Shame on parish


Without going too much into the situation, there was a horrible assumption about my husband and others made at the church we were considering joining in our new area (not considering that anymore btw). I don’t want to go too into it because it is beyond humilitating, but I will say this has to do with racism. and whoever is responsible for this is spreading these lies they were saying to anyone and everyone that will listen at parish council meatings and telling children in the church so that they are - if you can believe it - scared to go to church now. It actually has gotten much worse than that now, but I don’t want to get into it anymore than that.

My husband and I just got back from burrying my FIL and my husband being a strong catholic wanted of course to go offer prayers for his father’s soul and his friends who are not of the same religion wanted to come as support - that’s when all this started and some people who “didn’t know them” started getting everyone worked up about these guys they didn’t know in “THEIR” church.

I mean, correct me if I’m wrong, but I thought we as catholics are supposed to welcome people to our churches, not shame them for being a certain color. Even our mass books have an insert welcoming all visitors to the church.

I can’t even say how angry I am about this, and my husband now officially wants to start attending a non-denominational church now. I don’t know what to do.


I am sorry to hear about your loss.

The church that Christ established is perfect - it is the people who are part of it that are not. The way that you and your husband were treated is unacceptable by any means.

The problem is that we still have many people who are ignorant in this world and, although they say that they are Catholic, truly are not willing to walk the way of the Cross and embrace in God fully.

Those folks need our prayers.

Our family will pray for your father-in-law and we will pray for those folks that they come into the fullness of the Church.

Most of all, I will pray that God gives you and your family the strength to continue to be part of the true Church that Jesus has established here 2000 years ago.

God bless.


Certainly in a case like this it makes sense to find another Catholic Church to go to. It might also make sense to write a letter to the pastor describing your experience. And pray. Pray for the conversion of the community who rejected you and your family.

***for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, *** (Matthew (RSV) 25:35)

Read Matthew 25:31-46. You see that the consequences are rather gloomy for those who are unwelcoming. This community needs your prayers.


Have you talked to the pastor? Where has he been through all of this? Does he know? I find it inconceiveable that he would allow this sort of behavior from his flock if he is aware of it. I would expect a very scathing sermon from him at all Masses every week until this behavior stopped. And if he does condone it, or worse–join in with this behavior, you should go to the Bishop. Then find a truly “catholic” church where you should be and will be welcomed. And don’t forget to pray for those who have lost focus of the “Greatest Commandment”, to Love One Another. Please don’t let your husband lose faith within Christ’s Church because of the warped attitudes and actions of those with little faith.


well, he isn’t condoning it, but he I guess I should say is in some way understanding of it. To put a little more info into this, my husband is asian and portugese, but he looks middle eastern, and people in the church actually called the police about these suspicious people in the church and I know for a fact the pastor said he wanted to err on the side of caution. That’s why we are so mad. I will talk with him and if I don’t get anywhere, I most definately will go talk to the bishop.

I told my husband we just need to find a better church, and I think I’m getting through to him.



i’m sorry you had to go through that. that sounds horrible. hopefully you can find another catholic parish in your area. would your husband be open to trying that? praying for you…


Are you a strong Catholic as well? Your husband being a strong Catholic has to know that there are people who do bad things, but that sure doesn’t make the Catholic Church wrong.

I am sure that just about anyone you talk to in the forums would be glad to talk to the church you question.

I would think that as a strong Catholic, you would want to change the attitude of the parishioners, I would be glad to help with that.

What did they do?


Yes, that is terrible and of an example how sinful people can be! I would hope you would talk to the pastor.

Now, that’s certainly a great solution-- leave the Church and the Sacraments, put all your mortal souls in danger through joining a false church and denying the Catholic Faith.


Who would you be punishing? YOURSELVES.

The Catholic Church has the fullness of Truth, and there is no other to whom we can go-- as St. Peter famously said. Confront the racism in this parish or go to another. But, don’t leave the Catholic Church over some person’s sinfulness. That is cutting off your nose to spite your face.

You will never encounter any church group that has perfect people. If you go to this non-denom church and they are welcoming and warm and you don’t have the Sacraments or the Truth-- you have certainly traded the pearl of great price away.

Go talk to the priest!


You know, this type of thing happens a lot. It’s sad, but true.

In my old parish-- a large, urban, multicultural parish in a wealthy part of town-- a man who does prison ministry came to the 6 p.m. Sunday evening mass straight from having been at the prison. He was dressed in biker clothes (you don’t go do prison ministry in a polo shirt and boat shoes!) and looked “rough”.

Someone at Mass called the police on him!

Our pastor was so mad he got up the next Sunday and let the whole congregation have it at every mass. He shamed all those people big-time.


Well, I talked to the pastor, and he was relieved I talked to him only so that he could calm down those certain individuals. What he said was that he told everyone there is most likely an explanation for this and people even came forward saying these guys looked nice, were saying prayers and one came for communion (my husband) and those people said to the priest - does that sound like someone bad to you?!?!?!

Also, the assistant priest told me he believed these persons were stirring up trouble maybe for their own advantage because they wanted to somehow switch this over to something to do with a staff member they do not like - I don’t know how they did that, but they turned it around somehow onto someone else.

The priest said he is going to mention it during the mass so people can not worry. I really hope those stirring the trouble up feel a little ashamed of themselves and what they turned this into. I still haven’t decided if I will go and listen for what he says or not.

He also said he will call and write something to my husband about this.

Thanks for listening and for the advice everyone!

I will think if we want to keep going to this church. If not, I have another one in mind (and it’s Catholic )


It is too bad that a few people made you feel like this. The priest needs to make sure he clears the air and strongly. Best of luck to you.


I second this - Father should give a strong sermon on gossip etc. He should also personally, privately Chastize the worst offenders.



Dear Davia. My heart goes out to you. You and your husband have obviously been wounded. Of course, you are correct. ALL people are welcome in God’s house. And it is true… that God desires ALL people to find their way to the Catholic Faith. He desires ALL of His children to have the fullness of the Truth. There is no doubt about that. Race makes absolutely no difference. God doesn’t look at the color of our skin. He looks at our souls and our hearts.

Sadly, there are still those in our midst… who do not believe or accept this. But, this may not necessarily mean that everyone in your parish behaves in this way. Have you spoken of your concerns to the Pastor of your parish? If those responsible can be identified… I believe the Pastor would be well within his rights and responsibilities… to admonish them and to correct them.

If this is not possible… then, perhaps you can find a different parish to join. Believe me when I say… that this narrow-minded view is not the norm within the Catholic Church. Most of us accept the Truth. That we are ALL Children of God. And that we are ALL loved by God, and therefore… love one another. God bless you, Davia. I hope this helps some.:hug1:


i’m glad you got to speak to the pastor and he was receptive to your valid concerns. good for you


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