Thursday, August 31, 2006

Pastor Defies Bishop Peña

Pastor defies Bishop Peña

The Monitor
August 31, 2006

To the editor:
Monsignor Louis Brum, pastor of Holy Spirit Parish in McAllen, continues to ignore Bishop Peña’s direction and advice by leaving in place a ban on participation in parish ministries by parishioners who are members of Call to Action (CTA) or its local chapter, Call to Action-Rio Grande Valley (CTA-RGV).

In August 2005, Monsignor Brum instituted a formal policy of banning CTA and CTA-RGV members from full participation in the parish, calling the organization and its members “anti-Catholic” and “not in good standing with the Church.”

Troubled by this ban and alarmed by these characterizations, I wrote to Bishop Peña asking whether he was in agreement with Monsignor’s statements about CTA. On April 17, 2006, the Bishop replied, “Membership in Call to Action-Rio Grande Valley, in my opinion, does not per se cause a person to be ‘not in good standing’ with the Church.”

In later correspondence the Bishop has said, “I suggested for him (Monsignor Brum) to re-evaluate his policies and redefine the requirements regarding lay participation in various ministries of the parish" (June 6) and “...I have discussed the matter with him and encouraged him to resolve the matter amicably, as soon as possible. It is now up to him to respond to your needs" (June 20).

The exclusion from ministries not only deprives the parish the talents of these people but it shatters the unity of the Body of Christ. The policy must be changed and the damage that has been done must be repaired. Bishop Peña indicates as much when he says that the policy has no basis.

It is odd that Monsignor Brum, a priest who is constantly preaching about obedience to Church authority, persists in defying the Bishop.

Gerald Brazier

Peace and Justice Reminder:
Please join the parish Peace and Justice Committee and the Valley's People for Peace and Justice in a demonstration for peace in the Middle East this afternoon (August 31st) between 4:30 and 6:00pm at the offices of Representative Ruben Hinojosa, on the corner of McColl and Trenton. At 6pm, we will join the Coalition Against the Dealth Penalty, at that same location, for a prayer vigil for Derrick Frazier, who will be executed by the State of Texas at that time. See you there!

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Anonymous said...

Well, Mr. Brazier, doesn't it seem clear to you that the Bishop did help Fr. Brum? I think the bulletin insert last Sunday indicates that. What a joke!

Anonymous said...

What is truly odd is that, to this day, our Bishop has never stepped in and done something about this situation!

Father Louie’s exclusionary tactics have absolutely no place in the Catholic Church. Christ taught “inclusion” at almost every breath. Just why in God's name do you think a Bishop of the Catholic Church would not act against these totally unchristian tactics by one of his parish priests?

A Parishioner said...

Consider the following hypothetical scenario:

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to go to Holy Spirit Parish and get rid of all those rebellious Union Employees and their supporters. How dare them question my right to confiscate their Million-Dollar Employee Pension Fund or to FIRE THEM AT WILL!

Go find a way to circumvent that damn Union and FIRE ‘EM ALL... or, make life so miserable for them that they will LEAVE ON THEIR OWN!

Go in peace my son and I will look the other way to whatever you must do to complete your assignment. If you accept, I will also insure that you are elevated to a position of Monsignor.

Anonymous said...

Probably more truth than not!

Anonymous said...

When will you post again ? Been looking forward to this !