Paul Ryan: Patrick Conroy will remain as House chaplain

In scathing letter, House Chaplain rescinds resignation after feud with Paul Ryan

House chaplain from Oregon rescinds resignation after furor over his ouster by Paul Ryan

The veteran United States House chaplain, a beloved Jesuit priest, will continue with his ministry to the chamber's four hundred and thirty five voting members after Speaker Paul Ryan backed down and assented to Conroy's wish to rescind the resignation he had unhappily offered last month at Ryan's behest.

"I have accepted Father Conroy's letter and decided that he will remain in his position as Chaplain of the House", Ryan said, according to The Hill.

Ryan has said the reason he pressured Conroy to resign was because he didn't believe members were being "adequately served".

The Speaker has said concerns about Conroy's "pastoral services" were behind his decision. He writes, "It is my job as speaker to do what is best for the body, and I know that this body is not well-served by a protracted fight over such an important post".

"You may wish to outright "fire" me, if you have the authority to do so", Father Conroy wrote to Mr Ryan, "but should you wish to terminate my services, it will be without my offer of resignation, as you requested". Instead, Conroy says top Ryan aide Jonathan Burks told him the speaker wanted his resignation, and cited a prayer a year ago that was potentially critical of the GOP tax bill. Ryan has said he was dissatisfied with Conroy's pastoral care to lawmakers. Ryan himself is Catholic.

However, Conroy insisted to the New York Times that Ryan told him after the 2017 prayer: "Padre, you've got to stay out of politics".

In his letter Thursday, he said that Ryan's Chief of Staff Jonathan Burks had told him that the speaker was asking him to resign.

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Conroy's resignation sparked an uproar last week when it became known that he was asked to quit.

Earlier this week, Ryan discussed his decision to fire Conroy at a conservative summit hosted by The Weekly Standard. "I am disappointed by the misunderstanding, but wish him the best as he continues to serve the House".

Burks said in a statement, "I strongly disagree with Father Conroy's recollection of our conversation".

Ryan has said numerous lawmakers complained to him about Conroy's services but none have spoken publicly about their criticism, which created a vacuum that Conroy and his defenders filled.

In case you missed the beginning of the saga, Conroy announced he was stepping down as Chaplain not long ago, and then last week it came out that he had been pushed to resign by Ryan and/or his staff. "[Pat has] counseled people and tended to their personal and spiritual needs", said Gerry Connolly, a Democrat from Virginia, who co-wrote a letter with Republican Walter B. Jones requesting more information around Conroy's firing. Such a requirement would automatically exclude Catholic priests from the position.

The chaplain for the U.S. House of Representatives is rescinding his resignation.

Conroy's letter claims the discrepancy between the public and private explanations persuaded him to reverse his decision.

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