Cuenin, who now serves as head of the Catholic center at Brandeis University, was given two standing ovations.
Cuenin, who spoke at the 29th annual interfaith pride service at Old South Church in Copley Square, explained his decision to appear in his remarks from the storied pulpit. The congregation, affiliated with the United Church of Christ, was formed in 1669 and boasts a long history of association with social change -- including the American Revolution -- and an active ministry to gays.Here come the fatwas.
``I told a friend of mine, about a month ago, that I was going to be here today, speaking at the gay pride interfaith service, and she said to me, `What's a Catholic priest doing at a gay pride service?' Cuenin said. ``My response was, `Why wouldn't a Catholic priest be here?' In the tradition of my own Christian faith, it seems to me, as I read it, that Jesus was always with those who were often the target of hatred and persecution."...Organizers said they believe Cuenin is the first Catholic priest to preach at the pride service, which claims to be the longest-running such service in the country. In his remarks, which he acknowledged having crafted carefully, his only call for change came when he said, ``we hope for a new beginning."