Breaking: The Bishop Has Accepted Long’s Resignation

A reliable source has confirmed that the bishop has accepted Long’s resignation.  There will be a transition period while the bishop finds a replacement, and Fr. Long will remain in charge at St. Andrew’s during that time.

The past seven months have been difficult for many people at St. Andrew’s.  What is needed now are many prayers of healing and grace offered for Fr. Long and the entire affected community.

34 thoughts on “Breaking: The Bishop Has Accepted Long’s Resignation

  1. C. Davis

    Many people have commented here that they are disappointed to see Father Bill leave Saint Andrews. This is understandable, as he is a very dynamic person and his common message about loving/serving others is very fresh and timely. Nonetheless, his regular criticism of Catholic doctrines and anti-Catholic positions are quite disppointing too. (I will add that these are factual and verifiable, rather than emotional or subjective in nature.)

    To all of those who have expressed frustration over his departure, I ask: How do you reconcile the fact that your Catholic priest promotes theological views that are in direct conflict with your Catholic beliefs?

    I ask this sincerely, as I also like Father Bill, but find his anti-Catholic teachings to be non-negotiable. Clearly, our Bishop has drawn the same conclusion. Therefore, I seek your input on this. How do you condone or overlook the fact that this nice man is spiritually leading you away from what your church teaches you about your faith?

    I have commented previously that there are hundreds of Protestant churches in this county that also have very nice pastors promoting positive, feel-good messages. Does the promotion and cultivation of our core Catholic beliefs matter at Saint Andrews, or is the “man” really more important than our “principles”? Please thoughtfully explain how you reconcile this.

    Respectfully…

    1. Chris

      Respectfully, please tell us what he did to promote theological views that are in direct conflict with your Catholic beliefs? And prove to me that the bishop has clearly drawn the same conclusions? Until there is an official word from the official leaders of this diocese, why should we believe what you are saying here?

      1. C. Davis

        Hi Chris,

        I will concede your point that the diocese has not made a formal announcement about Father Long’s resignation. It has been investigating him though, and it is clear that this investigation concluded with his resignation/retirement/departure from Saint Andrews. You are correct though – without a formal explanation from the diocese or Father Long there are many assumptions about what truly transpired from the investigation. It would be nice to have details, but I will agree with you – at this point all we truly know is that for some reason he is leaving.

        As for what he has done to promote theological views that are in direct conflict with Catholic teaching, there are many, many instances that can be referenced. You can hear them in most – but not all – of his homilies if you are well-Catechized and understand the teachings of the Church. I will re-post below an excerpt of a previous posting I made that references some of the views he has promoted that are incompatible with Church teaching. There are also audio clips of these available somewhere on this website. I will also note that Father Long frequently – and publicly – points out that his view IS in conflict with what the Church actually teaches. He did this during his homily about confession, where he stated that the Church’s position is antiquated and that they should reverse themselves to allow for general absolution again. If you don’t want to take my word for it, then take his. He specifically stated that the Church needs to update its teaching on the topic of the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Really??? Go listen to the audio clip if you don’t believe me. This past Sunday Father Long joked that he would “probably be in trouble again today” for performing the Baptism of a child after the 11:30 service because the godparents of the child to be Baptized were married outside of the Catholic Church (which means the church does not recognize their marriage). He quipped that they had to drive 3 hours to come to St Andrews because there was no other Catholic parish that would allow for the Baptism under these circumstances. (Because Church teaching prohibits it.) Whether you agree with his view or not, you must acknowledge that this is, in fact, in direct conflict with Catholic teaching on this matter. There are reasons that our Church has rules about these Sacraments, and yet, Father Long repeatedly violates them because he feels that his views are more appropriate. Again, whether or not you agree with his views is not the issue here. The issue is “does he promote views that are in direct conflict with Catholic teaching”. It is not a matter of opinion that he Baptized a child on Sunday in violation of Church rules. He personally acknowledged his intention to do so from the altar on Sunday with full knowledge that it is a violation of Catholic teaching. How do you feel about this?

        Father Long has an obligation to uphold and promote the views of the Catholic church – even if they differ from his own personal views. There is no question about this, and he has taken a vow to do so. He has not done this since he came to Saint Andrews. Should we condone this since he is a really nice guy, or should we be troubled by this and say that this is unacceptable?

        Here is a short list of other statements he has made that are in direct conflict with Catholic teaching. These are accurate and verifiable. (Go listen to the recordings to hear him for yourself.) If you understand Church teaching, these should be alarming and unacceptable to you. I will ask again, how do you reconcile these anti-Catholic views when you are attending a Catholic parish to grow in your Catholic faith? Is the “man” more important than your “principles”?

        Previous post:. … it is an obligation to attend Holy Mass on Sundays. Were you present when Father Long spoke to the congregation about how he did not believe it was an obligation to attend, nor a mortal sin to miss, Mass on Sundays? This was during his Q&A sessions that he scheduled and there were over 250 people in attendance. This is incompatible with church teaching. The 7th point of the article you attached refers to confession. Did you hear Father Long’s homily around 2 months ago where he said confession was not necessary and that the church should go back to using general absolutions, which “Saint John Paul II wrongly did away with”? This is incompatible with Church teaching. And thank you for bringing up Pope Francis. He is a great leader that inspires all of us to deepen our spiritual life and expand our ministry to others. Could you ever imagine Pope Francis saying that the SACRAMENT of reconciliation (confession) doesn’t matter, St. Paul was wrong, he won’t submit to saying the prayers of the Liturgy, there’s no obligation to attend Mass on Sundays, he doesn’t believe in mortal sin, etc.? Of course not — these views aren’t CATHOLIC! Again, at the end of the day you have to ask yourself if you value GENUINE Catholic teaching that will help you grow in your CATHOLIC faith, or an inspirational speaker with a message that makes you feel good.

    2. Paul

      I believe quite the opposite, he is leading many closer to the church and closer to Jesus. Perhaps also ask have we interpreted some things they way we and others before us wanted to but not actually in the exact way they were meant to be. What is wrong with asking these question and opening our minds?

  2. Adam Zerda

    My wife and I heard the news of Fr Bill’s planned departure/retirement/whatever only today and couldn’t be more disappointed. As many others have commented, he was a welcome addition to St Andrew. In the last 6 months we have felt moved to embrace more fully our faith, our calling as Christians and have looked forward to weekly mass in a way we have been missing for some time. This website chooses to amplify messages with which it’s author disagrees. I will not argue these points. Not because I agree with them but because they miss the central point of Fr Bill’s teachings. If there was a central theme to Fr Bill’s teaching it was certainly not heresy but love. Love of us, of sinners, of outcasts, of the lost and the poor and weak and subjugated and confused. There’s not much room for heresy in a message of love. If the news is in fact true, we will sorely miss Fr Bill. And we will be sorry to see this quiet movement act to push him out.

    1. Randy Carson

      Adam-

      It is true that Fr. Long inspired many people, and you were obviously among those who felt attracted to his message. However, if you are really honest, you will acknowledge that other people (and not a few of them) were inspired to express their concerns about that message to the Bishop.

      However, as you seem to concede, the message delivered by Fr. Long was often at odds with the teaching of the Church.

      Therefore, this is not simply a matter of what the author of this website agrees or disagrees with. Obviously, the Bishop recognized a legitimate problem, also.

  3. Paul Gaffney

    We were out of town and just found this news. Father Bill Long is the face that our Church needs to project. For its first 250 years the Catholic Church was an outsider preaching change in society and tolerance. After it became an accepted religion in the Roman Empire, it used its inside position to maintain power and resist change for the next 1200 to 1600 years. Vatican II tried reopen the closed positions it had so staunchly developed and protected. Bill Long personifies the open Church I want to accept. I only hope that I can find where he lands next.

    1. Randy Carson

      Paul,

      The Church should reflect the face of Christ. So, when a priest is teaching things that do not reflect what Jesus’ Church – which He promised to remain with forever – has infallibly taught under the protection of the Holy Spirit, then that priest is no longer reflecting Christ.

      It sounds as if you are hoping to find a church that conforms to YOUR ideas – rather than one to which you must conform. St. Paul spoke of this:

      2 Timothy 4:3
      For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.

      I hope you will ponder this verse and turn back from the path you are proposing to follow.

  4. Debbie Anderson

    I agree with K. McIlveen . I have been a parishioner of St Andrews since 1989, with a short time attending at St. Michaels. I am not a theologian but I do know i felt “fed” and inspired by hearing him speak. I was so amazed he did all Masses and I did not have to try and attend “the one” he was saying. On ministry Sunday he inspired me and I went out and signed up for a committee which I had not done since my children were young and attending CCD at St. Andrews, when Fr. Schmidt and Sr. Anne were there.
    Father David made me angry, very angry. He may have been a scholar at theology but he was anything but welcoming. Some may say this is emotional but it is not the way, in my opinion, to “pastor”. Who felt comfortable as a parishioner to approach Fr. David if you did not know him, not I.
    I shook Father Bills’ hand after Mass on that Ministry signup Sunday and told him he was “a breath of fresh air” . Funny how many of us ,separately ,have used that phrase about him.
    I would not usually write in a forum like this but I am so so sad at this news.

    1. Randy Carson

      Debbie-

      Let’s put this into another context. If your child was in a classroom being taught by a new teacher who was a “breath of fresh air” personality-wise, but you knew that what he or she was saying was not only false but driven by a political agenda, would you pull your child out of that classroom? Would you complain to the bish…er…principal? Would you want that teacher removed from the school so that no other children were harmed by indoctrination into false ideology?

      And after the principle had accepted the teacher’s resignation, would you be upset because although the curriculum was really messed up, the teacher was a nice person that you could talk to easily at a parent-teacher conference?

      We are right to protect our loved ones from bad teachers who seek to impose their own social, political, religious and gender-issue agendas in the classroom.

      Should we be any less vigilant in the Church?

  5. Randy Carson

    It has been asked whether we are always supposed to feel good leaving mass and how people felt when they when they left Jesus’ presence. I offer the following:

    Mark 10:17-22
    17 As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. “Good teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
    18 “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. 19 You know the commandments: ‘You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, you shall not defraud, honor your father and mother.’[d]”
    20 “Teacher,” he declared, “all these I have kept since I was a boy.”
    21 Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”
    22 At this the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth.

    John 6:51-66
    51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats this bread will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”
    52 Then the Jews began to argue sharply among themselves, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?”
    53 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them. 57 Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. 58 This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your ancestors ate manna and died, but whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.” 59 He said this while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum.
    Many Disciples Desert Jesus
    60 On hearing it, many of his disciples said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?”
    61 Aware that his disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, “Does this offend you? 62 Then what if you see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before! 63 The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit[e] and life. 64 Yet there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus had known from the beginning which of them did not believe and who would betray him. 65 He went on to say, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has enabled them.”
    66 From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.

    1. Chris

      Randy,
      Yes, this is a hard teaching – in reference to the Eucharist, the Bread of Life discorse, the source and summit of our Catholic faith. There are those who don’t believe in the True Presense, still believe in Christ, and are still called Christians, correct? (That’s how I understand it.)

      Let me ask you this: Did you sell all your goods to follow Jesus?
      I did not, and that does not make me non-Christian. I follow Jesus by my time, treasure and talent. I serve in the church as an EM and Reader, I donate to the parish to keep the lights on and the AC running in the summer and the Heat on in the winter. Do you? or are you boycotting this until you get a different priest? (I heard that some of the people are actually doing this).

      What are the ways you live out your calling to “follow Him” ? do you feed the poor, clothe the naked ? Do you donate your time to helping the less fortunate? Do you smile and ask to know the person next to you at church? Do you volunteer as a catechist?

      Back to the topic: You cited 2 examples to support your cause. There are HUNDREDS of other references to how people felt when they left Jesus. They were healed by his touch, by what positive things he did and said. I prefer to see the POSITIVE side of things.

      Let me give you something to think about:
      Galatians 3:5 — Have you suffered so much for nothing, if it really was for nothing? 5Does God lavish His Spirit on you and work miracles among you because you practice the Law, or because you hear and believe? 6So also, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”…

      1. Randy Carson

        Chris-

        Jesus did not call me personally to sell all my possessions. He made that request of a specific young man because He knew what THAT person needed. You have different needs, and so do I. God knows what we need before we ask Him.

        However, the point is that not everyone left their encounter with Jesus feeling warm and fuzzy. In the post that prompted my response, you wrote,

        “So, If Jesus were up there teaching us, would he say “I don’t expect you to feel good leaving here after spending time with me” ???”

        And my answer, is: Yeah, sometimes. The passages I quoted provide proof of this. And the reason is that Jesus is concerned with more than how we feel…He’s concerned with what we DO…how we respond…to our encounter with Him. Sometimes being convicted doesn’t feel good, but it’s just what our Divine Physician knows we need to be healthy.

        You may have the final word. 😀

  6. K. McIlveen

    Both my husband and I have been blessed to have had Fr. Bill with us at St. Andrew’s. The sign at our entrance says “All Are Welcome.” He has embodied this message, explained the readings and gospel “good news” better than any other priest that’s come before. In addition, homilies have given us strength and wisdom to be more Christ-like.

    1. The New Look

      There is no doubt that Father Bill was a gifted speaker. He was also very personable and inspired people to look at things differently. I had very high hopes for him. Unfortunately his first mass was a shadow of things to come. I had never before heard a priest say that he did not agree with a particular prayer during the mass. In this case it was the prayer where the congregation says, “I am not worthy ….but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.” If he only would have tried to inspire and move people without denigrating the sacrament of reconciliation and showed some more respect for those who did not see things like him than he would still be here. Catholicism teaching and liturgy is not something that even a priest or pope can change. It is the deposit of faith handed down to us through the ages. All are Welcome is very true but there are dogmas and doctrines that come with being a Catholic.

    2. ykc

      Dear K,
      I have been a parishioner of St. Andrews for over 25 years. I loved Fr. Bill Schmidt’s warm personality. Fr, David was quite the opposite in personality. There were times he said things in a homily that I found extremely offensive. A few times I wanted to walk out (I didn’t). I could not deny that he was always liturgically correct, even when I didn’t like what he said.

      The Catholic faith is not just about having warm and fuzzy feelings. That’s only an emotion. Emotions ebb and flow depending upon current circumstances.

      Jesus formed the Catholic Church when he gave Peter the keys to the kingdom of Heaven. Peter was the first pope. From the very beginning, when there was a problem or confusion, they consulted Peter, then later it was councils. How did the Early Church Fathers (those who knew the apostles, or learned from those who knew them) worship in the first few hundred years after Jesus’ death and resurrection? The same as we do at the Holy Mass today! For 1500 years there was only ONE Church! Martin Luther, (a very emotionally unstable priest, by the way, according to his own writing and the writing of his spiritual director) decided he could interpret the Bible the way HE wanted to, and chaos erupted in just a few short years! He even had people killed who didn’t agree with his interpretation! That is why there are some 35,000 different Protestant sects today, each one changing the “rules” whenever something interferes with their emotions at the time.

      The crux of the problem with Fr. Bill is obviously not his personality. But there is a huge problem. There is much confusion in the parish about what is really going on. I’m not sure the diocese had identified the problem it until now. They passed him around from parish to parish for two decades because of complaints. It is only now, that they recognize he can no longer be an active priest. Think about that for a minute….Fr. Bill says he’s “retiring”. No priest in good health is allowed to retire at age 60!! Do you really think the diocese would allow that to happen when we are in such need of priests, if they didn’t recognize that he has a problem?

      This is not about him being “liberal” or doing things differently, no matter how he ties to spin it. He is practicing NEW AGE, not Catholicism. He does not believe in Catholic doctrine. The two are not compatible! Most Catholics today know nothing to very little about New Age. They think it is something that was popular in the 80’s and it has gone away. The fact is that New Age has become so mainstream today that we don’t even recognize it! New Age is very dangerous and is a sin against the First Commandment, at the very least. I don’t have time to teach a class on New Age in this post, but I can give you many reliable resources, including a Vatican document to explain it. There’s a book called, “Learn to Discern. Is it Christian or New Age?” by Susan Brinkmann that I highly recommend. I think you will be shocked at how Fr. Bill’s words directly correlate to New Age. He is smooth, and weaves enough of the truth in there to confuse people. Just remember who the “Master Deceiver” really is.

      Please don’t be angry with those of us who went to the bishop. We don’t have anything personally against Fr. Bill. On the contrary, many of us have been offering many prayers and sacrifices for his conversion back to The Church! We know he could be a great priest….IF he believed in her teaching. We know all things are possible with God. The only one who wins when we lose a priest is Satan. We don’t feel like we have won a victory. The entire situation is a huge tragedy! We arent horrible, rigid people. We are simply fellow parishioners who love Jesus and Holy Mother Church. We cannot pick and choose what Church teaching we will follow, as if we are in a cafeteria line. To do that is to cease being Catholic.

      Please prayerfully consider that we just might be right about him. Remove your emotions because of his friendly personality. Look at just the facts. Do your own research. Go talk to another priest in the diocese. Talk to the head of the Raleigh Deanery, Fr. Kerber at the Cathedral. Talk to the Vicar General, Msgr. Brockman.

      Let’s focus on praying for the future pastor of St. Andrews and the healing of our parish. Anger comes from Satan. There’s no room in heaven for anger. God bless.

      http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/pontifical_councils/interelg/documents/rc_pc_interelg_doc_20030203_new-age_en.html

      http://www.womenofgrace.com/blog/?cat=6482

      http://shop.womenofgrace.com/product/1888/

      1. Mary Ellen

        You state that: “Fr. Bill says he’s “retiring”. No priest in good health is allowed to retire at age 60!! Do you really think the diocese would allow that to happen when we are in such need of priests, if they didn’t recognize that he has a problem?”

        I have no stake in this dog fight; just a parishioner from a few years ago. But from what you say here, I conclude that the diocese is complicit in a lie. If he’s not “retirig” as diocese says he is, then it looks like they’re all lying. Why don’t they just come out and say he’s not teaching orthodoxy. IMHO That’s part of the problem with the Church as a whole today….they’re losing (or have lost) credibility.

  7. Chris

    http://gilmichelini.com/7-ways-dealing-priest-dont-like/

    This is something you probably could have read before starting to blog on why your priest is not someone you like, so, you are happy to have him leave. I am just stunned at how good you are at finding fault with what he has to say, rather than being great at pointing out the goodness and enthusiasm he has to share about how much Christ Loves Us, ALL OF US, no matter what status we have currently in the Catholic Church, no matter what our family or marital status is, etc…

    Father Bill may have his quirks, just like everyone; however, he has opened our eyes and reminded us that we are all members of the Body Of Christ. Christ lives IN us; because of our Baptism, we are called to support one another. This blog is far from supporting him in the things he has to say that were positive and encouraging.

    Now that he is at the point where can leave us, how do we pull our community back together? Start being more proactive and focus on that, instead of tearing us apart, please.

    1. C. Davis

      Hi Chris. With all due respect, I’m afraid you are missing the point here. This isn’t about criticizing, condemning, or not liking Father Long. This is about defending the Catholic faith and its doctrines. I thank you for posting the link to the article above. Please go back and read it. The very first point made in the article is that it is an obligation to attend Holy Mass on Sundays. Were you present when Father Long spoke to the congregation about how he did not believe it was an obligation to attend, or a mortal sin to miss, Mass on Sundays? This was during his Q&A sessions that he scheduled and there were over 250 people in attendance. The 7th point of the article you attached refers to confession. Did you hear father Longs homily around 2 months ago where he said confession was not necessary and that the church should go back to using general absolutions, which “Saint John Paul II wrongly did away with”? Open your ears and be objective. Again, this isn’t about not liking Father Long. I believe all of us agree he is a very approachable, warm, and charismatic individual. He is very likeable. The issue is that he disagrees with our Catholic doctrines and condemns them regularly to the parishioners who are there to grow in their Catholic faith. I hope you will reflect more on that element of these discussions, as that is what people on this blog are actually talking about.

      1. Bob M

        It is obvious that there are those in our parish who appreciate the “old” ways of the church. Change can be difficult to accept. Father Bill’s interpretation of church doctrine does not change the fact that he reaches more parishioners than any pastor we’ve had in the last two decades.
        Would you have us go back to condemning people to hell for eating meat on Friday?
        Wake up folks. Father Bill has shown he is more aligned with Pope Francis than any of our previous pastors.
        You are destroying a beautiful thing by not being able to accept change.

        1. Chris

          Bob, you are spot on. I have been at St. Andrews for 17 years. Fr. Bill is a breath of fresh air, and he actually makes you THINK and ACT just like Jesus has taught us. He encourages us to go out and live the gospel, just as Pope Francis does. Refreshing. It is the first time I felt actually GOOD about leaving mass – previous pastor had stressed just the opposite. Jesus is the RISEN CHRIST ! so should we be a part of; being ALIVE in our faith, not dead, is much more attractive.

          1. Randy Carson

            My wife and I have attended mass at St. Andrew’s for nearly 20 years. Could you provide a few examples of how Fr. David inspired us to do “the opposite” of going out and living the gospel?

            This would mean “staying in” and “not living the gospel”…and I don’t recall that message being delivered. Ever.d

            Could you refresh my memory on this…?

          2. C. Davis

            Chris,

            There’s no question that Fr. Long makes you THINK and ACT and is inspiring. Should it concern you though that many of his messages are incompatible with our Catholic doctrines? There are hundreds of Protestant churches around here that have very gifted, charismatic, and inspiring pastors delivering sermons each week that make you think and feel good. How is Fr. Long any different than them if he is promoting views that are in direct conflict with our CATHOLIC faith? At the end of the day you have to ask yourself if you value GENUINE Catholic teaching that will help you grow in your CATHOLIC faith, or an inspirational speaker with a message that makes you feel good. Which one of these do you think is more important?

            And thank you for bringing up Pope Francis. He is a great leader that inspires all of us to deepen out spiritual life and expand our ministry to others. Could you ever imagine Pope Francis saying that the SACRAMENT of reconciliation (confession) doesn’t matter, St. Paul was wrong, he won’t submit to saying the prayers of the Liturgy, there’s no obligation to attend Mass on Sundays, he doesn’t believe in mortal sin, etc.? Of course not — these views aren’t CATHOLIC! Again, at the end of the day you have to ask yourself if you value GENUINE Catholic teaching that will help you grow in your CATHOLIC faith, or an inspirational speaker with a message that makes you feel good. There are 25,000 different denominations out there that all have great speakers leading people astray with inspiring messages. What is it about your Catholic faith that you truly value over any of these others?

          3. Chris

            To clarify what I said above, I had heard several times from previous pastor that “leaving mass feeling good” is not an expected outcome.

            I did not say the previous pastor did not enocourage us to live the gospel. He did. It was just not as effective as Fr. Bill’s way of encouragment.

            So, If Jesus were up there teaching us, would he say “I don’t expect you to feel good leaving here after spending time with me” ???

            1. Randy Carson

              Matthew 10:17-22
              7 As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. “Good teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
              18 “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. 19 You know the commandments: ‘You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, you shall not defraud, honor your father and mother.’”
              20 “Teacher,” he declared, “all these I have kept since I was a boy.”
              21 Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”
              22 At this the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth.

              John 5:51-66
              51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats this bread will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”
              52 Then the Jews began to argue sharply among themselves, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?”
              53 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them. 57 Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. 58 This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your ancestors ate manna and died, but whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.” 59 He said this while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum.

              Many Disciples Desert Jesus

              60 On hearing it, many of his disciples said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?”
              61 Aware that his disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, “Does this offend you? 62 Then what if you see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before! 63 The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life. 64 Yet there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus had known from the beginning which of them did not believe and who would betray him. 65 He went on to say, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has enabled them.”
              66 From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.

        2. Randy Carson

          Bob-

          I guess some clarification would be helpful…do you believe that the Catechism of the Catholic Church reflects the “old” ways or the “correct” ways of understanding God, the Incarnation, our salvation, etc.? (I think it is both/and.) But if you believe it is only the former, would you say that the Catechism (and therefore the Church itself) is in error in its understanding?

          Further, Fr. Long recently introduced one of the readings at mass by asserting that Paul was “wrong” (audio available in another posting on this website). If Paul was wrong, does that the Holy Spirit was wrong when He inspired Paul? Or does that mean the scriptures are not inspired? How do we explain this?

          I ask because you say that Fr. Long is “more aligned with Pope Francis”, but it appears that Fr. Long is not aligned with either St. Paul or the scripture that Paul wrote.

          Your thoughts on this?

    2. Randy Carson

      Fr. Long does not have “quirks”…he has serious flaws in his theology. This was never personal…it was always about the fact that Fr. Long is teaching New Age spirituality and undermining the Catechism as well as the authority of the Catholic Church. Being a nice guy doesn’t make up for being a bad teacher. As Catholics, we can put up with a grumpy priest who teaches the truth; we cannot accept a pleasant priest who teaches false doctrine.

      As for healing the community, I am sure that those watchmen who rightly sounded the alarm about Fr. Long want nothing more than to see the parish healed quickly. Will those who are angry that Fr. Long is leaving be able to embrace those who worked to protect them?

  8. The Dumb Ox for all Seasons

    We need to pray for our parish in this time of change. We also need to pray for Fr. Bill. He seems to be conflicted and on a journey to seek peace in his life. He was called to be a priest and the church validated that calling when he was ordained. He is very personable but if you truly listen to him you can tell he has developed issues with authority and some core teaching of the Catholic Church. We need to pray he finds his way back to understanding his vows and the true teachings of Christ.
    Father Phillip Johnson was ordained in January 2017 and was diagnosed with brain cancer at age 24. He needs our continual prayers also.
    Here is a piece he wrote in 2014 as a seminarian:
    http://dioceseofraleigh.org/content/raleigh-seminarian-terminal-brain-cancer-responds-brittany-maynard

      1. ykc

        Although I would love to have Fr. Phillip, I highly doubt that will happen. Please pray for our next priest to be faithful and wise.

        1. J. Mason

          Why doubt? I heard from a Dean he might come here. He is one of the “kind, personable conservatives” in our diocese that all grow to like. I’ll pray that he comes.

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