Three priests and a former priest in the United Kingdom have accused anti-gay Cardinal Keith O'Brien of what The Observer reports as "inappropriate behaviour" involving the men. The newspaper lists the claims by the four (referred to as Priests A, B, C & D) which go back 33 years:
It is understood that the first allegation against the cardinal dates back to 1980. The complainant, who is now married, was then a 20-year-old seminarian at St Andrew's College, Drygrange, where O'Brien was his "spiritual director". The Observer understands that the statement claims O'Brien made an inappropriate approach after night prayers.
In a second statement, "Priest A" describes being happily settled in a parish when he claims he was visited by O'Brien and inappropriate contact between the two took place.
In a third statement, "Priest B" claims that he was starting his ministry in the 1980s when he was invited to spend a week "getting to know" O'Brien at the archbishop's residence. His statement alleges that he found himself dealing with what he describes as unwanted behaviour by the cardinal after a late-night drinking session.
"Priest C" was a young priest the cardinal was counselling over personal problems. Priest C's statement claims that O'Brien used night prayers as an excuse for inappropriate contact.
Through a spokesperson, the Cardinal has already responded to the charges: "Cardinal O'Brien contests these claims and is taking legal advice."
The Pope might even weigh in with his thoughts.
O'Brien has in the past referred to marriage equality as "harmful to the physical, mental and spiritual well-being of those involved."
O'Brien, who is expected to be one of 117 Cardinals who select the new Pope once Benedict steps down on Thursday, had himself been set to retire next month.
It happened at the Oz bar in Phoenix a week ago and thankfully no one was hurt. Watch a news clip about the episode, AFTER THE JUMP.
In what is being called a groundbreaking decision, the Kansas Supreme Court ruled Friday that the nonbiological mother of two children who was in a long-term lesbian relationship can have the same parental rights as the biological mother.
The case involves Kelly Goudschaal (who carried the children after undergoing artificial insemination) and her former partner, Marci Frazier. The Kansas City Star reports:
The couple had signed a co-parenting agreement that stated Frazier’s “relationship with the children should be protected and promoted,” and that they intended “to jointly and equally share parental responsibility.” After they separated, Goudschaal began limiting Frazier’s visitations and moved with the children to Texas.
Frazier filed a legal action seeking to have the parenting agreement enforced. After a trial, Johnson County District Judge Kevin Moriarty found that joint custody was “in the best interests of the children.”
Goudschaal was granted residential custody. Frazier was ordered to pay monthly child support and was granted “reasonable parenting time.”
As for the court's decision:
The Supreme Court said in Friday’s decision: “We have declared that the public policy in Kansas requires our courts to act in the best interests of the children when determining the legal obligations to be imposed and the rights to be conferred in the mother and child relationship.”
The court said that “what Goudschaal really wants is to renege on the co-parenting agreement without regard to the rights of or harm to the children, all in the name of constitutionally protected parental rights. “Surely, her constitutional rights do not stretch that far.”
Not enforcing the parenting agreement would deny the children the opportunity to have two parents as children in a traditional marriage would have, according to the court.
“The agreement is not injurious to the public because it provides the children with the resources of two persons, rather than leaving them as the fatherless children of an artificially inseminated mother,” the court ruled.