Sometimes my Church really screws up. The choir director, Joseph Nadeau, at St. Agnes Church in Roeland Park KS. was fired for being gay and refusing to sign a paper saying that being gay is a disorder and also that he had to be celibate and give up his other job, directing the Heartland Men's Chorus.
Apparently a group of conservative parishioners complained, and the campaign against Nadeau became quite nasty according to 365gay.com:
"... In 2003, a group of conservative parishioners started campaigning against Nadeau, who they saw as an emissary of a movement to "legitimize homosexuality at the parish level."
...Members collected signatures on petitions to the papal nuncio, while an anonymous group stapled pictures of Nadeau to ads of underwear-clad men and slipped them under churchgoers' windshields..."
Now, I understand that my church considers homosexuality intrinsically disordered, but Catholics are supposed to treat gays compassionately and the Church even recognizes that homosexuality is not a simple matter of choice; this is quite clear in the new Catechism which states:
" The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. The do not choose their homosexual condition, for most of them it is a trial."
Later on of course the Church says that homosexuals are called to chastity, and given the Church's teachings about sex outside the context of marriage consistent. But as much as I might respect the teaching authority of the Church, the Church does not have a monopoly on the truth and ought to step back and look at the whole person.
Here you have a person, who enriched his parish and his community through his work with the Heartland Men's Chorus. I don't know if he is chaste or not, but if he disagrees with the Church's position on homosexuality as a matter of conscience, that is his prerogative and ought not by itself be grounds for dismissal. A person ought not be punished for leading a basically good life but trying to live an authentic life.
The real sin here might just be the conservative parishioners and Church leaders who tried to force a member of the Church to live a lie.
As the executive director of the Chorus said recently in the Kansas City Star:
"How can a minister be a spiritual nurturer, he asked, if he or she is not able to live honestly?"