ST. JOHN’S, August 19, 2003 ( – Archbishop Brendan O’Brien of St. John’s Newfoundland has corrected a wayward priest who preached against the Catholic Church’s actions in defending marriage.  On Sunday Bishop O’Brien spoke from the pulpit of St. Kevin’s Church in Goulds where Rev. Paul Lundrigan had previously told parishioners that the Catholic Church was hypocritical for fighting same-sex marriages when it remained silent about sexual abuse by the clergy.  Two weeks ago, Rev. Lundrigan told the media “It was embarrassing to hear a bishop in Canada threaten the prime minister with eternal damnation for passing a bill that would allow people to get on with their lives.”  Bishop O’Brien defended the Church’s stand on marriage. “While procreation is not the only purpose of marriage and while not all marriages are fertile, it is precisely because of the link which the institution of marriage has with the family and with the reproduction and education of children that it deserves special recognition and encouragement in society,” he said.  Bishop O’Brien, who interestingly in the past has been known to be a somewhat liberal bishop, explained his correction of Fr. Lundrigan in a statement to the media. “When a bishop appoints a priest as pastor of a parish, it is with the clear expectation that he will present the Church’s teachings in an unambiguous way, particularly when he is preaching or giving the Sunday homily,” he said. “The basis for this confidence is the promise that the priest makes at his ordination that he will preach the gospel and explain the Catholic faith.”


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