Sunday, October 12, 2008

Martyrs, Courageous Priest and Time problems

Please visit Counterlight and read 'No More Martyrs' So true, so moving.

Also visit and read about a very courageous priest Father Geoff Farrow and pray for him. The comments he is receiving moved me to tears. His sermon last week had so much truth in it, it should be read in all churches. I become so angry when I think of the GLBT people who are turned away from the houses of the Lord.

The poor man must have put up his last post re the letter from the bishop late at night on the west coast of the USA so my friends on the East Coast and in Europe were asleep (I hope). Here it was merely late afternoon so I was able to alert some of the blogs to the latest news. Thanks for the hat tip from Grandmere and Madpriest.

Usually I am disadvantaged by the World Clock. You all post while I am asleep and then there is so much to read in the morning when I really should get out into the garden before the heat of the day or I have to leave for church (this morning) or hiking (tomorrow). Then the intertubes are so quiet when I have time to read late in my afternoon. I really must learn to ignore the blogs until after I have done my garden and house chores.
I have just begun a course at church on 'Preparing for Holy Week and Easter'. It is being led by both a Catholic and an Anglican priest. Father Gerard Moore (Catholic) led us through the history last week. Pointing out first that there was division about the 3rd or 4th century as to the time of the main Easter celebration (Thursday gradually gave way to Sunday). He wrily commented there was a lot of nastiness and argy bargy over this, so nothing is new in the Church. However he also pointed out that those of us in the Southern Hemisphere do not get the full point of Easter which celebrates the 'Coming of the Light'. For us it is increasing darkness especially when Easter falls well into April. Perhaps we should celebrate Easter at a different time to those in the North( I doubt it).
Anyway time can be a problem for those of us living both south of the equator and half way round the world.

Returning to Father Farrow. I have just an inkling of what he is going through. Back in the 1980's I came out as a teacher in a Senior Catholic College. I also regularly attended Mass at 'Acceptance' a group for gay catholics. We had visiting priests (obviously) and even a bishop once (he has now retired). That was before the present Cardinal Pell was sent to discipline the Sydney diocese. He is renowned as a homophobe.
Back in those days I found much more acceptance and help than in my own Anglican churches. There were many inclusive religious and laiety. Generally it was believed one's job was safe if one kept a low profile but I published anonymously an article about coming out as a teacher in a catholic school. I was told it caused consternation amongst some of the authorities who knew who had written it. Sadly AIDS meant I found less and less support from the students and so I eventually moved on. After a break I returned to a catholic school but this time a junior high in a different diocese and I did not feel it was appropriate to come out publicly although many would have known of my orientation.
I do pray Father Farrow finds support and a continuing role at this time.


Fran said...

I am weeping too much other than to let you know how much I love this post and how much I have come to love you from afar Brian.

I hope that does not sound too foolish. Somehow we are all connected in some very profound form of community out here on the internet. It is sacramental in a way I cannot explain, yet I know is true.

Brian R said...

Thanks Fran, dear sister in Christ.