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04/19/2007


Malta's Palace Square Explodes with Joy After Passage of Gay Civil Unions Law: VIDEO

Malta

Heavily Catholic Malta passed an historic bill on Monday night legalizing gay civil unions.

The Times of Malta reports:

There was an explosion of cheers in Palace Square as the vote was taken - 37 in favour and 30 abstentions. The façade of the palace was lit in the rainbow colours.

The opposition abstained from voting because of hesitation about gay adoptions:

The controversial law on civil unions was approved by Parliament this evening amid loud cheers and celebrations by about 1,000 people who gathered on Palace Square. The Opposition abstained. The bill puts gay partnerships on a par with marriage. Opposition leader Simon Busuttil said before the final vote that although the Opposition agreed with civil unions, it had reservations regarding child adoptions by gay couples and felt this issue deserved more study.

Check out the amazing video from Malta's Palace Square, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Plea to Pope Francis on Behalf of Homeless LGBT Youth Appears in Full-Page 'NYT' Ad

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Faith in America has taken out a full-page ad in today's New York Times to make an impassioned plea to Pope Francis on behalf of homeless LGBT youth. The letter to the Pope is written by Carl Siciliano, the executive director of the Ali Forney Center, NYC's largest shelter for homeless LGBT youth.

Read the ad HERE.

GoldWrites Faith in America founder Mitchell Gold in a press release:

"So much has been accomplished for LGBT legal equality….now we hope the next wave will be an all-out effort for LGBT spiritual equality…one that will especially protect vulnerable teens….and one that will enable all legislation to be passed. Just imagine for a moment if so many of the kids that have killed themselves did not grow up being taught that homosexuality was sinful….if when they came out to their parents they were totally embraced rather than being told they were “disappointed” and needed counseling….if they felt they had family and church to turn to?

"I’ve come to see that in the final analysis it is this “sin” hurdle that is the basis for too many to be against LGBT equality and it is clearly one of the most harmful parts of an LGBT teen’s life. Just a few months ago a precious 13 year old in my community told me how he agonizingly contemplated suicide for over a tortuous year. Why? Because he thought he was a sinner. On a very basic, simple level I believe we must dismantle this wall of outdated, misguided and ill-informed religious teachings. Not an easy task….but one that has to be done…..by all of us, with a concerted effort."

A Facebook page was also launched to accompany the ad.


NYC School Forbids Student to Attend Prom with Transgender Date: VIDEO

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Martin Luther High School, a Lutheran school in Maspeth, Queens, NYC, is forbidding one of its students, Anais Celini, from coming to prom with her boyfriend Nathaniel Baez because he is transgender, WPIX reports:

“The school said to me that his transition is unconventional and it’s not what he feels beneficial to letting him come to prom,” Celini told PIX11 News exclusively.

Baez said he feels bad for his girlfriend. “It’s hard because I really wanted her to be able to go to prom with her friends and me, as well,” Baez said. “It is one of the stepping stones in high school.” Baez said even if they’re barred from the May 22 dance, he will plan his own private prom weekend for his girlfriend.

Watch the couple's interview with WPIX, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Notre Dame Releases Powerful Video Featuring Gay Tennis Player Matt Dooley and Teammates: VIDEO

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Notre Dame University has released a powerful and inspiring video profiling Matt Dooley, a tennis player who came out of the closet to his coaches and teammates several weeks ago.

In the clip (which is accompanied by an article), Dooley speaks about the struggles he faced being in the closet and also some emotional interviews with his teammate Greg Andrews and head coach about what it means to them to share the experience of his coming out.

Says Dooley: "I started to realize obviously that a lot of it was a problem with me. That I wasn't allowing myself to be successful, and to accept myself, and accept the trust and love of my parents."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

(via outsports)

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Students at Catholic HS Reject Nun's Offensive Speech About Homosexuality: VIDEO

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An assistant theology professor at a Catholic high school in Charlotte, NC has caused a furor among students with a speech about homosexuality. We reported on this back in March but it has since blown up.

The kids aren't having it, and have alerted their parents to the nun's nonsense, USA Today reports:

Administrators at Charlotte Catholic High School met Wednesday with about 900 parents who learned about the March 21 speech from their children, upset at Sister Jane Dominic Laurel's assertion that homosexuality occurs mainly as a result of parents' shortcomings and pornography. Students said the assistant professor of theology at Aquinas College in Nashville, Tenn., told them that single and divorced parents caused kids to become gay; that homosexuals cannot live normal, productive lives; and that gays can't be good parents.

About half of the one-hour talk centered on homosexuality, according to a statement from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte's official newspaper.

Some parents at the 1,400-student school say they wanted to know about the topic of the assembly ahead of time and would not have allowed their kids to stay.

Watch the WCNC report, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Hawaii Catholic Schools Implement New Contract: Gay Teachers Can Be Fired

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A new teaching contract approved by the Hawaii Catholic schools office states that any educator can be fired if they engage in “homosexual activity” or marry someone of the same sex. The Huffington Post reports:

“The school expressly reserves the right to terminate the employment of any Teacher, who by word or example, denies the teachings or authority of the Church, or whose personal life or conduct is, based on Catholic teaching, immoral,” says a portion of the contract that was obtained by Honolulu Civil Beat.

The contract, which is called the "Standard Teacher Employment Agreement," is for full- and part-time teachers who must sign it every year they work.

HCS-StampThe contract, which is slated to go into effect for the 2014-2015 school year, explicitly says “homosexual activity” and “same-sex unions” are not permitted. The contract also lists other acts that could justify firing, including abortion, in vitro fertilization, or “unmarried cohabitation.”

Michael Rockers, the superintendent of all Hawaii Roman Catholic schools, said that while the provision is new, the expectations outlined in it are not.

He said the ultimate goal is to provide positive role models for students and that if a teacher's homosexuality were made public it would negatively affect the children.

“We want to be authentic about what our moral teaching is,” he said. “We’re trying to be pastoral about this and centered on what’s best for the students.”

Rockers said the written provision was not a response to last year’s legalization of same-sex marriage in Hawaii. 


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