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Priest Walks Out of Woman's Funeral Over Her Lesbian Daughter

Ann Werner writes about a disturbing incident over the weekend at a Maryland church:

GuarnizoSomething terrible happened this past weekend in Maryland and the fact that it was Maryland, a state that has just proclaimed that all are equal and has enshrined that concept into state law, goes to highlight the lengths to which the right will go. In this instance, the right was personified by Father Marcel Guarnizo, who officiated at the funeral of a former family member of mine. She was no longer a family member because I divorced the man who was her blood relative. But with social media these days, a person can remain in touch with those who, although there is no longer a family connection, are still people who are valued.

My friend Barbara, the daughter of the deceased woman, was denied communion at her mother’s funeral. She was the first in line and Fr. Guarnizo covered the bowl containing the host and said to her,  “I cannot give you communion because you live with a woman and that is a sin according to the church.” To add insult to injury, Fr. Guarnizo left the altar when she delivered her eulogy to her mother. When the funeral was finished he informed the funeral director that he could not go to the gravesite to deliver the final blessing because he was sick.

I will tell you a little about the woman who drove that priest from the altar. She is kind, she is smart, she is funny and she works hard promoting the arts. She pays her bills, she cares deeply for her family and she loved her mother and her mother loved her right back. And now she will never set foot in a Catholic church again and who can blame her?

Read Werner's full account at the link below.

Priest Walks Out Of Woman’s Funeral Because Of Her Gay Daughter [addicting info]

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  1. And now she will never set foot in a Catholic church again and who can blame her?

    Well, that's the good news!

    I was raised Catholic and I know the religion digs its tendrils deep. I hate the Church, but I feel a special sense of belonging and calm when I am in a church (the building). But the Catholic Church is an evil and corrupt institution and there are other options for LGBT people who want a spiritual/religious practice.

    Posted by: Alejandro | Feb 27, 2012 12:29:55 PM

  2. what a queen.....

    Posted by: aj | Feb 27, 2012 12:30:41 PM

  3. I am speechless because of this kind of arrogance.

    Posted by: Matt26 | Feb 27, 2012 12:34:58 PM

  4. I can hear the dimes drop already, out there in the DC area someone has dirt on this poor excuse for a priest let alone a human being....

    Posted by: aj | Feb 27, 2012 12:35:18 PM

  5. do you know why this continues? because progressive Cafeteria Catholics are letting it.

    hey, Catholics - 98% of you use birth control. the vast majority of you have no problems with gays marrying, nor with your OWN gay family members...and yet the church remains bigoted...why? YOU are not doing enough within the church to demand change.

    protest with your pocketbooks. make it known.

    when they pass that collection plate you write a note and put that in the plate instead - "I will not give you another dime until you promote love and acceptance the way Christ would have"

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Feb 27, 2012 12:50:58 PM

  6. Oh for god's sake. THOSE ARE THE RULES. You cannot take Communion if you are not in a state of Grace. That is the law of the land in Catholic ritual; if you cannot abide by that rule *do not partake in the ritual*. It is NOT FOR YOU.

    If this woman was indeed Catholic then she should have known that. If she wasn't, then a) why was she trying to partake in Communion at all, and b) when the family discussed the funeral Mass with the priest, this should have been made clear. She could receive a blessing, but not Communion.

    Posted by: NaughtyLola | Feb 27, 2012 12:51:35 PM

  7. The rule is that no one is to be refused communion should they come up, as no one, not even the priest, knows the state of the relationship between God and the communicant. The actions of one priest, or even several, will never make me leave the Church. Those of us who love and accept all people will eventually win out. And as long as marriage is also a secular institution with the state involved, the 14th Amendment applies!

    Posted by: Steve in OC | Feb 27, 2012 12:55:32 PM

  8. Not all priests are like that in the church. I know some priests who have no problem giving communion to gay people, will do blessings for weddings and invite everyone up to the service.

    Posted by: Marc | Feb 27, 2012 12:57:30 PM

  9. She won't set foot in the Catholic Church because a no-count priest dissed her at her mother's funeral, but the church's long history of raping and killing in the name of Jesus . . . that did not bother her so much?

    Whatever!! I have to wonder about anyone, especially gay people, who would attend and pay tithes to this horrific church.

    He was sick, so he could not attend the grave site service? Lying is a sin, but a petty school-boy lie is just pathetic!

    Posted by: Ricco | Feb 27, 2012 1:02:23 PM

  10. I agree with NAUGHTYLOLA, it's their sandbox and if you want to play in it you gotta play by their rules. ALERT FOR THOSE WITH NO CLUE: Jews and Muslims don't eat pork. If you like bacon don't become a Jew nor a Muslim. They will NOT be changing to accommodate your desires. Catholics don't like Gay folk.

    Posted by: Sargon Bighorn | Feb 27, 2012 1:07:22 PM

  11. No one should join the Catholic faith - ever.

    Posted by: OS2guy | Feb 27, 2012 1:17:54 PM

  12. the problem, Naughtylola and Sargon, is that it's truly NOT their rules: not really.

    if the catholic church denied communion to all Catholics who do not live according to Catholic Doctrine then the church would have imploded mannnny years ago.

    birth control users. oral sex enjoyers.

    the reason the church continues to be anti-gay is because it's the only thing they can talk about negatively that won't drive away their flocks.

    now, dont' get me wrong - this story is sorta like saying "kids playing with matches are shocked to discover that their fingers get burned" but the sad reality is that Catholicism breeds more deceit than faith - catholics use birth control. they DO. and they still take communion.

    that selectivity is the reason the anti-gay stance remains unchanged - priests are all too aware that if they come down hard (no pun intended...) on the sexual acts of HETEROsexuals then they'll scare aware their flocks.

    it's time for progressive catholics to keep their pocketbooks closed.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Feb 27, 2012 1:18:50 PM

  13. I agree: you play with hornets, you get stung. Her own fault for being shocked given their record. Kiwi, you are right and wrong: the church can (and has) refused communion to those who openly state they are using birth control, are gay, etc. if you don't talk about it, they'll put up with you. You're right that they'd fold in weeks if the masses stood up to them. Money talks, especially with all those settlement payouts. Don't count on it though.

    Posted by: Yeek | Feb 27, 2012 1:32:18 PM

  14. I have no use for these people, but remember, it was Christ himself who said, "No one who ever comes to me shall I turn away."

    Posted by: acorlando | Feb 27, 2012 1:36:59 PM

  15. Honestly why is she or anyone else surprised. Don't have the funeral at a Catholic church. It's a terrible story but no one should be schocked.

    Posted by: Scott | Feb 27, 2012 1:42:03 PM

  16. I have difficulties to understand where is the surprise, in Italy and as far as I know, everywhere in Europe, Catholic priest do not give religious funerals for gays and lesbian, especially if "was publicly displayed".

    Posted by: Luke | Feb 27, 2012 1:42:30 PM

  17. Naughty Lola....Oh please, millions of catholic women are on the pill and receive communion. The roman cult forbids artificial birth control, a venial sin. Do you really think all those women go to confession first and then renounce birth control as their penance before they're back in a state of grace? What about catholic single women living with their boyfriends? This is nothing more than homophobia so stop apologizing for the cult. Does anyone really believe the majority of catholic women using birth control actually confess it or tell their priest openly? Get real. This is nothing more than hypocrisy and bigotry. About time catholic women stood up and took on these bigots they call priests, just as they walked out of churches during mass in the 60s when the cult reiterated it's teaching on birth control.

    Posted by: Robert in NYC | Feb 27, 2012 1:44:21 PM

  18. In this case, I would blame the priest over the Church itself. At my father's funeral, not only was I able to receive Communion, but so was my partner. In fact, my partner, whom the priest had met, played the music for the funeral mass. The priest, from the pulpit, thanked him personally for the lovely music; knowing he was as much a part of my family as my sisters' husbands.
    I've had many issues with the Catholic Church and their dogmatic hypocrisy, but in this case, I would lay the blame at the priest.
    A nice response from the rest of the attendants, since she was first in line, would have been to all refuse to take Communion from that Priest. To show, in solidarity, that he was the one in the wrong.

    Posted by: Brian G | Feb 27, 2012 1:47:22 PM

  19. As Obi Wan Kenobi said: "You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy."

    That's the perfect description of the Catholic Church

    Posted by: Steve | Feb 27, 2012 1:47:33 PM

  20. Naughtylola -- there is also Canon Law that says a priest CANNOT deny Eucharist to someone if they ask for it. By being first in line, this woman was asking to receive and his refusal ignores the law of the Church.

    As far as his bad behavior, Fr. Guarnizo would do well to spend a long weekend, on silent retreat, praying over John 4:1-42 "The Samaritan Woman at the Well," and then reconsider his actions.

    Scripture says to everything there is a season. And when someone is mourning the loss of a parent, the Church needs to be there in their loss. This priest should be not dragging the ugly Culture War out off of the street to play out in a sacred space like a church.

    He has done more to harm the Church in this action than we will ever know.

    Posted by: Gman | Feb 27, 2012 1:53:46 PM

  21. @Robert in NYC, I'm not apologizing for anyone. I'm not Catholic. I'm atheist, as it happens. But instead of complaining that the Catholic church doesn't do what I want when I want it, I just ignore them and don't attempt to participate in their rituals.

    And for what its worth, refusal of Communion is basically up to the whim of the celebrant. Priests can and do refuse Communion to cohabitating couples and unrepentantly-birth-controlling women. Don't like it? Don't be Catholic.

    Posted by: NaughtyLola | Feb 27, 2012 1:55:19 PM

  22. ok , am an atheist

    He was in line with catholic doctrine refusing her communion

    BUT his leaving during her eulogy and not going to the grave site for the last blessing is NOT catholic doctrine but personal evil, hate, foulness within the priest

    Though the doctrine refusing her communion isn't cool , it is what it is....but in no way should the priest be allowed to slide on the eulogy issue etc

    The catholic church could have a potential PR boon if they publicly condemn the priest and sensure him for the eulogy walk out etc while stating he was only right per catholic doctrine on communion

    many non catholics would accept such as a valdi compromise

    Posted by: say what | Feb 27, 2012 2:11:34 PM

  23. This is clearly the mother's parish church. I hope everyone of her friends who attend that church saw what happened to her daughter and also stop attending that church and that the backlash continues.

    WWJD...certainly not that. This priest, for all his rules and supposed piety, is scum. Pray for your own soul, Padre, instead of worried about antiquated rules from an antiquated institution.

    Posted by: Bart | Feb 27, 2012 2:11:41 PM

  24. This is hardly atypical behavior in my experience. Aside from my godparents and their children (who are wonderful) most of the problems I ever run into with hateful behavior or extreme intolerance (and I mean producing real emotional, physical, financial, and legal damage) areCatholics or other 'highly religious' people. Religious is certainly nothing but a destructive force in my experience.

    Posted by: Tarc | Feb 27, 2012 2:17:55 PM

  25. Rev. Marcel Guar-Nazi

    Posted by: Drake | Feb 27, 2012 2:32:55 PM

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