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"Double Standard" Update

"Pro-Choice," "Pro-Gay" Priest Runs Amuck in Canada

by Christopher A. Ferrara

As this column has noted more than once, in a Church wracked by dissent and scandal in every nation, Fr. Nicholas Gruner of Canada, who has done nothing wrong, is the one and only priest in living memory the Vatican apparatus has seen fit to condemn publicly with an announcement in L’Osservatore Romano — the very day after 9/11! Fr. Gruner’s "offense" is his all-too-effective promotion of the Fatima Message as it relates to the current crisis in the Church and the world.

The curious treatment of Fr. Gruner has prompted this running "Double Standard Update" feature. The latest example of the double standard is found in another Canadian priest, Fr. Raymond Gravel, a pro-abortion activist  —  this is a priest, mind you  —  who has so far escaped any discipline for his dissent from the Church’s infallible moral teaching against abortion. Gravel is a priest at Saint-Joachim de La Plaine parish in the Canadian diocese of Joliette.

As reported by on June 25, 2004, the Canadian pro-life group Campagne Québec-Vie (Campaign Life Coalition Quebec) protested that Gravel "deserves Church censure" because he "appeared on radio program saying, ‘I am pro-choice and there is not a bishop on earth that will prevent me from receiving Communion, not even the Pope.’" Gravel, it seems, is quite familiar with the double standard this column has documented.

Nor was Gravel’s comment on the radio an isolated incident. The Life Site report notes that "Gravel is already well known for his dissident positions, having come out publicly in favour of homosexual ‘marriage’." So, we are dealing with a pro-abort and a pro-gay activist who is allowed to be a parish priest in Canada.

According to LifeSite, "Campagne Québec-Vie has called on Church authorities, principally the Bishop of Joliette, Most Rev. Gilles Lussier, to suspend the priest or ‘at the very least to publicly admonish him.’" Luc Gagnon, President of Campagne Québec-Vie, noted that "By its silence in the face of such a scandal, the Catholic hierarchy gives the impression that it approves of the serious doctrinal errors of Father Gravel, who continues obstinately to speak to the Quebec media."

Thus, a Canadian priest who supports abortion and "gay marriage" airs his views in the mass media while the Canadian hierarchy does nothing, even though this wolf in sheep’s clothing has openly defied them and the Vatican to take action against him. It’s just another day at the office in the post-conciliar "springtime" of Vatican II.

And speaking of the Vatican, can we expect to see an announcement in L’Osservatore Romano condemning Fr. Gravel and his public heresies? Given the track record of the past forty years, we already know the answer to that question.