There was just too much to share in our Part 1 post about open promotion of the gay agenda by priests in Boston and how Cardinal O’Malley coddles these priests, so we now bring you part 2. There will also be a Part 3 coming separately.
Fr. Stephen Josoma, pastor of St. Susanna in Dedham
Way back during Cardinal Bernard Law’s tenure, Irish parishioners at St. Brendan’s in Dorchester were scandalized to see their pastor, Fr. Ron Coyne and his ‘co-pastor,’ Fr. Steven Josoma, openly conducting themselves as a sexually intimate couple inside and outside the sanctuary. They sought intervention from the Vicar Forane, Auxiliary Bishop, Cardinal Law, and ultimately the Holy See, and when it got to the point where the priests were reportedly simulating the Sacrament of Marriage in the sanctuary to homosexual couples, the parishioners called the Cardinal’s office and demanded the removal of the priests. After both were sidelined for several years, under Cardinal Sean O’Malley both were reinstated as pastors.
In 2005, Josoma famously was doing a skit at a parish event with another gay-advocating buddy (now-former priest, Fr. Bob Bowers). As reported by the Globe, their skit included a joke with sexual innuendo about comparing a part of the male anatomy (“Mine’s bigger”).
Fast forward. At St. Susanna’s, the pastor and the parish were in the news in 2013 for plans to host a presentation by Austrian dissident priest, Fr. Helmut Schuller. The talk was part of a U.S. tour co-sponsored by 10 dissident organizations that publicly disagree with the Catholic Church’s teachings that prohibit homosexual activity, “gay marriage,” women priests, and married priests. Co-sponsors included gay-agenda-advocates like DignityUSA and New Ways Ministry, as well as Call to Action, FutureChurch, Voice of the Faithful, and Women’s Ordination Conference. Thankfully, Cardinal O’Malley banned the priest from speaking at St. Susanna’s, saying he would not allow anyone to speak on church property who advocates beliefs in conflict with church doctrine. (We wish that policy were upheld more consistently, but more on that in a moment). But why was Fr. Josoma on-board with having such a dissident present at his church in the first place?
Not long after that, in December 2014, Fr. Josoma’s parish featured as a faith formation speaker, Michael Hartwig–a former priest, vice rector and professor of moral theology at Holy Trinity Seminary in Dallas, who was relieved of his duties in Texas when he came out as a homosexual and left the seminary to live with his life partner, the head of the Dallas Gay Alliance. His name was in the news around a gay scandal at the seminary that hit papers after he left and took a job at Dominican-run Albertus Magnus College. and he was also in the news for having sued Albertus Magnus over their decision to not renew his contract because he represented himself as a former priest when he applied for the job but then revealed publicly in the Dallas Morning News he was actually a priest of the Dallas diocese “now on leave” (while at the Albertus Magnus living with his life partner). His topic for the faith formation series was “Divorce and Remarriage – Gay Marriage,” and the description said,
“Our theme this evening was to explore the relationship between Jesus’ and Paul’s teachings on marriage and contemporary patterns of marriage and to ask how the Church might advance these ideals in the contemporary context.”
If Fr. Josoma felt his parish would have benefited from authentic faith formation around the meaning and definition of marriage as Jesus Christ taught us, and current threats to those teachings, surely he could have found a better speaker than a gay former priest who took off to live a homosexual lifestyle with his life partner, couldn’t he?
Fr. Walter Cuenin, former pastor at Our Lady Help of Christians and former chaplain at Brandeis University.
Our Lady’s, under his leadership, was known as “gay-friendly” for years and he was renowned for having preached at a Gay Pride interfaith gathering and testified against an amendment to ban gay marriage. What’s astounding is the fact that his public advocacy for the gay agenda and leading souls away from salvation went on virtually unchecked for roughly 12 years under Cardinal Sean O’Malley. Consider the following:
- April 2002: Cuenin testified to a MA legislative committee in opposition to a proposed amendment that would have banned gay marriage. He argued that Defense of Marriage Amendment amendment seemed to violate the Catechism of the Catholic Church because homosexual marriage was a human rights issue.
- September 2002: In a New Yorker article entitled, “The Reformer“, he said gays and lesbians should be allowed a front-row seat at church and not be told that their lives are “basically disordered.”
- May 2005: Our Lady’s bulletin has a notice that the Gay and Lesbian Faith Sharing group invites all parishioners to Boston’s Gay Pride Parade
- June 2006: Cuenin was the featured speaker at the Gay Pride interfaith prayer service.
- April 2007: Cuenin speaks in Lexington at Interfaith Forum on topic of “God, Gays, and Faith.” Faithful Catholic, Alice Slattery sent an urgent request to Cardinal O’Malley prior to the talk asking him to intervene and stop the talk, but she got no response. She then sent a follow-up letter to Cardinal O’Malley_on April 12 2007 giving more background on Cuenin and also naming other officials and priests from the Archdiocese with past involvement in pushing the gay agenda. (more on this in Part 3). She also got not response. (Perhaps the letter was received by Fr. Kickham?!) Alice also had a letter published in the local Lexington newspaper saying that “Cuenin doesn’t represent all Catholics.“
- February 2012: Cuenin, in an interview with the New Ways Ministry, said:
“The Catholic Church opposes gay marriage, so I cannot directly say I support it, but I have seen from my experience that for many people it creates a much healthier environment..For example, if you were to go to Provincetown in the summer time, where a lot of gay people go, it’s a radically different place today than it was 20 years ago,’ Cuenin said. ‘They are there with children and married, raising kids, so they go home at night. In other words, it has transformed the whole gay scene.”
(BCI comment: Why would a celibate Catholic priest be checking out the gay scene in gay mecca, Provincetown, for decades and be so familiar with it?)
- October 2014: Cuenin, in his assignment as Catholic chaplain at Brandeis University, had what he described as an “enormous gay pride” rainbow flag displayed outside the chapel to “recognize Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer History Month. In an article in the Brandeis Hoot, he is described as an “official LGBT ally on campus through his work with Trisk (Brandeis‘ LGBTQ+ student social grou). He also continuously makes himself available and accessible to struggling students in his role as a confidential resource.” (BCI comment: so young people struggling with their sexual identity go for counseling from a Catholic priest who’s on the record as saying he feels homosexual activity and gay marriage are positive things?)
Fr. Cuenin left Brandeis in January of 2015 for health reasons and is currently a senior priest in the Archdiocese of Boston. He has been out of the news since his departure from Brandeis.
After years of complaints to both Cardinals Law and O’Malley about Fr. Cuenin’s promotion of homosexuality, he was finally removed as pastor by Cardinal O’Malley not for his public dissent from Catholic teachings, but rather based on the results of a financial audit that showed improper use of church funds for a leased car and excessive payment of Mass stipends. Then Cardinal O’Malley reassigned him be a college campus chaplain, where he was allowed to freely counsel students confused about their sexuality and fly a Rainbow flag over the campus chapel.
Many priests in the Archdiocese — certainly a large minority of the presbyterate and perhaps a slight majority of those between 55 and 75 — are homosexual men, and many of those have come to understand themselves by reference to their sexual identity as the gay subculture defines it. Does Cardinal O’Malley see this as a problem?
Why has Cardinal O’Malley coddled priests like those named above and in Part 1 (plus others) and allowed them to stay in active ministry where they are leading souls astray and away from salvation?
More in Part 3.