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Bishop Ray Browne (L) and Fr. Sean Sheehy (R)Screenshot/Shutterstock

LISTOWEL, Ireland (LifeSiteNews) – A Catholic bishop in Ireland has apologized for a priest’s public condemnation of contraception, abortion, homosexuality, and the “lunatic approach of transgenderism,” saying that the priest’s words “do not represent the Christian position.”

Father Sean Sheehy delivered a sermon over the past weekend while filling in for the parish priest of St. Mary’s Church in Listowel Parish, in the Diocese of Kerry. 

In his comments, which have since spread widely on social media, the priest spoke out boldly on issues such as contraception, abortion, and the promotion of sodomy and same-sex activity. 

“What is so sad today is that you rarely hear about sin, but it’s rampant,” stated Sheehy. “It’s rampant.”

The priest listed the numerous ways in which Irish society is being undermined, particularly regarding the family:

We see it for example in the legislation of our governments, we see it in the promotion of abortion. We see it in the example of this lunatic approach of transgenderism. We see it, for example, in the promotion of sex between two men and two women. That is sinful. That is mortal sin, and people don’t seem to realize it, but it’s a fact. 

Sheehy expounded on the necessity to deliver such statements, saying that God has handed down “a responsibility to seek out those who are lost.” 

“You have a responsibility to call people to an awareness of the fact that sin is destructive, sin is detrimental, and sin will lead us to hell,” Sheehy told the congregation.


READ: No room for ‘inclusion’: Homosexuality and transgenderism are sins against nature itself

He noted that people have to “admit you’re a sinner” in order to then “repent” and seek “forgiveness” like the saints.

“There are people who won’t like to hear what I’m saying,” Sheehy observed, “but the day you die you will find out that what I’m saying is not something I came up with, but is what God is saying.”

“How will people know what God wants them to know if we won’t tell them?” he questioned. “How will people who are lost, be found, if we as God’s people don’t call them?” 

Sheehy recounted the example of a mother, whose 17-year-old daughter was reportedly handed a condom on the streets by staff from Ireland’s health service.

“That is promoting promiscuity. That is horrible, horrible,” said Sheehy. “So as Christians, we need to stand up for God. If we don’t, then there is no hope for many people.”

At this point of the homily, members of the congregation had begun to leave. The Independent reported that around 30 people left the church in protest at the homily.

Sheehy responded to their departure, saying “to those of you who happen to be leaving today, God help you. That’s all I have to say to you. And God bless you who are here and worshiping God.”

READ: Transgenderism is a sin against at least four of the Ten Commandments: Franciscan priest

Bishop intervenes to condemn priest

After the priest’s homily caused consternation amonge the media, Kerry’s Bishop Ray Browne issued a statement on November 1, roundly condemning Sheehy for his outlining of Catholic teaching. 

“I am aware of the deep upset and hurt caused by the contents of the homilies in question delivered over the weekend,” began Browne. “I apologize to all who were offended.” 

The bishop further falsely stated that Sheehy’s views were not Catholic. “The views expressed do not represent the Christian position,” he declared. “The homily at a regular weekend parish Mass is not appropriate for such issues to be spoken of in such terms. I regret that this has occurred while a parish pilgrimage to the Holy Land is taking place.”

Continuing, Browne argued that “the Gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is a Gospel of love and ever proclaims the dignity of every human person.”

This meant that “it calls on us all to ever have total respect for one another,” he said, while not outlining what form such respect this would take – whether it be political or spiritual. 

Catholic teaching on abortion and homosexuality

However, Browne’s depiction of Sheehy’s condemnation of abortion and homosexuality as not representing “the Christian position” is in direct contradiction to Catholic teaching.  

The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) #2271 teaches about abortion that: “Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law.”

Cardinal Raymond Burke, former Prefect of the Apostolic Signatura, gave an interview in September 2020, referring to pro-abortion Joe Biden, saying that “a Catholic may not support abortion in any shape or form because it is one of the most grievous sins against human life, and has always been considered to be intrinsically evil.”

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UPDATE (3/30/23): Fr. Fidelis is jailed along with another pro-life hero

Father Fidelis has been sentenced to 270 days in jail by a Michigan court, while fellow Red Rose rescuer Matthew Connolly was sentenced to 90 days in jail and told to pay fines.

The CFR priest will serve his sentence (90 days per 3 charges) concurrently, so he will be behind bars for 3 months.

Like their companions Elizabeth Wagi and Jacob Gregor, who received lighter penalties, Moscinski and Connolly were pronounced guilty of “trespassing, resisting arrest, and disturbing the peace/interfering with a business” on February 24, 2023 at the 46th District Courthouse in Southfield, Michigan.

Wagi received 18 months’ probation with fines and was ordered not to go anywhere near an abortion facility or her co-defendants. Gregor got 12 months’ probation with fines and 10 days community service. He was told not to speak to convicted church members.

LifeSiteNews is still awaiting news of Dr. Monica Miller and Laura Gies, who were found guilty of trespassing and resisting arrest.

The Southfield trial stemmed from a Red Rose Rescue at the Northland Family Planning abortion center, one of three abortion centers owned and operated by Renee Chelian, on April 23, 2021.


UPDATE (1/24/23): 

Pro-life priest and Red Rose Rescuer Fr. Fidelis Moscinski has been found guilty of violating the Freedom to Access Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act. 

Yesterday Fr. Fidelis was convicted of the federal crime for a July 2022 “lock and block” rescue he conducted at a Planned Parenthood in Hempstead, New York. The priest is scheduled to be sentenced on April 24 and faces up to six months in federal prison. 

Sign the petition to let Fr. Fidelis know you support him and are praying for him.


UPDATE (10/26/22): 

A Pennsylvania court issued a split ruling against a pro-life Franciscan priest and activist arrested after he entered an abortion clinic to help women choose life.

Father Christopher “Fidelis” Moscinski was found guilty of two misdemeanor charges and not guilty of a felony trespass and a misdemeanor resist, for participating in a Red Rose Rescue at a Planned Parenthood.

Fr. Moscinski entered the clinic on August 27, 2021 with red roses and pro-life literature ready to hand out to women and persuading them to choose life for their children.

Fr. Fidelis has participated in many Red Rose Rescues at abortion centers, and for this has been imprisoned multiple times.

He was also previously arrested for trying to save babies in Ohio in June 2021 and in New Jersey in January 2020.

After the court decision, Fr. Fidelis urged people to “continue keeping all pro-lifers anywhere who are facing charges, especially federal charges, in your prayers, and that God can bring some good out of this unjust persecution.”

Sign this petition today to let Fr. Fidelis know you stand with him and his heroic fight to save unborn lives from abortion.

Fellow pro-life activist and Red Rose Rescuer Will Goodman told LifeSite’s Jim Hale that the court’s ruling to drop one felony and reject another was a “big victory.”But the crackdown on pro-lifers continues!

Just recently the Biden administration targeted Fr. Fidelis and other pro-life activists for Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act (FACE) violation charges.

This same law was also used by the FBI to raid the home of pro-life Catholic dad Mark Houck last month.

It’s really a disgrace that in America pro-lifers are increasingly being attacked and persecuted simply because they stand for life.

Fr. Fidelis Moscinski needs your prayers and support now more than ever as he continues to fearlessly battle for the unborn.

SIGN THIS PETITION TODAY to tell Fr. Fidelis you stand with him and his courageous fight!


‘Big victory’: Felonies tossed in split verdict for priest attempting rescue of unborn

BREAKING NEWS: Father Fidelis Legal Verdict reaction LIVE by Legal team

FBI charges pro-life priest with violating abortion access law one week after Mark Houck raid

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The CCC also states in #2357, with regard to homosexuality, that: “‘Homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.’ They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.”

While Browne attacked Sheehy’s homily by referring to a defence of the “dignity” of man, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith’s 1975 documentPersona Humana, has previously noted “there can be no true promotion of man’s dignity unless the essential order of his nature is respected.”

In his first letter to the Corinthians, St. Paul states that homosexual actions are sinful, explaining that “neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers,” nor homosexuals will “inherit the kingdom of God.” According to his letter to the Romans, those who practice homosexuality will receive “in their own persons the due penalty for their error.”

LifeSiteNews contacted the bishop seeking further comment, and asking if he did not consider abortion or homosexual acts to be sinful. This report will be updated upon receipt of a reply.