A Catholic high school in Kentucky barred two students from speaking just hours before graduation.

The Diocese of Covington said that the speeches “were political and inconsistent with the teaching of the Catholic Church.”

Katherine Frantz, the student council president at Holy Cross High School, and Christian Bales, the valedictorian, each grabbed a megaphone and delivered their speeches after the ceremony ended. Bales' mother said that both students believed their speeches were approved.

Bales, who is gay, told NBC affiliate WLWT that his speech included a message of “empowerment through youth.”

“As we enter into the real world, we must remember that we have a voice,” said Bales over the megaphone on the school's front lawn. “Throughout the past four years at Holy Cross, I’ve learned how to utilize my voice to advocate for my beliefs as an ethical individual. I faced opposition in a number of scenarios, but my voice has continued to grow in intensity as I face more adversity. Rather than allowing opposition to silence us, we must utilize it as empowerment.”

Officials informed the students on the morning of their Friday graduation that they would not be allowed to speak at the school's graduation ceremony.