Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Jesuit On The Wafer War

Barbara Johnson
Barbara Johnson parents were aging and were connected to an unfamiliar church, one they were too infirm to even visit. Johnson and her three siblings, spread around the region, didn’t know the parish, its culture or its members. Nor did they know its pastor, the Rev. Thomas LaHood, who last month in a church bulletin compared gay marriage to slavery. What’s next for Fr. Marcel Guarnizo is unclear. In his statement, he questioned the Washington archdiocese’s handling of the case and its allegations of his intimidation. 
Some Catholic commentators noted how unusual it is for a priest to publicly contradict and criticize his superiors. Doctrine dictates that priests are to be submissive to their bishops. “If I was Cardinal Wuerl, I’d buy him a one-way ticket to Moscow,” said the Rev. Thomas Reese, a Washington Jesuit and former editor of the prominent liberal Catholic magazine America. “These days, arch-conservative priests feel much more comfortable attacking their bishops than do liberals because they feel they’ll get support from conservative Catholic blogs and maybe some in the Vatican.” 
While Guarnizo has been fiercely attacked by liberal Catholics and non-Catholics, conservative Catholics have rushed to defend his decision to deny Johnson Communion. That Johnson ultimately received the sacrament from a lay minister that day hardly seems to matter at this point.


Anonymous said...

Why did you have to post her oh-so butch face? Just to look at her, you know exactly what she's about.

stretch marks said...

Some Catholic commentators noted how unusual it is for a priest to publicly contradict and criticize his superiors. Doctrine dictates that priests are to be submissive to their bishops.

Anonymous said...

sometimes it is a 'stretch' to be submissive if compromise is not

Anonymous said...

"Why did you have to post her oh-so butch face?"

Oh man, that's a cruel thing to write. Jesus wept. I will pray for you.

Maria said...

Barbara Johnson: “All That Matters Is Love”
March 20, 2012

Barbara Johnson arrives to the Symposium with Francis DeBernardo (All photos by Deborah Winarski)
Those words were spoken by Barbara Johnson, the Catholic lesbian woman who had been denied communion at her mother’s funeral, when she appeared at New Ways Ministry’s Seventh National Symposium on St. Patrick’s Day last week. For many participants, Ms. Johnson’s visit was the highlight of the three-day event.

New Ways Ministry’s Executive Director Francis DeBernardo introduced Ms. Johnson, pointing out how though she had been the victim of this liturgical abuse, she, because of her courage, strength, and faith, was also the main healer of many who experienced her pain vicariously.

Barbara and Ruth
After a brief talk to the assembled Symposium participants, Barbara was joined on the stage by her partner, Ruth, DeBernardo presented them with flowers and then led the Symposium participants in a blessing of the couple and of their family.

Excerpts from Barbara Johnson’s talks follow (you can read the rest here @

Father Martin has some sympathetic words up at Sensum Fidelum, a blog for "Minnesota Marriage Equality" @

Cardinal Wuerl doesn't strike me as the sort of guu who would be out golfing. Would it be too much to ask him to, I don't know, nurture the sensum fidelum w/ a little outrage? Probably too much to ask. Persecuting priest like Fr. Guarnizo is SO time consuming.

Anonymous said...

To Anon 2:43, her face is butch; you cannot deny that. She even chooses to have a butch haircut. Why is it cruel to point out the obvious? Oh, it's because politically correct, condescending twits like you cannot stand it when the truth is spoken plainly; so you call whatever you disagree with "cruel" or "hate speech" in an attempt to intimidate people into silence.

Jesus weeps for the distortion of his creation by sexual deviants and those who obscure the natural law and the truth of Revelation. Male and female he created them. This is why a man leaves his father and mother and clings to his wife, and the two become one flesh.

Anonymous said...

Love one another.