Setting up for schism

Setting up for schism

Remember that old computer game and TV show, “Where in the World is Carmen San Diego?” Let’s play “Where in the World is Walter Cuenin?”

Last week, Fr. Cuenin was in Rochester, New York, along with Fr. Bob Bowers, another infamous Boston priest, visiting Spiritus Christi Parish. Don’t be fooled: Spiritus Christi is not a Roman Catholic parish, but is a schismatic group that broke away from the Church after the Bishop of Rochester told them that they couldn’t have a woman con-celebrating the Mass (among other heresies). This is the home of the infamous Fr. Jim Callan, excommunicated, and his “co-pastor” “Rev.” Mary Ramerman. Oops sorry, their bulletin says that Jesus Christ is the pastor.

Anyway, in last week’s bulletin, we read the following:

Two internationally famous priests from the archdiocese of Boston visited us last weekend and were introduced at all the Masses.  Father Bob Bowers, 45, and Father Walter Cuenin, 59, are both in trouble with their archbishop.  Three years ago they organized a petition, signed by fifty-eight priests, calling for the removal of Cardinal Bernard Law because of his mishandling of the sex abuse crisis in Boston.  Both priests were pastors of prominent parishes known for their inclusive policies toward gay people and women, social justice advocacy, and outreach to the poor.  Both priests were recently removed from their parishes amid a huge uproar and protest by the people, similar to what happened at Corpus Christi seven years ago.  We wanted them to experience our church and see what can happen years later if they form a new and inclusive Catholic church.  Many parishioners encouraged them to start such a community.  Boston is ripe for it.  Please keep them in your prayers.

First, the information presented here is false. Bowers was not removed from his parish. He willingly took a leave of absence from ministry in a snit after his parish was closed. Cuenin willingly resigned after admitting he took money from his parish that he wasn’t entitled to.

But note the crux of what was written: Cuenin and Bowers were in Rochester visiting a schismatic group, apparently being encouraged to set up their own schismatic pseudo-Catholic church in Boston. What other reason could they have for visiting a schismatic, heretical group? Are they working on reconciliation with the Church? Doesn’t sound like it.

This is what happens when you don’t publicly denounce the heretics in your midst, especially among your priests: You set yourself up for scandal and schism that could take down unwary and unwitting lay Catholics with the perpetrators.

[Thanks to reader Dan for the link.]

Technorati Tags: Catholic, doctrine, priesthood, schism

Written by
Domenico Bettinelli