Fr Daniel O’Leary, a priest of the Diocese of Leeds, Tablet columnist and spirituality guru, is to speak at the 40th anniversary conference of Quest. Quest is a homosexual Catholic group banned by Cardinal Hume from being included the Catholic Directory as an approved Catholic organisation because of its dissent from Church doctrine by promoting homosexual sex. Fr Daniel O’Leary, famous for his New Age bon mots, will be speaking on the conference theme, ‘From Wasteland to Promised Land’.
In a letter to Charles Keal, Quest’s chairman at the time, Cardinal Hume wrote explaining that his decision to remove it from the list of approved Catholic organisations was that if an organization was listed with ecclesiastical approval, “the assumption must be that it accepts the church’s teaching set out in a manner that is in no way ambiguous.” The cardinal further explained Quest’s rejection of living ‘chaste lives in accordance with the church’s teaching’ raised concern about the direction Quest was taking. ”It is one thing for the church officially to recognize a support group for Catholic homosexual men and women, struggling, as we all do, to live up to the demands of our shared Christian vocation,” but was clear that an explicit part of Quest’s agenda is “to encourage and recognize loving same-sex partnerships,” which the church cannot accept.’
Quest’s constitution clearly sets out their promotion of an active homosexual life-style:
‘The purpose of Quest is to proclaim the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ so as to sustain and increase Christian belief among homosexual men and women by:
1. associating lay men and women who are seeking ways of reconciling the full practice of their Catholic faith with the full expression of their homosexual natures in loving Christian relationships, and providing opportunities for them to meet together for worship, discussion and study.
Quest’s website unambiguously expresses their dissent from the Church’s teaching on the sinfulness of homosexual sex:
[H]omosexual sex is not an incomplete or less perfect expression of human sexuality … I also want to affirm that I regard heterosexual and homosexual sex as having the same potential and value … I disagree fundamentally with Church teaching on this issue.
‘[T]he teaching of the Vatican Congregations….is incompatible with the Gospel”
“Quest, an association for lesbian and gay Catholics, welcomes in general the government’s proposals to provide for legal recognition of same-sex partnerships.”
The Archdiocese of Westminster has appointed a chaplain to be in attendance at Quest’s conference, Fr Francis Wahle, described by Quest as the Diocese of Westminster’s representative for Catholics who feel alienated from the Church.’
Protect the Pope comment: A few questions for Fr Daniel O’Leary, does he accept the Church’s doctrine as expressed in the Catechism of the Catholic Church that ‘ Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.” They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.’ (2357). During his talk at the Quest conference will Fr O’Leary be truly loving and pastoral by teaching and explaining this to these Catholics under his care?
Furthermore, will he go on to explain that ‘Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.’ (2359).
If Fr Daniel O’Leary does not intend to abide by, and teach, the Church’s doctrine on the immorality of homosexual sex then dioceses and parishes that allow him to lead days of renewal should reconsider allowing him into their jurisdiction.