Saturday, August 25, 2007

Niente di Nuovo Sotto il Sole

Another Italian priest admits to fathering a child... another group of Italian parishioners protests his suspension:

"I don't want to do like Adam and Eve did when they hid from the call of God after the original sin," the 41-year-old parish priest Don Sante Sguotti from the town of Monterosso, near Padua, told some 200 worshippers.

"The fruit of one's fertility should be a cause for joy," said Sguotti, who has been asked by Padua Archbishop Antonio Mattiazzo to leave the parish, home to some 800 souls.

"Maybe those who say priests are all false are right," he said. "I feel false, because it is not easy to walk alone along the path to truth. Sometimes you need to find someone to walk with."

Father Sguotti apparently has the support of many of his parishioners. Some young people were seen wearing T-shirts inscribed with "Don Sante Is My Priest" as he delivered his homily, but stopped short of presiding over communion.

"This could not be a normal celebration. I'll officiate the Liturgy of the Word, I'll pronounce the homily, but not the rite of the Eucharist," he said, adding that he did not want to get into "a vulgar arm-wrestling match" over the issue.

In June, the pastor of Pope Benedict's 2005 "vacation parish" at Val d'Aosta similarly acknowledged his paternity of a three year-old girl.

SVILUPPO: A reader writes in that, while the report cited above spoke of "some young people seen wearing T-shirts inscribed with 'Don Sante Is My Priest' as he delivered his homily..." in fact "the original Italian print on the T-shirts was 'Don Sante e' mio padre' -- padre [having] a double meaning: my priest and my father."