San Diego bishop bans outspoken pro-life priest from writing bulletin columns

Father Richard Perozich has been told by Bishop Robert McElroy he may no longer express views directly to parishioners
Bishop Robert McElroy of San Diego

Bishop Robert McElroy of San Diego

The following comes from a November 30 LifeSiteNews article by Claire Chretien:

San Diego Bishop Robert McElroy ordered a pastor to cease publishing columns in his church’s weekly bulletin after the priest wrote in support of the Catholic Church’s teaching on intrinsic evils and took strong stands on matters of prudential judgment within Catholic teaching.

Father Richard Perozich of Immaculate Conception Catholic Church first came under fire this fall when inserts appeared in his parish bulletin that said it’s a “mortal sin” to vote for pro-abortion Democrats. The fliers pointed out the Democratic Party’s official support for such intrinsic evils and warned Catholics they put their souls at risk by voting for Democrats. The Diocese of San Diego decried the fliers, which Perozich hadn’t authorized.

Then, Perozich penned a column of his own on Catholic voting. He reminded his parishioners of the Church’s teaching on intrinsic evils and opined on matters of prudential judgment within Catholic teaching.

McElroy responded by releasing a statement saying, “it is contrary to the Catholic faith” to view gun control regulation as a form of slavery and accusing Perozich of “fan[ning] the flames of hatred against Muslims or any religious group.”

Perozich had written, in part:

Father Perozich

Father Perozich

Among the slavery imposed upon us is killing the unborn child in the womb, abortion, even with monies from our taxes. Another is the threat of punishment for rejecting homosexuality in all its forms: in its teaching in the schools, in ‘so called same sex marriage’ with fines resulting in loss in business, income, and employment. A third enslavement is using embryos which have a soul as experiments. A fourth is cloning wherein now scientists are experimenting with human and animal DNA to create hybrid creatures. A fifth is euthanasia, the direct killing of human beings either with or without their consent. A sixth is the silencing of the Christian to express his faith in public, wherein our churches are complicit for fear of losing their tax exempt status. A seventh is the importation of immigrants whose religious values are to eradicate every belief except those of their own prophet and god, and to impose this on America. An eighth slavery is the government cave in to allow anyone to come into the country, and to support them monetarily, in part adding to a debt of $20 trillion, while paying Americans to sit home and not work, thus enslaving the soul of our own citizenry in depriving them of real work which sustains the immortal soul of a man and a woman. A ninth is playing policeman for the world, sending military might to try to control people who do not wish our presence in their affairs. A tenth is regulating the right to bear arms for free citizens in a nation where criminals and terrorists will always have weapons, and where government is now in opposition to the citizenry. And there are others wherein we are called to be as clever as serpents, yet guileless as doves.

Perozich told LifeSiteNews that McElroy ordered him to limit Immaculate Conception’s bulletin content to “calendaring events.” Perozich said he cooperated and that he respects the bishop.

Perozich’s columns will now only be published at his website, richardperozich.com. Immaculate Conception’s website has been taken down and its content has moved to Perozich’s personal site.

“Calendaring events is what [the bishop] wanted,” and pages three and seven, where Perozich’s opinions appeared, were what he opposed. “However, on my personal website, on those pages that would have been there, I have a page called ‘page 3 and 7’ in which I will publish other things that people who I know are interested [in],” the priest explained.

“Bishop McElroy ordered Fr. Perozich to put only coordinating events in the church bulletins at Immaculate Conception,” the page 3 and 7 section of Perozich’s website explains. “The bishop disagreed with the content of other materials, particularly on pages 3 & 7 of the bulletin, which were perspectives by Fr. Perozich and other educated people regarding matters of faith and morals and Catholic participation in society. Out of respect for the office as bishop, the bulletin is generic and coordinating. These Pages 3 & 7 are the pages that might have gone into bulletins and are meant for those who wish to hear others’ ideas.”

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  1. Romulus Augustus says:

    Truly shocking, I have no words for this except pray for a new Pope and the return of the Traditional Latin Mass NOW!!! Do I hear His Grace Cardinal Raymond Burke???

  2. Romulus Augustus says:

    Just as Mr. Trump will drain the swamp of Washington D.C. we the people need to drain the swamp in Rome!!

  3. 12 QUOTES FROM ST. PETER DAMIAN

    The following 12 quotes come from the writings of St. Peter Damian, a great ascetic and monk who was especially troubled by the clergy and religious of his time who failed in their duties, especially celibacy.

    “Tell us, you unmanly and effeminate man, what do you seek in another male that you do not find in yourself?”

    “For God’s sake, why do you damnable sodomites pursue the heights of ecclesiastical dignity with such fiery ambition?”

    continued….

    • 12 QUOTES FROM ST. PETER DAMIAN continued

      “By what right or by what law can one bind or loose the other when he is constrained by the bonds of evil deeds common to them both?”

      “Who can expect the flock to prosper when its shepherd has sunk so deep into the bowels of the devil?

      “Who, by his lust, will consign a son whom he spiritually begotten for God to slavery under the iron law of Satanic tyranny?”

      “This utterly diseased queen of Sodom renders him who obeys the laws of her tyranny infamous to men and odious to God.”

      continued….

      • 12 QUOTES FROM ST. PETER DAMIAN continued….

        “Without fail, [the vice of sodomy] brings death to the body and destruction to the soul. It pollutes the flesh, extinguishes the light of the mind, expels the Holy Spirit from the temple of the human heart, and gives entrance to the devil, the stimulator of lust.”

        ”The vice of sodomy] leads to error, totally removes truth from the deluded mind . . . It opens up Hell and closes the gates of Paradise.”

        ”The vice of sodomy] is this vice that violates temperance, slays modesty, strangles chastity, and slaughters virginity.”

        continued….

        • 12 QUOTES FROM ST. PETER DAMIAN continued….

          The vice of sodomy] defiles all things, sullies all things, pollutes all things.”
          “Who will make a mistress of a cleric, or a woman of a man?”

          “It is not sinners, but the wicked who should despair; it is not the magnitude of one’s crime, but contempt of God that dashes one’s hopes.”

  4. helen wheels says:

    Wow ! Saw this one coming, but I still can’t believe it.
    I have two words to describe the bishop’s move – and they’re NOT
    “Good job !”

  5. As I recall the Apostles were put to death; 10 out of 12, for their refusal to meet demands to cease preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

  6. Paul Fabijanic says:

    this bishop got to go … fire him he’s not catholic

  7. John Patrick says:

    Everyday the bishop of San Diego comes out with a new attack on the Catholic Faith. He should be deposed by the Vatican immediately.

  8. This is absolutely unbelievable. What next?

  9. Ann Chorbi says:

    Fr. Rick Perozich is one of the truest Catholic priests I have come to learn about.
    I admire him greatly for facing the devil face to face….I will be praying for him.
    I’m amazed after having now Archbishop Vigneron sent out years ago to help the Oakland Diocese get back on tract and then to have your wonderful Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone up in SF, I really had hopes for Califorinia’s soul….now I see the devil has returned through SD through this bishop…so sad, so very terrifying indeed ….we must keep praying, praying praying!
    So glad to be able to still view Fr. Perozich web page…..

    • Terry Scharringhausen says:

      Agree with you 100%, Anne. Fr Perozich will have my continual. prayers. Please let Fr Perozich know of your support in writing. PRAY FOR HIM and pray for the Bishop we have been given and our diocese!!

  10. At St. Mary in Escondido, we witnessed what happens when you have a pastor who speaks the truth from the pulpit (and in the bulletin). Every year at Golden Hall, along with another very conservative parish, there were 10-20X the number of converts at the Rite of Election and Call to Continuing Conversion than any other parishes. The year my husband came into the church, we chuckled that they put St. Mary and St. Margaret in the waaay back upper level with our overwhelming numbers. The wealthy parishes with their 4 or 5 candidates had the front row seats! Why not showcase the growing, vibrant, traditional parishes bringing in hundreds of new confirmandis to the flock? When asked by brother priests how this was happening, Fr. Rich would say,…

  11. Hillary supporters never give up! I expect religious persecution from the secular but not from my bishop. I agree with everything Fr. Perozich said in his column. Is teaching of the faith by a priest now reduced to “views”? I will bookmark Fr. perozich’s website and pray fervently for Bp. McElroy’s conversion and salvation.

  12. hosemonkey says:

    I do not know if this “Bishop” will ever read this critique, but by silencing this good priest, he has earned himself a place in infamy. It is the place and duty of the priest to counsel the faithful against evil and the things that the good father enumerates are truly evil and soul-destroying. The Catholic Church used to be known as a bulwark against these evils, but no more. The Church needs more warriors and fewer wimpy prelates.

    • What the good Bishop has done will be very counter-productive. Many people who were not aware of Father Perozich before will listen to him far more often and intently now. Remember when they used to “condemn” movies?? It guaranteed there would be lines around the block. Same phenomenon—but this time to good effect.

  13. Shameful, scandalous bishop. Priests are not required to obey their bishop in all things—-they are especially not bound to obey in matters of faith and morals.

    Let’s all get behind Fr. Perozich and tell him to continue doing what he does best—being a wonderful faithful, faith filled priest:

    Fr. Richard Perozich
    Immaculate Conception Church
    Address: 2540 San Diego Ave, San Diego, CA 92110
    Phone: (619) 295-4148

    • Anonymous says:

      unfortunately, the bishop has the power to immediately remove a pastor. there is no court system except in a few dioceses who have activated this option, so accusation becomes a form of immediate sentencing. in rare cases, appeal can be made, but most can’t find their way through the maze. if cardinals can be dumped from committees and perhaps lose their cardinal standing over fraternally shared questions of the highest importance, it is clear that there is something lacking in canon law. all clergy should have protection from arbitrary justice.

  14. Who do we contact to have Bishop McElroy removed. We must pray for him. He truly needs help.

  15. St. Christopher says:

    Father Perozich, you are the Cardinal Burke of the Diocese of San Diego. Your orthodoxy means that you will likely be shunned by your bishop, and perhaps even suspended (for a time of “discernment,” what irony if this happens). Difficult to any man, certainly. But you are a voice in the wilderness; be obedient, but not where your bishop seeks to direct you in his heretical ways. Be prepared to respond where B. McElroy directs you to provide communion to people living together, or homosexual couples, or to divorced and remarried (no annulment). Stay faithful, avoid scandal, show us all how better to earn Heaven. You are the kind of priest that we pray for, and thank God for. Christ will know of your suffering, good Father. Thank…

    • St. Christopher says:

      (Part Deux) ” . . . you,

      Faithful people — how do we get in touch with the feckless Bishop McElroy?

    • St.Christopher, what Father Perozich wrote is not orthodox.

      • Anonymous, could you kindly point out the SPECIFIC statements or writings of Father Perozich which you claim are “not orthodox”? If you can’t, shame on you. Fouling the good name of a dedicated priest by false accusations of heterodoxy is way, way out of bounds.

      • St. Christopher says:

        Of course, your comment is non-consequential in that it is entirely non-specific. Try to give it some meat. Saying a statement is or is not “orthodox” is meaningless without more.

        Further, what you are likely trying to say is that Fr. Perozich is not orthodox (to you) in that he is saying something different from a person (B. McElroy) who insists that what he says is orthodox (because of who he is). But, this argument does not work. The appointment of a bishop does not carry with it any guarantee of infallibility.

        • Anonymous says:

          The seventh and eighth statements are heterodox.The tenth is probably just a matter of opinion, definitely not Catholic teaching. He is entitled to his opinions but in an age when Catholics are so poorly educated in the faith, I feel the priest in the bulletin should stick to Church teaching.

  16. “There are many bishops in hell”-Our Lady of Fatima

  17. William Robert says:

    Actually, Bishop McElroy is handling this matter very graciously and within his role as Bishop. Father Richard is certainly entitled to his opinions as a citizen and priest. However, he is not entitled to use the parish bulletin to promote his opinions which are contrary to the teachings of the Church.

    • Anonymous says:

      Unfortunately, the good Father has shut down the parish website, and moved all of that content, plus his prohibited “views” to his own personal website. Following the Bishops’s directives to the letter, but no further. This story is not over yet.

      • I just tried to find the parish website and you get go daddy trying to sell the domain. How can a pastor do this? Why would a pastor do this? How are visitors to the area supposed to know when the Mass times are? What about people who are trying to come back to the Church? Only those who know the name of the priest and know that he might have a personal website, would be able to find it. Does he think the Church is his personal property?
        This priest needs our prayers.

    • Unless you can cite specific examples where Father spoke/wrote contrary to the Faith, you are “assuming facts not in evidence” re Father Perozich. I would not question your last sentence. I DO question how it applies to Father.

    • hosemonkey says:

      Billy Bob, “contrary to the teachings of which Church”? The Catholic Church, last I heard, was against “abortion, homosexuality, ‘so called same sex marriage’ with fines resulting in loss in business, income, and employment. A third enslavement is using embryos which have a soul as experiments. A fourth is cloning wherein now scientists are experimenting with human and animal DNA to create hybrid creatures. A fifth is euthanasia, the direct killing of human beings either with or without their consent. A sixth is the silencing of the Christian to express his faith in public, wherein our churches are complicit for fear of losing their tax exempt status. A seventh is the importation of immigrants whose religious values are to eradicate…

      • hosemonkey says:

        our society, replace it with the false cult of Islam, remove our second amendment rights and on and on. Censored by our wimpy prelates, up to and including our Pope, all of whom who have a severe deficit of cojones when it comes to defense of Catholic Truth, consorting with Lutherans and other mortal enemies of the Church, selling a thousand years of Tradition down the river. Disgusting.

    • Which teachings of the Church do you have in mind, William Robert?

  18. Stephanie Hart says:

    I knew what McElroy was about a few months ago when he said his biggest goal was to make every parish in San Diego go solar. Nice priorities, Bishop.

  19. Richard Peterson says:

    Where oh where has our Catholic Church fallen to?
    Vatican II was has proven to be only the beginning of a free fall to a very protestant
    And now we have Pope Francis!!!!
    LIBERAL church. Please, Please give us back our Traditional Church.
    Yes I know, we have some parishes with a Traditional Mass, but WE NEED MORE!

    God help us . . .

  20. Wow. Talk about your free advertising.

  21. As a practical matter, doesn’t the Bishop have almost total control over a priest? The Bishop determines the parish assignment, etc.
    I’m not at all surprised the other shoe dropped so quickly

    .

  22. Two of our departed friends had something to say about this. Saint Catherine of Siena and Arch Bishop Fulton Sheen. Saint Catherine admonished the Pope who was living in France at the time that he should get back to Rome and Bishop Sheen called it a duty of the laity to admonish Priest and Bishop if they were not living up to their commitment t0 God, Church or Them.

    • hosemonkey says:

      Amen! That is when we had real warriors who were not afraid to stand up for Christ without regard for Political Correctness and the irrational fear of (shudder) offending someone’s delicate little feelings. Tell the Truth, in season and out, let the chips fall where they may. Fr. Perozitch is a truth-teller.

  23. Little Birdie told Me says:

    Obispo McCroy is said to be on his way to Washington DC to replace Obispo Wourell as the Cardinal over there, a little birdie told me

  24. Ivy League says:

    I’m surprised he hasn’t tried to silence Catholic Answers. Perhaps that’s next on his list.

  25. There are a whole range of ecclesiastics in our Church who would be far more comfortable in Canterbury and Lund. Why don’t they just absent themselves. Bishops of any and all rank who become stumbling blocks surely have a millstone with their name on it. This is no less than scandalous.

  26. Immaculate Conception reports the collection on page 6 of its bulletin. Can’t wait to see next week’s contributions.

    ‘Course, the Diocesan Vig will be correspondingly larger (what you hipsters call “the juice”).

    Might the Bishop be counting on that?

  27. FromThePew says:

    Good Fr. Perozich. Bad Bishop McElroy. Sad for the Diocese. What to do? BOYCOTT the bad. SUPPORT the good. Maybe everybody should stop giving any MONEY to the BISHOP. Wouldn’t that be lovely?
    Be not afraid. God knows. Eternity waits to correct the wayward.

    • FromThePew says:

      Continued…….May God bless Fr. Perozich who speaks God’s truth, explains God’s laws, with all due respect for God’s glory (not for himself) and for our eternal salvation.

  28. If I may put a counterpoint to all of this. With respect to Father Perozich, if he had given voice with as much amplification and vigor and enegry as to other teachings from the present Magisterium that also relates to life, most notably the abolition of the death penalty, which his own Bishop and indeed all of the California bishops had worked to advocate, I am re-thinking that the treatment he would have gotten might be different. As it is, the position held is quite unbalanced, perhaps upholding more just one side of the political spectrum. And yes, I use “political spectrum” deliberately, for if Father had indeed given voice to, say, the death penalty’s abolition—which other clerics in his neighborhood I am sure did not talk…

    • about—his position would be more balanced. As it is, for some, his position only serves the right side of the spectrum, and the Gospel is not the message of the right.

      • St. Christopher says:

        “jon,” aboition of the death penatly is, in no way, on a moral par with abortion. Catholic doctrine does not hold this. Of course, you can find crocodile tears from Pope Francis and many American bishops on eliminating a society’s right to protect itself, but this is not and has not been, Catholic teaching. The elimiate the death penalty argument is purely political and purely aspirational, not doctrinal.

        Also, the “seamless garment” is also not Catholic teaching, although the late Cardinal Bernardin and his cronies tried hard to have you believe otherwise. There is a gradation to the gravity of sin, surely. Some will get you to Hell, like abortion, fornication, homosexual sex and the like, and others will not. Please do not…

        • St. Christopher says:

          (Part Deux) ” . . . get seduced by the desparate efforts of the Vatican and the USCCB to find an issue or two upon which to base their relevancy. The Church exists for one thing: to help Mankind recognize this true nature and thereby attain salvation. Nothing, absolutely nothing, more (not immigration “rights,” not income inequality, not the death penalty, blah, blah, and blah, is equivalent to this.

          • Nobody said that the death penalty is on the same moral level as abortion, SC. This is amply proven in Ratzinger’s 2004 Letter “Worthiness To Receive”. What you have missed from my comment is the “tactic”, the “strategem”, the shrewdness of having the presence of mind to speak about an issue that means a lot to the California bishops, including most notably McElroy namely the death penalty—AND THEN ALSO speaking forthrightly about abortion, euthanasia, and the rest of the Church’s teachings on life. People, recognize the signs of the times please and act accordingly.

  29. O how I wish that we could report Bishop McElroy yo the Vatican and ask for another Ordinary, but Pope Francis has got to be very pleased with him since McElroy is almost a clone of Cupich. The only thing got us to do is to storm heaven with rosaries as Cardinal Burke likes to say and to hope that McElroy gets transferred to another Arch/Diocese and we are blessed with a Catholic Bishop. This whole affair makes one long for the good old days with Bishop Brom.

  30. Jennifer Gradzewicz says:

    It seems that the word ‘sin’ has become a dirty word. Shame on Bishop McElroy. God bless Fr. Perozich for speaking truth. Praying for him.

  31. Bishop Brom complete with a massive Priest Sex scandal? Be careful what one wishes and/or prays for.

  32. Romulus Augustus says:

    Pray for Father Perozich, he is being a good priest and obeying his bishop. Don’ worry Father in the end you will be blessed by Our Lord and Bishop McElroy well I just won’t say what I would like to, but just very disgusted with him. On a nice note in Fathers own website I see that Father had a “communion rail” installed at Immaculate Conception Church his parish in Old Town San Diego what a wonderful thing to see, when I lived there it had no communion rail.

  33. Romulus Augustus says:

    Guys there is nothing wrong with calling out bad bishops and priests this has been done for centuries it does not make you a “BAD” Catholic indeed it makes you a loyal Roman Catholic if Bishop McElroy can’t uphold Church teaching then Father Perozich will!!!!! The day’s Vatican II are numbered 40 years have almost destroyed the Church yet when the return of the TLM is complete Holy Mother Church will be restored to Her glory.

  34. The Catholic Faithful in San Diego have been through a lot of adversity in recent years: First there was the priest abuse scandal and protracted law suit and settlement (Bishop Brom was not to blame – he inherited this mess from his predicessors.). Next we had the retirement of Bishop Brom and the all too brief tenure of the late Bishop Flores RIP. Now we are saddled with a Shepherd who is an extreme liberal/socialist. Fortunately the Church in San Diego will survive as we have the promise of Jesus Himself to remain with the Church until the end of time. COURAGE DIOCESE OF SAN DIEGO!!!

  35. I think the Bishop just put Immaculate Conception on the “Churches Worth Driving To” map.

  36. Linda Maria says:

    SHAME on Bishop McElroy, and his fellow, like-minded prelates! SHAME ON THEM ALL!! NO MORAL CONSCIENCE!! There is nothing on this earth, more HORRIBLE– than to see “Christian” religious leaders– especially of our Church!– to DELIBERATELY IGNORE the SUFFERING AND DELIBERATE MURDERS, of MILLIONS OF HELPLESS, INNOCENT BABIES IN THEIR MOTHERS’ WOMBS!!

  37. Lnda Maria says:

    A good priest like Fr. Perozich should receive only WORDS OF PRAISE from his bishop! Also, it is very important, to PUBLICLY proclaim the true teachings of our Church— and stand proudly behind Christ’s true teachings!!!

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