The Archdiocese of Boston said yesterday that it would help find a new Catholic school for a boy who was barred from a Catholic elementary school in Hingham because his parents are lesbians. Leading fund-raisers for Catholic schools in Boston, meanwhile, strongly disavowed the decision by officials of St. Paul Elementary School to revoke the offer of admission to a new third-grade pupil after learning of his parents’ relationship.
The Catholic Schools Foundation, the leading provider of scholarships to low-income Catholic school students in Greater Boston, issued a letter to administrators of local Catholic schools yesterday warning that it would not subsidize tuition at any school with a discriminatory admissions policy.
Any such practice “is at odds with our values as a foundation, the intentions of our donors, and ultimately Gospel teaching,’’ said the letter . from the foundation, which relies on corporate executives to help raise millions each year. The letter was signed by the group’s executive director, Michael B. Reardon. Jack Connors chairs the Campaign for Catholic Schools, which has raised nearly $60 million for major capital and program improvements in local Catholic schools. He called the incident an unfortunate aberration and said he was not concerned that it would discourage corporate donors.
“But,’’ he said, “I am disappointed that . . . this faith that I love seems to find new ways to shoot itself in the foot.’’
The archdiocese moved swiftly yesterday to clarify its policy and show support for the family. Mary Grassa O’Neill, superintendent of schools for the archdiocese, issued a statement saying that the church does not prohibit children of same-sex parents from attending Catholic schools and that the archdiocese will “work in the coming weeks to develop a policy to eliminate any misunderstandings in the future.’’
She added that she contacted one of the boy’s mothers yesterday morning to express concern and to offer to help place him in another Catholic school.
“She was gracious and appreciative of the suggestion and indicated that she would look forward to considering some other Catholic schools that would welcome her child for the next academic year,’’ the statement said.
Posted on May 14, 2010 by Bento