"There was a photographer there. I do not at all remember being introduced to this photographer as a member of the press. I was never asked for an official release about images that would be taken of me or photos that would be taken of me. I thought that this photographer was there because this was [Mr. Fuller's] last Mass and he wanted a memento, a memory, of this Mass, this community, this time, when later he would be gravely ill in bed and he wanted to feel the strength and the love of the community with him. And I thought this was a professional photographer that he had hired to take some pictures to have them as memories and souvenirs for himself," he said.
The priest said that a parishioner told him about Fuller's suicide plans shortly after the Mass, at the parish social hour.
"I had absolutely no idea what his intentions were before that. The moment I learned about his intentions, I was completely stunned. I was shocked; and I was just really really puzzled. I remain very puzzled," the priest told America.
Dupont addressed a March 16 post in which Fuller claimed that he had the approval of a priest to end his own life.
"I have absolutely no reservations about what I am doing," Fuller wrote in that post. "And my pastor/sponsor has given me his blessings. And he's a Jesuit!!!"
Dupont said that he was "absolutely not" the Jesuit priest Fuller referenced, and that he did not know who the priest might be. Neither the Archdiocese of Seattle nor the West Province of the Society of Jesus have indicated what priest Fuller might have been referencing, or if the matter is under investigation.
Nor has the archdiocese addressed questions related to the parish choir's performance at the party Fuller hosted leading up to his suicide.
The archdiocese has addressed Fuller's funeral, which he scheduled with the parish prior to his suicide.
In its Aug. 28 statement, the archdiocese said that when Fuller discussed his desire for a funeral with his pastor, Fr. Maurice Mamba, the priest 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."
After it was clear Fuller would continue with his plans, Mamba contacted Archbishop Sartain, who agreed that "it is the church's responsibility to pastorally care for those who mourn. With this in mind, the archbishop 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 archdiocese said.
Fuller announced the arrangements for his own funeral one week before he died, and days before the parish blessing. He scheduled the funeral for May 17. The archdiocese did not indicate when Sartain granted permission for the funeral, or when Mamba requested it.
(Story continues below)
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For his part, Dupont said that he feels "shocked" by the attention the story has received.
"I feel absolutely terrible about the confusion that has arisen out of this story," the priest told America.
"The last thing I want to do is be part of a confusion, and I certainly have no desire to question the church's teaching on the sanctity of life."