St. Andrew Principal Under Fire for Using Photo of Ellen on Invitation

"I need every single invitation returned and I will personally destroy them," St. Andrew Elementary School Principal Nancy Matteo wrote in an apology email to parents.

The principal of St. Andrew Elementary School has come under fire for using a photograph of Ellen DeGeneres on an invitation to a graduation dance.

After an uproar, Principal Nancy Matteo apologized to parents in an email saying it was “completely wrong” to use the photo because DeGeneres, who is a lesbian, lives her life outside of the teachings of the Catholic Church, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported. 

In the email to parents, she asked students to return the invitations with the picture of DeGeneres. Students will be given new invitations to the Oscar-themed school dance, the Inquirer reported.

"I need every single invitation returned and I will personally destroy them," Matteo wrote in the email, the Inquirer reported.

In the email to parents, Matteo calls the entertainer a “poor role model." She goes on to say she was “not thinking” when she sent out invitation featuring DeGeneres. 

"A role model, as defined by Webster's Dictionary, is a person who is unusually effective or inspiring in some social role, job, position, etc. This does not describe her at all. We work so hard to be good role models and then I go and do something stupid," Matteo wrote.

DeGeneres hosted the Oscars in 2014 and 2007.

Don Diego Delavega May 23, 2014 at 09:03 AM
With all that Pope Francis is doing with preaching tolerance and acceptance, what this principal and pastor have done is set back the Catholic Church decades. This is a blatant display of prejudice; if it was about race this principal would be asked to resign… But it is OK because after all the Catholic Church condones defending child abusers… And they wonder why they are losing parishioners...
Nifer May 23, 2014 at 11:04 AM
I don't understand, what does this have to do with child abusers?? This has to do with the Catholic Churchs opinion on gay and lesbian lifestyle. No one said anything about abusing children. The principal was told by the Archdiocese to eliminate the invitations because they depict a lesbian on the cover. These may not be the principal's views. But it sure is the Catholic Church's views. Again I say this whole debacle was brought on by ignorance. ( homophobic parents)
JD May 23, 2014 at 04:17 PM
To Concerned Citizen- I don't know Ms. Matteo but she left herself open to criticism by her remarks which were cruel. I truthfully believe most people don't care what was on the invitation. It was a innocent boo but her remarks were not.
Nifer May 24, 2014 at 11:31 AM
ConcernedCitizen commented on the article "St. Andrew Principal Under Fire for Using Photo of Ellen on Invitation" you commented on in Schools: I agree that she left herself open to criticism and is justifiably being criticized for her remarks. My comment was related to calling her "horrible on so many levels". I am a parent of St. Andrew students and 1) don't care about what was on the invitation, 2) don't agree with changing it and 3) thing the e-mail was completely out of line in attacking someone Mrs. Matteo has never met for things which have nothing to do with the matter at hand. Yet, I see a number of people on here attacking her character vs. addressing the remarks she made. If you have a problem with the "hate" don't be hate-filled in your response. ___________________________________________________ My response to Concerned Citizen is I don't hate anyone. If you are also a parent there you know for a fact that there are people who "hate" gay/ lesbian, etc. My comments were not directed at you. They were directed at the ignorant parents that went to the Archdiocese and reported Nancy for NOTHING. This seems so petty with all that is going on in the world and the other things that are true HATE. This whole thing is ruining Nancy's life because all she did was repeat what she was told to do by the Archdiocese. I don't see any follow up story about what the Archdiocese has to say. But I am sure they will throw Nancy under a bus the first chance they get. Nancy is a lovely human being and for these people who do not know her to SLANDER her is appalling. Principals in general get a bad wrap but I know for a fact she was being directed by the Archdiocese on how to handle this situation because of parental complaints.
Rosann May 25, 2014 at 04:40 AM
This principal handled the outcome of the invitation poorly. Although Ellen DeGeneres' lifestyle may not fall within the teachings of the Catholic Church, she is probably more Christian than a lot of Christians are. If you watch her show, she is always helping people in particular those that are less fortunate. If Pope Francis is accepting gay people into the church, then what's the issue?


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