A gay priest in New Jersey has been suspended over his continued support of gay groups and, he says, for expressing support for a woman who was fired from a Catholic high school for marrying her partner.
The Rev. Warren Hall was fired last year as a chaplain at Seton Hall University after posting support online for a group that promotes marriage equality. He was later appointed to a parish in Hoboken, but Hall said Newark Archbishop John Myers suspended him Wednesday.
Newark Archdiocese spokesman James Goodness said that Warren is "not allowed to function as a priest in any way" and that all priests promise "reverence and obedience" to their bishops and support of church teachings.
Attorneys for Kate Drumgoole say Paramus Catholic High School violated the state's anti-discrimination law when it fired her as dean of guidance and head coach of the basketball team in January after learning she was married to a woman. The school said Drumgoole was fired because she's in a same-sex marriage — not because she's gay. A judge last week denied the school's request to dismiss the lawsuit.
Myers said in a statement Wednesday that he supported Paramus Catholic's decision because Drumgoole's same-sex marriage could "create confusion and uncertainty in the moral formation" of students.
Hall told the Religion News Service that his support of Drumgoole was one of the reasons he was suspended.
Hall said last year that he was fired from the Seton Hall job because of a photo he posted on his Facebook page supporting the NOH8 Campaign, an organization that promotes "marriage, gender and human quality." He then publicly announced that he is gay and has kept his vow of celibacy.
Goodness said at the time that Hall was removed from Seton Hall because his assignment was ending but that the social media post was an "area of conflict" because of the group's advocacy for same-sex marriage. The problem was resolved when Hall removed the post from his page, Goodness said.
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