The Diocese of Worcester stripped a school in the city of Massachusetts of its affiliation with the Catholic Church because of the flags it displayed in support of Black Lives Matter and LGBTQ rights.
A decree issued Thursday by Bishop Robert McManus now prohibits Worcester Nativity School from identifying itself as a Catholic school.
Bishop Robert McManus says the Black Lives Matter and Pride flags contradict Catholic social and moral teaching.
“The waving of these flags in front of a Catholic school sends a mixed, confusing and outrageous message to the public,” McManus wrote.
Diocesan spokesman Raymond Delisle doubled down on McManus’ position.
“Bishop was just looking for alternatives to flags so they could get the same points across, that Black Lives matters, that God loves everyone, but does it have to be done with specific logos, if you will, of a particular organization with whom we have differences? he said.
The school says the flags will not be removed.
“As a multicultural school, the flags represent inclusion and respect for all,” said President Thomas McKenney of Nativity School in Worcester. in a report. “These flags simply indicate that all are welcome at the Nativity and this value of inclusion is rooted in Catholic teaching.”
“We are hearing more and more Catholic communities embracing inclusivity, and I think hearing a bishop trying to promote the opposite is just plain nonsense,” said Nativity elder Guillermo Creamer Jr. “It is very difficult to be an openly gay alumnus and to hear that the bishop is wresting Catholic status from an institution that has truly done nothing but good in our community.”
School officials say they will appeal to the Vatican.