Athy resident Anthony Murphy went out of his way to make lesbian couple feel unwelcome in their church choir
Recently married lesbian couple Jacinta O’Donnell and Geraldine Flanagan in Athy, Co. Kildare were contacted by fellow parishioner Anthony Murphy following their wedding.
Not to congratulate them as is customary, but instead to pressure them to leave the church choir.
In a text sent to Jacinta three days after the pair married, Anthony Murphy decried the “contradiction and hypocrisy” of an LGBT married couple performing in the choir:
“Jacinta I trust following Wednesday you will have the decency to resign from the choirs and as Eucharistic minister in the same ways you had the decency to resign from the lay Dominicans. Anything else would be a contradiction and hypocrisy.”
After receiving the text, Geraldine and Jacinta considered the suggestion from Anthony Murphy, taking the summer to contemplate their course of action. Yesterday, they took to Kfm radio to discuss the issue:
“Well we were mulling it over all summer when we were made aware of Anthony Murphy’s feelings and when we saw some of the very negative and I suppose hateful stuff that was on his Facebook page et cetera,” Geraldine said to the Kildare Today programme.
“And then I got the personal text message from him,” she said.
Ultimately, after reflecting on the matter the couple came to the “difficult decision” to remove themselves from the choir at St Michael’s Catholic Curch in Athy.
“Geraldine and I, the only things we’ve tried to do is provide a music ministry and the who idea behind that was to enhance the Eucharist and bringing this trouble to the church would be really futile and would negate anything we’re trying to do.”
“So we thought about it very hard and it was and still is a very difficult decision that we came to and we’re both very upset by it.”
Geraldine and Jacinta said that the parish priest Canon Frank McEvoy was contacted by Anthony Murphy who expressed his concern for the church over the newly married couple’s continued involvement in the choir.
However, Canon McEvoy has been supportive of the couple they said.
Murphy took to the air on the Kfm radio station to explain why he believed the newly married couple should remove themselves from the choir:
“Clearly, the way the choir operates in Athy, Jacinta and Geraldine are positioned on an altar in the sanctuary, in a stage almost, sharing the stage with the parish priest,” Murphy said.
“You can not have contradiction where the church teaches one thing and people who are right next to the tabernacle, the blessed sacrament, contradict all of that teaching.”
© 2016 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.
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