Maryland Catholic Church Denies Communion to Lesbian Daughter of Deceased

Maryland Catholic Church Denies Communion to Lesbian Daughter of Deceased

- in Top News, Faith and Religion, National

Maryland is making the news again this week, but this time it’s not for their marriage equality campaign – it’s for a Catholic funeral gone terribly awry.

Barbara Johnson attended her mother’s funeral at St. John Neumann Catholic Church in Gaithersburg, Maryland on Saturday and was refused communion by the priest presiding over the service. Father Marcel Guarnizo disagreed with Johnson’s relationship with another woman and reportedly told Johnson, “I can not give you communion because you live with a woman.”

Johnson is a lifelong Catholic and former Catholic school teacher.

9 News Now reported:

According to Barbara, things got even worse, because after first refusing to give her communion, and then walking off the altar when Barbara was giving her eulogy, Father Marcel refused to go with Barbara’s mother’s body to the cemetery in Aspen Hill. Barbara says she was told that Father Marcel had suddenly become ill.

In a written statement, the Archdiocese of Washington conceded that Father Marcel had acted improperly, saying, “Any issues regarding the suitability of an individual to receive communion should be addressed by the priest with that person in a private, pastoral setting.”

Johnson shared with the news station: “We don’t get a do-over. This was her one moment to pass from this earth.”



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1 Comment

  1. If the catholic church continues to abuse gays/lesbians etc then why continue to try to belong? There are other more welcoming & compassionate faith groups around if one must belong to a religion at all.

    I can understand the priest’s position-if he truly believes in his religion & all that communion means in that religion then I get it.

    However, have we all not become more enlightened? I mean the brave step of loving & living with a same gender partner surely means we’ve put the past [the Catholic Church] behind us.

    The Priest probably genuinely did feel sick. His indoctrination is that intense!

    Nonetheless, I’m sorry that the funeral service was marred. It is a tough time-I lost my son-& the last thing we want is the funeral destroyed by bad feelings so I didn’t have his service in the Catholic Church. My mother didn’t approve but then her disapproval ruined his & my life so why bother hearing her at that time?

    U must take care of urself, the Catholic Church won’t.


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