COVINGTON, Ky. – A Catholic diocese in Kentucky ruled just hours before graduation that the student council president and openly gay valedictorian couldn’t give their planned speeches. So the pair grabbed megaphones and delivered them outside afterward.
Diocese of Covington spokesman Tim Fitzgerald told news outlets the Holy Cross High School students’ speeches weren’t submitted on time, and upon review “were political and inconsistent with the teaching of the Catholic Church.”
Valedictorian Christian Bales’ mother, Gillian Marksberry, says her son and Katherine Frantz believed their speeches were approved, before being told otherwise the morning of their Friday graduation.
Bales say the pair’s social activism likely drew scrutiny. His speech featured the repeated phrase “the young people will win,” and encouraged graduates to “perpetuate God’s will by bettering the quality of life” for communities.