Your first reaction to the following letter from my friend Bill might be, "if you don't like the club rules, find another club." But if we applied that to government, there would be no revolutions. So, with that in mind, I thought you might be interested in what revolutionaries are doing in other "clubs." Feel free to take action, if you're so inclined.
From: Bill Quigley, Attorney for Father Roy Bourgeois, Quigley@loyno.edu
7214 St. Charles Avenue, Campus Box 902, New Orleans, LA 70118
August 8, 2011
Our brother, Father Roy Bourgeois, needs your immediate solidarity. The Maryknoll community has taken another step towards expulsion of Father Roy for speaking out in favor of the ordination of women priests. Father Roy has said that, as a matter of conscience, he must speak out against the exclusion of women from the priesthood both because it defies faith and reason and because the exclusion is rooted in sexism. Despite the threats to expel him, Father Roy refuses to recant.
It is time for people of good will to take action. Please contact Father Ed Dougherty, the Superior General of Maryknoll, and ask him not to expel Father Roy Bourgeois for advocating for women priests. Here is how to contact Father Dougherty:
Father Edward Dougherty
PO Box 303
Maryknoll, NY 10545-0303
Fax: 914.944.3600 or Phone: 914.941.7590
I am one of the lawyers on the team working with Father Roy. Below is a link to the letter Father Roy recently received from Maryknoll. It is the official second and perhaps final notice threatening to immediately expel him from the community.
Below is a link to Father Roy’s response to Maryknoll. You can read it and see where he stands. His letter is a simple direct invitation to dialogue about inclusion of women in the priesthood and a call for the protection of conscience – key foundation principles in any institution which respects human dignity. Contrast his letter with one from Maryknoll and judge which best reflects the spirit of hope, justice, respect and love.
Father Roy's Letter to Maryknoll:
Maryknoll Letter to Father Roy:
Father Roy has been a priest for 39 years and a member of Maryknoll for 44 years. We cannot allow Maryknoll, pushed hard no doubt by fundamentalist forces of the institutional church in Rome, to silence a prophetic voice of conscience and justice. Galileo was silenced by the church in 1633 for saying the earth revolves around the sun and they did not admit their error and apologize until 360 years later in 1992. Truth and justice cannot be expected to wait that long. Hundreds of priests already publicly support Father Roy’s right to speak his conscience. Thousands more women and men across the world support this issue and Father Roy as well. Maryknoll cannot and should not be party to a modern day silencing.
Thank you for your action and solidarity. Please send me a copy of what you send Maryknoll and I will make sure Father Roy knows of your support.
Peace and justice,