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Catholic H.S.: Gay Student Can't Accept Matthew Shepard Scholarship on Stage

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Catholic H.S.: Gay Student Can't Accept Matthew Shepard Scholarship on Stage

BY Michelle Garcia

May 08 2012 1:36 PM ET

A gay high school senior was told that he cannot formally accept the Matthew Shepard Scholarship at his Catholic school's annual awards ceremony, despite being encouraged to apply for the award from school administrators. 

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 A gay Iowa teenager has been told that he cannot receive the Matthew Shepard Scholarship at his Catholic school's annual awards ceremony.

Prince of Peace Catholic school senior Keaton Fuller was initially told that he could accept the scholarship at his school's awards ceremony on May 20. According to the Eychaner Foundation of Des Moines, Iowa, which granted the scholarship, Fuller even learned of the scholarship from his school, and the principal issued a statement to notify the scholarship committee that he could accept the award at the ceremony.

But weeks later, the opportunity to formally accept the scholarship at his high school has been revoked after pressure from the local Catholic diocese. "It is difficult to understand how after I have spent 13 years at this school and worked hard during all of them, I would be made to feel that my accomplishments are less than everybody else’s," Fuller wrote in a letter to the student body and staff. "This whole ordeal has been incredibly hurtful, and I am even sadder that this will be one of my last experiences to remember my high school years by."

The Matthew Shepard Scholarship grants $40,000 to an openly LGBT student attending the University of Iowa the following fall. Fuller won the scholarship based on his academic work, as well as his work to reduce homophobia at school and in his community.

As of Tuesday morning, more than 4,000 people have signed a Change.org petition supporting Fuller and asking the school's principal, Superintendent Leland Morrision, and Bishop Martin J. Amos to have a change of heart.

by on May. 8, 2012 at 2:51 PM
Replies (21-30):
sherry132
by Silver Member on May. 8, 2012 at 5:12 PM

Yes someone actually said that I was, in fact, excommunicated. Divorce can be forgiven, however, remarriage without annulment is not accepted, therefore, I am living in "sin" due to the fact that I am not with the original husband. We did not qualify for annulment in the church. It was the churches standing that our marriage was salvageable. But only the church thought this, the family therapist agreed we needed divorce. 

As for birth control, well that is another thing I refuse to be sorry for. I didn't have the emotional ability to continue having children. Two was all I could handle.

With the abortion, I can never forgive myself for it, therefore I do not expect or request the church forgive me. 

Quoting jehosoba84:

 

Quoting sherry132:

It's the promotion of the scholarship that is the problem. For them to announce the scholarship, the school will name the scholarship foundation, which would promote the homosexuality. At least in the eyes of the church.

And what have they changed? Women can't be priest, women can't use birth control, people can't get divorced, well they can, but it's rare the church gives out an annulment so that the divorced couple can remarry. Priest and nuns still can't have sexual relationships. 

What's changed that actually matters? Except the nuns can't beat the hell out of the kids anymore, I don't know of anything that has contributed to the church making a signifigant change.

Yes, I was excommunicated because I got a divorce and I used birth control and a very little known fact that I rarely ever share, I had an abortion that wasn't my choice, I 'forced' into it by my parents. I remarried and got my tubes tied. I can never participate in the blood and body of Christ again. After the annulment was denied, my priest stated that I was excommunicated due to the fact I was remarried and refused to be sorry for my divorce and remarriage. 

Quoting romalove:

 

Quoting sherry132:

There are rules against promoting homosexuality. The scholarship is a scholarship for only people who are homosexuals. 

I am an excommunicated Catholic. Nothing that matters has changed at all. 




 Did someone actually say to you that you are ex-communicated? Every sin you listed can be forgiven if you are sorry for them. I've never had an abortion, but I used BC for years and was married but not in the church's eyes for several years as well. I still attended church, just not communion. 


sherry132
by Silver Member on May. 8, 2012 at 5:14 PM

I can't through my own church and religion. My beliefs are that I can only participate in the receiving of the blood and body of Christ through the blessings of the Catholic Church. Rather or not I can receive communion is not the point of this post or my opinion on the subject.

The point is, openly homosexual people have never been accepted in the church and I seriously doubt they ever will be. 

Quoting smalltowngal:


Quoting sherry132:

It's the promotion of the scholarship that is the problem. For them to announce the scholarship, the school will name the scholarship foundation, which would promote the homosexuality. At least in the eyes of the church.

And what have they changed? Women can't be priest, women can't use birth control, people can't get divorced, well they can, but it's rare the church gives out an annulment so that the divorced couple can remarry. Priest and nuns still can't have sexual relationships. 

What's changed that actually matters? Except the nuns can't beat the hell out of the kids anymore, I don't know of anything that has contributed to the church making a signifigant change.

Yes, I was excommunicated because I got a divorce and I used birth control and a very little known fact that I rarely ever share, I had an abortion that wasn't my choice, I 'forced' into it by my parents. I remarried and got my tubes tied. I can never participate in the blood and body of Christ again. 

You can in a Methodist church. 


jehosoba84
by Jenn on May. 8, 2012 at 5:15 PM
1 mom liked this

 

Quoting sherry132:

Yes someone actually said that I was, in fact, excommunicated. Divorce can be forgiven, however, remarriage without annulment is not accepted, therefore, I am living in "sin" due to the fact that I am not with the original husband. We did not qualify for annulment in the church. It was the churches standing that our marriage was salvageable. But only the church thought this, the family therapist agreed we needed divorce. 

As for birth control, well that is another thing I refuse to be sorry for. I didn't have the emotional ability to continue having children. Two was all I could handle.

With the abortion, I can never forgive myself for it, therefore I do not expect or request the church forgive me. 

Quoting jehosoba84:

 

Quoting sherry132:

It's the promotion of the scholarship that is the problem. For them to announce the scholarship, the school will name the scholarship foundation, which would promote the homosexuality. At least in the eyes of the church.

And what have they changed? Women can't be priest, women can't use birth control, people can't get divorced, well they can, but it's rare the church gives out an annulment so that the divorced couple can remarry. Priest and nuns still can't have sexual relationships. 

What's changed that actually matters? Except the nuns can't beat the hell out of the kids anymore, I don't know of anything that has contributed to the church making a signifigant change.

Yes, I was excommunicated because I got a divorce and I used birth control and a very little known fact that I rarely ever share, I had an abortion that wasn't my choice, I 'forced' into it by my parents. I remarried and got my tubes tied. I can never participate in the blood and body of Christ again. After the annulment was denied, my priest stated that I was excommunicated due to the fact I was remarried and refused to be sorry for my divorce and remarriage. 

Quoting romalove:

 

Quoting sherry132:

There are rules against promoting homosexuality. The scholarship is a scholarship for only people who are homosexuals. 

I am an excommunicated Catholic. Nothing that matters has changed at all. 


 


 Did someone actually say to you that you are ex-communicated? Every sin you listed can be forgiven if you are sorry for them. I've never had an abortion, but I used BC for years and was married but not in the church's eyes for several years as well. I still attended church, just not communion. 


 'Someone' saying you're excommunicated does not mean that you really are. I'm pretty sure your bishop has to do that. I would speak to a priest about all of this. It is true that your new marriage is invalid and you're living in sin, but you can still attend church and pray everyday for forgiveness.

shannonnigans
by Platinum Member on May. 8, 2012 at 5:20 PM
I think the lesson he learned isn't that regardless of sexual orientation we all experience moments of invalidation and unacceptance; what he learned, unfortunately, is that BECAUSE of sexual orientation he can expect to experience a LIFETIME of invalidation and unacceptance, and the CC's actions demonstrate a hypocrisy which is truly staggering - we will hide and protect pedophilic and homosexual priests even if it means obstruction of justice but by God, this kid will NOT be allowed on stage to accept a scholarship.

But, to their credit, they did recently "forgive" Galileo for suggesting the earth revolved around the sun after he spent most of his life under house arrest. Strange, youd think they should be the ones to be forgiven.


Quoting 12hellokitty:

In a different article Fuller states


“Everybody at the school has always been very accepting and extremely encouraging toward me,” Keaton Fuller, a senior at Prince of Peace Catholic School in Clinton, Iowa, told msnbc.com. “That’s why the latest turn of events has been such a surprise -- I feel invalidated and unaccepted.”


 


So because The Church is not willing to go against it's teaching Fuller feels "invalidated and unaccepted"?  It's sad that he can so quickly write off the acceptance and encouragement he received from classmates and staff because of not being able to receive a scholarship on stage.  Someone needs to tell this young man regardless of sexual orientation we all experience moments of invalidation and unacceptance.  He could have made a bigger difference if he had respected the teachings of the Church and agreed to receive the scholarship at the awards ceremony.     


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Traci_Momof2
by Silver Member on May. 8, 2012 at 5:30 PM
1 mom liked this


Quoting 12hellokitty:

In a different article Fuller states

“Everybody at the school has always been very accepting and extremely encouraging toward me,” Keaton Fuller, a senior at Prince of Peace Catholic School in Clinton, Iowa, told msnbc.com. “That’s why the latest turn of events has been such a surprise -- I feel invalidated and unaccepted.”

 

So because The Church is not willing to go against it's teaching Fuller feels "invalidated and unaccepted"?  It's sad that he can so quickly write off the acceptance and encouragement he received from classmates and staff because of not being able to receive a scholarship on stage.  Someone needs to tell this young man regardless of sexual orientation we all experience moments of invalidation and unacceptance.  He could have made a bigger difference if he had respected the teachings of the Church and agreed to receive the scholarship at the awards ceremony.     

If accepting the award is so much against the church's teachings, then why did they tell him he could in the first place?  I think that's the issue here.  First they told him he could.  Then they told him he couldn't.  They need to make up their mind and stick to it.

Actually, the school needs to stand up to the diocese and stick with their original decision - not cave to pressure from the diocese.

PamR
by Pam on May. 8, 2012 at 5:30 PM

They encourage him to apply for the scholarship, he wins it and then they won't let him accept it at their ceremony?  That makes no sense to me.


Quote:

STOP trying to force Catholics into things they don't want to do, that is bullying.

Jalestra
by on May. 8, 2012 at 5:33 PM


Quoting sherry132:

There are rules against promoting homosexuality. The scholarship is a scholarship for only people who are homosexuals. 

I am an excommunicated Catholic. Nothing that matters has changed at all. 

Quoting romalove:

 

Quoting sherry132:

It's the Catholic Church. Their rules are clear. They haven't changed in 2000 years. They will never change no matter what society wants. I don't know why anyone is surprised. 

 There's a rule against scholarship acceptance?

And it's not true that it has not changed, they have absolutely changed things over time.

Or are you receiving any indulgences?


This is just  question because I'm having a logic problem, really interested in the answer and not trying to be an ass: Isn't it promoting homosexuality to encourage to apply for a homosexual scholarship in order to attend a homosexual school? 

I mean, if he just applied on his own and got accepted I can't fault the church for standing up for their rules, it's their church, but they encouraged him to do it....

shannonnigans
by Platinum Member on May. 8, 2012 at 5:41 PM
Like when law enforcement asks the church to turn over records of priests accused of pedophilia?

Quoting LavenderMom23:

STOP trying to force Catholics into things they don't want to do, that is bullying.



Posted on CafeMom Mobile
sherry132
by Silver Member on May. 8, 2012 at 5:46 PM


Quoting jehosoba84:

 

Quoting sherry132:

Yes someone actually said that I was, in fact, excommunicated. Divorce can be forgiven, however, remarriage without annulment is not accepted, therefore, I am living in "sin" due to the fact that I am not with the original husband. We did not qualify for annulment in the church. It was the churches standing that our marriage was salvageable. But only the church thought this, the family therapist agreed we needed divorce. 

As for birth control, well that is another thing I refuse to be sorry for. I didn't have the emotional ability to continue having children. Two was all I could handle.

With the abortion, I can never forgive myself for it, therefore I do not expect or request the church forgive me. 

Quoting jehosoba84:

 

Quoting sherry132:

It's the promotion of the scholarship that is the problem. For them to announce the scholarship, the school will name the scholarship foundation, which would promote the homosexuality. At least in the eyes of the church.

And what have they changed? Women can't be priest, women can't use birth control, people can't get divorced, well they can, but it's rare the church gives out an annulment so that the divorced couple can remarry. Priest and nuns still can't have sexual relationships. 

What's changed that actually matters? Except the nuns can't beat the hell out of the kids anymore, I don't know of anything that has contributed to the church making a signifigant change.

Yes, I was excommunicated because I got a divorce and I used birth control and a very little known fact that I rarely ever share, I had an abortion that wasn't my choice, I 'forced' into it by my parents. I remarried and got my tubes tied. I can never participate in the blood and body of Christ again. After the annulment was denied, my priest stated that I was excommunicated due to the fact I was remarried and refused to be sorry for my divorce and remarriage. 

Quoting romalove:

 

Quoting sherry132:

There are rules against promoting homosexuality. The scholarship is a scholarship for only people who are homosexuals. 

I am an excommunicated Catholic. Nothing that matters has changed at all. 




 Did someone actually say to you that you are ex-communicated? Every sin you listed can be forgiven if you are sorry for them. I've never had an abortion, but I used BC for years and was married but not in the church's eyes for several years as well. I still attended church, just not communion. 


 'Someone' saying you're excommunicated does not mean that you really are. I'm pretty sure your bishop has to do that. I would speak to a priest about all of this. It is true that your new marriage is invalid and you're living in sin, but you can still attend church and pray everyday for forgiveness.

I can attend church, however, I cannot receive sacraments, communion, or take any official stance in the church, such as doing the readings, or teaching the sacraments. 

As far as speaking to a priest, bishop or anyone else, I have. I accept things for what they are. I am not bitter or hurt in anyway. I do attend church and my children received their sacraments, although their father and I could not represent them. As for praying for forgiveness, I am not sorry for what has happened. Except for the abortion. I believe fully in my heart that God led me down the path I walked and that I followed his guidance. This is where the church and I completely disagree. It's because I REFUSE to change my thinking, or to say "I'm sorry" I am excommunicated. And honestly, I have talked way too much about this today, because other than in this post, it does not ever cross my mind. 

sherry132
by Silver Member on May. 8, 2012 at 5:48 PM


Quoting Jalestra:


Quoting sherry132:

There are rules against promoting homosexuality. The scholarship is a scholarship for only people who are homosexuals. 

I am an excommunicated Catholic. Nothing that matters has changed at all. 

Quoting romalove:

 

Quoting sherry132:

It's the Catholic Church. Their rules are clear. They haven't changed in 2000 years. They will never change no matter what society wants. I don't know why anyone is surprised. 

 There's a rule against scholarship acceptance?

And it's not true that it has not changed, they have absolutely changed things over time.

Or are you receiving any indulgences?


This is just  question because I'm having a logic problem, really interested in the answer and not trying to be an ass: Isn't it promoting homosexuality to encourage to apply for a homosexual scholarship in order to attend a homosexual school? 

I mean, if he just applied on his own and got accepted I can't fault the church for standing up for their rules, it's their church, but they encouraged him to do it....

Yes, you are right, but I have a feeling that someone didn't tell the church what they were up too until after the scholarship was awarded, and they probably heard about it afterward. But we will never know, because no one will ever tell us what went on with that. 

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