Maryknoll priest who attended fake wymym thing called in

Remember the sad news that an infamous Maryknoll priest, Fr. Roy Bourgeois, attended a fake ordination of a wymynpryst?

There have been some consequences, apparently.

Priest to meet Maryknoll leaders over role in Womenpriests’ ceremony

By Dennis Sadowski
Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON (CNS) — Maryknoll Father Roy Bourgeois will meet Aug. 18 with the three members of his order’s General Council to discuss his participation in a recent ceremony sponsored by Roman Catholic Womenpriests.

The Aug. 9 ceremony involved what Roman Catholic Womenpriests considers the ordination of Janice Sevre-Duszynska to the priesthood.

The organization, which is not recognized by the church, has sponsored numerous ceremonies since 2002 involving reported [fake] ordinations of women deacons, priests and bishops. These ceremonies have led to the excommunications of all involved because women cannot be ordained Catholic priests.

Father Bourgeois, an internationally known peace and justice advocate, confirmed he will meet with Maryknoll’s general superior, Father John Sivalon, and the two other members of the order’s council.

The priest told Catholic News Service from his Columbus, Ga., home Aug. 14 that his participation in the ceremony at a Unitarian Universalist church in Lexington, Ky., followed a period of reflection [apparently not long enough] after he received an invitation from Sevre-Duszynska, a longtime friend.

"In conscience I felt I had to be there," he said.

"I see (my participation) connected in a real way in my work for justice in Latin America, speaking out against the war in Iraq and connected to the injustice in my church here at home," [HUH?] added Father Bourgeois, who is best known for his 19-year effort to close a U.S. Army school at Fort Benning, Ga., that trains soldiers from throughout Latin America.

"Who are we as men to say to Janice and these other women that we are called but not you?" [That’s why we, as men, don’t make these decisions as individuals apart from Holy Church!] asked the priest. "This is a big issue for me. I feel we are tampering with the sacred, that we are in a way overwriting God’s call. Who are we to say that our call as men is valid, your call as women is not valid?

"I’ve come to the realization that women could be ordained in our Catholic Church," he said. [… apply medicinal censures at this point…]

He acknowledged that he has placed his 36-year ministry as a priest in jeopardy by participating in the ceremony. At the same time, he expressed hope that the council will continue to support him once his views are discussed[Yah… right.  Because the General Council is going to say, "You know, Father, you’re right!  Women should be ordained, darn it!  We’re gonna support you now that we’ve talked about it."]

"I don’t want to leave (the order)," he said. "But I do believe in this issue enough that I cannot be silent."  [Don’t let the door… etc. etc.]

Father Bourgeois, 69, said that during the event he concelebrated the liturgy and delivered the homily. He also said he laid hands on Sevre-Duszynska, 58, during what traditionally would be the rite of ordination.

Betsey Guest, community outreach coordinator for the Maryknoll order, which has its headquarters in Maryknoll, N.Y., said the members of the order’s General Council learned of Father Bourgeois’ participation in the ceremony through media reports.

"They were not consulted prior to his participation, nor would they have condoned it," she said.

Reports that Cardinal Edward M. Egan of New York intervened in asking the order to meet with Father Bourgeois were erroneous, she said.

"It was the General Council that has asked him to come back as one of their brother priests to understand from him the facts behind his thinking," Guest said.

Meanwhile, Sevre-Duszynska said she and other members of Roman Catholic Womenpriests have been seeking statements of support for her Maryknoll friend from across the country.

"This is a crucial issue for the church," she said. "This is an issue that could lead the church forward." [Delusional.]

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  1. Joseph Dylong says:

    I thought canon law 1378 dealt with this issue, isnt he autmoactially excommunicated?

    The story, it seems, has moved on:

    Maryknoll spokeswoman Betsey Guest said Bourgeois and Maryknoll leadership released a joint statement following their meeting that states, “An investigation has been carried out as to the true facts of the August 9 event in Lexington, Ky., A report of that investigation will be sent to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in Rome.

    In the meantime, Fr. Bourgeois has received a canonical warning.” Bourgeois concelebrated and preached at the ordination of Janice Sevre-Duszynska, a longtime peace activist and advocate of women’s ordination.

    Bourgeois said in the interview that his superiors warned him not to participate in similar events in the future. He said he had no plans to attend another ordination, nor did he have an invitation to do so.

    “Contrary to popular understanding, participants in the ceremony, such as Father Bourgeois, were not automatically excommunicated,” the statement said.
    Bourgeois said he felt strong support from his community but has no idea how Rome will respond.

    The priest, known best for his advocacy of Christian non-violence and attempts to close the international school for military training at Ft. Benning, Ga., said that during the discussion with a four-member leadership team he urged the order to continue a dialogue about the place of women in the church.

    Bourgeois considers the exclusion of women from ordination an injustice and one rooted in the fact that “the interpretation of the teachings of Jesus, over time, has been controlled exclusively by men.”

    He said he told the order, “I wish it were possible to work on issues of peace and justice and not upset anyone.” But, he said, others like Gandhi, Martin Luther King and César Chavez “have all shown us that when you work on these issues of peace and justice there are consequences.”

    Even so, he said, Maryknoll and other men’s orders should be “open enough” and “have courage enough” to discuss the matter with women. “We don’t have to start ordaining women, but can we at least invite women in and just listen? Can we shut up long enough to hear their stories, their experiences of being marginalized in the church? Can we hear the pain they feel?”

    At one point, he said, he asked the leadership group, “What do we say to Janice and other women who say they are called by God to be priests?”

    The question, he said, went unanswered.

    Bourgeois said he knows that the Vatican could come down with a more severe penalty. And if Vatican authorities should say he’s excommunicated? “I would be very very sad. I’ve been a Maryknoll priest for 36 years. But if Rome came down with the ax? I’d have to embrace it,” he said.

  2. Joseph Dylong says:


    Notice how the NCR keep uisng the term ordination, yet, it isnt.

    Moerover, the attempt to confer Holy Orders onto a women is a crime, as it is for a women who try to recieve the invalid ordination.

  3. Sam Schmitt says:

    “At one point, he said, he asked the leadership group, “What do we say to Janice and other women who say they are called by God to be priests?”

    The question, he said, went unanswered.”

    This is lame. There are plenty of men, too, who *say* they are called, but that doesn’t make them called – they have to be accepted by the Church.

  4. The whole Maryknoll order has gone bonkers. When my SD who was a Maryknoll from the “old school” found out that they were printing garbage in their little monthly magazine he hit the fan. Although he was retired he called them and gave them a piece of his mind. God rest his soul, he wanted to be a Carthusian. It must be terrible to be a faithful priest and be ashamed of your order.

  5. Jenny says:

    Are there any ‘internationally known peace and justice advocates’ who are also orthodox? Or is there something about that line of work that makes you loopy?

  6. jd says:

    Too bad for this priest and yet there is always hope that he will one day know the Lord’s will, perhaps by doing some Bible reading and re-studying the history of the Church and the patristic fathers. Maryknoll has been a very good missionary group but recently they have also been misinterpreting the Gospel and taking a more political point of view.Jesus came to save souls and to show them how to live by worshipping God and showing kindness to our neighbors. He did not want to dissolve countries borders and work for political or philosophical ideas contrary to Christ crucified. I am disappointed with this group even though they are doing much to help the poor. Fidelity to Christ is MOST important.

  7. Tina in Ashburn says:

    I can’t remember far back enough to remember when the Maryknolls weren’t bonkers. If my faded memory serves me right, back in the 60s when we lived in Saigon, our family avoided the Maryknoll priests.

  8. Tim Ferguson says:

    Jenny, I’d say that Mother Teresa was an internationally known peace and justice advocate. Currently, I believe that Fr. Benedict Groeschel and the Franciscan Friars of the Reform fit the bill. I think that instead of “peace and justice advocacy” making one loopy – loopy people incorrectly drape themselves with the mantle of “peace and justice advocacy” to justify their loopiness.

    As far as this priest being under the penalty of automatic excommunication – it certainly looks that way, and it’s up to his superiors to see if all the conditions fit (e.g. – to ensure that Father Ray is not so loopy that he’s not responsible for his actions) and declare that automatic penalty to have been incurred and act accordingly.

  9. RBrown says:

    In the early 90’s a friend in Rome remarked that the only Communists left in the world were Castro, the KGB, and some Maryknoll priests.

  10. Joseph Dylong says:


    No-one has to ‘declare’ someone is automatically excommunicated, because it is automatic, although, they can announce this has taken place.

    Translated text of the Decree:

    Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith
    General Decree

    Regarding the crime of attempting sacred ordination of a woman

    The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, to protect the nature and validity of the sacrament of holy orders, in virtue of the special faculty conferred to it by the supreme authority of the Church (see canon 30, Canon Law), in the Ordinary Session of December 19, 2007, has decreed:

    Remaining firm on what has been established by canon 1378 of the Canon Law, both he who has attempted to confer holy orders on a woman, and the woman who has attempted to receive the said sacrament, incurs in latae sententiae excommunication, reserved to the Apostolic See.

    If he who has attempted to confer holy orders on a woman or if the woman who has attempted to receive holy orders, is a member of the faithful subject to the Code of Canon Law for the Eastern Churches, remaining firm on what has been established by canon 1443 of the same Code, they will be punished with major excommunication, whose remission remains reserved to the Apostolic See (see canon 1423, Canon Law of the Eastern Churches).

    The current decree will come into immediate force from the moment of publication in the ‘Osservatore Romano’ and is absolute and universal.

    William Cardinal Levada
    Angelo Amato, S.D.B.
    Titular Archbishop of Sila

  11. Mark says:

    In my opinion, if this man wants to remain a priest, he should be retired to an isolated place and under a discipline of silence discern the state of his vocation. For the rest of his retirement years.

  12. Deusdonat says:

    I used to donate to Maryknoll way back when and very much enjoyed their little magazines (I am not using “little in the derrogatory sense, since anyone who is familiar with them knows they are hand-sized). And I have also met some very pious Maryknoll priests and sisters in my travels. But I am now convinced that the Maryknoll order (as with the Marianists and many others) are still living perpetually in the 1970’s and have not been able to break with their wayward theology and practices.

    If this priest is released from his order, I will be surprised.

  13. Joseph Dylong says:

    Reading the comments on the NCR website, it seems that people who want invalid ordination of women also hold other liberal views on homosexuality, rejecting the Magisterium, a misunderstanding of infallibility, contraception etc

  14. Serafino says:

    Well, another SAD event in all this is the fact that if Father really concelebrated the Mass, and had correct matter, form and intention, the fake women priests would REALLY HAVE THE BLESSED SACRAMENT PRESENT in their hands. Not, of course, by their fake “orders” but by his orders which one must assume are valid.

  15. Deusdonat says:

    Joseph, no big surprise there.

  16. AnnaTrad says:

    What a sad day to see a Priest fall so far and be so willfully blinded to the truth. May God have mercy on him and on us who do not pray, sacrifice and willing suffer for the convention of these Priests. How may Priest would be saved and return to be what they were called to be if we would only take the time to pray for them.

  17. Chris says:

    Everyone keeps saying he is automatically excommunicated… I don’t think so. He laid hands on her but doesn’t a priestly ordination REQUIRE the laying on of hands by a BISHOP? AS well as other things like approval from Rome; but that is not validity, I don’t think so anyway.

    So, if a priest cannot ordain another priest, then this misguided priest is not automatically excommunicated by that canon. What frightens me is not that he attended and delivered the homily but that he is not repentant for his actions. That frightens and saddens me. Pray for him and all the others involved in this ‘wymprst’ thing… pray especially hard for any clergy caught up in this.

  18. If I attempted to do such a thing, which I would never do, and my Bishop found out, I would be suspended indefinately, and I don’t mean for a few days! What is wrong with that man, what part of the word NO does he not understand?

  19. Joseph Dylong says:


    If he is not excommunicated under that canon, I wait to see what the CDF say on this issue! I am suprised his order didnt take a tougher stance.


    Didnt Pope Benedict, as Ratzinger, say he sees a smaller Church in the future but with Catholics more loyal to the Truth.

    I just dont know why Holy Mother Church doesnt remove theologians, Priests etc in the public sphere who bring scandal by questioning the authority of the Magisterium, and the Doctrines of Faith and Morals.

  20. Anne says:

    **Even so, he said, Maryknoll and other men’s orders should be “open enough” and “have courage enough” to discuss the matter with women.**

    That’s exactly what happened to the Anglicans. They brought absolutes, like contraception, to the Lambeth table for “discussion” when it should never have been considered a topic in the first place. The door was opened – today anything goes.

  21. Joseph Dylong says:

    Sorry that isnt Christ but Chris, dont want people to think I am taking the Lords Name.

  22. Matt Q says:

    Joseph Dylong wrote:

    “I just dont know why Holy Mother Church doesnt remove theologians, Priests etc in the public sphere who bring scandal by questioning the authority of the Magisterium, and the Doctrines of Faith and Morals.”

    We all wonder the same thing. We have bad bishops, bad priests, false teachings which the Church never would have tolerated in the past, but does so now. The mentality of the Church now is we’re worried about their feelings. They may go astray. ( They’ve already gone astray. ) They don’t want to come across as harsh and not be liked anymore. They think merely example is the way to go. The Popes have been bashing their heads against the wall hoping that motivates people to stop their nonsense. All it does is make the bad guys laugh and continue to carry on with their foolishness. Just like in the secular world, when laws go unenforced, the crimes continue.

  23. Calleva says:

    Surely the word ‘discussion’ implies an eventual decision based on the matters raised and agreed upon. Given that there is no possibility of women priests in our church, any such ‘discussion’ would be raising false hopes, and ultimately rather cruel. It would be more profitable to explain gently but very clearly to these women why they may not wear collar and cassock.

  24. Jayna says:

    “I feel we are tampering with the sacred, that we are in a way overwriting God’s call.”

    He’s got the right sentiment there, just the wrong way around.

  25. QC says:

    Matt Q, that is not entirely true. Such seeming non-action was also taken at other times during widespread problems. For example, I have been reading some letters from St. Peter Damian. In one, he responds to complaints against St. Leo IX for taken no action against simonists while certain folks clamored for them all to be deposed. St. Peter responds quoting St. Innocent I, that in situations where the problem is so widespread, there is not really the possibility of doing anything without being like the reaper who, in order to remove the weeds, pulls up all wheat as well.

  26. Joseph Dylong says:

    Isnt a smaller but faithful membership of the Mystical Body of God better than a large and somewhat defiant people.

  27. Westsider says:

    The people in ministry that I’ve met with agendas like women’s ordination and inclusive language often dedicate far more energy to their “campaigns” than they do to serving others.

  28. Randy_in_MN says:

    The wymynpriests spokesperson is already spinning this meeting as a positive development:

    I’m praying that there is a strong response from Rome. This priest (and other clergy who are submitting responses in blogs such as ncronline) and these lay catholic women (protestants) are doing a fine job of creating dissension, confusion and scandal among the faithful. Is there an expedited laicization process that can be initiated by the Church itself, in order to remove dissenting bishops, priests and deacons?

    Has anyone else noticed that the wymynpriests have the gall to acknowledge our Holy Father in their “eucharistic prayers” and they seem very careful to ensure that the words of consecration are consistent with those of our Mass. I’m surprised that they are that concerned, especially because their moral and doctrinal beliefs don’t appear to be in conformity with those of our Holy Church.

  29. Ad Orientem says:

    My comment just left at NCR. Any odds on it being approved?

    Caveat: I am Orthodox and not Roman Catholic. That said if you are Catholic here is the deal…

    For those who seem to be under the impression that Dogma is subject to majority vote on their part, I have a flash bulletin for you. You are wrong.

    From a Roman Catholic POV Fr. Bourgeois should be placed under sanction not for ordaining a woman as a priest(it’s impossible in any event), but rather for three canonical offenses.

    1. Sacrilege: In his violation of the ancient discipline of the Church prohibiting communication in sacris with avowed heretics, schismatics and persons under ban of excommunication.

    2. Sacrilege: In that he attempted to con-celebrate the Holy Mysteries with multiple lay persons.

    3. Heresy: In his open rejection of the irreformable and infallible teaching of the Church that female ordination is impossible. Pope John Paul II settled this question permanently in his Ex Cathedra Proclamation ORDINATIO SACERDOTALIS. The matter is not one of Church discipline but doctrine.

    This issue is no longer open for discussion in the Roman Catholic Church period. If you don’t like it all I can tell you is that there is a warm welcome waiting for you at the nearest Episcopal Church.

  30. Rosie says:

    I advocate the revival of ecclesiastical prison.

  31. Peggy says:

    Folks who have questions about Fr. B’s consequences might want to look into the interdict for Sr. Lears in the STL Archdiocese who not just attended, but apparently participated in, the faux ordinations (“fordination”) in STL last year. She is not automatically excommunicated. I don’t know if the consequences are different for priests. Bozek of the St Stan’s infamy also participated, I believe. He is being laicized, but has many other canonical crimes to his name.

  32. Monica says:

    Perhaps the real reason some priests support women’s ordination is because they want to be women themselves while not losing their priestly ordination? Or maybe some of these priests are too lazy to even try to learn and understand what the Church teaches and why. Or maybe this Father Roy is like a Father Pfleger, but instead of suffering from white-guilt, he suffers from ordination-guilt. It’s these ordination-guilt stricken priests who typically get the laity to do their priestly functions during the liturgy because they somehow see laity as a deficient state of existence so it is incumbent on them to make the laity to feel better about themselves. Any way you look at it, this is the type of truth distortion you get when separated from the Holy Teachings of the Church.

  33. CK says:

    Fr. Z, what are “medicinal censures”?

    The most obviously confusing quality in Fr. Bourgeois’ reasoning is that while he asks for the Church to “be open” to such ordinations, admitting that it is not presently possible, he still concelebrates with that “impossibility” thus creating a whole new church with new doctrines for himself and the others. He is now operating in a completely separated church…as a protestant! These kinds of activities always contain some kind of false self pity or self anointing of martyrdom as in “I would be very very sad. I’ve been a Maryknoll priest for 36 years. But if Rome came down with the ax? I’d have to embrace it,” I hope his council of examining Maryknollers was equipped with violins and lots of hankies!

  34. chironomo says:


    Doesn’t the canon referred to only require that you “attempt” ordination of women? Obviously the canon can’t apply only if you actually ordain women, because that can’t be done! It would seem that by “laying hands” on the candidate, he would be “attempting” ordination, even though he is not a Bishop. I don’t see why he would need to be a Bishop… that would make him no more qualified to ordain a woman than a Priest since NOBODY is qualified to do so. Hopefully the appropriate punishment will be handed down for this.

  35. Tina in Ashburn says:

    One aspect about ordaining women is that it is another example of men who have abdicated their authority and embrace laziness. Why do the work when you can dump it on a woman? How many jobs are we expected to do now?

  36. Matt Q says:

    QC wrote:

    “Matt Q, that is not entirely true. Such seeming non-action was also taken at other times during widespread problems. For example, I have been reading some letters from St. Peter Damian. In one, he responds to complaints against St. Leo IX for taken no action against simonists while certain folks clamored for them all to be deposed. St. Peter responds quoting St. Innocent I, that in situations where the problem is so widespread, there is not really the possibility of doing anything without being like the reaper who, in order to remove the weeds, pulls up all wheat as well.”

    QC, nonetheless, the errors remain and so does my point. Your reasoning is a cop-out. Evil prevails when good people do nothing. If you so hold that point of view then don’t expect abortion to go away anytime soon. Also, we should not have gone to war in WW2, just gently exhort Hitler and the Emperor. We’ve seen how such thinking has left us with.

  37. TerryC says:

    Lest we think that this is the worst of all possible times we should remember that many times in the past the Church faced widespread heresies, often embraced by priests and bishops as well as the laity. Some of our greatest saints Augustine (Pelagianism), Jerome (Montanism), Athanasius (Arianism),Dominic (Catharism), and so forth, are best known for their preaching against these heresies (some of which weren’t even named until they succeeded in their battle against them.)
    I dare say that in 500 years the heresy of secularism, the heresy of modernism, and the heresy of (do I dare call it Curranism?) which supposes that a faithful Catholic can pick and choose which dogmatic belief to accept, will be nothing but foot notes in a history book.

  38. Neli B. says:

    This women priests and anyone who supports them is heresy at their best. But it rises another question: what to think about women who distribute the Holy Communion in many catholic churches across USA? I believe that it is against the catholic church teachings that women could have their hands touch the blessed sacrament. It turns me off when I see the priest and to his side a woman distribute the holy communion; the message I get is that the church dogmas are irrelevant, that anyone can change the catholic doctrine at will just to please the secular views of “modern” persons. Please, I ask the Vatican to do something about it and it would be a nice thing if they would re-introduce the old way of saying mass.

  39. Fr. Angel says:

    “You’ve come a long way, baby!” This was first said about women in the Virginia Slims ads and now it can be said for the Maryknollers.

    Does any else remember the book “The Making of a Priest” by the Maryknoll author Fr. Albert Nevins? It came out in the 50’s but hung around in Catholic libraries for years. It detailed the formation of a priest from when he entered the seminary until he arrived at the altar for his First Mass. What a beautiful book.

    You knew from reading it that Maryknoll trained priests to love Jesus and the Church above all things and to convert hearts to Catholic orthodoxy. Now, sadly, they regard orthodoxy of sacramental doctrine as a cause of injustice and repression. Corruptio optima, pessima.

  40. Christabel says:

    CK (8:42)am, I believe you have hit on a particularly abhorrent aspect of the whole wymynpryst bandwagon : they all, men and women, appear to want to be martyrs. I wonder why this should be? It’s as if they are relishing the prospect of a punitive reaction so that they can demonstrate how unreasonable the Catholic Church is in all its ways and works.

    I find it sickening. Sorry, that’s a strong word, but really, that’s how I feel.

  41. Casey Collins says:

    The question of whether priests
    (as opposed to bishops) can validly confer
    Holy Orders is unresolved, according to
    Fr Thomas Kocik, author of
    “Apostolic Succession in
    an Ecumenical Context.”

  42. JPG says:

    To make everyone feel even better, imagine this man as 36 yrs a priest with this muddled thinking one can only scarcely conceive of the damage already done by this whackjob all politely ignored by the local ordinary. One frankly wonders whether you wuold find some horrid heterodox positions with which he has mislead the faithful.

  43. Emilio III says:

    When I hear of the antics of some Maryknoller, I find it encouraging to look at for balance.

Comments are closed.