By Advocate.com Editors
Originally published on Advocate.com May 02 2003 12:00 AM ET
The president of a private Jesuit high school in Omaha resigned Tuesday after the school's governing board questioned his "judgment and leadership" for inviting an openly gay man to speak during Mass. The Reverend Robert Hotz's decision sparked a buzz among students at Creighton Preparatory School in the days before his resignation. "Having the speaker at the Mass last Wednesday was just one issue in a series," Jim O'Brien, chairman of Prep's board, told the Omaha World-Herald. "It was a flash point but another incident in what we felt was a lack of correct judgment. I can't emphasize enough this is not the driving issue here.... This was the flash point."
The speaker, Don Fraynd, a 1990 Prep graduate who had taught at the school for six years, talked during Mass about the importance of service and his life as a gay man and a teacher. He also talked about how much support he gets from his male partner. Senior Paul Karrer thought the theme of Fraynd's speech was "opening up to different types of people who might not have friends. He's an openly gay guy, and apparently that really upset some of the really conservative and intolerant folks."