Fishwrap – once again – publicly attacks the Church’s moral teaching

fishwrapOver at the Fishwrap (aka National Sodomitic Reporter) Jamie Manson (openly lesbian activist, promoter of women’s ordination, mentored by Sr. Margaret Farley, and darling of the LCWR), laments the Church’s teaching about homosexuality.

This piece is part of Fishwrap‘s incessant effort to undermine Catholic teaching concerning morals.  Thus, the nicknames.

Let’s have a look…

Catholic schools must refuse to fire LGBT employees [getting it wrong by one letter!]

It’s beginning to feel like every week brings a new story about the firing of an LGBT employee from a Catholic institution.

The most recent well-publicized termination happened earlier this month at Waldron Mercy Academy in Philadelphia. The school declined to renew the contract of Margie Winters, the school’s director of religious studies, when it came to light that she is in a same-sex marriage. [So… she wasn’t fired.  She just wasn’t rehired.]

Winters, who has been with the school for eight years, says her administrators were well aware that she was married to a woman. It wasn’t until two parents complained to the Philadelphia archdiocese that she was terminated. [Thus correcting a problem that had endured for 8 years.]

In the wake of Winters’ firing, many commentators have suggested that bishops and Catholic institutions need to show greater mercy and compassion in dealing with its lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees. [First, it must be demonstrated that bishops and Catholic institutions are not merciful and compassionate.  No?  We deny Jamie’s premise.]

Waldron Mercy did show sensitivity and acceptance of their lesbian employee. They kept Winters on staff and valued her contributions to the students and the school community. [See what she did there?  Mercy and compassion means saying, publicly, that the Church’s teachings make no difference.  Neither does public scandal.  No.  Mercy and compassion are always grounded in the truth.]

But once the complaint was made to the archdiocese, Waldron Mercy, like most Catholic institutions caught in a similar dilemma, felt forced to terminate their employee.

Winters’ story sheds light on an important and overlooked truth [Do you think that what will follow is “truth”?  Take a guess.]: Even a Catholic institution that strives to be inclusive and nurturing can’t protect an LGBT employee. [“Protect”? From what?  The truth?  But wait! …]As long as Roman Catholic doctrine teaches that same-sex relationships are sinful and a violation of God’s plan for humanity, LGBT employees will not be safe in their jobs in Catholic institutions.


Read the rest there… or don’t.

So, the answer is that the Catholic Church must conform its teachings to please homosexualists.

An ironic point comes a little further down when Jamie writes:

According to Canon 803 §3, “No school is to bear the name Catholic school without the consent of competent ecclesiastical authority.” That “competent ecclesiastical authority” is the bishop who presides over the diocese in which the school is located, even if a religious community sponsors the school.

A loss of canonical status would, of course, have financial repercussions, such as the loss of funding or even the loss of the school’s property. Even more tragically, it has sacramental consequences. It is unlikely that the Eucharist or the sacrament of reconciliation could be celebrated at the school, for example.

How rich is that?   This from the outlet which was explicitly directed by the bishop where Fishwrap‘s HQ is located to remove “Catholic from their title!  HERE

Someone should inform Jamie of Can. 216:

Can. 216 Since they participate in the mission of the Church, all the Christian faithful have the right to promote or sustain apostolic action even by their own undertakings, according to their own state and condition. Nevertheless, no undertaking is to claim the name Catholic without the consent of competent ecclesiastical authority.

They would be less hypocritical were they to change the name of their paper… so that I don’t have to do it for them.

Toward the end of her piece she offers a good example of why I call Fishwrap the National Schismatic Reporter.   Get this:

Why, then, not call the bishops’ bluffs? Imagine the pushback and negative press a bishop would get if he stripped a Catholic school of its identity for refusing to fire an LGBT employee. Imagine the momentum that could be built and the empowering precedent it could set for other schools facing the same turmoil.

Yes, the risks of disobeying a bishop are serious, but unless we as a community of women religious, Catholic school board members and administrators, parents and students, and progressive Catholics join together to say “no more” to these unjust doctrines and degrading firings, substantive change will not happen. [She and Fishwrap want not just change in administration of schools or hiring and firing practices.  They want revolt against the Church’s doctrine, which they label “unjust”.]

For the sake of the integrity of our church and the future of Catholic education, it is time to defy the threats and bullying, have the courage of our convictions, and refuse to perpetuate this injustice inside the walls of our Catholic schools.

They want people to revolt against their bishops.

I say, pray – everyone – on your knees, even making special visits to the Blessed Sacrament, and offering mortifications, that the whole body of Catholic bishops of these USA will someday develop the … wherewithal formally to direct Fishwrap to remove the word “Catholic” from its name.

In the meantime, you might pray to St. Joseph, patron of the diocese where Fishwrap’s offices are found, to help the conversion of all the writers and staff to orthodox Catholicism or else permanently to shutter their windows and doors.

St. Joseph, pray for us.

Dest-joseph-patron-of-the-churchar St. Joseph, Terror of Demons and Protector of Holy Church, Chaste Guardian of Our Lord and His Mother, hear our urgent prayer and swiftly intercede with our Savior, whom as a loving father you defended so diligently, that He will pour abundant graces upon the staff of that organ of dissent the National catholic Reporter so that they will either embrace orthodox doctrine concerning faith and morals or that all their efforts will promptly fail and come to their just end. Amen.



About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. JARay says:

    Congratulations, especially on your prayer to St. Joseph, Father.

  2. pannw says:


    And no, I’m not going there to finish reading. I will not spike their stats and I don’t think I can stand much more immoral garbage for today, after reading the comments at WAPO on the PP videos. I can’t imagine how oppressed poor Lot was if Sodom was any worse than this.

  3. Supertradmum says:

    It is most compassionate to point out to a brother or sister in Christ that they are seriously sinning and in danger of losing their immortal souls.

    Truth in kindness and real love is compassion.

  4. Dialogos says:

    You think that’s bad? At the Facebook page of the official publication of the Archdiocese of Seattle, The Northwest Catholic, is a post with the recent article from America lauding the “findings” of the recent meeting of the erstwhile sappers of the Synod on the Family. The net effect is a tacit endorsement of “mercy” for re-married and cohabiting couples by the Archdiocese where I so reluctantly live.

  5. Paulo says:

    Folks, let’s face it. The enemy, the father of lies, currently has unrestricted use of social media and other means of mass communication. The National Catholic Register site put out this today: “Gay-Rights Advocate Wants to Win Religious-Liberty Fight Within Three Years” ( Does this matter?

    Well, in their “Leadership Lessons of the Navy Seals”, authors Jeff Cannon and Lt. Cmdr Jon Cannon aptly name their lesson 8 on the “Setting Goals” chapter as “Define Mission Success” (this is not a plug. The book is 12-years old, I happen to own it, and I admire the no-nonsense approach therein). The headline above states the enemy’s mission, and some parameter for evaluating success. So, how do we match, no, exceed that? Is it time to emulate Christ and evict the money changers? “And they came to Jerusalem. And when he was entered into the temple, he began to cast out them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the chairs of them that sold doves.” (Mark 11:15)

  6. Kathleen10 says:

    We are experiencing war on multiple fronts today, but they don’t look exactly like the wars we recognize. The battle for the church is real nonetheless, and it is spiritual and temporal. Here is a champion for the opposition, and they will tear down the church with nary a tear if that is what it takes to accomplish their goal. I could almost match that. I’d rather see the church close institutions, churches, hospitals, adoption agencies, whatever it is, if it is not to remain authentically Catholic, and by that I mean teaching Catholicism with all it’s hard truths. We are seeing where milquetoast Catholicism is getting us.
    Homosexuality, no. It is decimating the church in so many ways, and see are seeing more every day about how very far it’s adherents have gotten. They are not only inside the gates, in many ways they are controlling the gates. It is going to take something, I know not what, to excise the minions and regain our church. The cancer is stage four, and we need the divine physician.

  7. Kathleen10 says:

    And a thousand “Amens” to your prayer, Fr..

  8. Kathleen10 says:

    Sorry. “see” = “we”.

  9. WYMiriam says:

    “Imagine the pushback and negative press a bishop would get if he stripped a Catholic school of its identity for refusing to fire an LGBT employee.” (emphasis added)

    Well, um, maybe in this case it would be a matter of a bishop unmasking that “Catholic” school and revealing its true identity for what it really is?

    If it quacks like a duck . . . .

  10. Mojoron says:

    How hard is it to have a company remove the word “Catholic” from their name? The latest Mic’d Up at The Church Militant, Michael Voris explained the five year history of his battle with the Archdiocese of Detroit concerning his original name “Catholic TV” and why the diocese wanted for Voris to get rid of the name Catholic, which he did, no problem. The whole process of safeguarding the faith by saving the name Catholic is a major joke as can be seen and witnessed by the shenanigans of our supposed catholic legislators exemplified by Pope Nancy’s numerous comments about her love of the faith. If failure of the battle is continuing the word “Catholic” in publications is our gauge, then we must be monumental in our failure by allowing our wayward legislators continuing to blaspheme the faith by their legislative actions. Our episcopacy must be in La La Land in their lack of a unified response to the word “Catholic’ as both an adjective and a noun.

  11. When, dear God, will the Church finally deal with such callous and destructive miscreants?

  12. benedetta says:

    I don’t have time to read it. I am just really glad that we are all beginning in the Church to be able to have an open and honest conversation or dialogue on such things as the life force which animates us all and about equal protection of human persons under the law for social justice. Even if those babies were unwanted by the Fishwrap and their ilk, they still had that life force evolving in them and they deserved equal protection under the law just the same. We are not Victorians who invented repressive and puritanical constructs about human life to designate arbitrary places on the timeline of a life to proclaim it human or not. No we are not bound by such legal fictions. We can say yes life is good, all human life is good, no matter the appearances or another’s bigotry or phobias. We can say that God pronounced human life good and that life force is working through every one of us from womb to tomb without distinction for gender class money or power. We are not people who put frivolous moments of pleasure first and greedy pursuit of material belongings ahead of social justice. I am so pleased to be on the bus for this justice finally. It’s a grassroots, secular sort of justice which actually does make sense in an evolved present age Chrsitian sort of a way, and I wouldn’t miss the opportunity to advocate for the poor. I’m glad to see the Fishwrap is casting aside small minded obsessions in favor of the big picture. ?

  13. Kerry says:

    In the book, A Bitter Trial, Evelyn Waugh and John Carmel Cardinal Heenan on the Liturgical Changes we read Waugh’s spirited words, “There is no possibility of the Church modifying her defined doctrines to attract those to whom they are repugnant.”

  14. pmullane says:

    “Winters, who has been with the school for eight years, says her administrators were well aware that she was married to a woman. It wasn’t until two parents complained to the Philadelphia archdiocese that she was terminated. ”

    Sounds about right. Catholic school fails the faithful miserably, the faithful who their role is to serve by educating their children (and who, apart from anything else, pay their inflated wages), and only when parents realise that they are being cheated in their faith and wallet by charlitan ‘educatiors’ and kick up a stink about it that action gets taken.

    Its the same story the world over.

  15. Alaina says:

    Fishwrap makes a call to preserve Catholic education? The misuse of the term mercy in this entire situation is tiresome, and the misquoting and neglect of facts is typical for this type of agenda. What exactly is a “progressive Catholic”? I know what anti-Catholic means.

  16. The Masked Chicken says:


    I had a comment on this subject, but I think I hit Log out instead of Post :( No time, now, to re-do it.

    The Chicken

  17. Traductora says:

    I’m in Spain at the moment, and the Church is under heavy attack from political sources. I don’t think they have been this open about it since the Spanish Civil War. Some of them have actually called for burning churches. The attackers are a coalition of the left and gays, and no one has heard a peep from the Vatican in support of the Church.

    Recently, a Spanish priest, with the support of his bishop, refused to have a “transsexual” as a godparent for a baptism in his parish. This, of course, caused leftist hysteria to break out, and the woman complained that she didn’t know why she was being prevented from being a godparent just because she thought she was a man, since after all, Pope Francis had invited a Spanish “transexual” who felt insulted by a priest to visit the Vatican and even made the woman’s bishop pay the expenses of the trip.

    The Church in Spain is being thrown to the wolves by the very people who were supposed to protect Her.

  18. Alaina says:

    I commented about this situation the other day under Father’s post about Father Ryan’s blog.

    @The Chicken, unfortunately prudence was not involved at all. Just deliberate defiance until the administration was exposed.

  19. Supertradmum says:

    We are supposed to protect the Church, Traductora. And, I see very few, in face, practically zero lay people protecting the Church where I am.

    As to poor leadership in the Church, it is symptomatic of poor leadership worldwide.

    Stop looking toward the Vatican and look at your own parish. I had to point out some things where I am now several times in the past month which were in disobedience to Rome, and/or connected to false teaching from priests in this area. Did I get supported? No.

    Too many people never, never step up and say anything about situations until things are at the last possible stage of “fixing”. Unless we make noises, as most priests and bishops do not, evil will continue to enter the Church. I take it seriously that this is the Age of the Laity.

  20. The Masked Chicken says:

    [Revised – I read the opening remark of the post too fast. Jaime Manson wrote the article, not Sr. Farley, who has nothing to do with the article and to whom I apologize – TMC]

    “Winters, who has been with the school for eight years, says her administrators were well aware that she was married to a woman. It wasn’t until two parents complained to the Philadelphia archdiocese that she was terminated. ”

    What is so ironic about this comment is that it seems as if Jaime Manson, clearly, does not understand the true concept of tolerance. To tolerate something, it must, a priori, be an evil. One does not tolerate a good. Toleration is a prudential decision. It may only be done for a short time (however that may be defined), wherein the possibility of a true conversion exists. One does not tolerate continuing, intransigent evil. One confronts it and overcomes it by good, which just may be the application of superior force.

    The administrators made a prudential judgment to tolerate the presence of a same-sex “married” teacher. That was their call to make. Perhaps, they thought she might wise up under the influence of such saintly Catholics (ehem) as those who attend the school. When the parents complained, the situation changed from one of secret tolerance, where the danger of scandal was small (part of the prudential judgment calculus) to one where the danger of scandal was real and immediate. Since the situation changed, the nature of the prudential judgment was modified to safeguard a greater good – the peace and sensibilities of the parents so as to prevent scandal.

    People are entitled to a good name, unless some defect becomes public knowledge, or there is a greater good to be considered. That is what happened here, nothing more. Good, old-fashioned Catholic moral theology. If Manson does not understand this, may I suggest she take a refresher course? Her comments, here, confuse the Faithful and re-frame what is, otherwise, the normal part of decision making in an imperfect world.

    The Academy is not required to give Manson’s comments the time of day. The person fired was the Director of Religious Education. One educates by one’s life, as well as with words. To thumb one’s nose at Catholic moral teachings is a contradiction with the office of Rel. Ed. Director. Rather than admit that the Director was wrong to be in the “marriage,” Manson chooses to complain that the Church’s teaching are wrong. She is making up in her mind a dilemma that does not exist and then grabbing the horns of one side of the dilemma, trying to snap it off.

    While I can commiserate with the predicament of the School administrators, who, whether through prudence or through negligence (one cannot tell from the outside) allowed an immoral situation to continue for eight years, nevertheless, the best way 99% of the time to avoid these situations is to not let them get started from the beginning. The Religious Ed. Director should never have been hired to begin with if she were already “married,” or should have been fired when she tried to go through with the “marriage” – which , certainly could not have been in a Catholic Church. Tolerance should only be considered in very exceptional circumstances (such as if the person had been homosexual, but chaste and committed to chastity). In this situation, the administration might have strained prudence too far. Certainly, it is unclear what could have possessed them to allow an openly homosexual person to be a director of religious education.

    In any case, Manson’s comments are just silly.

    The Chicken

    P. S. To Alaina

    I cannot read motives into a situation of which I have little knowledge, so whether it were from prudence or defiance, I cannot say what brought this about. I have made the case that it could have been a morally acceptable prudential decision if that were to have been the case. The underlying principles in the case that it might have been prudence (assuming charity until otherwise proven) involved in the hiring ( or even lack of knowledge) are what worth mentioning, even if the hiring were from defiance.

    Wow, that sounded like a Victorian novel. Oh well – strained syntax Friday…

  21. Andy Lucy says:

    You know, Father, if you keep writing posts like this one, you will never get your newsie creds to the LCWR annual hootenanny and poker run. And considering the speed with which the “biological solution” is thinning their ranks, those conferences will become a matter for historians, not journalists in the very near future.

  22. Traductora says:

    There are some things that must be done by Church authorities to support and protect the Church. In Spain, and increasingly in the U.S., the Church is under direct legal attack by The State. Laypeople can certainly complain and resist at their level, but the bishops and heirarchs are the ones charged with the duty of protecting the Faith and the flock and resistance from them is a genuine challenge to the State. This goes beyond local parish affairs.

    But what is even worse is when they – the German bishops, for example, or the Fishwrap clergy and sometimes even higher ranking Church officials – not only fail to defend the Church but actively undermine it and weaken it in the face of State attacks. And that is what is happening now.

  23. AnnTherese says:

    Such a sad and challenging situation, on many levels. Of course, this teacher is only one of many sinners forming young souls in Catholic schools. But most Catholic school teachers who are using birth control, are living with their boyfriends/girlfriends, have had an abortion, are unfaithful to spouses, are abusive to their (or other) children (physically, emotionally, or sexually), etc.– might be more successful in hiding their sins from their student’s parents and Church authorities. They might appear to be really solid Catholics.

    I’m not defending this teacher, just saying– a straight teacher isn’t necessarily a good Catholic, either. Or, some might be good Catholics and really bad people. The safest bet would be for the Catholic Church to close schools and put full responsibility for a Catholic education on parents. (And I’m not being sarcastic.) Some Catholic parents choose to homeschool their children, and I think that is a wise (albeit not perfect, for other reasons) choice.

    On a side note, it feels like the schism is looming… not just due to the widening chasm of beliefs and practices, but also the animosity that is growing deeper and sharper.

    Oh, Holy Spirit!

  24. robtbrown says:


    It’s not a matter of a teacher being a sinner, but rather of leading a public life that contradicts Catholic doctrine.

    IMHO, tolerance doesn’t necessarily presume evil. Today, it’s grounded in moral relativism–we’re all supposed to tolerate everyone’s “life style”.

    Also: The administration made the see-no-evil non decision to ignore the situation hoping that it wouldn’t be noticed. High school students, however, often know lots about their teachers’ private lives.

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