Scalia's Son Speaking at Conference Promoting Chastity for Gays

'I'd rather not be dragged into the political and cultural battles,' says son of conservative Supreme Court justice.

By SHARE

The Rev. Paul Scalia, son of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, will speak July 27 at the Courage/Encourage Conference in Mundelein, Ill., to promote chastity for people who are gay.

Scalia is an Arlington, Va., based Roman Catholic priest and serves on the board of Courage, the international group that's sponsoring the conference.

"Really to our mind this is such a simple thing," Scalia told U.S. News in a brief phone conversation. "It's a matter of care of souls."

The event is "private in the sense that you need to register for it," Scalia noted. He expressed some concern reporters might invade attendees' privacy.

[RELATED: Christian Ministry Apologizes to LGBT Community, Announces Shutdown]

Priests queue to attend a mass at the St Peter's basilica on the first day of the conclave on March 12, 2013 at the Vatican. Cardinals moved into the Vatican today as the suspense mounted ahead of a secret papal election with no clear frontrunner to steer the Catholic world through troubled waters after Benedict XVI's historic resignation. The 115 cardinal electors who pick the next leader of 1.2 billion Catholics in a conclave in the Sistine Chapel will live inside the Vatican walls completely cut off from the outside world until they have made their choice.
Priests queue to attend a mass at the St Peter's basilica on the first day of the conclave on March 12, 2013 at the Vatican. Cardinals moved into the Vatican today as the suspense mounted ahead of a secret papal election with no clear frontrunner to steer the Catholic world through troubled waters after Benedict XVI's historic resignation. The 115 cardinal electors who pick the next leader of 1.2 billion Catholics in a conclave in the Sistine Chapel will live inside the Vatican walls completely cut off from the outside world until they have made their choice.

Scalia declined to speak in depth about the conference, saying, "I'd rather not be dragged into the political and cultural battles."

Courage is an officially recognized Roman Catholic apostolate - a group of religious leaders endorsed by the Vatican - and operates 100 chapters in the U.S. and in several countries around the world, according to its website.

An agenda for the four-day conference - which costs $375 to register for, including lodging - says Scalia's Saturday morning address is titled "Fearing the Lord ... and Not Being Afraid." The "commuter" charge for attending the conference is $70 per full day, or $50 per half-day.

After Scalia's address, conference workshops will include "A Model of Transformation for Persons with [Same-Sex Attractions]" by Andrew Comiskey of Living Waters Ministries. Two members of the Philadelphia branch of Courage will speak to attendees about "Taking Your Local Chapter to the Next Level."

[READ: Gay Rights Attorney Calls Justice Scalia 'An Amazingly Good Predictor']

Some workshop titles have no obvious relation to sexual orientation, including, "Sacred Imagery in Art: Visual Representation of God's Word from the Baroque to the Modern."

The agenda encourages attendees who are "struggling" with same-sex attractions to prepare for the conference with this prayer:

Lord Jesus, I consecrate my sexuality to you;

cleanse my mind, my memory, my imagination and

my dreams of all erotic content.

Grant me the gift of chastity, to bring my sexual

drive into subjection of your Holy Spirit dwelling within me.

If there be any dividedness in my heart in this regard,

please make my heart pure and simple.

Guard my weakness by your Holy Cross through

the intercession of your Mother Mary, my

guardian angel, Saint Charles Lwanga, and the

communion of saints. AMEN

Conference organizers do not currently have a hard figure for the number of attendees expected, as registration is open until July 17.

Efforts to promote chastity or reorientation for people attracted to members of the same sex are highly controversial. In June the president of Exodus International, a group with around 200 branches that has urged "reparative therapy" since 1976, apologized for his work, admitted it was often harmful or ineffective and announced the organization would close.

Watch a sermon by Scalia:

 

More News:

  • Odd Details, Possible Lead After Burglary at Whistle-Blower's Law Firm
  • Video: Ohio Kidnapping Victims Break Silence
  • TSA to Travelers: Don't Fear Muslim Practices During Ramadan