Quest and Bishop Conry discuss including LGBT Catholics in the Bishops conference’s ‘Crossing the Threshold” project

Terence Weldon, a leading member of the Soho Masses Pastoral Council who runs the blog Queering the Church, has given Protect the Pope details of a meeting he had with Bishop Conry with Ruby Almeida, Chair of the dissenting homosexual group Quest. Cardinal Hume banned Quest from calling itself a ‘Catholic organisation’ because it promotes homosexual sexual acts.

In May 2013 Terence Weldon wrote about his overtures to Bishop Conry to arrange a meeting to discuss his plans to expand his facilitation of New Ways ministry based workshops into the diocese of Arundel and Brighton.  Terence Weldom currently facilitates New Ways Ministry workshops for the Soho Masses Pastoral Council.

One of the problems with Terence Weldon’s plan is that New Ways Ministry has been condemned by the US Bishops for dissenting from Catholic teaching on homosexuality and for this reason the faithful have been warned that it is not a Catholic organization. Cardinal Donald Wuerl and Bishop Salvatore Cordileone on behalf of the US Bishops issued the following statement on Frank DeBenardo of New Ways Ministry:

In view of the recent booklet Marriage Equality: A Positive Catholic Approach, by Francis DeBernardo (published by New Ways Ministry), we, as the respective chairmen of the USCCB Committee on Doctrine and the Ad Hoc Committee for the Defense of Marriage, wish to reaffirm Francis Cardinal George’s statement of February 12, 2010 and assure Catholics that in no manner is the position proposed by New Ways Ministry in conformity with Catholic teaching and in no manner is this organization authorized to speak on behalf of the Catholic Church or to identify itself as a Catholic organization.’

In June 2012 members of the Soho Masses Community attended a one – day workshop, “Next Steps in LGBT Ministry”, led by Frank DeBenardo of New Ways Ministry. Following this workshop Terence Weldon led a workshop  in May 2013for the Soho Masses Community based on the New Ways model.

Though this was Terence Weldon’s original objective in meeting with Bishop Conry, it  appears that during their  meeting the possibility was discussed of Terence Weldon and Quest becoming involved in some capacity in the Bishops Conference’s ‘Crossing the Threshold’ project which is the responsibility of Bishop Conry. ‘Crossing the Threshold’ is a national project to support ministry to 4 million non-church-going Catholics.

Terence Weldon writes that Quest’s meeting with Bishop Conry moved from the original agenda of talking about ways of working towards expanded LGBT provision in his diocese to a much wider ranging discussion in the context of ‘Crossing the Threshold’ enabling them to discuss LGBT provision nationally as well as in Arundel and Brighton.

Terence Weldon told Protect the Pope that he ‘enjoyed a particularly helpful and constructive discussion with Bishop Conry on the broad principle of including LGBT Catholics in his “Crossing the Threshold” project. During this discussion, substantial time was taken up with this very subject of conscience. He was particularly interested in the plans of Quest, the organization for gay and lesbian Catholics, to hold a workshop on the subject for next year.’

Terence Weldon and  Ruby Almeida reportedly left the meeting with Bishop Conry looking forward to further discussions and to concrete actions that might follow.

Protect the Pope comment: Terence Weldon is also an active member of A Call to Action and represented the Soho Masses Pastoral Council at ACTA’s national conference at Hinsley Hall, Leeds.




22 comments to Quest and Bishop Conry discuss including LGBT Catholics in the Bishops conference’s ‘Crossing the Threshold” project

  • If only Bishop Conry was half as charitable to those Catholics who accept the teachings of the Church.

  • Rifleman819

    Deacon Nick ,
    Utterly flabbergasted by this.Only surprised that Ed Stourton and Tina Beattie weren’t present as well.

  • Lynda

    Malicious apostasy with the aim of taking as many souls with them as possible.

  • Lisa Graas

    I’m glad you’re keeping tabs on this so I don’t have to. I’m busy homeschooling, which is my contribution toward neutralizing the gay agenda. Cutting off pay tv helps, too. Every little bit helps. This agenda is a passing novelty, by the way. As Bishop Fulton Sheen has said, there are always consequences for denying Natural Law. If you jump off a bridge, you WILL die. There is no getting away with denying Natural Law. There is almost always a war somewhere in the world…but sometimes there is not. Those times when there is not a war have come as a natural result of war. As peace eventually comes, though it is short-lived, so will acceptance of Natural Law on this issue prevail. Satan can have his way for a time, but in the end, it is the light of truth that shines in the darkness, as the darkness cannot ever ever overcome it.

    Peace to all, and God bless you.

    • Deacon Nick Donnelly

      Hi Lisa, if my two children had lived I would have given homeschooling serious consideration, so I think its wonderful what you’re doing. St Paul described the consequences of breaking the Natural Law as the ‘wrath of God’, which is the constant love of God as experienced by us sinners. God bless you in your important work for the Kingdom. Deacon Nick

  • Philippa Rowdan

    Deacon Donnelly,
    Please, please stop posting these stories about that man, he is my Bishop, I live near him, he is quite capable of destroying my faith. I occasionally see him, I no longer speak to him, I hurry away lest I shout and scream at him, the very sight of him has become an occasion of sin. I even wince when his name is mentioned in the Eucharistic Prayer. I want to teach my grandchildren to chant ‘Apostate’ at him when they see him.

    I think it best not to log on here anymore, so sorry.

    • Deacon Nick Donnelly

      Philippa, I’m so sorry that Protect the Pope’s recent post on Bishop Conry and his meetings with ACTA and Quest have caused you such distress. I think it essential at this time to shine a light on the activities of dissenters in our Church. I will pray for Our Lord and His sweet Mother to give you consolation. It might help to have a devotion to that great bishop and saint Pope John Paul II. He can be your shepherd. God bless you, Deacon Nick

  • John

    Terence Weldon posted a reply on this blog in which he confirmed what most of us suspected: that he is basically at variance with the teaching of the Church on sexual ethics. Perhaps Bishop Conry could be invited to post his own take on all this. Is Weldon misrepresenting him for his own purposes or is he really adopting the positions that Weldon claims? It would be good to know.

  • Genty

    When the Pope is a bishop, every bishop is a pope.

  • BJC

    I think we have to take Terry’s summary of what was said with caution. He is after all somebody who doesn’t mind twisting the words of the Sacred Scriptures to fit his agenda or making blasphemous comments about Our Lord and the saints. He is therefore somebody who is unlikely to think twice about twisting the words of a Bishop. You know a tree by its fruits. Not that +Kieran doesn’t bring things on himself, because quite obviously he has with what seems to be a liberal broadside on Humanae Vitae and ACTA recently.

    In Terry’s defence though, I have to say at least he’s open about his beliefs and doesn’t hide behind cowardly words like Clifford Longley, Catherine Pepinster, Elena Curti and very probably more than one or two of our Bishops, and an awful lot more our priests.

  • Rifleman819

    Absolutely spot on -Mr Weldon’s “stream of consciousness” prose at least has the merit of honesty.
    The rest write in code but lack the courage to nail their (heretical) colours to the mast.

  • Wake up England

    If Irish politicians can openly vote for abortion without any breath of censure from their bishops, then it’s glaringly obvious that the monkeys are now running the zoo. That Rubicon has already been triumphantly crossed; the bishops’ silence can only indicate their tacit co-operation.

    Therefore Weldon is merely jumping on the bandwagon to promote his pet cause – full in the knowledge that there will be no episcopal penalty whatsoever to pay.

    Other “Pet Causes” will now surely follow-on. A few bishops will speak-out, but many will stay silent with the result that somethings will be acceptable in one diocese but not in another – of course this will damage the Catholicity of the Church.

    The “New Ways Ministry” and other organisations will be encouraged by my bishop, but banned by your bishop.

    What a joke.

    • Deacon Nick Donnelly

      Often the silence of the bishops about each other in public is justified by the expressed concern to preserve the unity of the episcopacy. The truth is that they seek to preserve the public show of unity which masks an episcopacy split by schismatic fractures. Deacon Nick

  • Ioannes

    Despite all this it is liberal orthodoxy that the bishops are subservient to a dictatorial and over-centralized Roman Curia. In reality, Basil Hume strove for autonomy, and according to his biographer Anthony Howard, virtually achieved it. +O’Donoghue of Lancaster warned: “We must guard against the Catholic Church degenerating into local Churches who consider themselves almost autonomous in some respects from the See of Rome”.

  • Rifleman819


    A very good point you make-perhaps ….just once in a while does a bishop from these Isles need to be recalled to Rome-and the removal vans arrive once he is there.

    “Pour encourager les auteurs”-as Voltaire would say.

    Bloggers here might have a suitable candidate….but I couldn’t possibly comment……..ahem.

  • I do wish you would at least get your basic facts right. If I know you are wrong about those you write about myself, who can you expect me to trust anything else you right?

    * I am not “a leading member of the Soho Masses Pastoral Council”. I used to be, but withdrew some time ago (for purely practical and logistical reasons, I can no longer commit to getting up to London as often as previously)
    * The “Soho Masses Pastoral Council” no longer exists. It has not disbanded, but renamed to take account that it is no longer based in Soho – and its remit from Archbishop Nichols has implications for all of Westminster.
    * You did not “obtain details” of my meeting with Bishop Conry. You presumably read that the meeting had taken place – but no “details” of that meeting have been disclosed, anywhere – except that a constructive discussion took place, including our offer to the Bishop to assist with “Crossing the Threshold”, as he sees fit. He may accept our offer – or he may not.
    * The wording of your report implies that the original purpose of the meeting was to discuss promoting or holding “Next Steps” workshops. It was not. The original aim was to discuss the much broader topic of ministry to LGBT Catholics, and ways to draw them back into the sacramental life of the church. This has an obvious fit with the objectives of “Crossing the Threshold”.
    * It is ludicrous to suggest that Quest “promotes homosexual sexual acts”. It does not. Instead, it promotes meeting together with other lesbian and gay Catholics for discussion, prayer and worship. That “discussion” includes matters of conscience formation – again, a topic fruitfully discussed with the bishop.
    * And I emphatically did not “tell” Protect the Pope anything. You’re welcome to read my facebook posts, as you obviously do, but do not misrepresent them as direct communication with yourself.

    • Lynda

      Rather, deformation and deadening of conscience.

    • BJC


      I don’t see what your problem is. You are hardly a model of probity yourself. In your little ditties on your blog you routinely distort the Sacred Scriptures, blaspheme Our Lord and the saints and put the words into the mouth of anyone you please. On top of that you distort the Catechism of the Catholic Church and official church documents. What goes around comes around and you are hardly in a position to start wagging your finger at anyone else in the “get your facts straight” stakes. Reading just one of your little essays is like reading one line after another of misrepresentation, distortion and twisting of facts.

    • Mr Weldon,

      As far as the faith is concerned I do wish you would “at least get your basic facts right”

      I don’t hold out any hope of this.

  • Dilly

    I was under the impression that Deacon Nick placed events clearly in the past when referring to the Soho Masses Council ( “and represented the Soho Masses Pastoral Council at ACTA’s national conference at Hinsley Hall, Leeds.”), which takes care of the first two points.

    Your own “for the record” comment on September 18th at 6.27 on a previous post reads “…. and also enjoyed a particularly helpful and constructive discussion with Bishop Conry on the broad principle of including LGBT Catholics in his “Crossing the Threshold” project. During this discussion, substantial time was taken up with this very subject of conscience. He was particularly interested in the plans of Quest, the organization for gay and lesbian Catholics, to hold a workshop on the subject for next year.”

    As Deacon Nick presumably reads the comments on his own blog, there is no great mystery as to where he “obtained details”. It was from you. In the last sentence of your comment there is an implied invitation to visit your site, where more information concerning the rest of the points may presumably be freely obtained.

    As for any conclusions about whether or not Quest “promotes homosexual sexual acts” – this “nuanced” approach was clearly lost on Cardinal Hume.

    The Catechism states that we are guilty of sins which we ourselves do not commit when we cooperate with another person’s sins.

    We share in another’s sin: (a) by counsel; (b) by command; (c) by consent; (d) by provocation; (e) by praise or flattery; (f) by silence; (g) by assistance; (h) by defence or concealment; and (i) by not punishing the evil done.

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