Priest Defends Suspended Catholic School Teacher

Courageous Priest Note: Patricia Jannuzzi, a Immaculata Catholic High School teacher, was placed on administrative leave for comments supporting biblical Catholic teachings on homosexuality.  Fr. Peter West is defending her against attacks by actress Susan Sarandon.

Dear Ms. Sarandon,

Patricia Jannuzzi’s Facebook post.

I am a Catholic priest who supports Patricia Jannuzzi, the Immaculata Catholic High School teacher who was placed on administrative leave due to the campaign you supported against her. Objectively speaking, she said nothing hateful. She simply responded to a truly disrespectful comment by Dan Savage.

While we stand on opposite sides of the culture war, I admire you for having the courage of your convictions. I wish Bishop Bootkoski had been as resolute as you are in defending authentic marriage between one man and one woman.

You are full-throated in what you believe, while some bishops are half-hearted. You have a backbone. You are not lukewarm. In the Bible, Jesus says “I know your works; I know that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either cold or hot. So, because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth. (Rev. 3:16)

You support your friends and don’t mind harming your perceived enemies, as is natural if not exactly Christlike. You have essentially exercised veto power over what will be taught, not only at Immaculata, but at Catholic high schools throughout the country. What happened to Patricia Jannuzzi will create a chilling effect on other teachers who might be inclined to defend Catholic teaching on marriage and chastity in or outside the classroom. Congratulations, what a great thing one post on social media from you can accomplish!

I don’t expect to win your accolades but I want to emulate your courage by declaring my own convictions: Any union between two persons of the same-sex can never be a true marriage in the eyes of God. Jesus affirms God’s plan for marriage saying, “from the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female.” (Matthew 19:4)

You will probably misconstrue what I have said here as “hate speech,” but my motive is not to cast aspersions. I simply proclaim what Jesus said: “The Kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the Gospel.” (Mark 1:15)

Father Peter West

Vice President For Missions

Human Life International

This is an open letter that was sent by the writer to actress Susan Sarandon.

P.S. – Would you do Courageous Priest a favor and share this info with your friends on Facebook, Twitter or Email right now? We truly appreciate it. Or leave a comment, we would love to hear what you think.

6 comments to Priest Defends Suspended Catholic School Teacher

  • Stella

    Would someone please post the full comment from facebook? I can’t seem to locate it.

  • Frances Zickert

    THANK GOD! for real God fearing TRUTH defending Priests who walk the talk. Father West! You are my inspiration you made my daily walk with Jesus joyful. I am rejoicing in the Lord! Always! You are on my Thanksgiving daily prayer list. THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU! for standing up for Jesus the WORD OF GOD! exuding His PEACE. the fruits by which we know HIM! WOO! HOO! God is good! All the time! AMEN

  • Phoebe Fong

    It is heart warming to have priests and lay people stand up for the tenants of our Catholic faith in the face of the secular tsunami of our times.
    The Catholic faith have always had strong opposition from the enemies of Christ, but it seem overwhelmingly so nowadays.
    Its my personal decision, together with some of my like minded friends, that we will only financially support those religious and deserving church organizations who uphold wholly and strictly the teachings of Christ. We, of course, pray for at the others who do not uphold their appointed ministries.

  • Jacqueline

    I thank God for priests like you, Father West, who have the courage to stand on the Word of God. I sent an email to Bishop Bootkowski asking him if he represents the Word of God or the word of Susan Sarandon and received no response. I believe that Pope Benedict XVI, Emeritus was right when he said that the church will get smaller but will be far more faithful and devout (paraphrased.) I sense a schism coming in the wind.

  • tg

    Way to go Father. I hope a lot of bishops read your letter. It should be advertised somewhere. Thank you for standing with our Lord and this teacher. God bless her and you.

    • Jacqueline

      You are kidding about the Bishops reading Father West’s letter. It is the Bishops who have warned the priests not to partake publicly IN anything that smells of action from opposing sides….even if it expresses the true Word of God. As rally captain, I recently held a rally for the Definition of Marriage and invited all of the Priests and Seminarians that I know and a few Religious to attend to pray the Rosary alongside the Banner and signs at a busy intersection and NOT ONE ATTENDED. There were only 12 of us that showed up for the Rally…..WOULD YOU SAY THAT JESUS WILL BE VERY BUSY SPEWING ALL OF THE LUKEWARM SO-CALLED CATHOLICS/CHRISTIANS OUT OF HIS MOUTH????

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