From Stella Borealis come this entry about the annual Pentecost challenge made by a homosexual activist group to the local Archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis. The group concerned is called Rainbow Sash.
Adherents of Rainbow Sash publicly protest the Church’s teaching on homosexuality by making a public display of themselves during the time of Holy Communion during a Mass for Pentecost at the Cathedral of the Archdiocese. In other words, they seek to receive Communion while protesting the Church’s teachings.
My emphases and comments.
Archbishop Nienstedt Responds to Rainbow Sash Alliance
Archbishop John C. Nienstedt of the Archdiocese of St. Paul-Minneapolis has responded to a letter by Brian McNeill, organizer of Rainbow Sash Alliance USA, in which McNeill notified the archbishop that – as in previous years – lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Catholics and their allies would be present wearing rainbow sashes at this year’s Pentecost Sunday noon Mass at the Cathedral of St. Paul ["as in previous years"… which means that they are both contumacious and persistent in their contumacy.]
Notes McNeill on the Rainbow Sash Alliance USA website:
"We cannot repeat too often that we attend Mass on Pentecost to celebrate who we are, not to protest. We participate in Mass in the same way we do all the other days of the year. But on Pentecost we come out of the closet as lgbt Catholics, family and friends to remind our fellow Catholics that we too are part of God’s loving family."
McNeill’s letter to the archbishop also stressed that the rainbow sash represents and invites dialogue between LGBT Catholics and the Roman Catholic hierarchy.
Following is Archbishop Nienstedt’s response.
I write to acknowledge your letter of May 10, 2009, alerting me to the fact that you and some fellow protesters [His Excellency is not falling for this.] will be wearing rainbow sashes at the noon Mass on Pentecost in the Cathedral of St. Paul. I ask you to refrain from such a public act of dissent, especially as it so clearly shows disrespect and irreverence for the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ. [Archbp. Neinstedt has called it as he sees it.]
Anyone wearing a “rainbow sash” will not be permitted to receive Holy Communion, since their dissent is a sign that they have publicly broken communion with the Church’s teaching. I also ask that those not wearing the sashes refrain from sharing the Holy Eucharist with those who do. [In other words, don’t go up and receive a Host and then give it to a protester. Hmmm… I wonder if that would fall under can. 1367, which covers not only throwing away the Sacred Species (abicere) but any contemptous treatment of the Eucahrist. Now that they have been so instructed, were they to do such a thing would be pretty close to what the canon describes.] Such an action is unbecoming the dignity of the sacrament.
With regard to the dialogue you request, it would first be essential that you state clearly that you hold with the conviction all that the Church teaches on matters of human sexuality. If you do not believe, then there cannot be dialogue, but only debate. The truths of our faith are not open to debate.
Again, I hope you will see how disruptive your planned protest will be for those who will gather on Pentecost to pray. I ask you to refrain from being the cause of such disruption.
Sincerely your in Christ,
The Most Reverend John C. Nienstedt
Archbishop of Saint Paul and Minneapolis
High kudos to Archbishop Nienstedt in this matter.
I think there might be a model here also for pro-abortion politicians or other highly visible Catholic figures who persist in support of abortion and who approach to receive Holy Communion.