SALTILLO, Mexico, July 29, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Raul Vera, the Catholic bishop of Saltillo, Mexico, is under investigation by the Vatican over his sponsorship of an organization that condones sodomy, according to Mexican press sources.
Saltillo area newspapers are reporting that Vera has received an inquiry from unnamed Vatican officials regarding the Gay and Lesbian Community of Saint Aelred (San Aelredo).
The Saint Aelred group, which professes to be Catholic, teaches members that they may engage in homosexual relations, but encourages them to do so with a single partner. It also holds film festivals featuring productions that condone homosexual behavior.
Bishop Vera has publicly affiliated his diocese with the group and has promoted its activities, including sponsoring its film festivals, according to reports in the Mexican media. The organization is also involved in a number of diocesan parishes.
LifeSiteNews (LSN) first reported the activities of the Saint Aelred group in 2008, after an investigation that included interviews with the group’s leader, Noe Ruiz, as well as diocesan priest Robert Coogan, who acts as a “spiritual guide” for the group. Both Ruiz and Coogan admitted to LSN at that time that the organization condones homosexual behavior.
LSN published contact information for the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, as well as the Congregation for Bishops and the Congregation for the Clergy in its 2008 article. However, Vatican officials did not act until a new series of articles began to be published by the Spanish Catholic news agency ACI Prensa.
Acknowledging to the Saltillo newspaper Zocalo that he has received a “call from the Vatican” and “I have to clarify things,” Vera added, “I have to respond a series of questions from Vatican City that they are asking regarding my work with homosexuals, but it is due to this Catholic information agency that has been saying barbarities.”
Vera complains that the agency had made “unfounded” accusations, “that I promote homosexual relations.”
“And I, in my life, never have worked for that. In the Diocese of Saltillo we have very clear objectives. We work with them [the homosexual community] to help them to recover their human dignity, which is injured for many of them beginning in their homes, in the society, and they are treated as a scourge.”
However, following the Vatican inquiry, Bishop Vera has announced to the press that he is “restructuring” the group, and has removed Ruiz from his position as group coordinator.