A Roman Catholic priest in Ireland was publicly rebuked by his bishop for a homily over the weekend that condemned abortion, homosexuality and transgender behavior as sinful.
Retired Rev. Sean Sheehy came out against what he described as “rampant” sin in society, some of which is backed by government legislation, he said during his sermon at St. Mary’s Church in Listowel, County Kerry, Ireland, on Sunday.
“What is so sad today is you rarely hear about sin, but it’s rampant,” said Sheehy. “It’s rampant.”
“We see it, for example, in the legislation of our governments,” Sheehy continued. “We see it in the promotion of abortion. We see it in the example of this lunatic approach of transgenderism. We see it, for example, in the promotion of sex between two men and two women.”
“That is sinful, that is mortal sin. And people don’t seem to realize it, but it’s a fact, it’s a reality,” the priest added.
Sheehy, who was filling in for the parish priest who is on a pilgrimage, reportedly offended some people in attendance, approximately 30 of whom left the church during his homily, according to Irish outlet The Kerryman.
Bishop of Kerry Ray Browne, who did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment, later apologized to those who were put off by Sheehy’s “offending” homily and maintained that the views he expressed in it are not “the Christian position.”
Browne said exhibiting “total respect for one another” is a “fundamental Christian teaching,” and rebuked Sheehy for speaking about such issues “in such terms” during Mass.
“I am aware of the deep upset and hurt caused by the contents of the homilies in question delivered over the weekend,” said Browne. “I apologize to all who were offended. The views expressed do not represent the Christian position.”
Browne added that he regrets the incident occurred while Father Declan O’Connor, the parish priest, was on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land.
During an interview with Kerry Radio, Sheehy did not back down from the positions he expressed during his homily, and also spoke out against the Irish government healthcare system for distributing condoms to teenagers, which he said promotes sexual promiscuity.
“As the old saying is, the truth hurts, but it sets us free,” he said. “Jesus, for example, did not come to make people feel good. He came to save people from their sins, and that was actually the gospel of the Sunday. He said he came to seek and save what was lost; in other words, those people who are lost in sin.”
“And why are people lost in sin? Sometimes they don’t even realize that what they’re doing is a sin. So that’s where the church’s responsibility kicks in, because the church has a responsibility to identify what is sin or what isn’t, so people will know what they’re choosing freely,” Sheehy continued.
Regarding the rebuke from his bishop, who barred him from performing Mass until O’Connor returns, Sheehy said he “couldn’t care less, really.” He claimed the bishop is “muzzling the truth in order to appease people,” and advised him to familiarize himself with the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
“I know myself what I said cannot be disproven by any honest-to-God Christian or Catholic teaching, and that’s the bottom line,” Sheehy added.
Sheehy has gotten into hot water before, according to Independent.ie, which reported that he received censure from the then-Bishop of Kerry Bill Murphy after he made statements in support of a convicted sex offender who sexually assaulted a 22-year-old woman in 2008.
Steehy stepped down as the parish priest of Castlegregory, Ireland, shortly after the verdict, according to the outlet.