Wednesday October 13, 2010

Detroit Abp Vigneron Warns against ‘Progressive’ Catholic Group

By Kathleen Gilbert

DETROIT, Michigan, October 13, 2010 ( – Archbishop Allen Vigneron of Detroit has warned Catholics in his flock about a planned meeting by an umbrella organization of dissident Catholic groups, including groups that promote the normalization of homosexuality, women’s ordination, and other liberal issues.

The American Catholic Council (ACC) has planned a national gathering in Detroit during June 11-12, 2011, the weekend of Pentecost, when the archdiocese traditionally carries out priestly ordinations.

ACC has been joined by several dissident Catholic groups, including the homosexualist groups New Ways Ministry and DignityUSA, as well as Call to Action, Voice of the Faithful, and the Women’s Ordination Conference.

In a statement posted on the archdiocese’s website Tuesday, Archbishop Vigneron noted that some members of the archdiocese had contacted him with concerns about the ACC meeting.

Although ACC’s stated purpose is to “respond to the Spirit of Vatican II,” the archdiocese said that, “in fact, the goals proposed are largely in opposition to the teachings of the Second Vatican Council and the Holy Spirit, which inspired the Council.”

Vigneron’s office noted that some speakers and groups at the planned event “espouse positions which are clearly contrary to Catholic faith, leading to alienation and estrangement from the Church.” Vigneron instructed Catholic facilities not to host any meetings associated with ACC and priests not to endorse the group. The archdiocese also stated that the prelate “has asked the organizers to cancel their plans for this national gathering that distorts the true Spirit of Vatican II.”

“The archdiocese wishes to commend and embrace all true efforts at Church renewal – the American Church Council’s agenda is not such an effort,” stated the archdiocese.

As bishop of the Diocese of Oakland in California in January 2004, Vigneron similarly warned the faithful away from Call to Action, a dissident group lobbying for an end to mandatory priestly celibacy.

Both in Oakland and in Detroit, Vigneron has earned a reputation for hard-hitting pro-life zeal, defending embryonic human life, leading prayerful pro-life protests and speaking out forcefully against voting for pro-abortion politicians. Vigneron has also proven a tough pro-family advocate, chastising the California Supreme Court’s decision to make same-sex “marriage” legal in 2008.

“This wisdom about the nature of marriage is not a form of discrimination, but undergirds our freedom to live according to God’s plan for us,” said Vigneron in a pastoral letter. “No government has the power to change the order which God has inscribed in our nature.”

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