This is not where I thought this story would end. http://www.seattlearchdiocese.org/Assets/ARCH/SanctityOfLifeStatement-rev01.pdf
August 28, 2019
The Associated Press news story naturally leads the reader to assume certain things about the priest
and his intentions. However, we are learning a very different reality was at work. We looked into this and can confirm that the priest who did the blessing did not know about Mr. Fuller’s intentions. The priest was a visiting priest who happened to be at St. Therese that particular Sunday when the pastor was celebrating Mass at his second parish. The blessing was done after Mass by the priest whose interest was to bring comfort to someone he learned was dying. The priest was not aware of any news photographer, although he was aware people were taking pictures.
While it is clear that some of Mr. Fuller’s friends at the parish knew of his intentions, the pastor at St. Therese initially did not. Mr. Fuller eventually approached the pastor to ask to plan his own funeral. The pastor discussed the gift of life and tried to convince him to change his mind. He made it clear that neither he nor the parish could support his plan to take his own life. Once it was clear that Mr. Fuller was not going to change his mind, the pastor reached out to his leadership to discuss the situation.
Archbishop Sartain agreed that it is the church’s responsibility to pastorally care for those who mourn. With this in mind, he gave permission for the funeral with certain conditions to ensure there was no endorsement or other perceived support for the way in which Mr. Fuller ended his life. The purpose of the funeral was to pray for his soul and bring comfort and consolation to those who mourned.
Conditions or not, what could Archbishop Sartain think that the parish would get from allowing this??? How about Bob’s eternal soul??? It’s tragic! How many more lives in this parish are now at stake?
Archbishop Sartain (and I still can’t believe he did this but I guess he did) approved a funeral AHEAD of the suicide of a man who was going to kill himself and was told this was against the teachings of the Church. So, all you people who are contemplating doing the same, it seems as you’ll get you funeral too, because, those who are mourning and all.
Let me be clear. Trying to compare this to a run of the mill suicide is ridiculous. Bob Fuller’s thoughts were documented to the end. And to allow anyone to pre-schedule their own funeral is simply awful. Maybe, at that point, someone might have least looked into the rest of his problems.
This man was a public, obstinate sinner who showed no remorse, even after counselling from his pastor for his suicide. On his way out the door he chose to marry his homosexual partner hours before, he thought he was a shaman, boasted of his past affairs on Facebook, etc. and very little was done to stop and correct him. He was intent on doing it and his funeral was approved by the archbishop. Bob at least knew, according to the archdiocese, the Church’s teaching on the dignity of life and still did it. What in THE heck were they all thinking? Scratch that! Was anyone thinking? How many more have been scandalized by this??? How many more think it’s just fine because the Church will simply roll over and give them their lovely funeral as if it means absolutely nothing but a nice goodbye? This is, simply, hideous. At THE very least, the pastor or archbishop should have manned up and been there to hear confession at the end if he was willing but they just signed off on it as “Well, there’s nothing else we can do because he’s determined to do it!” The Church has failed Bob Fuller and those that will follow his example. I hope those that threw up their hand hit the confessional this weekend. Prayers for you Bob. You were failed beyond belief.