On February 27, Father Michael Ryan preached a homily on the Sermon on the Mount at Saint James Cathedral in Seattle, where he is pastor. On the basis of the homily, it was reported on the Seattle P-I blog that he was giving up the What If We Just Said Wait? campaign, launched more than a year ago. The story was picked up by other news sources. Although the quotations were accurate, the tone and intentions of Father Ryan were not captured by the report.
Sources close to Father Ryan tell us that his remarks had more to do with cultivating an attitude of spiritual detachment in the present situation. Trusting in God’s providence does not absolve one from taking a stand or rob one of conviction concerning what is right. It does, however, keep one from fretting about the outcome.
The text of the homily is now available on the cathedral parish website.
From its inception, the What If We Just Said Wait? website has been managed by a group of lay people. Father Ryan has not removed his name or disavowed the initiative.
Father Ryan is on retreat and could not be reached for comment.