James Callan is back in the news.
A priest excommunicated after he became the pastor of the schismatic Catholic community of Spiritus Christi, Father Callan has said that the loss of his pastoral duties was the most painful experience of his life.
For him, excommunication is a null concept. Holy Orders are forever. Callan was ordained in the Roman Catholic Church. He will be a priest for all eternity. So, he still consecrates, transubstantiates and distributes the Holy Eucharist. What more could he want?
I can tell you what he doesn't want. He doesn't want the Church to exclude gays, women, divorcés, and other Catholics whose souls long for the Seven Sacraments.
As a cradle Catholic who loves the Church, I can imagine how hurt he is, the psychic pain he must feel at his own exclusion. Still he follows his conscience, ministering to the Church's outcasts in Spiritus Christi.
The Star-Gazette states that he "formed" Spiritus Christi. I object. Callan did not "start" his own church.
It sounds as if Spiritus Christi was inadvertently formed by the Roman Catholic Church herself.
Spiritus Christi began with people cast out of Roman Catholicism. Jim's flock are married Catholic gays, Catholic women called to the priesthood, remarried Catholic divorcés, and many others who want to receive the Holy Eucharist, but are not "in communion" with Rome.
These are not simply "issues" that haunt Rome; they are people who feel cruelly kept out of the Church.
And Father Callan doesn't need Rome to be a real hero, i.e., a saint.
Canonization does not create a saint: it only recognizes the fact.
Go, Jim, go!