**This is an old article (which is why I didn’t post In The News) but noteworthy still the same. I believe these things are still happening in Catholic schools in the U.S. **
“Gay Friendly” Agenda Gaining Footholds in Catholic Schools Around The Country
By Teresa Cepeda
The October 30 through November 1 conference of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) attracted nearly 1,000 teachers, administrators and activists to gloat on the group’s gains in schools and to share tactics for pushing the gay agenda in schools, getting around opposition from parents and school boards.
Parents and their elected representatives on school boards were identified by a number of speakers as “the enemy,” including keynote speaker Suzanne Pharr, a homosexual and racial activist from Plant City, Florida. The biggest enemy, according to Pharr, is the “Right”—a group of people, mostly men like the Promise Keepers, who don’t have any beliefs or ideals of their own, but want to hurt gays and to control youth and women. Pharr said that the current agitation for the gay agenda in schools is as important to their movement as the 1957 school desegregation court decision was to the civil rights movement.
Father James Schexnayder, speaking at the conference as a representative of the Diocese of Oakland’s Task Force for Outreach to Gay and Lesbian Communities and their Families and as Executive Director of the allegedly NCCB recognized National Association of Catholic Diocesan Lesbian and Gay Ministries (NACDLGM), continues this theme of gay rights versus backwards “conservatives” into the Catholic realm. Right wing Vatican officials and preVatican II Catholics are the hateful, vocal minority trying to prevent progress in human rights. Church sexual teachings are superstitious, based on fear rather than theology or revelation.
With helping from a willing bishop, John Cummings of Oakland, Schexnayder and his group have made the diocese’s nine Catholic high schools gay-friendly. When Contra Costa County public schools passed a gay sensitivity resolution this year, Schexnayder’s diocesan Task Force formed a “Safe Schools Program,” funded by the United Way, to go into the public schools, hold faculty and staff in-services, to do presentations to classrooms and to form support groups to help gay students “come out of the closet”—things that were beyond the wildest dreams of gay organizations because of parent and school board objections, but which had been going on in Catholic schools for years. Asked by a questioner in his talk why the public schools would bring in a Catholic agency to promote gay and lesbian issues, Schexnayder replied, “Because we had had the experience in Catholic schools and even gay/lesbian agencies hadn’t been doing that.”
Schexnayder noted that the Catholic Charities employee who runs the Safe School Program, Julie Lienert, is a GLSEN board member and that she was attending the conference. Lienert’s business card and brochures for the Safe Schools Program were put out on a display table for a “queer youth” consortium of which the Safe Schools Program is a part. The program is, according to the brochure, conducted “in collaboration with the Center for Human Development” (a radical gay organization). Services offered to “gay, lesbian, and questioning youth and families” include: staff in services, classroom workshop (“Interactive presentations that help students explore myths and stereotypes, sexual identity, and family diversity.”), curriculum/library resources, and links to gay community services. Only a handful of people attended Schexnayder’s talk— several of them already involved with the Task Force and most of the rest gay teachers in Catholic schools who came to complain about the Church’s teaching that homosexual sex is wrong.
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