Homosexual Activism in the Archdiocese of San Francisco.
Part III: Most Holy Redeemer

Most Holy Redeemer Staff

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Most Holy Redeemer Parish Staff: Donal Godfrey, SJ

 

The atmosphere at MHR can corrupt good priests and laypeople. We are all sinners. We have no desire to attack any person, clerical or lay, for the sake of attacking, but if we are to show the harm caused by the embracing of homosexuality at MHR, we must tell the truth.

Although Father Donal Godfrey was, until early September 2010, the Executive Director of University Ministry at the (Jesuit) University of San Francisco and not officially a member of the Most Holy Redeemer staff, he is a fixture in the parish.

Again we ask you to remember our thesis, which was reinforced by a reading of Fr. Godfrey's book "Gays and Grays: The Story of the Gay Community at Most Holy Redeemer Catholic Church":
 

"Most Holy Redeemer is not a Catholic church with gay members. It is a gay spiritual institution that is willing to use Catholicism, including the sacraments, just as far as they can be made "inclusive" of the formative experience of the parish, which is homosexuality, and no farther."

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Fr. Godfrey may be the most prominent homosexual activist Catholic priest in the world today. His book "Gays and Grays: the Story of the Gay Community at Most Holy Redeemer Catholic Church" is the best possible support for our thesis that Most Holy Redeemer is no longer a Catholic Church, but a gay spiritual institution.

This could be demonstrated by an exhaustive set of quotations from Father's book. Two are below, and you may go here for more. For a full review of the book, go here.

“(Rev. Jim) Mitsulki (of Metropolitan Community Church) has very fond memories of ‘Fr. Tony’ (McGuire)…Mitsulki speaks of a certain revolving-door factor operating between their respective congregations. Some attended services at both churches . . . Sometimes parishioners from Most Holy Redeemer went to MCC for same-sex weddings they could not hold at MHR.” p54.

“Well the question in my mind was, the people who make a conscientious decision to live together as a gay couple, and then they come to communion, just like people who make a similar decision on birth control, you don’t harass them. You respect their decision. The next step was, ‘Can a clearly gay couple take on open ministries in the church?’ Like if a gay couple apply for ordination, that would clearly be an obex. What about Eucharistic Ministers? I thought maybe I should consult [Archbishop Quinn], but then we already had them!” Fr. Anthony McGuire, quoted p52.

So both parishioners and priests are prepared to abandon Church teachings when that teaching conflicts with gay spirituality. And what's Father Godfrey's attitude? A sample:

"Is it less appropriate for gays to imagine Jesus as gay than for African Christians to picture him as black, Asian Christians as Asian?" "Gays and Grays", p 134.

"These are the people who might only attend Mass irregularly, but still have a sense of belonging to the community…" "Gays and Grays" p136.

"The question is can a gay person be authentically Jewish or Christian or Catholic?" "Gays and Grays"

"I believe in other words, that the gospel must always be inculturated into every culture, and this must include gay culture." "Gays and Grays" p138.

"I will not feign academic objectivity: if such a thing really exists. I firmly believe in a new approach and a new vision in this area of ministry. In this I do have an 'agenda.'" p132.


Here's Fr. Godfrey ministering to his flock:

at the 2003 "Gay Pride Parade". Images 32, 33, & 34.

at the Gay Service of April 29, 2007, broadcast worldwide on BBC radio. Images 2 & 3. Audio here.

at the 2007 Castro Street Fair. Images 5, 6, & 7.


Father Godfrey's field of action is not limited to Most Holy Redeemer. After his book was published, he was appointed Executive Director of University Ministry at the University of San Francisco.

This gave Fr. Godfrey an even larger opportunity to proselytize for his "new approach and a new vision in this area of ministry":

November 15, 2007: speaks at Boston College. His topic is his book “Gays and Grays.” The address is sponsored by the Theology Department, The Jesuit Institute, St. Ignatius Parish, and the “Lesbian Gay Faculty Staff Administrators Association at Boston College.”

November 29, 2007: adresses the weekly “Lavender Lunch” at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, California. The event is sponsored by the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies in Religion and Ministry. From the event listing “Fr. Donal will present case studies of Most Holy Redeemer parish in The Castro and the University of San Francisco. These two very differing institutions are Catholic examples of best practice with regard to the LGBTQ community.”

November 30, 2007: speaks at the University on his book “Gays and Grays: The Story of the Gay Community at Most Holy Redeemer Catholic Parish.” The talk is sponsored by the Lane Center for catholic Studies and Social Thought (whoalso sponsored the "Queer Perspectives: Is it Ethical to be Catholic" seminar at MHR).

March 3, 2008: Writes opinion piece "Toward a Church Apology for Gay Prejudice" in the Australian publication EurekaStreet.com.au

Quote: "Indeed churches have often been profoundly unloving toward the GLBT community. Many Catholics andother Christians long for their churches to be places of welcome for all people and commit themselves topursuing this goal...Pastoral practices are changing in some places. Nonetheless parishes like Most Holy Redeemer remain the exception."

March 9, 2008: Celebrates Mass and gives the homily at Most Holy Redeemer Church. The homily is entitled "The Call to Come Out." Fr. Godfrey draws a parallel between Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead and homosexual persons coming "out" about their homosexuality. The homily begins:

"Joshua Gamson, Professor of Sociology at the University of San Francisco, writes in his book, The Fabulous Sylvester, that by 1975 San Francisco was to gay men and lesbians what Israel was to Jews, only with fewer wars and more parties. San Francisco was where you went to come out and be gay...

Bill Huebsch sees the process by which LGBTQ Christians journey to greater and deeper union with God as similar to Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead:

'Lesbians and gay men will tell you that the truth is this: sexuality is a gift from God and homosexuality is one expression of that gift. That’s the truth that has set so many lesbians and gay men free at last. And in this coming out gay men and lesbians often say that, for the first time, it is now clear how God touches us with eternal truth.'"

July 18, 2008: visits World Youth Day in Australia.

Fr. Godfrey is attending an "Acceptance" forum. "Acceptance" --"gay, lesbian, bisexual, & transgender Catholics"--is a sort of Australian version of "DignityUSA." Check out the photos--its the same old LGBT story. The Acceptance folks were not allowed to attend the official World Youth Day events. ABCNews.au reported:

"The organisers of the forum had tried to have the event included in the event's Youth Festival but were told it did not fit within church policies."

Fr. Godfrey was also interviewed on the air.

October 18, 2008: is quoted in the San Francisco Chronicle, questioning the motive of His Excellency George Niederauer for supporting Proposition 8:

"You can hardly blame them for their caution, said (Fr. Donal) Godfrey, who is the executive director of university ministry at the University of San Francisco. "The bishops must feel pressure to go along," he said. 'There aren't that many going around campaigning for (Prop. 8). I think they signed off on (the e-mail) and hoped it ends soon.'"

December 13, 2008: In an article in Catholic San Francisco, Fr. Godfrey had this comment:

"Jesuit Father Donal Godfrey, executive director of University Ministry at the University of San Francisco, said that while he 'personally opposed Prop 8 which is a matter of conscience,' he "did not feel that this was the right occasion for a speech such as this."

Emphasis added. In case anyone has forgotten, here is the text of Proposition 8:

"Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California."

July 2-5, 2009: Fr. Godfrey gives a workshop at the DignityUSA Convention in San Francisco.

For a more complete chronology, go here.

On September 3, 2010, an article in the California Catholic Daily revealed that Fr. Godfrey's long-time friend and associate, Mr. Patrick Mulcahey, was teaching workshops on the slave/master lifestyle at the "Master Slave Conference 2010." It was subsequently shown that Mr. Mulcahey had been leading workshops at such events for a number of years. See here and here, for just two examples.


Let's revisit another quotation from "Gays and Grays":

"I believe in other words, that the gospel must always be inculturated into every culture, and this must include gay culture." "Gays and Grays" p138.

It all sounds so harmless. But to see what 25 years of "welcome" and "inculturation" have meant at Most Holy Redeemer, visit this page.

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