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TAMPA, Florida, July 9, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) – A Florida couple is suing to get their money back after donating to a Catholic high school that has since gone “woke.”
Anthony and Barbara Scarpo pledged $1.35 million in 2017 to the Academy of the Holy Names, a high school in Tampa, Florida, that both of their daughters attended.
The Scarpos donated to help disadvantaged students and advance the academy’s master plan and were chairs of the school’s fundraising campaign, the Tampa Bay Times reported. The school’s auditorium was renamed the “Scarpo Family Theatre” in their honor.
Last week, however, the couple filed a lawsuit to retract their pledge and have their donation returned. The 13-count complaint slams the Academy of the Holy Names.
“The Academy lost its way, distancing itself from mainstream Catholicism, and embracing the new, politically correct divisive and ‘woke’ culture where gender identity, human sexuality and pregnancy termination among other ‘hot-button issues’ took center stage,” the Scarpos’ lawsuit states.
The complaint, filed in Hillsborough County Circuit Court on June 26, also asks the academy to give the family’s tuition money to Catholic charities of their choosing. Tuition and fees for high school students at the Academy of the Holy Names run as high as $22,450.
The Scarpos are also asking for the school to stop advertising itself as Catholic and that it no longer be accredited by the Florida Catholic Conference. Their lawsuit names the academy, former president Author Raimo, chairman of the board Ernie Garateix, and other members of the school’s leadership, as well as the Florida Catholic Conference, Newsweek said.
Gregory Hearing, a lawyer for the Academy of the Holy Names, called the action against the school “attention-seeking.”
“For a court to delve into whether the substance of matters taught by a Catholic school are consistent with a Catholic education would entangle the court in excessively religious matters, and thereby violate the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution,” he wrote in a letter to the Scarpos’ lawyer, Adam Levine. “That we should need to educate you on this is absurd.”
“This is not asking the courts to get involved in a religious issue, but this is a simple breach of contract. If you’re paying for a Catholic education, that’s what you should be getting,” Levine said, according to the Tampa Bay Times.
“It’s about the failure to deliver on a promise.”
"No man can serve two masters. For either he will hate the one, and love the other: or he will sustain the one, and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon." - Matthew 6:24
In the lead-up to their meeting in mid-June, we call on the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) to exclude Joe Biden and other “Catholic” politicians (like, Nancy Pelosi) from Holy Communion over their public, obstinate, and scandalous promotion of abortion.
Please SIGN and SHARE this petition which asks the USCCB to act to stop the abuse of the reception of the Holy Eucharist by politicians who promote the murder of innocent pre-born babies.
We know that making a decision to exclude public figures from Holy Communion is not easy. But, sometimes, this is the only way to make them understand the error of their ways, and to preserve the Church from serious scandal.
Indeed, Canon Law (Canon 915) declares that those who persist in manifest, grave sin should not be admitted to Holy Communion.
Beyond that, at this point, public excommunication appears as the only suitable response for Biden's obstinate, public and grave sin of promoting abortion.
In doing so, we do not hold ourselves up as judges over Joe Biden's eternal soul, but we encourage the bishops to make known one of the consequences of public and obstinate support of abortion by our 'Catholic' politicians.
The fact is, in terms of the manifest, grave sin of abortion, Joe Biden is as bad as he said he would be before the election.
Therefore, it is cold comfort that the USCCB is only preparing to discuss this issue only now.
But even now, if the USCCB publicly excommunicate Biden for his pro-abortion stance (as well as other pro-abortion politicians), the Conference could reclaim some of the moral authority which they lost by their largely silent assent to Biden's candidacy.
Please SIGN and SHARE this petition, now.
Since Joe Biden was sworn-in on the 20th of January, he has wasted no time in signing orders and bills which facilitate the destruction of unborn human life.
- In one executive order, Biden rescinded the Mexico City Policy prohibiting the federal government from spending taxpayer monies on abortion and the promotion of abortion.
- Biden also signed (instead of vetoing) the COVID relief bill, which, for the first time in 44 years, contained funding for abortions in America, using taxpayer dollars.
- Biden said that he wouldn't defend Hyde, and he hasn't.
And, if he and the Democratic Party get their way, a lot more of the same regarding abortion is on the way.
Strong action must be taken lest anyone, especially young people, be confused by the scandal of a "Catholic" in Biden's position aggressively promoting abortion, enabling the killing of innocent human beings.
American rank-and-file Catholics don't want any more compromise and equivocation from the Bishops Conference on this "pre-eminent" life-and-death issue.
We want clear action, not twenty more years of dithering and "dialoguing."
50 million babies have been lost to abortion in the U.S. since Roe!
So, we will NOT accept any more lives lost as a result of dithering and "dialoguing." [**Please see "Notes" below about how it has been reported that some senior U.S. clerics are trying to prevent this discussion from even taking place.]
And, we will especially NOT accept one life lost to abortion by politicians who claim the Catholic Faith, but who promote grave evil. God forbid!
With all due respect to these bishops, they diminish the Holy Eucharist and their high office, as well as cause grave scandal to the faithful, by not imposing public canonical penalties on a man who is promoting mass murder of the unborn against the constant teaching of the Church.
The bishops are now at a crossroads and must choose either God or mammon.
We call on them to choose God and choose Life!
And we also continue to encourage those brave, true and good bishops who have done well to warn Amercian Catholics about the perils to the unborn and the Faith resulting from Biden's promotion of abortion!
SIGN and SHARE this petition, which asks the bishops of the United States to act in unison to exclude Joe Biden from Holy Communion for his scandalous promotion of abortion - the murder of the innocent.
After signing, please take a moment to CONTACT the offices of the USCCB to politely, but firmly, encourage the Conference to take the necessary steps to exclude from Holy Communion public officials who continue to show blatant disregard for innocent human life and the Church's teaching.
The USCCB's Office phone number is: 202.541.3000
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Joe Biden: I support abortion ‘under any circumstance’ - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/joe-biden-i-support-abortion-under-any-circumstance
Biden administration has opened the way for ‘abortion by mail on a massive scale’ - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/biden-administration-unleashed-by
‘Catholic’ Biden marks Roe v. Wade anniversary with pledge to make abortion available for ‘everyone’ - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/catholic-biden-marks-roe-v-wade-anniversary-with-pledge-to-make-abortion-available-for-everyone
BREAKING: DC archbishop affirms he will give Holy Communion to pro-abortion Joe Biden - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/breaking-dc-archbishop-affirms-he-will-give-holy-communion-to-pro-abortion-joe-biden
Vatican puts brakes on US bishops confronting problem of pro-abortion Biden receiving Holy Communion - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/vatican-puts-brakes-on-us-bishops-confronting-problem-of-pro-abortion-biden-receiving-holy-communion
Abp. Aquila backs call for pro-abortion ‘Catholic’ Joe Biden to be denied Holy Communion - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/abp-aquila-backs-call-for-pro-abortion-catholic-joe-biden-to-be-denied-holy-communion
Cardinal Burke floats ‘excommunication’ for Biden over his ‘aggressive’ abortion promotion - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/cardinal-burke-floats-excommunication-for-biden-over-his-aggressive-promotion-of-abortion
Biden’s HHS is lying about Title X to push abortion - https://www.lifesitenews.com/blogs/bidens-hhs-is-lying-about-title-x-to-push-abortion
List of US bishops for and against denying Communion to pro-abortion politicians like Biden, Pelosi - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/list-of-us-bishops-for-and-against-denying-communion-to-pro-abortion-politicians-like-biden-pelosi
Notes about USCCB's June Meeting:
For nearly twenty years, the US bishops have been dithering about whether or not to excommunicate pro-abortion politicians by formally withholding Holy Communion from them.
Their indecision on this gravely scandalous matter is a scandal in itself, but one of the biggest obstacles has been internal opposition from senior U.S. bishops.
And, although the faces have changed in the last 20 years, their morally-and-intellectually-challenged arguments against excommunication have not changed.
Liberal bishops of the USCCB say that excommunicating Biden (for example) would divide the Church, divide the bishops, and would politicize the reception of Holy Communion.
Indeed, in the name of “unity,” it is reported that some senior U.S. clerics, including Cardinal Blase Cupich (Chicago), Cardinal Wilton Gregory (Washington, DC) and Cardinal O’Malley (Boston), have been working overtime to prevent any substantial discussion of so-called “Eucharist coherence” (that is, what qualifies as worthy reception of Holy Communion).
It is also reported that at least 57 other American bishops allegedly joined these Cardinals in a recent letter to the Head of the Bishops Conference, Archbishop Gomez of Los Angeles, to try to pressure him to drop the planned discussion at the full meeting of bishops in June.
And now, even the Vatican is getting involved, with the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith suggesting that even more “dialogue” is needed.
These same clerics may mistakenly believe that any attempt to suppress the objective connection between a politician’s promotion of abortion and his unworthy reception of Holy Communion will fool anyone.
But, it will not.
Rank-and-file Catholics are not stupid and can smell compromise a mile away, and we’ve had enough.
With all due respect to the Cardinal, bishops, and the Vatican…those who fail to act diminish the Holy Eucharist and their high office, as well as cause grave scandal to the faithful, by “dialoguing” with a man who is promoting mass murder of the unborn against the constant teaching of the Church.
Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition urging the bishops Conference to take action at their June meeting to exclude pro-abortion Joe Biden and other abortion-promoting “Catholic” politicians from Holy Communion.
***Photo Credit: Claire Chretien / LifeSiteNews
Newsweek reported that the Academy of the Holy Names plans to file a motion to dismiss the lawsuit and may file a counterclaim demanding the Scarpo family give all of their pledge. The Scarpos have donated $240,000 as of 2018, their complaint said, and have raised more than $9 million for the academy.
Anthony Scarpo had previously spoken out against the direction of the academy, writing a letter after his elder daughter’s graduation blasting the school, according to his lawsuit.
“The continued indoctrination of your twisted version of social and racial justice, equity, inclusion, sexuality and today’s politically correct narrative has permeated like a stench through the halls of the Academy and been allowed to seep into the minds of our children, causing stress, anger, guilt and confusion,” Scarpo wrote.
“You were always eager to solicit our hard-earned money and take what you could but held firm as you dragged dozens if not hundreds of conservative families and teachers through your reimagined, highly progressive world, even as parents and students asked you … pleaded with you to stop, slow down,” he continued. The Scarpo family ultimately transferred their younger daughter to a different high school.
In their lawsuit, the Scarpos highlighted a blackboard in a school common area that promoted becoming an LGBT “ally.” The academy’s message “utterly fails to put any part of this explanation into perspective within mainstream Catholicism,” they said.
They also noted a letter issued by Raimo and Garateix about the creation of a “justice, equity, diversity and inclusion committee.” The letter claimed that “racism and hatred” were “reflected in the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd and Breonna Taylor” and stressed the need for “uncomfortable” race-related conversations.
Raimo and Garateix did not “recognize the harm to their White, non-Diverse students by making them believe that they and their families are personally responsible for the historic harm(s) some members of our society have visited on other members of our society,” the Scarpos’ complaint read.
Emily Wise, a spokeswoman for the academy, told Newsweek that the school’s curriculum is “based on Catholic values and rigorous academic standards.” “The Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, the school’s founding order, are dedicated to the full development of the human person through education, social justice, contemplation and the arts,” she said.
The Sisters of the Holy Names is an increasingly pro-LGBT order of nuns. This year, the order’s leadership team signed onto a statement led by an LGBT activist group and joined by dissident bishops that told homosexuals and transgenders “God is on your side.” The statement made no mention of the intrinsic evil and grave health hazards of homosexuality and transgenderism.