The New Civil Rights Movement reports that over 400 Catholics met in Detroit this week to attend a conference billed as “Welcoming Our Brothers and Sisters with Same-Sex-Attraction.”
According to The Detroit Free Press, Detroit Archbishop Allen Vigneron celebrated a mass at the close of the conference yesterday.
“It’s not being a bigot to say that people should not have sexual relations with people of the same gender,” the Archbishop said during his closing sermon.
The Free Press reports that Dr. Timothy Flanigan gave a lecture, “HIV and Other Health Risks Associated with Men Who Have Sex with Men” in which he said:
“…male sex, anal sex facilitates the spread of all sorts of diseases … bacterial infections, parasitic infections … anal sex is risky, dangerous. … And oral sex also carries with it its own risks as well.”
Father John Riccardo of Our Lady of Good Counsel Parish offered instructions on how to talk to teenagers about gay issues:
“This is the question which is asked by junior-high kids: ‘Why does God hate gays?’ Here’s the image that I use: ‘I just rip open a bagel, I take it, and I cram it in my ear. What would you say?’”
Kids apparently respond, “That doesn’t go in there.”
“Exactly. That will ruin your ear canal.”
According to the Free Press, Father Riccardo also talked about a parishioner of his who has a gay son:
“Riccardo said the family member allows the gay partner of her child into her home and doesn’t exclude her. Riccardo said his family member has said: “If this person doesn’t come in my house, they may never hear the gospel. … I want them to encounter Jesus.”
Riccardo said: “The goal here isn’t going from being gay to being straight. The goal here is going from not knowing Jesus to knowing Jesus.”
Riccardo said it’s important to reach out to gays, because “if we don’t find a way to do that, then we’re going to have a ghetto and put walls around us and no one is going to come in.”
At the same time, his family member “is very firm and clear with her child,” Riccardo said. She said she tells her child “when you are here, you will not sleep together (with your gay partner) … because I think that’s harmful and here are the reasons why.”
Archbishop Vigneron agreed.
“Some people think we’re a bunch of Queen Victorians … prissy. A bunch of blue-stockings. No!”