On Oct. 16, San Francisco’s notoriously ‘gay-friendly’ Most Holy Redeemer parish hosted a fundraiser for the Castro Country Club, a recovery center for homosexual alcoholics and drug addicts. Among other things, the ‘club’ is well known for its “sunning and cruising outside steps,” according to one Bay area homosexual weekly.
Guests at the benefit included a number of same-sex attracted San Francisco politicians. The politicians were Scott Weiner, Rafael Mandelman, and Rebecca Prozan, all of whom were running for San Francisco Supervisor for district 8, and all of whom are openly homosexual. Prozan is “married” to another woman. (Weiner won the Nov. 4 election.)
The homosexual newspaper San Francisco Bay Times reported: “The Castro Country Club filled a room at Holy Redeemer Church on Oct. 16 for their Harvest Festival Banquet with more than 150 people for a benefit for the club.”
The Castro Country Club was founded by a Catholic priest, Fr. Joseph Healy. On Nov. 11, 2007, the webpage of Most Holy Redeemer announced: "Congratulations and Welcome, Fr. Joe! The MHR family welcomes Fr. Joseph Healy, a ''son of the parish'' who has been assigned to Most Holy Redeemer as Parochial Vicar. We wish you many happy and successful years here at MHR".
Why “son of the parish?” In his book on Most Holy Redeemer, Gays and Grays: the Story of the Gay Community at Most Holy Redeemer, Fr. Donal Godfrey, SJ, explains: "The Castro Country Club was founded by an openly gay parishioner at MHR, Joseph Healy; Healy has since become a priest in the diocese of San Francisco." Fr. Healy passed away in 2009.
With regard the Oct. 16 parish event, the Bay Times continued, “The three-layer chocolate mousse truffle torte with wild berry compote was delicious and briefly distracted diners from staring at honored guest Michael Brandon, who is a champion charity fundraiser and provocative erotic film star and stage performer” -- a roundabout way of saying that a Catholic Church hosted a homosexual porn star. Brandon’s website describes him as a “producer, director, and porn star award winner” and the site contains an obscenity disclaimer and requests persons under 18 years of age not to enter the site.
Brandon was not the only questionable character in attendance. The event was emceed by a well-known San Francisco drag queen who goes by the name “Ivy Drip,” also known for headlining “Adults Only” events.
Apparently the organizers were a little concerned about allowing a Catholic church to host their event, but, reported the Bay Times, “Controversy was averted when it was made clear that no room rent was paid for the space.”
As for the Castro Country Club, said the Bay Times, “The Castro Country Club is a refuge for people seeking sobriety; it has occupied a building on 18th Street near Castro Street since 1983. The building is to be sold and the Save the Steps Campaign, named for the club’s notorious sunning and cruising outside steps, is underway to raise money for a down payment.”
Most Holy Redeemer has developed a reputation over the years for repeatedly poking the Church in the eye when it comes to moral teachings regarding homosexuality. It is the parish where, in 2007, Archbishop George Niederauer inadvertently gave Communion to two men dressed in drag as Catholic nuns. The archbishop later apologized to the faithful for the incident.
Until recently, the parish regularly sent a contingent to the annual San Francisco ‘gay pride’ parade. In October 2006, the archdiocesan chancery told the parish that the “Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence,” a group of drag queens who describe themselves as “the leading-edge order of queer nuns,” could no longer use the parish hall for bingo fundraisers. Prizes for bingo winners included dildos and pornography.