This post has been updated and moved to:
This posting was sent out as a US group mailing prior to posting it here on the Thalamus Center.
My name is Fr. Marty Kurylowicz, I came out March 1997 to draw public attention to help protect children who are growing up to be gay – from life threatening devastating effects of the Vatican’s unsubstantiated antigay teachings.
Removing my Clerical State
Presently June 2012, my Bishop Hurley of the Grand Rapids Diocese is seeking to remove my clerical state and even suggested that I voluntary seek this change. I am a priest and the fact that I am is the reason I felt morality responsible to “come out” for the protection of gay children growing up by making helping to make the public aware of the documented evidence of the life time harm that is caused to children who grow up gay and who are living in antigay social environments. One of the major sources that significantly is responsible for creating antigay social environment is the Vatican antigay teaching, which are in fact unsubstantiated, because they are not supported by scripture scholars or by science. For the Vatican this once again is the same problem they got into regarding Galileo, which nearly 400 years later, Pope John Paul II said the Vatican was wrong and Galileo obviously was right. Only, this time millions of very young children globally are at risk who are not able to protect themselves and are being harm for life being raised in antigay social environments. The Vatican for the sake of these children around the world needs to immediately renounce all their antigay teachings, because they are not based on truth. They are all unsubstantiated.
The Reason - for removing my
Bishop Hurley states is my
REFUSAL TO RETURN to the Diocese
Not True - In 1997
I was being Forced Out by Vatican’s Hostile Treatment
In 1997, nearly 2 months after having “come out” I was completely surprised by the Vatican’s unethical and malicious directive that I be sent away (location was not given) for a period of several months to be reeducated on homosexuality and sexual orientation, which essentially is reparative therapy. It was starling for me to find that all my years of faithful dedication, achievements that contributed to my favorable status in the Diocese were totally wiped away. It was as if, I was not deserving of even plain human respect. The issuing of this dehumanizing directive from the Vatican was like a traumatic shock that instantly made it vividly clear to me that my personal safety and wellbeing were no longer of any importance in the Diocese. My life had been threatened and no one was willing to protect me, which meant it was no longer safe for me to remain in the Diocese of Grand Rapids.
The Vatican’s directive was a hostile threat I felt to force or to scare me so that out of fear I would flee to leave the priesthood voluntary. I believe this was their plan or at least it seemed to be so. However, it was because I was a priest and that it was my duty as priest to be willing to die for others, especially children. I knew very well that I had done no wrong. (1) There was ample research and clinical documentation, as well as, my personal experience and extensive observations of LGBT students, adults, communities, and PFLAG parents that overwhelming supported the fact of the life time harm that is caused to children growing up gay raised in antigay social environments. (2) The Vatican’s antigay teachings are unsubstantiated because they are not supported by scripture scholars or by science. They are fraudulent because of the life threatening harm and violence they perpetuate, globally. It is a case like the Vatican condemning Galileo, which Pope John Paul II agreed and apologized for the Vatican’s wrongdoing.
There was no reason for me to leave the priesthood personally or otherwise and to do would be running out on children, who are not able to protect themselves. It would mean failing to continue standing up for the truth, which the core foundation of being a priest. It was and still is my life.
The Key Reason for Leaving Diocese
Escape Vatican’s Relentless Hostile Discrimination
However, I ask of instead of being sent away to be reeducated on my homosexuality and sexual orientation, if I could study psychology at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, if I paid for it. The Vatican in the same mean-spirited and hostile manner granted me an educational leave of absence that was left opened ended. In addition, this also meant I would have to give up my regular monthly priest salary that included room and board. It was clear that the Vatican by their demonstrated hostility towards me that they did not want me anymore and that they truly wanted me to leave. I left the Diocese of Grand Rapids because I was no longer safe; in fact it was out of fear for my life that I left. I was so surprised by their hostility, which never ended and it is back again, today 2012, with great even greater force.
The hostile continued even after I left the Diocese June 1997 though not during the years that Pope John Paul II was alive. I began thinking that after 8 years I had appeased the Vatican, I was financially supporting myself and my educational costs though just barely. I was faithfully continuing my studying psychology as my finances allowed pursuing advance degrees. I was involved in community mental health clinical work during the week and saying masses at parishes that need help on the weekends and major feast days.
However, the Hostility resumed in full force almost immediately after Benedict XVI became pope April 2005. Benedict XVI began to wrongly without evidence to publically attack gay priests endlessly attempting to shift the blame for decades of child sexual abuse cover-ups onto the issue of homosexuality. This was especially true because he was the person in charge for decades and the blame for the cover-ups was falling directly on him. Bishop Hurley was appointed bishop of the Grand Rapids Diocese in June 2005. Bishop Hurley and Benedict XVI though as Cardinal Ratzinger had been collaborating working together on antigay issues since 1987. When Hurley became bishop of Grand Rapids MI the hostility towards me resumed with the forever misleading and twisting of the facts in order to attack me publically and discredit me and seriously harm my reputation. This is likely because of the 1997 News Media coverage of my “coming out” as a gay Catholic priest and it was even noted by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops as being “unprecedented” as reported in The Grand Rapids Press. This would be especially true, now 2012 because the majority of Catholics support gay marriage, possibly more people are being responsible individually acquiring a well informed conscience and can plainly see that the Vatican’s antigay teachings are truly unsubstantiated and that they are life threatening to very young growing up gay around the world.
However, since 2005, to the present my reputation has been attacked severely several times harming my careers, making impossible to support myself, which has destroyed me completely financially – losing everything, my residence to foreclosure, my car, and all my savings.
I think that it would be quite easy for people to blame me for my problems that is, if it weren’t for the never-ending scandals: (1) of Benedict XVI 30 years of global child sexual cover-ups, (2) more recently the Vatileaks revealing the character assassinations, forged documents, secrecy, etc., (3) the Vatican Bank Scandals, the lack of transparency, publishing psychological documents of ousted ex-bank president because of his threatening evidence of even deeper corruption inside the Vatican and (4) the Vatican’s continuous public attacks on USA politicians who support gay marriage.
WRONG MAILING ADDRESSES
Bishop Hurley’s HOSTILE Treatment
Letters Regarding Removal of Clerical State
In June 2012, this same hostility through misleading information twisting the facts that began his present attempts to remove my clerical state. I explain this more in detail below. Just to mention here his letters to me regarding his removing me from my clerical state have all been addressed to the wrong mailing address, however, I have been receiving all other Diocesan mail for the past 2 years at my correct mailing address. Still in his letter to me dated July 31, 2012, he states, since I failed to respond to his first letter of June 29, 2012 (which I never received because had it sent to a wrong mailing address) therefore he has begun the process of removing my clerical state. He also, states that it is because of my refusal to return to the Diocese that has lead to having my clerical state removed. In 1997, they want me out of the Diocese making it clear that I was not safe staying nor should I expect fair treatment should I return. However, now 2012 they have twisted it around for the public that I refused to come back. Hurley used this same twist in May 2006 notifying me that I was no longer given permission to say mass publically, which is reported in The Grand Rapids Press.
Below is a copy of his letter July 31, 2012 sent to the wrong mailing address.
No Civil or Whistleblower Protection for
Gay Priests or any Priest
KILLING THE SECRECY only Hope
As a Gay Catholic Priest – I have no civil protection my bishop and the Vatican knows this. “Separation of Church and State” and the Vatican Diplomatic Immunity protect them from civil intervention. The only recourse, if anyone is listening and understands the relationship and life of a Roman Catholic priest, that I have or any priest has is to go public, do not keep the secrecy. Going public is absolutely no guarantee of receiving any help or support. The only hope this has is one of knowledge helping people become more aware of the secrecy of the Vatican’s corruption, especially these days and likely for the past 30 years. There is an identifiable manner in the way I have been treated since I came out 1997 that is similar to the 30 years of ongoing cover-ups of the Vatican, which has been exposed in part from the Vatileaks and the Vatican Bank Scandals. In particular, the opposition to the Vatican (unwanted or threatening personnel including secular persons) are ousted, documents are forged, misleading information is given, attacks are made on their reputations to destroy their credibility, and publically facts are always twisted to make the Vatican appear as the victim or the ones in the right.
Below is the letter sent to dated July 31, 2012 and my letter sent to Bishop Hurley.
August 2, 2012
Most Reverend Walter A. Hurley
Bishop of Grand Rapids
I have not received any letter from your office dated June 29, 2012, because as you indicated in your letter dated July 31, 2012 it was sent to the wrong address. This seems like a deliberate attempt to make sure I did not receive this letter of yours dated June 29, 2012 and therefore you could state I did not respond to your directives.
The one and only letter that I did receive from your office was dated July 31, 2012 and it was sent to 682 Deer Street, Plymouth, Michigan, which is not my mailing address. It is surprising that I have been receiving all the diocesan mail for the past 2 years addressed to me at my correct mailing address.
It is interesting that your previous letters mailed to me in the past have been (1) notarized and (2) sent by certified mail so that you would have proof that I received your letter. If you followed this same procedure of yours and there is no reason to think that you would not, considering the extreme importance of the contents that you refer was in your letter dated June 29, 2012 then you would have proof that I did not receive it. This would be true; unless of course you did not intend that I should receive your letter dated June 29, 2012 so that you could speed up the process to alter my clerical state and falsely claim that I did not respond in the allotted time of 15 days. If this was indeed your intention your actions could rightly be called deceitful and ruthless.
It is equally puzzling as you indicated in your letter to me dated July 31, 2012 that I failed to respond to you in the 15 days set down in your letter to me dated June 29, 2012 (which I did not receive), if you believe you sent this letter of June 29, 2012 to my correct address, why then would send your second letter dated July 31, 2012 to a different address that is not my mailing address? Unless, of course, again, you did not intend me to receive your second letter dated July 31, 2012. Then you would have been able to alter my clerical state without my ever knowing you had, until I would be quite surprised to be informed that my health care insurance had been discontinued. Later I would learn that I had no legal recourse because I did not respond to any of your letters, which I never received. In the Archdiocese of Detroit it has been stated among many who had legal dealings with you including attorneys that you are known to have ample precedents for being - deceitful and ruthless.
However, I am indeed deeply surprised by the contents in your letter dated July 31, 2012 and I can emphatically assure you that I have absolutely no intention whatever to give up my clerical state. It was because I took seriously my duty as a priest and stood up for the factual truth about sexual orientation by “coming out” to my parishioners in March 1997 for the safety and well being of children, as young as 4 and 5 years of age, as documented in the Grand Rapids Press at that time and because I did so the Vatican has continuously been mistreating me. My present situation for the past 15 years is entirely due to the hostile working environment imposed on me created by the threat that was made on my well-being, indeed my life that came from the bishop’s office May 1997, which were the Vatican’s directives ordering me to be sent away on a sabbatical for several months to be reeducated regarding sexual orientation, an intensive form of reparative therapy, also known as conversion therapy. It is a psychotherapy attempt to change a person’s homosexuality that is based on the debunked concept that homosexuality is a mental disorder in the 1970’s by both the American Psychiatric Association and the American Psychological Association. Soon other national associations from both the medical and mental health professionals from their own independent research data followed suit. Since, then there is more than ample clinical documentation and research data that continued to assert through the 1980’s and 1990’s right up to 1997 that homosexual orientation is a natural part of human development and that any attempt to try to alter or change a person’s homosexuality was considered unethical because of the severe life threatening harm that was found could harm a person more.
The only type of mental problems that were found to be associated with homosexuals were those caused by the stress from being raised in hostile anti-gay social environments living under the constant possibility of encountering violent life threatening physical attacks, e.g. those created by the Vatican’s unsubstantiated anti-teachings, the unsubstantiated public remarks made about homosexuality by such clerics as Archbishop Tartaglia, along with Dolan, Nienstedt, Bertone, George and many many others including Benedict XVI.
The reason why I was to be subjected to the unethical practice of thos intense reparative therapy of being reeducated about the homosexual orientation that was ordered by the Vatican was because in March 1997, at the age of 47 years old I came out to my parishioners at Holy Family Parish, Sparta, Michigan to help stop the violence against gay people, most especially to children as young as 4 and 5 years old who grow up to be gay. The fact that I was a priest I felt not only morally obligated but that it was my duty as a priest to be willing to even sacrifice my life for the safety and well-being of children. As you know though you may have forgotten is true reason and meaning for being a priest. However, in truth I always hoped that that card would never fall into my lap, but fall it did and I believed that how a person responds in this kind of situation would define that person’s whole existence. There is no escape.
“In March 1997, after attending a National Symposium of the New Ways Ministry that was held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, I learned that children as young as 4 and 5 years of age know that they are different. This feeling "different" is only identified in their adult years as being gay. However, the harmful influence of antigay social and religious norms -- in particular, for Catholics, the Vatican’s unsubstantiated antigay teachings -- are severe and last throughout a child’s lifetime.
The harmful effects are not isolated only to these children who grow up to be gay, but also affect their families, siblings, friends and anyone whom they might consider special in their lives. They are a prescribed societal sentence of implicit isolation, which place at risk of suicide so many innocent adolescents and young adults. They stifle an enormous amount of human potential in the world that otherwise could be put to use for finding cures for diseases, offering better ways of maintaining peace among people and improving the quality of life for everyone in the world.” (The above is taken from a letter that I wrote and sent July 2010 to the President of the United State, Vice President of the United States, United States Congress, United States Supreme Court Justices, United States Department of Justice, 50 United States Governors and to a great number of attorneys, journalists, news reporters, and organizations. I wrote this letter to bring to light that the idea of “Separation Between Church and State” does not give churches or Benedict XVI the freedom to abuse children or adults.)
The Vatican’s antigay teachings are unsubstantiated, because they are not based on truth either from the bible or science. This is same mistake the Vatican made concerning Galileo by condemning him as a heretic. In 1992, Pope John Paul II made a public apology to Galileo nearly 400 years later stating that Galileo was right and the Vatican was wrong.
My “coming out” to my parishioners March 1997 as reported in The Grand Rapids Press was successful. There was no exodus of parishioners from my parish and there was not any drop in our regular weekly or monthly building fund collections. In addition, as reported in the Grand Rapids Press the spokesperson for the United Stated Conference of Catholic Bishops stated that my “coming out” as a priest was unprecedented. This fact was quite sad indeed because there should have been hundreds of others before me. What was significantly unique about my “coming out” was the fact the I did it for the safety and well-being of very young children, 4 and 5 years of age who grow up to be gay.
It is most interesting to note that in August 1997, the United Stated Conference of Catholic Bishops came out with the very first positive document on homosexuality that focused on the importance of caring for children who are growing up gay called “Always Our Children.” However, in October 1997 Cardinal Ratzinger now Benedict XVI had sanctioned the co-founders of the New Ways Ministry. Moreover, in 1998, Cardinal Ratzinger/Benedict XVI had altered the United Stated Conference of Catholic Bishops document “Always Our Children” making it less positive.
It was also conveyed to me at that same time in the bishop’s office May 1997 that my life was in danger of being seriously harmed, but never did I think that that violence would becoming from the Vatican. This was conveyed to me knowing full well the serious harm of reparative therapy, when I asked if I paid for my own sabbatical to study psychology at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan would I be granted permission to go. I was granted an educational leave of absence, however, this was only granted to me if I was willing to forfeit my regular monthly priest salary, including finding and paying for my own living arrangements. I was given this permission just 2 weeks before I was scheduled to leave. It seemed an unnecessary cruel delay that deliberately prevented me from making any timely arrangements, i.e. finding work to support me financially, finding a place to live, and to workout a course of study in order to be able to begin my sabbatical on time. Because of this I had experienced many unnecessary setbacks. Considering all the above and what I was told I did not feel it would be safe for me to stay in the diocese.
Although, it was not until October 2005 that I once again felt morally obligated and that it was my duty as a priest again to protect the well-being of children to give my response based factual data, when I was asked by a Grand Rapids Press news reporter for my comments on the newly elected pope April 2005, Benedict XVI, regarding his new rules regarding gay priests.
Impending rules on gay priests create Catholic divide
– The Grand Rapids Press, October 8, 2005
When the Rev. Martin Kurylowicz came out to his Sparta parish eight years ago, he said he had struggled for years with his homosexuality.
The Catholic priest says the struggle would be made harder for many others if the Vatican issues new rules that reportedly would ban gays from becoming priests…
…"I sizzled when I read it," said Kurylowicz, 55. "It's very hurtful, is what it is. In this day and age, there's no reason for it. It sends a message that there's something wrong with gays."
Kurylowicz said he spoke out then to raise awareness of violence against gays and teach others homosexuality is not a choice…Church leaders still don't understand that and contribute to gays' poor self-esteem, he said…
…"Kids as young as 4 or 5 know they're different," said Kurylowicz, a psychotherapist… "They grow up with this pervasive guilt, which sabotages their growth and motivation." The result is thousands of dollars in therapy to accept their natural orientation, he said, adding, "Does the Vatican want to take that on, like the tobacco industry had to take on for the damage it caused consumers? "…
The recent Vatileaks and the Vatican Bank scandals has brought into the light the harm and life threatening deceptive antics of the Vatican i.e. character assassinations, leaking forged documents from Vatican against Dino Boffo the Vatican ousted Catholic editor. The Vatican published a confidential psychological document concerning the mental health of the Vatican's recently ousted bank chief. It was reported that it appeared to be aimed at further discrediting and humiliating the Vatican bank's ex-president for fear of the publication of his “secret dossier” believed to contain irrefutable evidence regarding money laundering, tax-evasive and Vatican’s financial transactions between many surprising people i.e. politicians, the mafia, all hidden behind the Vatican’s lack of transparency.
The Vatican’s leaking psychological documentation to discredit and to destroy the reputation of the Vatican bank's ex-president turned informant has a déjà vu quality to it that remains me of May 2006 when you publically disclosed to the news media – The Grand Rapids Press - the confidential psychological documentation related to me in order to discredit and to further humiliate me. However, your deliberate public disclosure backfired for you because it was all the psychological documentation that is the evidence that reveals the severe life long harmful effects caused to a child who out of blind obedience, including the child’s parents and family believes as true the Vatican’s unsubstantiated antigay teachings. This is a most severe form of child abuse because it is hidden, not overtly visible, an implicit form of child abuse – that appears safe, acceptable, even loving, which makes it even more severe, because of this disguise. Research has shown that it has life long harmful devastating effects even life threatening to children, globally. As more research becomes available and it becomes widely known by the public the Vatican will once again on an even greater scale then with the child sexual abuse cover-ups - held responsible for their criminal negligence towards children. Because there is more than ample research data at the present to warrant the Vatican’s immediate renouncement of all their unsubstantiated anti-gay teachings, which applies to all of their antigay teachings.
Ever since August 2003, people attending masses where I was the celebrant have told me that they noticed that someone they did not recognize was taking notes during my homilies, as if to be spying on me. I paid little attention to this at the time. However, since then there have been many attempts to discredit my reputation. They have been effective, causing for me the loss of many of my strong friendships, causing me severe harm financially and causing great stress that is now impacting my physical health. Your recent misaddressed important letters to me regarding my clerical state is once again one of many attempts to discredit me. The Vatileaks and Vatican Banks scandals have shown these are not the exceptions but more like the common practice of the culture inside of the Vatican. The Vatican’s diplomatic immunity has greatly enabled the Vatican to continue their culture of deceptive antics hidden in the lack of transparency and guarded secrecy, except now for the Vatican Bank. The Vatican is not answerable to any civil court and it is seems conceivable they could literally get away with any injustice short of murder. Therefore for my safety and the safety of children, I am left with no other option but to make public all your dealings with me. This letter is being sent, as like the with my letter above dated July 2010, to a great number of individuals in government, in the news media, attorneys, appropriate organizations, etc. though not exactly the same addressees, as above but to many new people, as well.
In addition, I am sending you several copies of this letter individually addressed to you, so that there will be no attempt to say that you haven’t received this letter from me.
I would appreciate a copy of your first letter to me dated June 29, 2012, which I did not receive, because you sent it to the wrong address. My correct mailing address: XXX
To quote a phase: “You have done enough. Have you no sense of decency, sir? At long last have you left no sense of decency?”
Fr. Marty Kurylowicz