together with neighboring churches, will be hosted by Cabrini on Friday, October 3, with a 6 pm meal, 7 pm prayer. At our tables, we enjoy casual conversation, and also take a brief look at the Scripture passage for the evening. At 7 pm we move upstairs for Taizé Prayer, where we will hear this same Scripture in multiple languages, and join together in song, prayer, and silence, in a candlelit environment. HELP NEEDED for the meal (soups, setup, cleanup) – contact Chris Kosowski (firstname.lastname@example.org; 612-339-3023 ext. 115).
In the recent affidavit by Jennifer Haselberger, it came to light that there was a conversation among Archdiocesan staff to silence Father Mike by having him declared ‘disabled.’ In response to this newly-learned, maligning information, the Parish Council elected to write a letter to the Archbishop in support of Father Mike. The text of the letter follows. We will keep you apprised of any response we get from the Archbishop.
- The Parish Council
September 17, 2014
Dear Archbishop Nienstedt:
We are writing to affirm our complete support of Father Michael Tegeder, our pastor, and ask for a public apology for recent comments impugning his character.
Since his assignment to St. Frances Cabrini three years ago, we have been graced daily by his presence among us. In that time, we have come to know him as a man who is extraordinarily well-read and well-versed in matters of social justice and have seen his passion for justice by his bold actions on issues important to us. We have also seen in him a strong love for and commitment to the environment, recalling the principles of Catholic teachings on care for the earth. He is a spiritual man who puts his spirituality into action. His ministry is truly a gift to us and to the archdiocese.
We have observed how effectively Father Mike has interacted with the people at Gichitwaa Kateri. He has completely immersed himself in that community and has helped us increase our interactions with them. His ministry to the people of Kateri seems most like how Jesus would live among a marginalized people.
It is against this backdrop that we, as loyal Catholics, write to you with our deep and heart-felt concerns. In the deposition given by Jennifer Haselberger, she stated that a senior member of your office “wanted you to declare Father Michael Tegeder disabled as a means of silencing his opposition to your efforts to promote a constitutional amendment prohibiting same-sex marriage”. If enacted Father Tegeder would have been declared disabled and unable to minister to St. Frances Cabrini or Gichitwaa Kateri. What previously was a behind-the-scenes private discussion, is now in the public light.
As the spiritual leader of the archdiocese, we ask that you put your Christian leadership into action. In the spirit of reconciliation and healing, we ask that a public apology be given to this parish, Gichitwaa Kateri, and to Father Tegeder and that the apology come directly from you as the Ordinary of this archdiocese and chief administrator of the archdiocesan chancery.
The St. Frances Cabrini Parish Council
Archbishop Nienstedt has responded, in one letter, to both the letter sent by the Parish Council dated September 17, and to an email sent to him by Father Mike. Here is his response. - The Parish Council