BOSTON, August 4, 2004 ( – The Paulist Centre in Boston, is a hot-bed for dissenting Catholics who wish to counter the teachings of Roman Catholicism but yet remain within it. “It’s where people who hate the Church go to church,” according to The Weekly Standard’s Jonathan V. Last, in an article published July 25.

Archbishop Sean P. O’Malley of Boston, in an interview with in January, said “These politicians should know that if they’re not voting correctly on these life issues that they shouldn’t dare come to communion.” Although the Archbishop may not have direct sway over John Kerry’s actions, he could have some authority over the priest who directs the Paulist Centre, Father John Ardis.  Ardis gave the “benediction” at the Democratic National Convention. “As the priest talked, his arms outstretched and palms facing upward, the nominees, Senators John F. Kerry and John Edwards, bowed their heads and closed their eyes in prayer, balloons and confetti swirling about them,” Boston Globe writer Michael Paulson described.

In his address, Ardis defended homosexual rights, asking that the Lord “give us the courage to embrace each person as our neighbour, regardless of gender, race, or ethnic origin, regardless of sexual orientation, religious tradition, or age.”  Last wrote a commentary on a July 25 protest outside the Paulist Center by a number of pro-life groups, including the American Life League, and Operation Rescue. The protesters carried signs with slogans such as Stop Killing My Generation and You CAN’T be Catholic & Pro-Abortion.

“The practical consequence” of the Paulist Centre’s dissident attitude “is that if John Kerry isn’t the least bit conflicted about stumping for abortion and taking Communion, the people at the Paulist Centre are even less conflicted about giving him the Host,” Last writes.  After the Mass, Father John Ardis addressed the protesters by reading the Centre’s Mission Statement from the front steps. Parishioners applauded. “Which explains why John Kerry feels so comfortable at the Paulist Centre,” Last continues. “His fellow parishioners aren’t gritting their teeth and looking away while he fights for abortion and defies the Catholic Church. They’re cheering him on.”  The Paulist Centre is listed on the Conference for Catholic Lesbians web-site as one among several “Lesbian & Gay-Friendly Parishes” in America.  Contact the Boston Archdiocese to voice your concerns to the Archbishop:

Read Last’s Weekly Standard column, “A Curious Kind of Catholic – Boston’s Paulist Center,” at:

Read the Boston Globe’s coverage of the DNC “benediction:”