Catholic priest accused of refusing to perform last rites to man after finding out he is gay

Ronald Plishka survived heart attack and is still furious: 'The doctors came in and told me to calm down or I’m going to have another heart attack'

Catholic priest accused of refusing to perform last rites to man after finding out he is gay
18 February 2014

Lifelong Catholic Ronald Plishka thought the end was near after he suffered a heart attack earlier this month and asked a nurse at the hospital to summon a priest.

Plishka, a 63 year old from Washington DC, wanted to be administered communion and last rites.

The priest, working as a chaplain at D.C.’s Washington Hospital Center,  allegedly refused after Plishka mentioned that he is gay.

‘He would not do it,’ the retired travel agent tells Washington Blade.

‘By him not doing it I assumed he would not do it because why was he getting ready to do it and all of a sudden when I say I’m gay he stops?’

Plishka said the priest, Father Brian Coelho, offered instead to pray with him.

‘He wanted to pray. That’s what he wanted to do. He said, "Well I could pray with you." And I just told him to get the fuck out of here – excuse me. But that’s what I told him.’

‘And then the doctors came in and told me to calm down or I’m going to have another heart attack,’ he said.

A hospital spokeswoman said Plishka’s complaints are being takejn seriously and pointed out that last year, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation recognized the Washington facility as a ‘Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality.’

The Archdiocese of Washington did not have comment on the matter, according to The Blade.

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