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The interior of St. Patrick's Cathedral located in New York, New York. (Photo by Jeremy Huang via Unsplash)

'Sacrilege': Trans Activists Turn Funeral Into 'Desecration of St. Patrick's Cathedral'

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The funeral of a transgender activist in an iconic New York cathedral elicited a denunciation of the event by a senior church official, who called the mass a scandal within one of the preeminent houses of worship in U.S. Catholicism.

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York condemned the funeral of Cecilia Gentili, which was held in St. Patrick's Cathedral in Manhattan and drew a large audience on Thursday.

Gentili died Feb. 6 at the age of 52, according to an Instagram post. But it was the disturbing antics at the self-proclaimed atheist's funeral that led the cathedral to hold a rare "Mass of Reparation" for the funeral that Catholic leaders are calling "sacrilegious."

A church service of this type is to make "reparation for sin," according to the Catholic Encyclopedia. 

slider img 2An estimated crowd of more than 1,000, packed into the church and cheered as eulogists led them in praying for transgender rights and access to gender-affirming health care, according to The New York Times.  

But that wasn't all they did. The mourners also mocked Catholic saints and repeatedly celebrated "whores" during the service, according to The Daily Signal

During the funeral, a photograph of Gentili was on display near the altar with a halo and the Spanish words for "transvestite," "whore," "blessed," and "mother" above the text of Psalm 25, The Times reported. 

A livestream of the service also showed one of the speakers, who was identified by the outlet as Oscar Diaz, describing Gentili as "This whore. This great whore. St. Cecilia, Mother of all Whores!" In response, the audience began clapping and cheering with many choosing to stand. 

Diaz's words apparently were in reference to the Catholic saint Cecilia. She is one of the most famous virgin martyrs of the Catholic Church and the patron saint of musicians, according to The Daily Signal. Cecilia is believed to have been executed by the Roman Empire for refusing to give up her Christian faith.

The service's organizer Ceyenne Doroshow, a biological man who identifies as a woman, led the audience in chanting, "Cecilia! Cecilia! Cecilia!" before describing the late Gentili as a "saint" and comparing Gentili to Jesus, who "ministered to all," the outlet reported. 

"Except on Easter Sunday we don't really have a crowd that is this well turned out," Father Edward Dougherty, who presided over the service said as the audience of trans activists applauded and cheered. 

The conservative group CatholicVote called the service "unbelievable and sick" in a post on X.

In a separate post, the Rev. Nicholas Gregoris, a co-founder of the Priestly Society of Saint John Henry Cardinal Newman, called the event a "blasphemous & sacrilegious fiasco... a deplorable desecration of America's most famous Catholic Church. Revolting!"

In a statement released Saturday, the Rev. Enrique Salvo, pastor of Saint Patrick's thanked people he said had informed the church that they "share our outrage over the scandalous behavior" at the funeral.

"The Cathedral only knew that family and friends were requesting a funeral Mass for a Catholic, and had no idea our welcome and prayer would be degraded in such a sacrilegious and deceptive way," Salvo said.

"That such a scandal occurred at 'America's Parish Church' makes it worse; that it took place as Lent was beginning, the annual forty–day struggle with the forces of sin and darkness, is a potent reminder of how much we need the prayer, reparation, repentance, grace, and mercy to which this holy season invites us," he continued. 

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About The Author

Steve Warren is a senior multimedia producer for CBN News. Warren has worked in the news departments of television stations and cable networks across the country. In addition, he also worked as a producer-director in television production and on-air promotion. A Civil War historian, he authored the book The Second Battle of Cabin Creek: Brilliant Victory. It was the companion book to the television documentary titled Last Raid at Cabin Creek currently streaming on Amazon Prime. He holds an M.A. in Journalism from the University of Oklahoma and a B.A. in Communication from the University of