The Daily Caller | 2/12/2019 | Staff
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A North Carolina priest defended his decision Monday to cancel a **** city councilwoman’s speech at a Catholic high school, saying it was his duty.

Immaculate Conception Church Rev. Chris VanHaight faced public backlash from Durham City Council member and school alumna Vernetta Alston for canceling a speech at Immaculata Catholic School for black history month.

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“Regrettably, I understand from a variety of reports that a number of groups are planning demonstrations at our school that day, to register their respective opinions regarding Vernetta Alston, an Immaculata alumna and Durham City Council member who initially had been listed as one of the event speakers,” VanHaight said in a letter to parents. “As pastor, I cannot place our Immaculata students into this contentious environment.”

The priest later clarified to news outlets that his decision was also based on his charge to uphold Catholic teaching on marriage and sexuality, which teaches that marriage is between a man and a woman.

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“It can be difficult to balance being clear about what the Church teaches and trying to be open and welcoming to all people, but that is my role as pastor,” VanHaight wrote in an email to The News & Observer. “I informed the diocese after I made the decision and they were fully supportive. I do deeply regret that although I had no intention of disrespecting Ms. Alston that is exactly what happened....
(Excerpt) Read more at: The Daily Caller
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