Wednesday, September 2, 2009

NJ Bishops try to pre-empt marriage equality

From the NJ Star Ledger:
Catholic bishops in New Jersey have begun a campaign against same-sex marriage in anticipation of a possible vote on the issue by state legislators sometime after the November election.

The bishops directed Catholic priests throughout the state to distribute in parish bulletins last Sunday a 2,300-word letter opposing same-sex marriage. The priests are also expected to speak about the issue from the altar after Labor Day.

This politicking is legal, unfortunately. However, I believe the polls in NJ are largely pro-marriage--including the Catholics
Official Catholic teachings against same-sex marriage are widely known, although polls indicate U.S. Catholics don't collectively heed church teachings. In a Washington Post/ABC poll this spring, 46 percent of white Catholics favored legalizing same-sex marriage, compared with 49 percent of the general population.

The Catholic bishops have decided to make gay marriage their big thing. In Maine, they are closing parishes but sending money to the hate campaign. In Washington State, they oppose domestic partnerships. In WashingtonDC , they refuse to lend their weight to immigration reform because it dares to give same sex couples benefits. Internationally, the Catholic church would rather see people killed lest any rights for gays lead to marriage: the better dead than wed policy.

Let's see this for what it is: institutionalized bigotry. Catholics of good will need to be vocal against the BIshops, who are leading their church into injustice and hatred.

Update: The DC Bishop is in on the act. From the Advocate:
Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl has increased the Catholic Church's involvement in opposition to marriage equality in the nation's capital.....Wuerl has joined forces with Baptists, mainly African-American preachers, in pressuring D.C. officials to allow public voting on the legalization of same-sex marriage.

David A. Catania, the openly gay city council member who introduced the bill to legalize same-sex marriage in D.C. this fall, is undaunted by the Catholic Church's participation in the debate. "We have a long tradition in this city of evolving toward equality and a better, more expansive view of human rights, and in 2009 this includes marriage equality for same-sex couples," said Catania. "I respect the bishop for his view…but we live in a representative democracy where there is a separation of church and state. We do not live in a theocracy."
If the hierarchy of the Catholic church really wants to pick a war with the GLBT community, they better realize they are picking it with their own congregations. I don't think that will be very pretty.

1 comment:

Fr. Marty Kurylowicz said...

I am in the process of gathering blogs related to Marriage Equality. Below, I explain more about who I am and what I am about.

I finished responding on BEYOND (STRAIGHT AND GAY) MARRIAGE – ranting on about the Catholic hierarchy.

I was so struck by Benedict XVI Christmas message 2008 underhandedly knocking homosexuals, transgendered people, and the fact the world community of people remained silent. I wrote a post about it for the blog I started the Thalamus Center Auschwitz - Christmas 2008 - Brokeback Mountain -

However through 2009, I have been pleasantly surprised by the number of world leaders who came out in support of LGBT people. Agreed it is not enough, but it sure is progress! Even Sarah Brown led the LGBT Pride Parade in London. I do not remember LGBT leaders being invited to the White House ever before or someone like, PM Tony Blair telling Benedict XVI it is time to rethink his thoughts about gay rights.

I have been actively supporting Marriage Equality. After I came out in 1997, for some reason I could not do any more weddings in the Catholic Church. I felt hypocritical to do so that I was condoning the harm of denying marriage to a gay couple. And to do a marriage while some were denied would be a sacrilege in a building believed to be dedicated to the highest form of love known to humans.

Now in 2009 I have been supportive of Marriage Equality more fiercely, presently with Bishop Malone of Maine. The Roman Catholic hierarchy could not pass graduate course exams on human sexuality, sexual orientation, and gender identity or biblical studies. I know that they would all fail miserably, including Benedict XVI. I would like them to prove me wrong!!! Instead of educating people they speak out in ignorance and fear spreading hatred and violence that indiscriminately is severely harmful to all children. There just are not any civil laws to prevent them from doing this kind of harm, yet.

"We should be teaching people how to love and not teaching them how to stop loving human beings." MSK

With all best wishes,


PS. My name is Fr. Marty Kurylowicz, I came out publicly, as a gay priest to my parishioners in March 1997. Sparta, Michigan (Grand Rapids, MI). I did so because I felt a strong moral obligation to draw attention to the serious harm caused to very young children who grow up to be gay, who are raised in social environments influenced by antigay social and religious norms.

I have started a project called the “Thalamus Center” to continue to this advocacy for children to stop this type of child abuse.