Patrick Archbold is co-founder of Creative Minority Report, a Catholic website that puts a refreshing spin on the intersection of religion, culture, and politics. When not writing, Patrick is director of information technology at a large international logistics company in New York.
If reports are to be believed, a compromise is in the works that will amount to nothing less than an endorsement of the gay identity in the 2015 NYC St. Patrick's Day parade.
The Irish Times reports that under pressure from NBC, not only will a group be allowed to march in the parade with a gay identity banner (something previously banned) but that none other than Timothy Cardinal Dolan will be Grand Marshal.
A gay group of employees from NBC will march in next year’s New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade behind their own banner, a source with knowledge of the ongoing parade controversy has told the Irish Voice.
On Wednesday, September 3, at a reception at the New York Athletic Club, Cardinal Timothy Dolan will be named as the grand marshal of the 254th St. Patrick’s Day parade, set to step off on Tuesday, March 17.
In a historic move aimed at defusing the storm that erupted this year over the exclusion of gay banners in the march, the addition of a banner identifying gay NBC staffers is a compromise forged at the insistence of several New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee members, including Dr. John Lahey, president of Quinnipiac University in Connecticut, and Francis X. Comerford, chief revenue officer for NBC-owned TV stations.
NBC, the long-time broadcast home of the St. Patrick’s Day parade, was prepared to drop its coverage unless a compromise that resulted in the inclusion of a gay group was brokered.
If this is true, and I pray it is not, it is a shameful and sinful capitulation by the parade organizers and Cardinal Dolan.
If a parade that is meant to honor a great saint is being used to promote a sinful agenda, it should be cancelled rather than allow it to be used in such a way. It is one thing for a parade committee to fold under pressure, but it is quite another that the Cardinal Archbishop of New York would be asked to lend his name and office to the parade. Such an action can be viewed in no other way than total capitulation to gay identity groups.
If Cardinal Dolan accepts the offer, it would not be the first time he has used his position in the Church in a way that seemingly endorses gay culture. This past spring, commenting on the coming out of Michael Sam, the Cardinal Archbishop infamously said, "Good for him. I would have no sense of judgment on him. God bless ya … Look, the same Bible that … teaches us well about the virtues of chastity and the virtue of fidelity and marriage also tells us not to judge people. So I would say, 'Bravo.'"
If news of the compromise is true, Cardinal Dolan must publicly reject the offer to be Grand Marshal and encourage the organizers to cancel the parade rather that accede to the demands of NBC. This is an incredible chance to witness that the Church still actually believes what it is supposed to believe.
Cardinal Dolan's statement (see link above) is disingenuous. The issue at hand has never been who can march in the parade. I am quite certain that gay people have always marched in the parade. What is at issue is people marching under a banner identifying themselves and promoting sin as normative. The acceptance of the parade committee and the Cardinal is nothing less than the public acceptance of the normative nature of gay identity. That Cardinal Dolan's statement clearly attempts to dissemble on this critical point is shameful, if unsurprising.