Thursday, March 20, 2008

USF Update IV

Life in SF, or what our friends over at USF refer to as "the Gay Rome."*

Following up on our post of earlier today, we were happy to see a couple of wide-awake San Franciso Catholics take Fr. Privett to task today in the "Letters" page of this week's Catholic San Francisco.

We sent a letter in too, but they didn't print it. Here it is:

USF President Fr. Stephen Privett’s defense of his fellow Jesuit Fr. James Keenan (CSF 3/14/08) is brazenly duplicitous. The facts are easily found. Fr. Privett says Fr. Keenan “did not testify in support of gay marriage.” Well, the issue was Massachusetts Amendment H. 3190, which reads, in relevant part:

"… only the union of one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in Massachusetts. Any other relationship shall not be recognized as a marriage or its legal equivalent."

Did Fr. Keenan testify on this issue? Yes. His testimony, submitted to the Joint Committee on the Judiciary on April 28, 2003, begins: “I am here today to testify against H. 3190 because it is contrary to Catholic teaching on social justice.”

And it ends: “In this light, as a priest and as a moral theologian, I cannot see how anyone could use the Roman Catholic tradition to support H. 3190. On the contrary, the Catholic theological tradition stands against the active and unjust discrimination against the basic social rights of gay and lesbian persons. For these reasons, I urge you to recommend a no vote on H. 3190.”

So when Fr. Privett says Fr. Keenan “did not testify in support of gay marriage” his words are in the most technical legalistic sense true, but in reality a lie. Quite the role model for the students of USF. As for Fr. Keenan, I guess Fr. Privett better defend him, since he’ll be USF’s 2008 Summer Scholar-in-Residence.

Gibbons J. Cooney

San Francisco

*For the origin of "the gay Rome" tag, listen to this q & a from the USF "Queer Perspectives" seminar, held at, where else, Most Holy Redeemer.

Posted by Gibbons

2 comments:

Marjorie Campbell said...

You might also find Deal Hudson's column on the matter of interest. http://insidecatholic.com/Joomla/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=3115&Itemid=48

Gibbons J. Cooney said...

God bless him!