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‘God Is Trans’ Church No Longer Hosting ‘Pride Mass’ at Gay Monument, Cites Security Concerns

The Church of St. Paul the Apostle in New York City has announced a change of location for its planned “Pride Mass” after the National Parks Service informed them that the Stonewall National Monument would not be open to the public due to security concerns. The church had planned to hold the Mass at the federal monument, which features sculptures of two same-sex couples and groups of gay and transgender pride flags. The Mass will now be held at the Church of St. Paul the Apostle at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday.

The Church of St. Paul the Apostle has faced criticism for its decision to hold a “Pride Mass” and for its choice of location, with some calling it “blasphemous.” The church had previously hosted a controversial art display called “God Is Trans” earlier this year, which also received severe criticism.

Dominican Father Thomas Petri, a moral theologian and president of the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, D.C., spoke out against the parish’s decision, saying that the Mass should not be used to make a political statement. “It would be inappropriate for any Mass to be celebrated with a political end, and with political flags or campaign posters flying in the sanctuary or among the congregation,” Father Petri said. (ncregister.com) “It would be impious and possibly sacrilegious because it profanes the very purpose of the Mass: The worship of God by the participation in the body and blood of Christ himself.”

Father Petri went on to say that the Mass is meant to “turn our minds and hearts to things that are above and not to things below.” He added that celebrating a Mass at Stonewall, where the monument, the statues, and the flags carry a meaning that most people rightly identify with a lifestyle, sexual activity, and an ideology that are all contrary both to the Christian understanding of the human person and to a life of chastity and virtue, would be inappropriate. (catholicnewsagency.com)

“It’s not pastoral to facilitate anyone walking that path. There are much better ways to seek justice in the world without abandoning the vocation we all have to grow in holiness,” he said.

The Stonewall National Monument is a 7.7-acre park in the West Village neighborhood of Greenwich Village in Lower Manhattan, New York City, dedicated to “LGBT rights” and history. (catholicnewsagency.com) It was designated as a national monument by President Barack Obama on June 24, 2016. (youtube.com)

The Church of St. Paul the Apostle held a Mass at the Stonewall National Monument in 2019, and a visiting priest, Father Gil Martinez, celebrated the Mass, saying, “Sisters, brothers, siblings, Christ called us here today to this sacred space to commemorate the sacrifice of those who came before us.” Father Martinez went on to say, “50 years ago, queers, considered the lowliest of the low, made a stand for their dignity. And though they were beaten by police, they were not broken. Their hope, faith, and rage built the revolution on which we stand. Take a moment to pause and look around you, see their legacy in the faces of those around you. See what God is doing in our world.”

The Church of St. Paul the Apostle’s decision to hold a “Pride Mass” at Stonewall has been met with mixed reactions. While some have praised the church for its inclusivity and support of the LGBTQ+ community, others have criticized the decision, saying that it goes against Catholic teachings and values. The change of venue for the Mass is likely to further fuel the debate around the role of the Catholic Church in supporting the LGBTQ+ community.