By Patrick B. Craine

OTTAWA, Ontario, September 30, 2009 ( – The faculty of theology at Saint Paul University in Ottawa will be hosting an event entitled 'Vatican II in Canada' on October 15-16.  The keynote address will be delivered by Gregory Baum, a former priest, with a response from Bishop Remi De Roo.

The event is being advertised by the Archdiocese of Ottawa, both on its website and in a fax sent out from the Pastoral Office.  In particular, the Archdiocese is encouraging adult faith development program participants to attend.

Baum and Bishop De Roo would seem excellent speakers on the issue, given that they both participated in the Second Vatican Council.  The former Fr. Baum attended as a 'peritus', a theological expert, and Bishop De Roo is one of the few surviving Council Fathers, having been named a bishop shortly after the opening of the council.

Both Baum and Bishop De Roo are renowned, however, for their opposition to authentic Church teaching.

Baum has long opposed the Church on issues such as contraception, priestly celibacy, and homosexuality.  Following Pope Paul VI's encyclical Humanae Vitae, which reiterated the Church's condemnation of artificial contraception, he helped rally opposition to the teaching.

He has long disparaged priestly celibacy, and, in fact, he himself married a divorced former nun without having sought laicization.  He was a prominent activist for same-sex “marriage,” and was co-founder of the liberal Catholic New Times, which endeavored to undermine Church teaching from its inception in 1976.

Bishop De Roo is himself also widely recognized as advocating positions contrary to Catholic teaching.  He is a trained 'Enneagram' teacher, which the Pontifical Councils for Culture and Interreligious Dialogue, in a joint document, named as an example of the modern gnostic New Age movement.

“When used as a means of spiritual growth [it] introduces an ambiguity in the doctrine and the life of the Christian faith,” they wrote.

In 1999, reports Catholic World News, he was ordered by the Vatican to cancel a speaking engagement at a conference for the International Federation of Married Catholic Priests.  Further, he has been a featured guest at conferences run by the dissident group Call to Action, which seeks to alter Church teaching on a range of issues, such as the male priesthood, priestly celibacy, contraception, and homosexuality.

As Msgr. Vincent Foy has detailed, Bishop De Roo also played a strong role in the Canadian Bishops' adoption of the Winnipeg Statement in 1968, in which they opposed Pope Paul VI's strict condemnation of artificial contraception.

St. Paul University itself has long been a seat of dissidence in the Canadian Church.  They raised eyebrows earlier this year when from June 12-14 they hosted the National Conference of the feminist Catholic Network for Women's Equality, a group that advocates for women's ordination.

The Archdiocese of Ottawa told LifeSiteNews that they have no comment at this point.

LSN did not hear back from the St. Paul University contact for the event, Dr. Catherine Clifford, after repeated attempts.

Contact Information for respectful communications:

Archdiocese of Ottawa
1247 Kilborn Place
Ottawa, Ontario K1H 6K9
Phone: 613-738-5025
Fax: 613-738-0130
E-mail: [email protected]

Catherine Clifford, Ph.D., Vice Dean, Faculty of Theology
Saint Paul University
223 Main St.
Ottawa, Ontario K1S 1C4
Phone: 613-236-1393 ext. 2281
E-mail: [email protected]

See Composing Effective Communications in Response to LifeSiteNews Reports

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