Another Priest Automatically Excommunicated Despite Bishop Olmsted’s Efforts

Fr. Vernon Meyer Formally Rejects the Catholic Church
and Becomes a United Church of Christ Minister

By John Quinn

Phoenix, AZ, September 20, 2010 (Courageous Priest) –

Fr. Vernon Meyer

Fr. Vernon Meyer,  automatically excommunicated himself when he rejected the teachings of the Catholic Church concerning women ordination.  Meyer participated in the “ordination” of Elaine Groppenbacher in Tempe, AZ last month.  For Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted, this is the fifth priestly excommunication for serious refusal of faithful obedience to the Catholic Church, according to The Arizona Republic.

Referring to Meyer, Bishop Olmsted states: “Actions such as these are extremely serious and carry with them profoundly harmful consequences for the salvation of the souls participating in this attempted ordination. To feign the conferral of the Sacrament of Holy Orders results in the penalty of excommunication. This penalty applies both to the person attempting the ordination and the person attempting to be ordained.”

The Catechism of the Catholic Church, #1577: “Only a baptized man validly receives sacred ordination. The Lord Jesus chose men to form the college of the twelve apostles, and the apostles did the same when they chose collaborators to succeed them in their ministry. The college of bishops, with whom the priests are united in the priesthood, makes the college of the twelve an ever-present and ever-active reality until Christ’s return. The Church recognizes herself to be bound by this choice made by the Lord himself. For this reason the ordination of women is not possible.”

This is not the first disagreement between Fr. Meyer and Catholic Doctrine.  In 2004 Fr. Meyer was under obedience to Bishop Olmsted to recant a joint declaration Meyer signed which supported “full acceptance” of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgendered individuals in churches.

Fr. Meyer apparently told The Arizona Republic that he signed the declaration “after making sure it did not conflict with Catholic positions.”  This statement contradicts the actual declaration, which states: “Homosexuality is not a sickness, not a choice, and not a sin.”  Two sentences later, the declaration proclaims that all aspects of the homosexual lifestyle should have “full acceptance and inclusion.”

Despite the pastoral efforts of Bishop Olmsted, Fr. Meyer is now a United Church of Christ minister and is the Director of the Arizona Center for Theological Studies, which he founded.  Fletch Wideman, local president of the pro-homosexual group P-FLAG reports “the United Church of Christ, has taken a strong pro-gay stand.”  This comment would be supported by high percentage of United Church of Christ clergy signing the petition.

The Arizona Center for Theological Studies reportedly values “a deep respect and appreciation for the various interpretative traditions within Christianity.” And has courses on Ecumenical Methods of Theology and studies the Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian and Islamic religions among other diverse topics.

The center has two sponsors.  One is John Chuchman, who authored the book “I Love My Church, BUT, OH MY GOD!”   In the book, Chuchman states why he is “so excited about Organizations like Call to Action and Voice of the Faithful,” organizations known to be active in their support of abortion, homosexual rights, contraception and women’s “ordination.”

Bishop Olmsted

Bishop Thomas Olmsted

Bishop Olmsted has been under attack for requesting his clergy and religious to remain faithful to the vows of obedience they took when they dedicated their lives to serving the Catholic Church.   Many people are calling Bishop Olmsted intolerant and unpastoral.   This is not true.  He has exhausted every resource to bring his sheep back to the flock.  How truly sad it is that some of his priests choose tolerance as their supreme pillar and foundation of truth.

2 Timothy 3:12-13 “And all that will live godly in Christ Jesus, shall suffer persecution.  But evil men and seducers shall grow worse and worse: erring, and driving into error.”

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14 comments to Another Priest Automatically Excommunicated Despite Bishop Olmsted’s Efforts

  • Dan

    When the conversation takes the short historical view, or only takes in the neighborhood and not the world view, we get into snits like this one. The Roman Catholic Church only embraced priestly celibacy in 1075, and several Eastern Rite churches, in full communion with the Roman Catholic Church, allow marriage before ordination. Anna was a Priestess, many others in the OT and NT offer priestly lives. Don’t take the short road!

  • carmen

    Bravo for Bishop Olmstead,we need more like him>

  • Ed

    Saying Olmstead is “brave” or “courageous” would like calling the executioner that. . . . Oh, please, people, think for yourelf.

  • Thank you to Anne Hughes and her sister and many others who are helping to “Thank the Men of the Catholic Church” – see their website and future book “Letters to Priests”.

  • Denise

    Thanks be to God for the brave Bishop Olmstead!

  • Patty

    Thank you Bishop Olmsted. Purity and Chastity were a Reality and a Virtue, respectively, that Jesus wanted to leave deposited in His Church so that we might remember Him as He showed Himself to the World. Women are confused if they want to be Priests. Mary – Full of Grace set an example for women that Jesus approved of. Power in Prayer and Counsel, among numerous other things were only some of the things that she gave to the early Church. This meekness does not mean women should suffer by the egos or domination of the male population… Jesus was also meek and gentle…women did not suffer from what Jesus established here on earth. But the priesthood was for men. Women should remember that this here on earth is nothing compared to that which God has for us in heaven…I’m sure Jesus would still prefer women not being priests today as He did yesterday…Let His Will Be Done – not ours – no matter how great we feel we are or how clearly we perceive men’s weaknesses and think we can do better. Remember that Eve thought she could do better than God and should we not have holy fear of that innate disorder in us?

    Stop, look and listen! Come back to the gentle fold everyone!


  • Pablo

    May God our Lord in His infinite and supreme goodness be pleased to give us His abundant grace, that we may know His most holy will, and entirely fulfill it.

    Santa María de Guadalupe Esperanza nuestra, salva nuestra patria y conserva nuestra Fe.

    Edited for charity

  • John Bradley

    What a sad day that another priest rejects the teachings of the Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church, it Magisterium, his bishop and the Holy Father. Pray for Father Vernon Meyer that the Holy Spirit will lead him back to full communion with Holy Mother Church. Pray for all priests that they reject the relativism of the secular humanism.
    The gates of Hell shall not prevail against it

  • Etienne

    Ah! A bishop who is not afraid. May his tribe increase.
    God’s blessings upon him and his kind.

  • Rosie

    We need to pray more for the priests in our Catholic Church, we are in difficult times, there are tons of attacks.. especially to anything related to life; ….let all priests be blessed by the sacred hearts of Jesus and Mary….

  • Ricky

    I sure wish Bishop Olstad would come to Memphis and do some correcting of our Bishop who encouages homosexual social gatherings under the guise of “ministry” and supports advocates of abortion for public office under the shroud of “complexity.”

  • God Bless Bishop Olmstead, and all faithful and obedient Priests who serve Our Lord and His Church with holiness and truth.The few dissenters who wish to take a detour off a deep cliff have the freedom to do so;and have decided to take their salvation and toss it up to the wind.Sometimes I think it seems almost like a drink at a poison well;a spiritual death of some kind to a soul to scandalize themselves and lead others to do the same;and be blind for not realizing that by their very twisting of the truth they can make their choices holy to themselves and expect others to follow in their defiance.If Jesus was standing in front of this man ,and he had to face God would he be able to stand??Our Lord who was Most Pure and asking one thing of His Priests ,to be chaste and celebate; detached from this world.There are many white martyrs at this time in history; the Church suffering,the many Bishops, Priests and Religious who have kept their vows and carry the cross of courage ,bravely as they define and defend the Catholic Faith and its truth;I wish the papers would publish some stories of the ones that do God’s will and give us the courage to follow behind them!God Bless

  • Debbie

    God bless Bishop Olmsted, a true and courageous Shepherd! We pray for him and those like him, and that the Lord of the Harvest will send more Shepherds who are willing to give their lives for the Gospel and its Truth! GOD BLESS the BISHOP!

  • […] Another Priest Automatically Excommunicated Despite Bishop Olmsted’s Efforts September 20th, 2010 Read the full article here: Another Priest Automatically Excommunicated Despite Bishop Olmsted’s Efforts […]

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