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Top Catholics And Evangelicals: Gay Marriage Worse Than Divorce

Divorce is something that is roundly condemned in the Bible, and depending on the level of conservativeness of one's place of worship, cohabitation - that is, lovers living together without being married; though sometimes even just opposite-sex individuals sharing an apartment counts, even if the two have no romantic connection - is just as taboo. So why is it that that gay marriage has church leaders worked into a froth that exceeds the other two by leaps and bounds? 

Because gay marriage is worse, of course.

6a00d8341c730253ef01761769e740970c-800wiThat's right, even though Jesus himself has literally nothing to say about same-sex marriage but explicitly says divorce is a no-no, nearly 50 high-level Catholic and evangelical leaders (including pastor Rick Warren and former NOM Head Maggie Gallagher) signed off on a 5000-word manifesto to be released in the March edition of conservative journal First Things that says,

[W]hat the state defines as marriage no longer embodies God’s purposes in creation. An easy acceptance of divorce damages marriage; widespread cohabitation devalues marriage. But so-called same-sex marriage is a graver threat, because what is now given the name of marriage in law is a parody of marriage.

Of course, no anti-gay screed is complete without mention of the good men and women who have lost their livelihoods for standing up for what is right:

[Some people] are already being censured and others have lost their jobs because of their public commitment to marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

Of course, no one has lost their jobs because of their public commitment to heterosexual marriage; they have lost their jobs for refusing to abide by the laws of the land, which in most places now mandate recognition of civil gay marriages, which is a very different thing. But what does the truth matter? It's not like the bible has any mandate against lying, right? At least, not a mandate that's any more explicit and important than the nearly 20 passages about divorce?

Other than that one.


Bishop Hyperventilates Over Catholic Hospital Giving Equality To Gay Employees

St Louis Archdiocese

Mercy Health employs over 40,000 individuals over seven states in its Catholic health care system, so to better meet the needs of all of their employees they have announced that they "will extend benefits to all legally married spouses effective this spring." Which includes legally married gay spouses.

Bishop James V. Johnston of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau in Missouri went apoplectic over the decision and wasted no time in going forward with unrestrained hyperbole, saying:

Bishop James V JohnstonNo believing Christian worthy of the name should violate God’s law because of ‘regulations.’ Our ancestors refused to abandon the faith even when subjected to the cruelty and torture of the Roman Empire, but in our age unspecified ‘regulations,’ government funds, and fear of public ridicule is sufficient in order to secure the compliance of some.

Johnston remarkably refrained from invoking Godwin's Law. The Archdiocese of St. Louis was marginally more restrained:

It is simply inconsistent to claim to be a Catholic institution while publicly acting against Church teaching.

The Archdiocese did not mention how providing legal - not religious - recognition to same sex couples and the attendant benefits and protections is acting against Church teaching. Unless the Church teaching is to make life miserable for all nonbelievers, which seems to be sort of the opposite of the teachings of the Bible.


Ireland To Introduce Gay Adoption Law Prior To Same-Sex Marriage Referendum: VIDEO

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The Irish government has announced that legislation providing for adoption by gay couples will be enacted before the forthcoming referendum on same-sex marriage, reports the Irish Times.

The government also today announced the exact wording that people will vote on in the May referendum: “Marriage may be contracted in accordance with law by two persons without distinction as to their sex.”

The announcement in relation to adoption by gay couples comes following the first televised debate earlier this week on the same-sex marriage referendum during which potential pitfalls on the issue of gay adoption were revealed.

Actor Colin Farrell had pre-recorded an interview with host Claire Byrne in which he spoke passionately about his support for equal rights and how growing up with a gay brother and seeing him be at "the tail end of the whip of intolerance" left an indelible impression on him.

Frances_Fitzgerald_2014Whereas existing laws state that only married couples or sole applicants can seek to adopt a child, proposed changes would extend the right to adopt to same-sex partners. The reform will be part of the Children and Family Relationships Bill, the general scheme of which was published early last year, with a revised version published last September by current minister for justice Frances Fitzgerald (right).

The bill on same-sex marriage - along with a bill dealing with another referendum on reducing the age at which an individual can contest the presidential election from 35 to 21 - is expected to be published shortly and to be debated by both Houses of the Oireachtas in the coming weeks.

Earlier today we reported that the Union of Students in Ireland has launched the Vote For Love campaign in support of same-sex marriage. Watch the campaign video, AFTER THE JUMP...

In December, the Bishop of Elphin Kevin Doran (above) released a manifesto outlining the reasons behind the Catholic Church's continuing war against equal rights for gay people.

Last weekend, Ireland's health minister Leo Varadkar announced that he is gay. Earlier today, Labour politician Dominic Hannigan announced that he married his partner of 20 years Chris, in London on New Year's Eve.

Continue reading "Ireland To Introduce Gay Adoption Law Prior To Same-Sex Marriage Referendum: VIDEO" »


FOX News' Bret Baier: I Pulled Out of Anti-Gay Catholic Conference Because It Doesn't 'Line Up With the Loving Church I Know'

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As we've been reporting, the rabidly anti-gay Catholic group Legatus found itself at the center of a controversy after activist and Good As You blogger Jeremy Hooper highlighted the extreme and disturbing views held by the organization including labeling same-sex attraction as a disorder and recommending conversion therapy. As a result, three individuals slated to headline the group's annual conference, actor Gary Sinise, Fox News anchor Bret Baier and MoltonCoors Chair Pete Coors all pulled out of the event. 

At the time of Baiers' withdrawal, Fox News released a statement saying Baier "was unaware" of anti-gay articles published by Legatus' magazine or "the controversy surrounding them.” 

Now, in an email addressed to hatemonger Peter La Barbera of Americans for the Truth About Homosexuality, Baier confirms that while Fox did ask him to pull out of the event, he also backed out due to his own views on sexual orientation and faith, views that for Baier are diametrically opposed to Legatus':

I pulled out of the speech at Fox’s request — because of the controversy surrounding some of these articles and editorials that have been published in the Legatus magazine [...]

I am a lifelong mass attending Catholic – I’m a lector at my parish. I consider myself to be in line with my Church on most things. This isn’t about me.. but, describing homosexuality as a ‘disorder’ and talking about ways to ‘cure’ people from it – does not seem to line up with the loving, accepting Church that I know. Nor does it match up with how Pope Francis has talked about the issue recently. 

I couldn’t speak because of that – I don’t wish the group any harm, but after Gary Sinise pulled out.. as a newsman, Fox agreed that I could not be surrounded by that controversy… as much as I would have loved to have talked about my book, my faith, and my son’s battle with congenital heart disease. 

That is the truth. 

I hope you and others can understand. If not.. I wish you well with your viewing. 

Peter LaBarbera meanwhile was none too pleased with Baier's response, blasting Fox News for "directly [financing] and [sponsoring] pro-”gay” media events that promote homosexual behavior and ideology–including same-sex 'marriage'–condemned by the Catholic Church." 

[h/t Jeremy Hooper]


Pope Francis Warns of 'Insidious Attacks' Against the Family, Tells Catholics Not to Breed 'Like Rabbits'

Francis

Closing out his four day trip to the Philippines with an outdoor homily in Manila earlier today, Pope Francis railed against "insidious attacks" against the family in a thinly veiled reference to gay rights, the AP reports:

Pope Francis denounced Monday what he calls the "ideological colonization" of families and the developing world, where he says progressive, Western ideas about birth control and gay rights are increasingly being imposed by groups, institutions or individual nations — often as a condition for development aid.

Francis said Catholics don't have to "be like rabbits" and have more children than is safe or responsible. He said there are plenty of church-approved ways to regulate births. But he said most importantly, no outside institution should impose its views on families. [...]

During the Vatican's recent meeting on the family, African bishops denounced how aid groups and lending institutions often condition their assistance on a country's compliance with their ideals: allowing health care workers to distribute condoms, or withdrawing assistance if legislation discriminating against gays is passed.

"When imposed conditions come from imperial colonizers, they search to make people lose their own identity and make a sameness," he said. "This is ideological colonization."

Earlier in his trip, Pope Francis had warned gay marriage threatened to make the family "disposable."

A record 6 million people were believed to have gathered on the streets of Manila to hear the pope's speech today. Watch footage of the cheering crowd, AFTER THE JUMP...

In related news, Pope Francis is planning to address a joint session of Congress and visit the White House during a trip to D.C. this September. 

Continue reading "Pope Francis Warns of 'Insidious Attacks' Against the Family, Tells Catholics Not to Breed 'Like Rabbits' " »


North Carolina Catholic School Fires Gay Teacher: VIDEO

Lonnie Billard

In yet another case of anti-gay discrimination in Catholic schools, Charlotte Roman Catholic diocese, North Carolina fired teacher Lonnie Billard (above left, with his partner Rich) after he announced his engagement on Facebook, reports the Advocate.

Before his dismissal, retired Billard had continued to work as a regular substitute teacher in Charlotte Catholic High School.

Although the diocese has claimed that the school made the decision, Billard has challenged this version of events:

“This was not a decision by Charlotte Catholic High School. I had talked with one of the administration officials. He knew [about the engagement announcement]. He didn’t care. He said he knew me to be a good teacher and a good person.

“Apparently there were a couple teachers there who are super-conservative Catholic. They are not friends of mine on Facebook, but they found out about it and escalated it so it got to the diocese.

I knew the Catholic Church is behind the times when it comes to understanding and acceptance of gay people, but I thought with the current pope saying, ‘Who am I to judge?’ that maybe things would be better, but apparently that’s not the case.”

According to diocese spokesman David Hains, Billard was not fired for being gay but for violating an employment contract that prohibited him from opposing church teaching.

However, responding to objections from the diocese on the facts as presented by Qnotes, the Charlotte-based LGBT community newspaper stated:

“The violation of Billard’s contract was his statement on his intention to marry. Without this statement, Billard wouldn’t have been fired. Therefore, it is factual and accurate to report that Billard was fired because he is a gay man who announced his intention to marry his same-gender partner — an act the church calls ‘disobedience,’ but which is also a fundamental human and civil right guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, as recently upheld by North Carolina’s U.S. District Courts and the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.”

In March of last year, an assistant theology professor at Charlotte Catholic caused a furore - and a backlash from parents and students - when she claimed in a speech that homosexuality occurs mainly as a result of pornography and parents' shortcomings.

Watch a report on the case, AFTER THE JUMP... 

 

Continue reading "North Carolina Catholic School Fires Gay Teacher: VIDEO" »


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