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Latino Labor Group Stands Up To Catholic Church, Refuses To Cut Ties With LGBT-Friendly Allies

Voz

The Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) has threatened to cut funding to a Latino workers rights organization if it refuses to cut ties with other groups that support marriage equality, reports Think Progress.

Voz, which primarily helps Latino immigrants find work in Portland, Oregon, does not take a position on marriage equality. However, when faced with the decision to end it’s association with Latino rights group the National Council of La Raza or lose $75,000 of it’s $310,000 annual budget, Voz leaders “self-disqualified” the group by voting to continue the affiliation.

The CCHD is subject to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, a longtime opponent of marriage equality.

In a press release, Romeo Sosa, Executive Director of Voz, wrote:

“CCHD forced the question of Marriage Equality into the grant process. Ultimately we are an organization that does not discriminate; many of us know people who are gay, lesbian and transgender. They are our aunts and uncles, nephews and nieces, friends, co-workers and neighbors.”

However, other local organizations are now rushing in to support Voz. Spokespeople from the Oregon AFL-CIO and Basic Rights Oregon hosted a news conference on Wednesday to declare their solidarity with Voz, and Basic Rights Oregon has already received nearly $10,000 in pledges from pro-LGBT organizations.

Call To Action, a Catholic social justice group, has launched an online Groundswell petition asking the CCHD to “stop bullying social justice organizations with litmus tests over LGBT equality.”

The CCHD’s decision is seen by some as hypocritical given that Catholic groups are currently lobbying President Barack Obama for exemptions from a pending executive order barring federal contractors from discriminating against LGBT employees.


Anti-Gay Archbishop Nienstedt Under Investigation For Sexual Misconduct With Men

John Nienstedt

In news that should surprise approximately no one, a virulently anti-gay Catholic church leader is being investigated for sexual impropriety with other males. Minnesota's Archbishop John Nienstedt is presently under investigation for inappropriate sexual conduct with seminarians, priests, and other men, allegations that Nienstedt denies.

Said church whistle-blower Jennifer Haselberger to Commonweal magazine:

I believe that the investigators have received about ten sworn statements alleging sexual impropriety on the part of the archbishop dating from his time as a priest in the Archdiocese of Detroit, as Bishop of New Ulm, and while coadjutor and archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis. [He] also stands accused of retaliating against those who refused his advances or otherwise questioned his conduct.

Well, at least this time his accusations are coming from adults instead of children.


Elton John Says Jesus Would Support Gay Marriage - VIDEO

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There's a new interview with Sir Elton John, covering topics ranging from his favorite charities (SportsAid) to his plans for marriage to partner David Furnish and his views on the Catholic church.

On this latter topic, the interviewer presses John on whether he believes LGBT priests should be able to get married. What results is a fantastic little tangent:

Of course [they should]. And I don't see why Catholic priests have to be celibate. It's crazy. These are old and stupid things. And the church hierarchy might be, you know, 'up-in-arms' about it, the traditionalists. [But] the times have changed. We live in a different time. If Jesus Christ were alive today... I cannot see him as the Christian person that he was and the great person that he was saying 'this cannot happen.' He was all above love and compassion, and forgiveness, and trying to bring people together. And that's what the church should be about.

Watch the interview, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Elton John Says Jesus Would Support Gay Marriage - VIDEO" »


Vatican Says Catholic Church Must Become More Inclusive Towards Gays and Their Families

A newly released Vatican document calls on the Catholic Church to be less judgmental towards gays and encourages dioceses to welcome children of gay couples into the faith with equal dignity - further signaling the Church’s shifting tone on LGBT issues.

VaticanThe 75-page document, based on responses to a questionnaire sent to dioceses around the world, will be discussed at a Vatican meeting of the bishops this October.

Reuters reports:

While the new document did not signal any immediate change in the Church's condemnation of homosexual acts and its opposition to gay marriage and to the adoption of children by gay people, it used language that was remarkably less judgmental and more compassionate than past Vatican statements.

It said that while bishops remained opposed to governments "redefining" marriage by permitting same-sex unions, the Church had to find a balance between its teachings on the traditional family "and a respectful, non-judgmental attitude towards people living in such unions."

Pope FrancisWhile ex-Pope Benedict called homosexuality “intrinsically disordered,” and an obstacle to world peace, Pope Francis has led the effort to "rebrand" the Church in a more LGBT-inclusive direction, saying last July "If someone is gay and is searching for the Lord and has good will, then who am I to judge him?"  

Reuters continues:

The document noted that a number of Catholics who responded to the questionnaire felt "a certain unease at the challenge of accepting these people with a merciful spirit and, at the same time, holding to the moral teaching of the Church ..."

"However, when people living in such unions request a child's baptism, almost all the responses emphasize that the child must be received with the same care, tenderness and concern which is given to other children," it said.


Dominican Cardinal Tells U.S. Ambassador to ‘Take His Gay Pride Elsewhere’

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Nicolás de Jesús López Rodríguez, a Catholic Cardinal from the Dominican Republic who has previously referred to U.S. Ambassador James “Wally” Brewster as a maricón (Spanish slur for “faggot”), is again voicing his displeasure with the idea of an openly gay man serving as ambassador to his Caribbean nation.

Dominican Today reports:

Cardinal Nicolas de Jesus Lopez Rodríguez on Thursday again railed against the openly gay U.S. Ambassador, asking James Brewster to "take his pride elsewhere," and reminded him that diplomacy is used to promote relations, moral values, trade agreements and mutual cooperation among the world's countries.

"Diplomacy is not for that sort of thing, an absolutely negative propaganda," the Archbishop of Santo Domingo told reporters who asked about a video released by the U.S. Embassy, where Brewster and his husband Bob Satawake promote the celebration of "Gay Pride Month” in June.

The cardinal spoke after heading a mass to mark Corpus Christi in San Antonio parish, in the Gazcue sector.

"I am totally against that, everybody knows it, my position is not new, not because this man with this kind of attitude has now arrived."

When Brewster was first nominated last year, a group of conservative Dominican Republic religious leaders organized a 'black armband' protest against what was seen as an "insult to good Dominican customs"


Former NOM Official Calls for Catholic Church to Excommunicate Nancy Pelosi

Former NOM Communications Director Thomas Peters is suggesting that the Catholic Church should excommunicate Nancy Pelosi for urging San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone to drop out of NOM's hateful March for Marriage. Cordileone, as we mentioned earlier, says he's going.

PetersWrites Peters on CatholicVote.org:

I can think of about a thousand things that Nancy Pelosi and Archbishop Cordileone should have a chat about. Her lecturing her archbishop on the church’s teaching ain’t one of them.

The gall of this woman is unbelievable. And what she and dozens of politicians are doing by publicly demanding that the archbishop withdraw from the event should anger us. Because if the church is our family, we need to respond when our family is under attack.

Massa_pelosiPeters calls Pelosi a false Catholic and says the church should get rid of her:

Pelosi can still do damage and cause scandal because she can still claim to be Catholic. To the average bystander, and to lots of Catholics, Pelosi is as Catholic as you or me. She goes to Mass. She receives Communion. She refers to herself as Catholic and talks about her faith in the public square. Sure, some bishops don’t always have nice things to say about her, but they never do anything about it. Pelosi herself seems to believe that she is still safely within the fold.

If words can’t reach Pelosi, maybe excommunication would.

Such a dramatic act would not only serve as the necessary wake-up call to Pelosi, it would also help protect the rest of us.

GLAAD's CAP has a lovely list of all the nice things Peters has said about gay people.


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