The president of a Catholic high school in Fridley, Minn., resigned after revealing that he is in a "committed same-sex relationship," which he admitted conflicts with the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.
"This is a deeply personal decision comes as a result of a great deal of prayer, discernment and reflection," former Totino-Grace High School President Dr. William Hudson said in a statement, according to KMSP FOX 9 News.
"Though heartbreaking and painful, I must say that it is freeing to be open about the most important thing in my life and to live an authentic life. For over 20 years I have placed service of the Catholic Church ahead of my family. I am excited to now be able [to] focus on my 2 children and my partner of 18 years as my first priority," Hudson added, who had been at the high school since 2004 and became president in 2011.
Hudson, whose last day at work was on Friday, previously served as associate executive director of the Second Schools Department of National Catholic Educational Association in Washington, D.C., and has worked with more than 1,200 Catholic high schools across the U.S.
In response, Totino-Grace school board Co-Presidents Mark Motzel and Mary Wilcox said that Hudson had served the community well and thanked him for his efforts.
"He has an excellent record of accomplishment and provided strong academic and financial stewardship at Totino-Grace during his tenure," the co-presidents stated, according to a Totino-Grace announcement.
"That said, leading a Catholic school while living in a committed same-sex relationship is not consistent with the teachings of the Catholic Church. We thank him for his service and wish him well as he explores new professional opportunities."
The school began its search for a new president and has meanwhile named Julie Michels, the school's principal, as interim president.
Catholic schools across America have maintained that their employees need to comply with the tenants of the Roman Catholic Church and its standards. In May, an Ohio Catholic teachers union refused to back a woman who was fired from her position as a physical-education teacher at a Catholic high school after it was revealed she was in a same-sex relationship.
Bishop Frederick Campbell of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Columbus insisted, however, that the teacher was not fired because of her sexual orientation, but because she appeared to be living in a "quasi-spousal relationship" with a woman, going against Catholic moral teaching.