” “Women and children should not be forced to deal with males in their spaces, whether it be locker rooms or bathrooms.”
  • It’s an issue of privacy and public safety.. Here is a link to a list of 26 bathroom incidents that have been in the news. The concern is not that transgendered individuals are more likely to be sexual predators, but rather that sexual predators could exploit such laws –and are already doing so today — by posing as transgendered in order to gain access to women and girls. The list of bathroom incidents includes 15 in the news since 2016 alone.
  • Under the law, any attempt to block a man from entering the women’s locker room, dressing room, or bathroom could result in individual penalties of up to $50,000 and a year in prison.
  • An analysis of 220 media-reported sexual offenses in Target stores found a  2.3X increase in the amount of “upskirt” incidents after they announced their transgender bathroom policy, and a 2.9X increase in peeping tom incidents after the policy.  See “Sexual Violence Reports in Target Spike After Transgender Bathroom Policy: Study
  • Businesses are also affected, like a female spa owner who faces a discrimination claim for declining to wax the genitals of a man identifying as a woman.
  • As described at VoteNoTo3.com, the pro-transgender movement is positioning a mental disorder as a civil right. And the cost to us is the loss of our rights. Transgenderism is not a civil right, but an uncivil wrong!
  • Transgenderism is not a unique form of self-expression, but a mental disorder that needs psychological treatment and our prayers.
  • Opponents of transgenderism are not crazy bigots, but sane and loving people who care about their families, faith, and freedom

Bishop O’Connell in a town hall meeting in Wakefield two weeks ago gave several different excuses for why the bishops weren’t speaking out–one excuse after another when the person questioning him on the matter explained why the bishop’s initial response was bogus.  As described by several people at the event, including the person who asked the question, first Bishop O’Connell said that sometimes if we’re winning on an issue, the bishops don’t speak out because it could backfire and cause opinions to change in an unfavorable way. The person who asked the question pointed out that we’re way behind, so that explanation was silly. Then he said the bishops don’t want to offend people.  The questioner said it sounded like he wasn’t concerned about people being led to mortal sin.  Then he said he personally wasn’t doing anything because he’s just a “soldier” and hasn’t been told to do anything. Based on his responses, BCI thinks he’s nothing but a wimp.  So is Cardinal O’Malley and so are all of the MA Catholic bishops.

Then there’s the matter of practically nothing done about the scandal at St. Ignatius in Chestnut Hill, where a letter was published in the parish bulletin encouraging parishioners to vote Yes on Question 3.  

Was the pastor fired?  No.  Was there a correction published in the parish bulletin to undo the damage done?  No.  The pastor is still there, and merely published a minor clarification buried several pages back where he still complimented the person who wrote the “beautiful” letter and merely clarified that the “Vote Yes on 3” message and logo was not necessarily expressing the opinion of the Catholic Church or Archdiocese of Boston.  Bishop Reed and Cardinal O’Malley should both resign — along with that pastor — for their complete abdication of episcopal responsibility,  tacit allowing of souls to be led to sin, and likely mortal sin, and  lack of courage to preach the gospel in-season and out of season.

Please pass this on to friends and family members in MA and urge them to vote No on Question 3.


Update on Transgender Bathroom Bill, Bishop O’Connell Town Hall, and MA Bishops

October 26, 2018

Just a few quick updates for readers.  First, here’s the well-done video ad from KeepMASafe that supposedly sparked the transgender parish administrator at St. Ignatius to publish his letter in the parish bulletin saying people should vote “yes” on Question 3.  Please share the video with friends and family members so they know they should vote “No” on Question 3.

In view of there being zero activity by the MA Catholic bishops on this, those fighting this battle need any donation they can get, regardless of how small.  Here’s how to donate:

votenoto3.com  No-holds-barred group (MassResistance) that knows how to get in the trenches and fight hard.

keepmasafe.com: This is the pro-family group that did all of the work to get this measure on the ballot.

These links bring you directly to pages where you can donate online.  They need every dollar you can spare.

Regarding the Bishop Mark O’Connell Town Hall meeting last night in Wakefield, due to an emergency, BCI was unable to attend, but people who attended have started giving us reports.  If you were there or know someone who attended, please post your feedback and/or notes in Comments belowon this post or email them to us at bostoncatholicinsider@gmail.com or submit via the anonymous Contact Us link.

We are told that Bishop O’Connell said Cardinal O’Malley and regional bishop Reed are aware of the situation at St. Ignatius reported in our most recent post and “something will be done.”  That is usually code for “absolutely nothing will be done,” but we shall see.  And Bishop O’Connell tried to reframe the root cause of the clergy sexual abuse crisis as not being about homosexuality more than once. He got a lot of push-back from people in the audience.  We will share more details as soon as we’ve heard from more people who were there.


BOMBSHELL: Boston Parish Promotes Transgender “Rights” and Men Accessing Women’s Bathrooms

October 24, 2018

Just when we thought we’d seen it all, a Boston Archdiocesan parisImage result for transgenderh led by a “gay-friendly’ pastor has done something worse than we could have imagined.  The “gay-friendly” pastor at St. Ignatius of Loyola in Chestnut Hill — welcomed by Cardinal O’Malley to the parish in 2016 despite his published history of leading a “gay-friendly” parish in New York City — has a full-page propaganda letter in their parish bulletin touting the parish administrator’s story as a transgender person and urging parishioners to vote “Yes” on the upcoming “Bathroom Bill” ballot question. A “Yes” means the existing law stands that allows transgender people to use whatever bathroom they please. A “No” means the law would be repealed, restoring safety and sanity to the Commonwealth by simply saying that people should use the restroom of their biological gender, as it’s been for the nearly 200 years since there have been public restrooms.

Please sign our Change.org petition to urge Cardinal O’Malley to immediately remove the pastor of the parish and also ask the Massachusetts Catholic bishops to issue a clear public statement that they support a “No” vote on Question 3.

First, excerpts from the letter from the transgender parish administrator:

stignatius

Dear Parishioners,
I delivered the below text at a recent interfaith action event for transgender equality, hosted by Temple Israel of Boston…

One of the most frustrating aspects of being a catholic trans man is that people often insist on praying for me, but never with me. On the surface, they may appear well intentioned, and undoubtedly some are sincere. Yet, I know there are folks who pray for me to…change who I am at the very core of my being. They pray for what they assume to be a choice, a sickness, a disorder…. Opponents find comfort in limiting my human rights…This hatred and fear mongering is used to validate repeals to our protections, as is the case with Massachusetts Ballot Question 3… this measure seeks to roll back public protections for the transgender community.  A no vote would succeed in stripping trans people of our rights, whereas a yes vote would preserve current legislation.

I never imagined that my faith would become a battleground. Often, I feel caught between my two communities…I exist in both communities without being a contradiction. If anything, my identities enhance each other. The choice I make is to reclaim what it means to be queer and religious in today’s world…

I cannot deny I benefit from privileges that others in the trans community do not. I experience passing privilege, meaning most people would not realize I am a trans man, unless I willingly outed myself. I am white, I come from a loving and supportive family, and I was able to receive a college education. My insurance has fully covered trans related services.   However, many of my trans siblings are faced with difficult choices…

…we encourage the people of Massachusetts to love the transgender community, and uphold the protections in the name of dignity. Thank you!

(At the bottom of the bulletin page, there is a “Yes on 3” logo, clearly implying the support of the pastor for this position)

To say the publication of this in a Catholic church bulletin is terrible and outrageous is an understatement.  The salvation of many souls is put at high risk by this.  The smoke of Satan has clearly infiltrated this church.

People do indeed need to pray for the parish administrator, whether he wants the prayers or not, as well as the pastor, Fr. Joseph Constantino, who was well-known as an advocate for the gay agenda before coming to this parish (see this post and ChurchMilitant’s report, “”NY CHURCH DRAPES ALTAR STEPS WITH GAY FLAG”)

Here’s what people need to know about transgenderism and the bathroom bill.

First, yes, it is indeed an issue of privacy and public safety, and here is a link to a list of 26 bathroom incidents that have been in the news. It’s important to note that the concern is not that transgendered individuals are more likely to be sexual predators, but rather that sexual predators could exploit such laws by posing as transgendered in order to gain access to women and girls. The list of bathroom incidents includes 15 in the news since 2016 alone, showing this concern about safety and privacy is legitimate.  Here are just two examples:

This predatory behavior inflicts serious emotional and psychological harm on the victims.   Under the law, any attempt to block a man from entering the women’s locker room, dressing room, or bathroom could result in individual penalties of up to $50,000 and a year in prison. Businesses are also affected, like a female spa owner who faced a discrimination claim for declining to wax the genitals of a man identifying as a woman.

That’s part of the issue, but there’s more to it than that, as described at VoteNoTo3.com. What’s happening is the pro-transgender movement is positioning a mental disorder as a civil right. And the cost to us is the loss of our rights.

  1. Transgenderism is not a civil right, but an uncivil wrong
  2. Transgenderism is not a unique form of self-expression, but a mental disorder
  3. Transgenders need psychiatric assistance, not public accommodation
  4. Opponents of transgenderism are not crazy bigots, but sane and loving people who care about their families, faith, and freedom

Cardinal O’Malley needs to remove the pastor of the parish immediately and have a correction published in the parish bulletin. He and the Massachusetts Catholic bishops also need to come out publicly and voice their support for voting No on Question 3.  They and the do-nothing Mass Catholic Conference have been silent on this, and for the salvation of souls, they need to speak out and encourage their pastors and clergy to speak out.

Please sign our petition to immediately ask Cardinal O’Malley and the MA Catholic bishops to correct this situation.

In his 2006 Letter on Homosexuality, Cardinal O’Malley said the following:

It is never easy to deliver a message that calls people to make sacrifices or to do difficult things….We must teach the truths of the Gospel in season and out of season. These recent times seem to us like it is out of season, but for that very reason it is even more urgent to teach the hard words of the Gospel today.

Friends and relatives of homosexual Catholics sometimes feel torn between their allegiance to Christ and their concern for their loved ones. I assure them that these goals are not incompatible….Calling people to embrace the cross of discipleship, to live the commandments and at the same time assuring them that we love them as brothers and sisters can be difficult. Sometimes we are told: If you do not accept my behavior, you do not love me. In reality we must communicate the exact opposite: “Because we love you, we cannot accept your behavior.”

Cardinal O’Malley, it’s currently “out of season!”  Evil triumphs when good men do nothing. Now is the time for you to stand up and do exactly what you said must be done in 2006!

Here’s a link to the Change.org petition which emails Cardinal O’Malley asking him to remove the St. Ignatius pastor and emails all Massachusetts bishops asking them to publicly urge MA voters to vote “No” on Question 3. Please spread the word to like-minded friends and family members and ask them to sign also.


“Town Hall” Meeting with Bishop O’Connell, Oct 25 in Wakefield

October 23, 2018

A BCI reader has passed on word of what looks like it could be a really worthwhile program this Thursday, Oct. 25 in Wakefield with Bishop Mark O’Connell, auxiliary bishop for the North region.  Here’s the bulletin listing:

From the Pastor’s Desk

Meeting with Bishop Mark O’Connell, Oct 25th at Most Blessed Sacrament, Wakefield

In view of recent events in the Church, the five parishes in Melrose and Wakefield; that is, St. Mary’s and Incarnation in Melrose and St. Joseph’s,  St. Florence’s and Most Blessed Sacrament in Wakefield are jointly sponsoring a question and answer session with our regional Bishop, Mark O’Connell.  The session will be held at Most Blessed Sacrament Parish Hall this Thursday evening, October 25th from 7-8:30pm.  All are cordially invited from these parishes and beyond.

Bishop O’Connell has an openness and willingness to discuss the current climate and issues in the Church.  At this event, he will first listen to anything anyone needs or wants to say to him as a bishop about the crisis, and then he will answer questions about the crisis or the Church.  We get our analysis about these things too often from the wrong places.  Our Church and politics and media are so antagonistic that the loudest voices are often the most extreme.  Bishop O’Connell has had much experience dealing with these issues and can share this past experience.  Your comments, concerns and anger will help inform him for future important meetings.

 Most Blessed Sacrament is located at 1155 Main St, Wakefield, MA 01880. We think Bishop O’Connell should be commended for his willingness to speak at this program and field questions, and the pastor and collaborative are to be commended for putting on the program and creating a forum for an open dialogue.  All interested are welcome to attend.  


New Election “ad” for Democrats

October 23, 2018

This short video was just passed to BCI by a reader.  We thought it was hysterical and wanted to share with readers.

This ad was definitely not approved by the DNC.  Enjoy!


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