For the past number of years, stories about sexual abuse by priests and the coverup of that abuse by the hierarchy of the church have been rampant. This leaves me wondering just what it does take to get removed as a priest. I’m not going to delve into the theological rationale behind the firings, I just want to bring up a couple of examples.
Ways to get fired.
1. Be a practising heterosexual
Back in 2009, a Miami based priest, Rev. Alberto Cutié, was photographed wrapped in the arms (and legs) of an attractive adult female.
Over a three-day period, the pictures also captured him kissing her in a bar. In one of TVnotas‘s “in fraganti” shots, the woman wraps her legs around Cutié; in another, Cutié has a hand down her swimsuit, fondling her rear end.
Because of the scandal, the Archdiocese of Miami says Cutié, 40, is no longer the administrator of his Miami Beach parish, and it has barred him from leading Sunday Mass there.
2. Be a practising homosexual
A catholic college in Philadelphia fired a gay priest after calling him a ‘heretic‘, becaus eof his long term relationship with an adult male.
Students are angry after Chestnut Hill College, a Roman Catholic college in Philadelphia, fired a professor because he’s gay, although Father James St. George has never hidden that fact and was completely vetted before joining the college.
St. George believes it’s because the college received a letter from James Pepper, a local lawyer with no ties to the college, branding him a “heretic”.
3. Refuse to support other bishops in their insistence that paedophilia within the church was a settled issue.
Because he violated “communio episcoporum” (the communion of bishops) and other canons by speaking in support of extending the statute of limitations for cases of sexual abuse by clergy, retired Detroit auxiliary bishop Thomas Gumbleton said he was forced to discontinue his role as pastor at a Detroit parish….
In 2006, he gave a written testimony to the Ohio House Judiciary Committee that explained his support for a bill that would extend the statute of limitations to 20 years past the victim’s 18th birthday. In that testimony, he also said a priest sexually abused him in the 9th and 10th grades.
The Ohio Catholic Conference and bishops had spoken out against the bill. They opposed one part of the bill, which would give a one-year look-back period that allowed people to come forward with allegations that had ran past the statute of limitations.
By speaking in support of a bill that the Ohio bishops spoke against, Gumbleton had violated “communio episcoporum,” Gumbleton said. He was notified of that violation in a letter from the Vatican sent to the then-Detroit Archbishop Adam Maida, which was then given to Gumbleton.
A direct consequence of this violation, Gumbleton said, was that he was forced to give up his position as pastor at St. Leo Parish in Detroit, where he had been since 1983.
Ways not to get fired.
- Sexually and/or physically abuse children
- Cover up sexual abuse of children
There are many more examples on both sides of the ledger, but you get the drift.