I am disgusted with your behaviour in not allowing Marnie Kennedy to distribute communion at our Easter Ceremonies. I have tried to be patient with both you and Clesio but you have shown that you are determined to shut out as much as possible our community. Your letter of appeal read out to us about six month ago is just an outward sign of reconciliation that means nothing when at every turn you shut us out or exclude. You do not like our values of concern for the world. Your concern is for a personal spirituality that is pious in presentation but devious and exclusive in action.
I tried one Sunday to communicate with Clesio about his decision to allow someone from the congregation whom we had never seen before to speak at a time when you and he have disallowed us to speak. I was aiming to appeal to his reasonable thinking and understanding about how we might feel when there is one rule for one of your own (or like minded) and a different rule for the rest of the congregation.
Firstly Clesio ignored me and walked directly to the goup of people who were clearly Neocatechumenate followers and started laughing and talking. This action of Clesio’s incensed me. I do not see that you and Clesio want to include our community. I will say so in my letter to the Vatican for your review as a group.
Clesio stated that it was because this person requested in the so called normal way and sought permission. We also did seek permission before on many occasions, and were denied it.
What makes your behaviour all the more reprehensible is that in your sermon (yesterday – Easter Vigil) you talked about the pursuit of power being worth nothing! Your sermon is worthless as you do not demonstrate any humility about your own behaviour. You cannot seem to see that you do exactly what you are encouraging others not to do!
We are not fools. You need to practice what you preach if you believe that you represent Jesus on earth!! By what right do you think that you can just decide to exclude a revered member of our community. Marnie has served the Church more than three times the amount of time that both yourself and Clesio have served the Church. Your behaviour is reprehensible.
In fact that is what your behaviour does: it excludes. I have witnessed time and time again that reasonable requests by members of community has been refused. How can I really think of you as a parish priest that is approachable?
I think your comment to a young member of our community last night reveals it all! When you turned to Stephanie and said “who are you? I have not seen you here before”. She made her first Holy Communion with our children at St Vincent’s, and as she said to you she was baptized in our church. This demonstrates to me that you have no intention of allowing yourself to come to know any of us really!
Any attempt to dialogue with you is met by either silence or a grunt! I think it is true that you have not at any time demonstrated that you want to get to know any member of our community. Do not talk to me about reconciliation! You are the antithesis of it!
I am sending a copy of my communication to you to John Usher.
Member of the St Vincent’s Church for 35 years.