Deal Hudson, editor of Crisis Magazine, offered his thoughts on the Archdiocese of Boston’s decision to ban all archdiocesan-related events from Our Lady Help of Christians Parish in Newton, Mass. Many people took it as a personal swipe at the pastor Father Walter Cuenin. Here’s an excerpt from Deal’s letter:
The article paints Father Cuenin as a successful and dynamic pastor who is a martyr to Law’s campaign of secrecy and deception, blaming the Cardinal for offering no explanation for his silencing of Cuenin.
Nothing could be further from the truth. For one thing, Father Cuenin’s “success”—at least in the eyes of the Boston Globe—has come about largely as a result of his wildly dissident positions. Take, for example, the following statements made by Cuenin in an article for The New Yorker entitled “The Reformer: A Priest’s Battle For a More Open Church”:
“Priests have been forced to remain silent about the supposedly unassailable prohibitions on birth control, second marriages, the ordination of married men and women.”
“The divorced should be allowed a front row seat, and not be told they are unworthy to approach the communion banquet.”
“Gays and lesbians should be in the other front row, and not told that their lives are ‘basically disordered.’”
Cuenin has complained that no official reasons were given for placing this ban on him or his church, but given the context of his comments, it’s no wonder that Law has intervened. Of course, the Globe would have you believe that Law is the one who’s completely out of line.
It also shouldn’t be surprising that Cuenin’s parish is one of the flagship members of Voice of the Faithful (VOTF) and that Cuenin himself has been a loud and active supporter of the group. He has even distributed ashes at a “Healing Mass” to pray for healing between VOTF and the Church.
Yet another indication that VOTF might be a bit more dissident than it claims.