Brisbane Archbishop reacts to gay choir's use of Catholic Church
Arcbishop John Bathersby has indicated that he is offended by the use of a Brisbane church for a gay pride event.
Fr Peter Kennedy and Fr Terry Fitzpatrick of St Mary's Catholic Church, in South Brisbane, have agreed to host a concert by the Lesbian and Gay Pride Choir as part of the Brisbane Pride Festival.
The 45-member ensemble is due to perform at the church on Friday night, with songs ranging from Madonna to Monteverdi.
Fr Fitzpatrick has defended the decision to host the event, saying it is the role of the church to be "inclusive".
Archbishop Bathersby was in London at the weekend, but in a letter published in The Courier-Mail newspaper, he said the local priests had agreed to host the gay concert despite his strenuous objections.
Labelling the use of the church as "offensive", the archbishop said Fr Fitzpatrick was "not going about it the right way" if he was attempting to promote inclusivity in the church.
He also slammed an advertisement promoting the event in the festival's program.
The advertisement appears near that for the play Corpus Christi, which parallels the life of Jesus Christ with that of a homosexual Texan man, and which the archbishop dubbed "enormously offensive".
"The event was advertised in a Pride Festival program . . . in the midst of other advertising that many people would find totally unacceptable," Archbishop Bathersby wrote.
But Fr Fitzpatrick said the church needs to make up for its past role of fostering homophobia.
St Mary's Parish, South Brisbane
Archdiocese of Brisbane
Brisbane Lesbian and Gay Pride Choir | Homosexual choir has pride of place in church (Courier-Mail)
Brisbane Pride Festival
Italian gays march for rights against Vatican and the law (The Observer)
10 Jun 2003