Saturday, September 06, 2008


A high-profile Maryknoll priest is standing by his decision to take part in a woman's priestly "ordination" ceremony despite being reprimanded by his Ossining-based Catholic community and facing possible disciplinary action by the Vatican.

The Rev. Roy Bourgeois has become a prominent figure for his long-time protests against the School of the Americas, a U.S. Army operation at Fort Benning, Ga., that trains Latin American soldiers. An annual demonstration organized by Bourgeois has in recent years drawn upward of 20,000 people who contend the school is linked to human rights abuses in numerous countries.

Bourgeois was called to Ossining on Aug. 18 by Maryknoll's leadership to discuss his involvement 10 days earlier in an "ordination" ceremony for a female friend in Lexington, Ky. Bourgeois gave the liturgy, even though the Vatican has threatened excommunication for those who participate in such ceremonies.

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