Did Fr. Long Commit Sacrilege Against the Eucharist?

The following account comes to me from an eyewitness of the events.  On Saturday, December 2, 2017, as exposition of the Eucharist was coming to a close, and after benediction, Fr. William Long was removing the Blessed Sacrament from the monstrance.  As he was doing this, the Host apparently fell out of the monstrance and onto the table that supports the tabernacle.  Fr. Long did not return the Host to the tabernacle, but, instead, left the Eucharist on the table.  He then left the chapel with the Host lying on the table.  A layperson who was in attendance returned the Host to the tabernacle.“Sacrilege is a grave sin especially when committed against the Eucharist, for in this sacrament the true Body of Christ is made substantially present for us.”—CCC 2120

Screenshot of 11-26-17 Bulletin. Click for Entire Bulletin

Now I’m no canon lawyer, but I imagine that leaving the Eucharist outside of the tabernacle is a major no-no.  And after poking around on the Internet,  I found that it appears to violate gobs of canons, especially 938 and 943.

The Catechism also has important things to say on the matter. CCC 2120 describes as sacrilege “profaning or treating unworthily the sacraments.” And here’s what it says about the Eucharist in particular:

Sacrilege is a grave sin especially when committed against the Eucharist, for in this sacrament the true Body of Christ is made substantially present for us.

The passage cites canon 1367, which dictates that a person guilty of sacrilege against the Eucharist “incurs an automatic . . . excommunication.”  Punishment can also include “dismissal from the clerical state.” This raises important questions.  Did Fr. Long excommunicate himself by his actions?  If he did, how can he still be a priest?  How can the masses he celebrates be valid?  How can the sacraments he administers be valid?  These are important questions that people who continue to attend St. Andrew’s must ask themselves.  How would you like to discover after it’s too late that the anointing of the sick that one of your loved ones received from Fr. Long was, in fact, not valid?

All of these questions are of the utmost importance, but they cannot be answered by amateurs.  Only a canon lawyer has the expertise to answer these questions authoritatively.  Anyone know of a Jacoby & Meyers for canon lawyers?

It’s no mystery to people who have been paying attention that Fr. Long is not the biggest fan of the Eucharist.  Somebody pointed out to me that the parish’s mission statement has substantially changed:

The opening sentence in the original mission statement for St. Andrew the Apostle Church stated: “St. Andrew the Apostle Roman Catholic parish is a people, called by Baptism and nourished by the Eucharist, in which God’s presence is experienced, shared, and celebrated.” Within just a few weeks of his arrival, on his own accord, Bill Long struck out the phrase, “and nourished by the Eucharist,” and removed it from all subsequent parish publications.

          Another parishioner has observed at Mass, that Fr. Long never purifies the vessels after Communion.
          Is there any doubt about this man’s beliefs about the Eucharist?  He clearly rejects the doctrine of the real presence.  And he is defiantly rubbing the noses of the faithful in his unbelief.  He also shows no fear of punishment, and this should give us some indication of the bishop’s disposition towards Long—which would explain why no action has been taken against a priest who so obviously rejects and despises the teachings of the Catholic Church.
          Whether or not the bishop takes appropriate action in this matter, the fact remains that something must be done, for the cost of doing nothing is just too great.  Certainly, an important first step would be to contact a canon lawyer.  But there is more still that can and must be done.  In an upcoming post, I will offer some choice suggestions.

Should We Boycott the Bishop’s Annual Appeal? Vote!

13 thoughts on “Did Fr. Long Commit Sacrilege Against the Eucharist?

  1. Mike

    I was shocked at how unchristian Fr. Long was to anyone who didn’t believe exactly what he taught. I was more sadden by those that stayed and accepted his “feel good religion”. Apparently when Fr. Long resigned he asked the Bishop if he could fill any other assignments in the Diocese and the Bishop declined to place him ANYWHERE! Now with such a high demand for priests – Why would the Bishop not want to touch him with a “ten-foot pole”? Think about it – were all of us in the Diocese of Raleigh and Bishop wrong or perhaps was Fr. Long and his few “poorly formed” Catholic supporters so confused about their faith that they thought they could just pick and choose what to believe.

  2. rbarber2012

    WHAT A SHAME SEVERAL OF THE COMMENTS ARE! I believe some of the people of St. Andrew Parish missed the part of the parish statement of purpose that states they are an “accepting and loving community for all people.” In my four score plus three years as a Catholic, I have experienced hundreds of priests and other religious persons in parish churches and schools. I count Fr. Bill, friend and pastor at St. Egbert, among the best of them all! It’s unfortunate that a small group of malcontents can malign and denigrate such a fine and fervent man whose ministry is so outstanding. As in all things, small groups of intolerant people are usually very loud in their disapproval, trying to convince the other 90% of the population how right they are. We see it every day and should be immune to it by now
    Sadly our church has lost a wonderful priest/leader, I wish Fr. Bill well in his future endeavors. I know he will be successful.

  3. Rey Arias

    After meeting Fr. David, Fr. Tom and Br Bill, I started attending St. Andrews. Fr Bill’s arrival was such a refreshing change to our parish. He provided inspirational messages with a personal touch.
    What a shame that a hateful “catholic” would be the cause of all this. The Bible says “LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR.”
    Because of someone’s outdated opinion, the Catholic church is losing so many loyal and life-long members.
    God Bless Father Bill Long.
    Best wishes and you will be incredibly missed.

  4. Carolyn Dammers

    I think Fr. Long’s arrival at St. Andrew was like a breath of fresh air. I was fortunate to have found a parish in Connecticut, my home state for many years, which had a philosophy much like Fr. Bill’s. The sign over the front door said “ALL ARE WELCOME”, and all were, regardless of race, ethnicity, or sexual orientation, and all were treated with the same love and respect that Jesus accorded to the tax collectors and prostitutes in the Gospels. Remember that we are all created in the image of God, and God doesn’t make mistakes. And aren’t we all called to imitate the behavior of Christ. In the Old Testament God promised Abraham that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars in the sky. To accomplish this, God had to ensure the survival of the Jewish people, hence the Old Testament violence of the Jews in defeating their enemies, as well as anything that hindered the procreation of the Jewish nation, along with food and clothing restrictions that would ensure their survival.
    But Jesus came to change all that. He preached “love thy neighbor” with no stipulation as to color or sexual orientation. It was no longer necessary to worry about the survival of Israel, Christ now had to teach the Jews how to love their neighbors as themselves. He constantly preached that we are all equal and equally loved by the Father and that He came to save Each one of us. How dare any one of us think we are more important to God than our neighbor. This may be a contentious issue, but we must remember that God has no gender, a soul has no gender. I also believe in the doctrine of the resurrection of the body, and I’m not sure how that all works out, there is my leap of faith. But I trust that a God Who is love, will appreciate our love for all of His creation.
    I think that what angered most people at St. Andrew was Fr. Bill’s defense of gay, lesbian and transgendered persons as being as precious to God as the rest of us. Since God has no gender, or has every gender, who are we to judge. We may very well get to Heaven and hear God say “Fr. Bill was right all along, I created EVERYONE in my image, and when I sent my Son to die for you, He died for ALL. SO WHO HERE IS PREACHING HERESY!

    1. through another lens

      Carolyn, you must have been absent or did not hear Fr. Long’s statement when he said that the early Church created/made up the story of a mythical God sending his only Son to save us from our sins.

      As for the idea of Heaven, Fr. Long repeatedly said that Heaven is NOW – here on earth – not some mythical place that we go to when we die.

      There has been much going on with multiple ministries and staff at St. Andrew that has not been reported on this site. All were NOT welcome by Fr. Long, even when they tried to be kind and communicative to a man whose beliefs they did not understand. Parishioners were told St. Andrew was no longer the place for them and were asked to leave or step down from their ministries or, in some cases, ministries were just dissolved. Probably none of us will ever know the full extent of what has transpired.

      I am so sorry that our community has become polarized during the last 8 months. Although there is no guarantee that everyone who has posted their very diverse, strong opinions on this site were all St. Andrew parishioners, I do hope that all St. Andrew parishioners share a belief in our Triune God, (the Father, Son, & Holy Spirit), the Real Presence and Jesus Christ as the Savior of the World.

  5. Rick

    Father Bill is the best thing that has happened to St. Andrews in years… They also ran Jesus out of his home town. It is VERY SAD that the church can be bought $$$… if you don’t like what you hear, you can buy the answers you want. I hope all you people that are this full of hate can live with yourself. I wish Father Bill the best and will continue to support and pray for him.

  6. Ted

    From the opening bell to the closing bell of every weekly Sunday Mass, Fr. Bill Long is the most inspiring priest St. Andrew’s has had the pleasure of welcoming. Please don’t leave us Fr.Bill!

  7. C.

    Keep up the good work on reporting the issues at Saint Andrew. His homily on confession on December 17 was the worst homily I have every heard in my half century of being a Catholic. He is more of a follower of Teilhard De Chardin than Jesus Christ.

    1. Chris

      Thanks for bringing this up. Evertime I hear a new name or word, I look it up because I am still growing in my wisdom and knowledge.

      Pierre Teilhard de Chardin was a Jesuit paleontologist who worked to understand evolution and faith. He was born May 1, 1881, and died on April 10, 1955. Between these days Teilhard fully participated in a life that included priesthood, living and working in the front lines of war, field work exploring the early origins of the human race, and adventurous travels of discovery in the backlands of China. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin also participated fully in an intellectual life through the development of his imaginative, mystical writings on the evolutionary nature of the world and the cosmos.
      For more information, on the Loyola Press web services, read this:

      Loyola Press is a Catholic Jesuit service. Jesuit is a name that came from Jesus. A Jesuit is a member of the Society of Jesus, a Roman Catholic order of priests founded by St. Ignatius Loyola, St. Francis Xavier, and others in 1534, to do missionary work. The order was zealous in opposing the Reformation. Despite periodic persecution it has retained an important influence in Catholic thought and education.

      The sacrament of reconciliation is a good one; it’s just not required to be obtained every week or every month as some people think it is. The church teaches it should be celebrated at once a year, preferably in Lent.
      See the catechism, 1431 “Interior repentance is a radical reorientation of our whole life, a return, a conversion to God with all our heart…”

      Making use of the “examen” will help you with your interior repentance, which may be radical way for some pepole to return to God, but it is not radical for me, or for the Jesuits, a Catholic order of priests.

      1. titrisol

        Theilhard’s philosophical views were suppressed by the church, but survived thanks to some of his friends and were published (i think) after his death. PTdC reamina faithful jesuit.
        I read them as a young man, and was impressed by how convoluted they were and how they offered an alternative catholic view. I want to read them again as an older man, to see whether my youth impressions are valid.
        In reality, a dumbed-down-version found a hom ein the NewAge movement in the 70s and 80s.

        Jesuits (Societa Iesu) is a religious order created in the 16th century in Spain by Ignacio de Loyola, a “Company” of soldiers of Jesus who were not afarid fo followorders and to go to the darkest corners of earth.
        They werew at the forefront during the counter-reformation and after the Illustrattion they used to recruit the most gifted people.
        They opened many Universities, such a Loyola, Xavier, Notre Dame, etc.

        However something happened in the mid-20th century and some of the memebers of that order have become the best troublemakers.

        I was very lucky my mother didn;t send me to the Jesuit high school.

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