Over the past few days, I have received many calls and email messages from people with many different viewpoints and seemingly opposite messages about the incidences involving Covington Catholic High School students at the March for Life. Many of these calls and messages have revealed the regrettable polarization in our Church and in our society.
As many have noted, over the weekend, I joined Bishop Foys in a condemnation of alleged actions, not people. This post replaces that original blog entry with the additional information below from the Diocese of Covington.
I do not have jurisdiction in the Diocese of Covington. However, I have sought to act in solidarity with the Bishop of Covington, who is in a position to have the best information about what transpired and who has pledged an independent investigation of the situation. (See the statement from the Diocese of Covington below.) At this time, I am not going to get ahead of the Diocese of Covington’s independent investigation with additional comments.
I want to assure those who are concerned that I am confident that Bishop Foys and the school will reach out and respond to those who were impacted by these events and media reports.
Whatever the investigation reveals, I hope that we can use this as a teachable moment, learn from any mistakes on the part of anyone involved, and begin the process of healing.
Today’s Statement from the Diocese of Covington
On Monday afternoon, the Covington Police alerted us that they had intelligence concerning a planned protest, Jan. 22, at Covington Catholic High School and a vigil at the Diocesan Curia. Due to threats of violence and the possibility of large crowds, the Diocese was advised to close Covington Catholic High School, the Diocesan Curia and neighboring Covington Latin School. We thank law enforcement officers for their protection and will reopen when they say it is safe to do so.
Concerning the incident in Washington, D.C., between Covington Catholic students, Elder Nathan Phillips and Black Hebrew Israelites the independent, third-party investigation is planned to begin this week. This is a very serious matter that has already permanently altered the lives of many people. It is important for us to gather the facts that will allow us to determine what corrective actions, if any, are appropriate.
We pray that we may come to the truth and that this unfortunate situation may be resolved peacefully and amicably and ask others to join us in this prayer.
We will have no further statements until the investigation is complete.
Diocese of Covington
January 22, 2019