A decade ago, when a large group of Catholics feuded with the Diocese of Rochester over issues such as female priests and blessing of gay unions, the very public dispute resulted in the dismissal of a longtime priest, the ouster of a nun from her order and the firing of a pastoral associate — as well as national media attention.
It led to a splinter congregation, Spiritus Christi Church, that draws as many as 2,900 people a week for its worship services in downtown Rochester.
The break also rippled quietly westward into the Diocese of Buffalo, where a small but faithful group gathers weekly inside a Protestant church on the West Side, guided by the same principles of inclusion preached by the Rochester congregation.
They call themselves Spiritus Christi Buffalo, and on the first Wednesday evening each month, the Rev. James Callan, the ousted Rochester priest, drives the 76 miles on the Thruway to celebrate a Catholic Mass in Buffalo.
Please read the full article at Buffalo News.
Other notable quotes from the article:
“Sometimes I feel like I’m breaking rules,” said Rosey Nogle, who also attends St. Timothy’s Church in the Town of Tonawanda"
“I don’t think turning people away is very productive for a religious community,” said Nogle, who is studying in the lay program at Christ the King Seminary and hopes someday to follow in Ramerman’s footsteps and become a priest."