A story appeared today on the priest in my diocese who was excommunicated for joining Rent-A-Priest. [Via Dom]
"That’s what I see my ministry as – reaching out to those who have been disenfranchised," Fisher told the Times-Union on Monday.
Fisher had been married and divorced, raised two children, and ran his own insurance agency before his ordination and said he plans to remarry soon.
Fisher said his troubles began in the summer of 2005, when the diocese learned of those plans.
In June of that year it removed him from St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church in Palm Coast, where he had been associate pastor for one year.
Previously he had served at Christ the King parish in Jacksonville from 2002 to 2004.
Fisher said the diocese tried to convince him to go through the process of laicization, before his planned marriage. The procedure transforms a Catholic’s status from that of clergy to lay person.
Fisher said he refused.
"I felt it [ordination] was a gift as well as a call and is an integral part of who I am," Fisher said.
Fisher said he joined Rent A Priest in March because he wanted to continue functioning as a priest and needed the fellowship of other priests who had married, he said.
Galeone learned of Fisher’s involvement with the group in April, Bagg-Morgan said, when he received a letter from Rent A Priest’s parent organization, CITI Ministries. The due-process procedure for excommunications began shortly thereafter.
He preached at my parish once soon after being ordained on the Feast of the Assumption. The homily was quite good and orthodox. This is sad that unfortunately this late-vocation priest decided that the priesthood was all about him. Please send some prayers his way.
“Fisher said his troubles began in the summer of 2005, when the diocese learned of those plans.”
His troubles began long before that.
You got that right, Paul!
How did he slip through the seminary? Were there no signs of an underlying problem?
I went to his Ordination and he seemed to be sincere. Only God knows. Will pray.