Trip to the United States

In the first half of November I have two invitations to the United States.

The first one is an invitation to Pittsburg, to speak to an Association of Pittsburg Priests. This is a long-standing association, which I understand now also contains former priests with their partners and families.

The second invitation is from New Ways Ministry (Sr. Jeannine Gramick) to conduct a weekend for their members and supporters.  New Ways Ministry works for promoting full integration of LGBT people into the Catholic community.

This weekend was due to take place in a Jesuit run retreat centre. But problems arose a few weeks ago, when some right-wing website began to object, pointing out that both myself and Jeannine were under sanction from the Vatican. Then the local bishop took up the cudgels, demanding that the event could not take place in the retreat centre, and threatening public condemnation.  The staff of the retreat centre were very supportive, and wanted to host the event. But eventually their provincial, presumably under a lot of pressure, decreed that it could not happen in the retreat centre.

The end result is that the weekend is still happening, but it will now take place in a premises owned by the Episcopal Church.

I would have thought that the United States episcopate would have enough to worry about, with a number of their senior people in open rebellion against Pope Francis!

From my point of view the whole thing was so stupid………. and tiresome…………

But I am looking forward to my weekend in the Episcopal Church. I am assured I will be made very welcome.