The Anglican Bishop of Peru has said the “very lamentable” manner of Fr. Alberto Cutié’s entry of the Episcopal Church following a sex scandal will cause “deep problems” between the two communions.
He remarked it was “too early” to have the former Catholic priest and media personality preach at Episcopal Sunday services like he did on Sunday.
The Anglican website VirtueOnline.org reports that Anglican Bishop of Peru Bill Godfrey spoke about Fr. Cutié in an interview with Peru’s RPP-TV.
The issue of Cutié's conversion affects Bishop Godfrey since the Episcopal Church is part of the Worldwide Anglican Communion.
“Changing from one Church to another is not like changing shirts,” Bishop Godfrey explained, adding that the former Catholic priest’s actions are still generating many “polemical” commentaries.
"The pictures of Fr. Alberto together with his divorced girlfriend, Ruhama Bunil Canellis, as well as the controversial pictures have shaken Catholicism,” the Anglican bishop said.
“I believe every person acts according to their conscience, it is a personal decision, but I believe it very lamentable that it happened this way because to move from one communion to another will cause problems between the two churches,” he continued, according to Virtue Online.
The bishop said it was “sad” that the “talented” and influential Fr. Cutié did not convert in “a more discreet manner.”
“I am not one to judge or criticize but he wounded many people who held him as an example.”
Bishop Godfrey said a process of “adaptation” would have been advisable for the former Catholic priest.
“It is not like changing shirts and then saying everything is alright. I think it is too early to let him preach… given the circumstances it would have been more prudent to wait till the scandal subsided.”
Last week, Episcopal Bishop of Southeast Florida Leo Frade said he was “excited and pleased” to announce Fr. Cutié’s reception into the Episcopal Church. The former Catholic priest delivered a homily in an Episcopal Church on Sunday.
The Catholic Archbishop of Miami John C. Favalora reported that he was not informed of the priest’s decision. He said the cleric’s actions “have caused grave scandal within the Catholic Church, harmed the Archdiocese of Miami − especially our priests – and led to division within the ecumenical community and the community at large.”
The announcement of Fr. Cutié’s conversion “only deepens those wounds,” Archbishop Favalora said.