BILLINGS – A Catholic priest at Roman Catholic Diocese of Great Falls-Billings condemned the Billings Catholic Schools for allowing a gay couple to serve as event chairs for an upcoming fundraiser.
Father Ryan Erlenbush, who lives in Great Falls and is an alumni of the Billings Catholic Schools, posted on his personal Facebook page the schools "have really let us down with the Mayfair invitation this year."
"You know a Catholic School has lost its way when a prominent homosexual couple is advertised as the chairs for the annual fundraiser," Erlenbush stated. "Why would any Catholic (indeed, any Christian) attend or donate to Mayfair 2018? What does a Catholic School have to do before people say ‘enough’ and take their kids (and their money) elsewhere?
"I’m an alumnus of the Billings Catholic Schools, and I say, ‘enough.’"
Erlenbush’s post received a majority of responses critical of his view. Some supported his stance.
The Billings Catholic School Foundation declined an interview but stated "we have six wonderful chairs working to make this event happen." It went on to state it didn’t consider this situation to be an issue or newsworthy.
According to the foundation, a number of donations have come in since the priest’s post went viral in spite of his comments.
Pope Francis has reaffirmed in the past the Roman Catholic Church’s position that homosexual acts were sinful, but homosexual orientation was not. He also has called for transsexuals and homosexuals to be accepted and embraced by the Catholic Church, but said he was staunchly opposed to schools promoting or endorsing such “tendencies”.