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Priest punished for allowing Sabrina Carpenter to film 'provocative' music video inside Catholic church

By John Patrick Magno Ranara Published Nov 30, 2023 2:59 pm

A priest is facing the consequences for allowing singer and actress Sabrina Carpenter to film a music video inside a Catholic church.

According to a report by The New York Times carried by PEOPLE, Monsignor Gigantiello was relieved of his administrative duties over a church in Williamsburg, Brooklyn after allowing Carpenter to film a music video for her hit song Feather, which was released on Oct. 31. 

The artist could be seen near the end of the video singing and dancing to the lyrics of her song around the pews and altar while wearing a black tulle and veil. There were also faux coffins placed around the altar, which referred to how she killed the men who have wronged her and watched their deaths take place.

In the report, it was revealed that Gigantiello was stripped of his title two days after the release of the music video. The Diocese of Brooklyn explained in a statement shared with the Catholic News Agency that the priest gave permission to Carpenter's team to shoot inside the church despite not having followed the proper protocols. 

"The parish did not follow diocesan policy regarding the filming on Church property, which includes a review of the scenes and script," the statement read.

The Diocese further stated that Bishop Robert Brennan was "appalled at what was filmed at Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary Church in Brooklyn."

In a letter posted on the church’s Facebook page, Gigantiello apologized for the issue, reasoning that he agreed to have the artist film inside the church to "further strengthen the bonds between the young creative artists who make up a large part of this community and the parish." He added that his online search about the artist "did not reveal anything questionable."

"The parish staff and I were not aware that anything provocative was occurring in the church nor were we aware that faux coffins and other funeral items would be placed in the sanctuary," Gigantiello wrote.

"While I take full responsibility for the erroneous decision to allow the filming, I want to assure you that I had no knowledge that such a scene would be filmed in our church which we worked so hard to restore in its present sacred beauty," he added.

According to The New York Times, however,  the pastor said in an email that he was aware there would be a funeral scene in the video, but the final version of the visual was "not what was initially presented" to him.

Meanwhile, Carpenter gave her reaction to the controversy in an interview with Variety, saying, "We got approval in advance, and Jesus was a carpenter."

Feather is a song from the artist's fifth studio album Emails I Can't Send Fwd: