For Immediate Release
Statement on All Souls Catholic School Employment Decision
A recently publicized account of what led to the termination of the employment of a school teacher at All Souls Catholic Parish is not accurate and needs to be corrected. The school found it necessary to conclude the teacher’s employment because she did not honor the commitments she agreed to in her contract with the school. Every Catholic school teacher in the Archdiocese of Denver, as a minister of the Church, signs a contract at the outset of each school year, and in that agreement they pledge to “personally [exemplify] the characteristics of Catholic living,” which includes, “refraining from taking any public position or conducting himself or herself in a manner that is contrary to the teachings of the Catholic Church.”
In this case, the school was made aware that one of their teachers is in a same-sex relationship, and after discussing this with the teacher, learned that she intends to persist in violating the standards she previously agreed to uphold. An employee who violates any of the terms of their employment agreement knows from the outset of their work that they can’t remain employed at the school.
That a Catholic school employee experiences same sex attraction in itself is not a cause for termination. However, all Catholic school employees in the Archdiocese of Denver are expected to abide by the terms of the agreement they signed and commitments they make, including the duties that are quoted above.
In addition, while not every family may choose Catholic schools for the same reason, the fact is that many families do send their children to our schools expecting their children to receive an education that conforms to Catholic beliefs. This written disclosure of the expectations, and teachers signing and committing to those requirements at the outset of each school year, is intended to protect the Catholic identity of our schools. It is a promise to our parents that their children will receive an authentic and fully Catholic education. It would be unjust for a school to present itself as a Catholic school and not offer a Catholic education.
We recognize the current popular culture and some in our society may not hold the same views as we do, but as Catholic institutions our schools retain their right to ensure that its ministers, which includes our teachers, carry out a faithful witness to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to the teachings of the Catholic Church.
Catholic teaching on sexual identity, marriage, family, and parenting are inseparable from the way we choose to live and interact. These teachings allow us to fully comprehend how to love God and neighbor. We believe that sexual expression contributes to human flourishing as it is integrated with a view toward its natural ends: faithful, covenantal love between a man and a woman, and a self-gift ordered toward procreation and joyful unity between spouses. Someone persisting in a lifestyle contrary to these views will find it difficult to teach them to our students.
A copy of the contract which is signed annually by all teachers can be viewed here: