UPDATE: Columbus Diocese Remains Resolute, Lesbian Teacher Basks in Spotlight

The Columbus Dispatch reports that after meeting with the principal of Bishop Watterson High School, Carla Hale gave a press conference to her fawning supporters in the media vowing to “continue her fight” against the Catholic Church. Far from being a private matter between two consenting adults, Hale has elevated this issue to a public debate precisely because of her own actions, first by publishing her relationship in an obituary, then by going to the media (a full month later) to publicize her story, and now by antagonizing the diocese and school while they are prevented from commenting on the matter not only by human resources policy, but also good taste.

LifeSiteNews reports that the terms of employment which were approved by the union that represents Carla Hale explicitly forbid this kind of posturing: “A contract may be terminated at any time for gross inefficiency or immorality, for serious unethical conduct, or for willful and/or persistent violations of reasonable regulations of the school or the Diocesan Office of Catholic Schools.” Many disagree with the Catholic Church regarding the morality of same-sex unions, but surely they cannot disagree that lying to your employer for 19 years and then abruptly denouncing them in public is grossly immoral and seriously unethical.

Only royal trumpeters should toot their own horn. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Only royal trumpeters should toot their own horn. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

The Catholic Church teaches that people with homosexual feelings fully deserve human dignity and compassion. However, the media frenzy that Hale is all too happy to keep feeding is the very definition of willful and persistent violation of Catholic teaching. In the Gospel, Jesus admonishes his disciples against such public displays, “When you give alms, do not blow a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets to win the praise of others. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward.”

Meanwhile, the principal and other employees of the school have received threatening emails and phone calls from Hale’s supporters. From Hale’s handling of this case, it is clear she is aggressively pushing an agenda that goes beyond simply getting her job back. Even if the school wanted to bring her back, how could they possibly do so now with the media circus and angry mob following on her heels? Far from being contrite and resolving to sin no more, Hale is poisoning whatever sympathy might have remained for her from her former employer.

The invective and demagoguery surrounding this case is typical. All who defend Catholic teaching are derided as hypocrites, bigots, and simply mean-spirited. How wounding these criticisms must be to the heart of Bishop Campbell and the employees of the Diocese of Columbus and Watterson High School who so deeply love the Church and seek the best for all God’s children. Pray for them. Write them a letter to show your support. Thank them for their steadfastness and their courage in defense of the Catholic faith. Unlike Hale, these good servants of God’s people do not seek earthly recognition, but it couldn’t hurt to let them know they are not alone amidst the storm and fury of anti-Catholic persecution which is becoming so fashionable in our time.

  • Arthur Radley

    I get the idea that “Because we are Catholic, ye shall not question.” There has always been this superior attitude about this religion. I think that is how their priests have managed to get away with so many horrific crimes for so long. The article and the comments are dripping with arrogance and superiority.
    Catechized = Indoctrinated.
    Can be very scary.

    • Slats

      Actually, if you would read the blog posts (and most of the sympathetic comments) carefully, you would see that it’s not just a matter of blind faith and not questioning. It’s that many of us have thought through Church teaching and come to the conclusion that it is rooted in natural law and the truth of the human person. It is true that trust in God is a foundational principle for Catholics. However, the subtext of your comment is that the Church’s take on this is false, and that if people thought things through, they would all side with Ms. Hale. Neither is true.

  • SegoLily

    As long as the wider Catholic culture is so worldly and poorly catechized, things like this will continue to erupt. When a young, Catholic teacher announces she has conceived via in-vitro fertilization, is she expelled from teaching in a Catholic school? I expect there have been numerous instances of this, but no consequences. I say this only because in-vitro conception is widely used and is gravely immoral. Catholics generally do not understand how immoral it is because it is never spoken of from any pulpit. In the process new humans are created and destroyed, or left to languish in the deep freeze. So, though I sympathize with the bishop in this case, and hope he prevails, I doubt this will be the case. It’s time for the Catholic school system in America to have a consistent ethic of morality lest it fall like a house of cards. The persecutions are here. Catholic schooling will soon go underground.

  • http://catholicvote.org Karla Giardina

    I fully support Bishop Campbell and the Columbus Diocese. If you want to work at a Catholic School or institution, you should abide by the Catholic Teachings. To expect a Catholic School to follow secular law instead of the laws of their Church is unreasonable and foolish.

  • JCarlos

    Nobody wins in cases like these…

    Ms. Hale is a ‘practicing’ Methodist and may not have felt obliged to adhere to the faithful teaching of the Universal Church.

    This is a pyrotechnic just waiting to explode when Catholic Bishops allowed non-Catholics to teach in our schools. And we wonder why young Catholics are indifferent with the Moral teachings of the faith.

    Let’s pray for healing and forgiveness for everyone involved.

  • Mark R. & Gail C, Platt

    We fully support the Diocese and pray God’s mission will guide all to the right paths of love and compassion, not anger and belligerence.’s

  • Tania

    Catholics everywhere have a responsibility and a right to live their faith. Jesus told the woman “go and sin no more”. Those who couldn’t change their lifestyles, well, Jesus spoke truth to them, to repent. Many turned away from Jesus because they wanted to do whatever they wanted to. So if you say you are Catholic, then you believe in Jesus and follow his example. Many Catholics pick and choose parts of our faith to follow. You can’t sit on the fence, you are either on one side or the other. Lord have mercy on us all!

    • Mary

      This. Tania said it perfectly.



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