“Nobody has run it by Archbishop Cordileone”

San Francisco Jesuit church to host ‘Gay Men’s Chorus’

San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus (image: Dawn Ennis/lgbtqnation.com)

On Friday, October 26, the “San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus” is scheduled to perform at the Jesuit St. Ignatius Church in San Francisco. The concert is part of a three-day event marking the chorus’ 40th Anniversary, one part of which is a “Drag Brunch” with transvestite Donna Sachet at the Sir Francis Drake Hotel.

This is not the only controversial event to have been hosted at St. Ignatius Church. At Mass on July 1, 2013, so-called ‘gay pride” Sunday, St. Ignatius’s current pastor, Fr. Gregory Bonfiglio, SJ, read a letter from his Seattle confrere Fr. John Whitney defending his participation in that city’s “gay pride” parade.

Flier for the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus

On March 26, 2015 the parish hosted Dr. Tim Lewis for an Adult Faith Formation program titled ‘How to Talk to Your Teenage Children About Sex’. Lewis’ profile on the Psyris.com website describes his areas of expertise as: “LGBT and Questioning Individuals.”

On August 15, 2015, the parish hosted a screening of “Love is Strange,” a movie celebrating same-sex “marriage” by openly homosexual filmmaker Ira Sachs.

On November 29, 2015 St. Ignatius hosted Reverend Vincent Pizzuto, an openly homosexual baptized Catholic who left the Faith, was ordained priest first in the Celtic Christian and later, the Episcopal Church. The Reverend Pizzuto has been open about moving “beyond the confines of the Roman church,” while serving as full professor and program director of the  Department of Theology and Religious Studies at the (Jesuit) University of San Francisco.

Finally, in 2008 St. Ignatius replaced the church’s confessionals with an art gallery in order to “enhance the dialogue that takes place on a larger scale within the ritual space of the church.” 

The upcoming concert was promoted in an October 19 article in the San Francisco Chronicle headlined “SF Gay Men’s Chorus to play church decades after archbishop rejected it.” Excerpts:

Father Greg Bonfiglio of St. Ignatius Parish (image from St. Ignatius Church)

“…37 years ago, the still-new singing group wasn’t welcome in all corners of the city. In a devastating blow that made headlines around the Bay Area, the chorus’ April 25, 1981, concert at St. Ignatius Church was canceled weeks beforehand by Archbishop John Quinn. He said the concert could be ‘misinterpreted’ as the Catholic Church approving of homosexuality, which he considered immoral.”

“Thankfully, times change, and the Gay Men’s Chorus is once again preparing for a concert at St. Ignatius Church, the first time ever it will sing in the stunningly grand church known for its terrific acoustics. This time the concert, set for Friday, is almost sure to happen. ‘We were told in no uncertain terms that any chorus that has the word ‘gay’ in its name is not allowed to sing in any Catholic churches in the city,’ said Tim Seelig, artistic director of the Gay Men’s Chorus….It was always a thing since 1981.’ “

The Chronicle continued: “Father Greg Bonfiglio, a pastor at St. Ignatius, explained that the church sent invitations to a range of diverse choruses and choirs, inviting them to perform.” There’s just one little glitch. Nobody has run it by San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, according to Bonfiglio.

“Oh, sure, he’ll hear about it’ the pastor said. ‘There’s nothing at issue, I don’t think” ’ to which the Chronicle writer responded, “Here’s hoping.”

To contact San Francisco’s Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, call 415-614-5500.

California Catholic Daily exclusive.

Comments

  1. Franco Aventine says

    How does the Pastor of a Catholic Church do this and the Bishop does not be immediately reverse it and the Pastor is disciplined with a trip back to Seminary School for a year?

    Apparently todays clergy have ignored the warning of Pope Paul VI that the smoke of satan has entered the temple of God.

    • Maybe you should read this other story from the San Francisco Chronicle…
      “More than 200 Bay Area clergy members named on Catholic sex abuse accusation list”
      A law firm suing California bishops for the records of priests accused of sexual abuse released its own report Tuesday listing more than 200 clergy in the San Francisco Bay Area it says are accused of misconduct.
      https://bit.ly/2JfQ69L

      • What has this anything to do with a chorus of gay men singing?

        • It doesn’t — Kev is merely pointing out that the Catholic Church clearly has much more pressing issues to deal with than a bunch of gay men singing beautiful music in one of their churches.

          • OK, fair enough Anon at 10 PM. It’s not what I took from Kev’s comments, but I suppose yours is a fair reading and if so, I’d tend to agree with him.

  2. When is this going to stop……

  3. Abp Cordileone will do nothing to stop this.

  4. The Jesuits need to be suppressed.

  5. St. Christopher says

    Dear Archbishop, you cannot permit this scandal to happen. You will be hated for showing such Faith. However, that is what you are meant to endure, Excellency.

    Failure to do this means that you join the “chorus” of mendacious fellow bishops that do almost nothing to teach and live the Faith. Also, you will show young men what it means to be a true man, Excellency. Silence is the norm of cowards.

  6. If the performance was by people with disablities or were ill, would there be such an outcry of self-righteous indignation?

    Those with same-sex attraction have a disorder, just like others who suffer from mental, emotional and physical disorders. These individuals are spiritually disabled. Those who are activly feeding their urges need prayers for their eventual conversation, so that they will be free of this mortal sin, and eventually be able to partake in the Eucharist in a properly disposed and worthy manner.

    Just because the Catechism states that same-sex attraction is “inherently disordered”, it does not grant an unfettered license to denigrate the human individual or treat them as lepers used to be treated.

    • Joe in San Jose says

      Your analogy misses the point, which is that this chorus glorifies in their sinfulness and refuses to repent and refuses to affirm the truth of Catholic teaching. It would be like a Catholic church hosting a performance by a choir of self-affirmed adulterers, thieves, murderers, rapists, pedophiles. There would be an outcry if a parish hosted a concert by a NAMBLA chorus. Justifiably so. As there should be an outcry against this travesty.

      • The analogy is on point. Practicing homosexuals are spiritually injured.

        The same applies to heterosexuals, who habitually practice adultery, consistently have sexual relations outside marriage or conjugally co-habitate. These “straight” individuals are also spiritually injured and need prayers for conversion also.

        • Actually Katie you are wrong… if they don’t practice sodomy, straight adulterers, although sinning, are not attacking the natural order with their behavior

          • Mortal sin requires three elements:
            –grave matter;
            –knowledge that the act involves matter; and
            –acting on the grave matter anyway.

            Adultery, fornication and sodomy are all mortal sins. There are no degrees, levels or hierarchical structure mortal sins.

            Hetero-sexual acts of adultery and fornication are mortal sins because they violate the sanctity of marriage and continence, while the basis of sodomy violates God’s natural law.

            Regardless of the premise, all are mortal sins

          • bohemond,

            Here, in relevant part, is the LETTER TO THE BISHOPS OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH
            ON THE PASTORAL CARE OF HOMOSEXUAL PERSONS. The full text is available at:

            http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_19861001_homosexual-persons_en.html

            “Christians who are homosexual are called, as all of us are, to a chaste life. As they dedicate their lives to understanding the nature of God’s personal call to them, they will be able to celebrate the Sacrament of Penance more faithfully and receive the Lord’s grace so freely offered there in order to convert their lives more fully to his Way.”

            Space limitations prevent placing the full text; so please, and in freedom from fear read the full…

          • Katie, adultery is not one of the sins that cries to heaven for vengeance. Sodomy is. Checkmate.

          • If there is to be vengeance for sodomy from Heaven, then it will be meted out by God Almighty (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) according to His plan and timetable; not yours, mine or anyone else’s. Vengeance belongs to God alone. No cries necessary.

            “Revenge not yourselves, my dearly beloved; but give place unto wrath, for it is written: Revenge is mine, I will repay, saith the Lord.” (Romans 12:19; Douay-Rheims translation)

    • You are starting from wrong premises and ending with wrong conclusions. Or, as in your last paragraph, even though you know what the Church teaches, you just decide you can ignore it and come up with your own rules.

  7. This is what Satan wants. You cannot reconcile sodomy with Christianity.

    • Joe in San Jose says

      No, but they’re trying.

    • Your Fellow Catholic says

      I’m pretty sure there is no sodomy at this event. And I believe it was Saint Augustine who said “He who sings, prays twice”.

      • Larry Northon says

        “I’m pretty sure there is no sodomy at this event.” Probably not, but these men want us all to know that when they’re not singing for an audience they’re privately sodomizing.

      • Steve Seitz says

        YFC,
        I’ve always had trouble with that quote because I get distracted when singing. When I sing, I hardly pray. 🙂

    • Can you reconcile heterosexuals who practice adultry, fornication and living conjugally outsid of marriage?

      • Katie, fornication or adultery with someone of the opposite sex are serious mortal sins, but sodomy, incest and bestiality are even more serious. There are grades of mortal sin. A priest who is over a seminary who commits sodomy with one of his seminarians is not only guilty of unnatural fornication but also spiritual incest.because he has sodomized one of his spiritual sons. Many people have known what they were doing was wrong, continued to do it any way and now have dead unrepentant consciences.

        • Moryal sin is mortal sin, with the same consequences.

        • Your Fellow Catholic says

          Since YOU bring up the issue of sodomy. First of all, not all gay people practice it. Secondly, a lot of straight people do practice it. Thirdly, abuse at the hands of priests with under age adolescents and children was sometimes not sodomy. It was rubbing under or through clothes, masturbation, etc. Still horrible things to do to a child. Not justifying any of it, but if you are trying to make the case that sodomy is somehow a worse sin than the rest – well, know the facts.

          • It is worse because it is more damaging to the body to misuse one of its functions. That type of behavior is extremely dangerous for women especially. Plain and simple, it is a filthy habit.

    • Take a look at St. Augustine of Hippo. His sexual depravity is well-known. Through the prayers of his Mother, St. Monica, he was converted and reconciled to the Church.

      Shouldn’t we, as members of Holy Mother Church, emulate St. Monica and pray for the conversion of those who are wounded and suffer from the disorder of same-sex attraction?

  8. In commercial terms, the Catholic Church has no real trade mark status. Any kind of facial tissue is called kleenex, although generic brands cannot legally print that on the box. Catholic universities? They are largely generic private institutions who still slap the name Catholic on requests for alumni support. My favorite squishy ad lingo: ” In the Catholic tradition”.

  9. Love the sinner, hate the sin. Let those without sin cast the first stone.

    • Way to cherry pick scripture while condoning sinful behavior. The Church has enough problems with homosexually right now without giving it a stage in one of its parishes.

    • Hi Mike, that’s what the Bishops said when Priests were molesting thousands of boys.

    • West coast says

      One of the Church’s spiritual acts of mercy is admonishment of the sinner. This is not a situation where people will bring stones to the concert to use to murder the choir, so please don’t misuse scripture. But in order to avoid corrupting influence, the concert must be canceled.

    • What is the reason for this chorus to exist? The one thing unifying the members is their persistence in sinfulness and their refusal to leave the sinful life. And their campaign to glorify their sins and force the rest of us to join in approvingly. So, their sin is front and center. And if you want to use the Sacred Scripture, then stay in the context, and tell these sinners to “Sin no more”.

    • Bad things happen when he who is without sin casts a stone. Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed.

  10. Just have a Courage Apostolate table set up in the Narthex attended by men and women with same sex attraction that live lives of sanctity. They could be available to answer questions and provide information and media to the curious and desperate alike.

  11. Linda Maria says

    Many people don’t realize, that the Council Fathers of Vatican II firmly decided to allow all clergy and laymen to make their own decisions, with no control from the local bishops. Canon Law is also disregarded, except for a very few cases. Also– many Catholic colleges decided to pull out from Church control, in the infamous “Land O’ Lakes” conference, in 1967. Irresponsible, and terribly frustrating!

    • Your statement about Vatican II in incorrect.

      • Linda Maria says

        Anonymous– Go ask any prelate, and they will explain this to you! Vatican II practices are not written down formally, in the Documents. What the Council Fathers decided– is that the Church was too controlling– and that all Catholics, clergy and laymen– should have the rights to “individual freedoms,” to make their own decisions– without the local bishop telling them what to do– except in a few very rare cases! And Canon Law is disregarded on this, too! So– I don’t think we will see Abp. Cordileone telling either the President of USF, or the Pastor of St Ignatius Church– what to do!

  12. Rev. Joseph Shore-Goss says

    What a blessing and joy to see the church continue to do good work to bring the community together. As the pope said “ who am I to judge”. Let us follow the papal lead and love our brothers and sisters for who they are, children of God perfect just as God made them!

    • While one might dispute your characterization of homosexuals, your characterization of Francis is spot on, Reverend. No one can fault you for that. I have no doubt if Francis were in the Bay Area during the time of the performance, his seat would be front and center.

    • So I’m a child of God who likes to eat a peanut butter sandwich in church while walking up to receive communion, is that okay because “I ” say so ?

    • Ah so called Rev. Joseph, none of your “tolerance and love” will save the souls of these “brothers and sisters” at hour of their judgment

  13. What a great experience that church and that audience is going to have! Tim Seelig is a phenomenal choral director and the SF Gay Men’s Chorus is one of the top Men’s choruses in the country.

  14. Pope XI to Edmund Walsh SJ:

    “Tell me, Father Walsh, “who have been the worst persecutors of the Church, tell me?” Father Walsh knew the Pope wanted to answer his own question, so he didn’t answer. The Pope said, “The Church’s worst persecutors have been her own unfaithful bishops, priests and religious.” He went on, “Opposition from the outside is terrible; it gives us many martyrs. But the Church’s worst enemy is her own traitors.”

  15. Reminder that Jesus dined with sinners (aka prostitutes) and likely didn’t lecture them (why else would they come to him). Food for thought: are you a Pharisee, obsessed with the law (small l, not capital L)? https://coffeewiththeking.org/2014/10/29/matt9c/

  16. The smoke of Satan has definitely entered the Sanctuary, carried in by many clergymen who openly disobey and act in opposition to the most basic tenants of our faith, as evident all around us. Disobedience, lack of discipline, lack of respect for anything and everything Holy, pride and self will on display, as evidenced also by some comments above. Yes, Satan quoted Scripture passages to Our Lord, while tempting Him. Satan’s followers are doing the same today, while tempting the Church to abandon The Lord and plunge itself into depths of sin.

  17. How wonderful (and what a relief) to see the Catholic Church making some GOOD news! Bless this parish for welcoming the LGBT community for a celebration in song, and may God forgive all those in the comment section who have taken it upon themselves to judge.

  18. It’s my understanding Religious Orders and Priestly Confraternities and Societies operate at the invitation of the Ordinary? I think it’s high time for the Jesuits to be dis-invited from the Archdiocese.

  19. Tony de New York says

    ‘may God forgive all those in the comment section who have taken it upon themselves to judge.’
    There is NOTHING wrong with judging, is part of HUMAN NATURE, but even YOU are judging.

  20. For those that don’t know the Bishop has little authority over parishes and school run by religious orders, like Jesuits. He can try persuasion or kick them out of his diocese, but ordering them around as he would a diocesan priest, isn’t possible

  21. This is just sacrilege, plain and simple.Those pushing so-called same-sex marriage are pushing apostasy and are apostates. They can mouth the creed all they want, but the “god” and “Jesus” they serve is not the God of the Bible nor two thousands years of Church history. The Jesus of the Bible said that a man and woman would leave their father and mother and become one flesh in marriage, not Steve and Jack would leave father and mother to hookup.

    • Apostasy is the complete rejection of the faith, Anne, not a failure to live up to a moral code. Besides which, this choir is not only made up of Christians. I think you’ll find Jews, Muslims, athiests, Buddhists, etc among their ranks. And although they sang “Nearer My God to Thee”, it was a secular concert for a mostly secular audience. For some of them, it might have been their first time in a Catholic Church. Isn’t bringing people closer to Christ part of evangelization? How are to we bring people to God if we reject them before they enter the front door?

      • Anonymous, It is apostasy. It is a complete rejection of the Judeo-Christian moral code. No orthodox Jew or Sikh would take part in this either.

  22. Salvatore Manella says

    So, did the concert take place?

    • Yes it did, welcomed in with a stirring letter of congratulations and welcome from archbishop cordileone himself. Truly a magical night. The reading of that letter, and the entire concert itself are available still on YouTube if you want to see it.

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COMMENTS POLICY: Comments are limited to 750 characters and will be truncated at 750. Comments should not contain offensive or libelous language. Please strive to be civil. All comments are subject to approval by our moderator and to editing as the moderator deems appropriate. Inclusion of your email address is optional.