A Chicago priest will not be allowed to burn an LGBTQ Pride flag as planned, Windy City Times reports.
Earlier this month in a Sunday bulletin, Fr. Paul Kalchik of Resurrection Catholic Church announced in a postscript to his printed homily that a rainbow flag found hanging in the church would be burned as a sacrilege during an upcoming prayer service held in front of the church.
When made aware of this event, scheduled to follow a September 29 mass, Archdiocese of Chicago leadership told Kalchik he could not move forward with his demonstration.
Kalchik also intended to burn his parishioners’ pledge cards, with which they promised to fast and pray for 40 days, while singing Psalm 141: “Let my prayer arise before you like incense, my hands like an evening offering.”
“We can confirm that the pastor has agreed not to move forward with these activities,” said Archdiocese of Chicago communications and marketing director Anne Mascelli in a statement.
In his homily, published on the Church Militant website, Kalchik also preached, “We cannot let the current troubles keep us from our mission to go make more disciples for the Lord, nor should modern day distractions like global warming, LGBT ’rights’ or even immigration issues ever take precedence over that mission.”
“We are grateful that the Chicago Archdiocese quickly and firmly rejects the words of this pastor and his intended ’ritual’ which are inconsistent with Catholic values and beliefs,” says DignityUSA president Chris Pett.
“It appears that this pastor was hijacking the parish to promote an extreme, ultra-conservative agenda promoted by the Church Militant group which is not officially recognized by the Church and is rejected by most Catholics,” Pett continues.
“National polling over the past number of years consistently shows that a majority of Catholics support LBGTQ people and our issues. While we continue to challenge the institutional Church to reject its harmful and incorrect teachings about homosexuality, we are glad to see this decisive action on behalf of all LGBTQ Catholics.”