CNA reports that after months of deadlock, a Jesuit gymnasium in Worcester, Massachusetts, has been stripped of its status as a Catholic school by a local bishop for opposing his order to stop displaying flags supporting the LGBT movement and the Black Lives Matter movement.
“The display of these flags in front of a Catholic school sends a mixed, confusing and scandalous message to the public about the Church’s position on these important moral and social issues,” he said. bishop Worcester by Robert McManus in Decree of 16 June.
He stressed that “The Nativity School in Worcester can no longer define itself as a ‘Catholic’ school and present its personality. It can no longer use the title ‘Catholic.’ This means that it is not permissible to celebrate Mass, celebrate the sacraments and sacraments, or celebrate the services of the ‘school’. In any building or chapel in the Diocese of Worcester.
Canon law states that “a school, even if it is in fact Catholic, shall not be called a Catholic school without the consent of the competent ecclesiastical authority” (CIC 803 § 3).
Bishop McManus noted that it was his “holy duty and inalienable responsibility” to determine when a school would act against the principles of Catholic teaching and ignore the legitimate authority of the bishop as the guardian and overseer of Catholic education in the Diocese of Worcester.
He explained that the flag of “Gay Pride” expresses support for same-sex “marriage” and the active practice of their lifestyle as members of the LGBTQ+ community. He added, “The Catholic Church teaches that every life is sacred and the Church unequivocally supports the motto ‘Black Lives Matter’ and strongly affirms that every life counts.” However, the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement has appropriated this phrase and promoted a platform that is in direct conflict with Catholic social teaching on the importance and role of the whole family, and seeks to disrupt the structure of the family, which is clearly inconsistent with the teaching of the Catholic Church.”
The school said it would appeal against this decision and would continue to suspend flags, arguing that any decision by the diocese would not affect its activities.
The Jesuit Nativity School in Worcester educates boys in grades five through eight. Its students are predominantly African American and Hispanic and education is free. The school is privately run and not part of the parish school system.
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