Matt C. Abbott
New York archdiocese retaliates against priest
By Matt C. Abbott
June 10, 2014

In my June 3 column, I wrote:

In New York City, there's been talk (by the "powers that be" at the Archdiocese of New York) of closing certain parishes, including Holy Innocents Church, which offers the Traditional Mass.

Father John Zuhlsdorf recently wrote at his blog:
    I have been sent part of a transcript of a sermon given in New York City by Father Justin Wylie at a favorite church of mine, Holy Innocents in the Garment District. Holy Innocents has been a great success story. However, a recommendation was made by a committee that it, along with Father George Rutler's parish Saint Michael's in Hell's Kitchen, should be closed.

    Father Wylie has some hard words, imbued with charity and priestly concern, to those who desire the traditional Roman Rite as well as to the priests and bishops who have, for decades, abused the same through neglect or outright persecution. And you know who you are.
Click here to read Father's blog entry in its entirety.

Meanwhile, "gay" Masses and ministries, complete with rainbow flags, continue – 21 years and counting – at The Church of Saint Francis Xavier.

Well, there's an update on Father Justin Wylie – the aforementioned priest from South Africa who gave the stirring sermon in support of orthodox Catholics in general and the parishioners of Holy Innocents Church in particular – and it isn't good.

From a reliable source (edited):
    Father Wylie's sermon was not well received by the 'powers that be' in the Archdiocese of New York. Recently he was informed that the archdiocese sent a letter of rebuke to his bishop in South Africa and to at least one other Church official.

    Father Wylie was subsequently dismissed from his position as attaché of the Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See to the United Nations. Also, he's not allowed to have any public liturgical engagements or function as a priest in the archdiocese, and he'll be sent back to South Africa.

    All of this came as a consequence of the sermon. The archdiocese has been trying to stamp out any and every type of opposition to closing churches, particularly Holy Innocents.

    When the Archdiocesan Advisory Group recommended Holy Innocents for 'consolidation,' no mention at all was made of the daily Traditional Mass, or what would happen to it after Holy Innocents becomes part of Saint Francis of Assisi.
Again, to read the partial transcript of Father Wylie's "controversial" sermon, click here.

Pray for Father Wylie and for all other priests (and lay Catholics, for that matter) who are suffering various types of persecution – from within and outside the Church – throughout the world.

Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us.

© Matt C. Abbott


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
(See RenewAmerica's publishing standards.)

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Matt C. Abbott

Matt C. Abbott is a Catholic commentator with a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication, media and theatre from Northeastern Illinois University. He also has an Associate in Applied Science degree in business management from Triton College. Abbott has been interviewed on HLN, MSNBC, Bill Martinez Live, WOSU Radio in Ohio, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's 2019 ‘Unsolved’ podcast about the unsolved murder of Father Alfred Kunz, Alex Shuman's 'Smoke Screen: Fake Priest' podcast, WLS-TV (ABC) in Chicago, WMTV (NBC) and WISC-TV (CBS) in Madison, Wisconsin. He’s been quoted in The New York Times, the Chicago Tribune and other media outlets. He’s mentioned in the 2020 Report on the Holy See's Institutional Knowledge and Decision-Making Related to Former Cardinal Theodore Edgar McCarrick (1930 to 2017), which can be found on the Vatican's website. He can be reached at

(Note: I welcome and appreciate thoughtful feedback. Insults will be ignored. Only in very select cases will I honor a request to have a telephone conversation about a topic in my column. Email is much preferred. God bless you and please keep me in your prayers!)


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