Like Roy Bourgeous, Fr. Zawada is following his conscience.....He asks us to do the same. I for one will be petitioning his superiors. Their site says they are Prophetic, Fraternal, Franciscan.......Seems they are ousting their own prophet..... Here is the address if you will follow suit!
Fr. John Puodziunas, Provincial Minister
Sts. Francis and Clare Friary
9230 W. Highland Park Avenue
Franklin, WI 53132
Voice 877.636.3742 Toll Free
Sunday November 27, 2011
This is a message to friends of Fr. Jerry Zawada, OFM. Our dear friend Jerry is facing expulsion from the Franciscan order and excommunication from the catholic church.
On November 19, 2011, Fr. Jerry Zawada joined with Rev. Janice Sevre-Duszynska, ordained a priest in 2008 in the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests, in leading an inclusive Catholic Eucharistic liturgy in Columbus Georgia. Many were in Georgia at this time during the annual gathering sponsored by School of Americas Watch. Fr. Zawada told friends he openly joined in this inclusive liturgy as a matter of conscience.
Within days of the liturgy, Fr. Zawada’s order, the Franciscan Friars of the Assumption BVM Province, Franklin, Wisconsin, was contacted by church authorities in Rome. Fr. Zawada has been advised by his order that he is facing excommunication and expulsion from the Franciscan order for joining in the liturgy with a woman priest.
Fr. Zawada will meet with his Franciscan Provincial, Fr. John Puodziunas, on Tuesday November 29, 2011.
Fr. Jerry has been a member of the Franciscan order for 56 years, since 1955. He has been a priest for 47 years, since 1964.
For the last several years, Fr. Zawada has been working with the migrant community in Arizona and Mexico with the local Catholic Worker community in Tucson, AZ. He hopes to continue this work despite a diagnosis of neuropathy or nerve damage which has afflicted his feet and legs. Fr. Zawada gets around with assistance from a cane or walker.
It is expected that the Bishop of Tucson Arizona, who has strongly objected to Fr. Zawada’s public civil disobedience actions challenging US government policy, will also ask Fr. Zawada to cease all official ministry in that diocese. Fr. Zawada has served time in federal prison for actions with the School of Americas Watch challenging human rights violations by graduates of the US Army Western Hemispheric Institute for Security Cooperation (formerly known as the School of Americas) at Fort Benning GA and for actions at Fort Huachuca Arizona challenging the training of military intelligence in the tactics of torture.
When I asked Fr. Jerry what his friends should do he said he does not feel comfortable telling people what to do. He encouraged each of us to follow our conscience and to keep him in our thoughts and prayers as he meets with his Provincial.