Mass Uprising

The Gay-Marriage Uproar Within the Catholic Church

Comments

1
She yelled that she would get Father Ryan and then told me to get out, so I went back outside and stood under a sign that read "All are welcome."
2
Hunthausen also famously opposed the anti-gay Initiative 13 in 1978. He even had a big press conference. Check the Seattle Times archives.

Seattle voted down I-13 by 62%, upholding anti-discrimination laws :)
3
Thank you for this article. I agree that most Catholics are accepting (and perhaps excited for) marriage equality, especially in WA state. I can tell you that my entire family are liberal Democrats who also attend church weekly.
However, I don't see some mass exodus of the Catholic church on this issue. The thing is, priests don't discuss gay people or gay marriage in mass. They don't talk politics. The sermons are appropriate, fitting for many situations, and are not offensive (in my experience of course). So, who cares what some old guy at the top is saying? Yes, he's the Pope, but we didn't vote him in. He's just a man, sinful as any other man (and wrong at times). He can print whatever decree he wants; yes it bothers me, but it's not changing my mind.
And lastly, mass feels traditional and comfortable. Other Christian religions seem what my dad calls "religion lite". In addition, the Catholic church does so much work for our community. I can guarantee you that none of my family - the 7 uncles and 4 aunts and their respective families - are leaving anytime soon.
Although I wish Pope John Paul II was in power now.. I doubt this would be happening.
4
Great piece Dominic.
5
At some point, Sarajean, you have to see that you and your family are enabling the bigots.

I have a gay brother and sister: you will never find me crossing the transom of a Catholic Church again.
6
Why doesn't anyone ever ASK these people what they're talking about? Seriously!

---

The first clue about Sartain's views didn't come until January 13, 2012, when Sartain and three other Catholic bishops in Washington State issued a proclamation declaring a campaign to stop the same-sex-marriage bill in Olympia, saying that the "continuation of the human race" hangs in the balance and that "bringing to life the next generation" requires restricting marriage to straight couples—and that everyone should contact their legislators.

---

So there aren't any "out of wedlock" pregnancies? So we're clear that marriage is NOT needed to reproduce, right?

Then how would letting one probably-non-reproducing couple get married PREVENT a DIFFERENT couple from having children (or even the above mentioned O-o-W pregnancies)? Because we already allow infertile couples to marry.

So this is not about "continuation of the human race". Why isn't anyone asking them about it?
7
This is a good article. You can't mention the history of this diocese, with Hunthausen being removed by Ratzinger long before he was pope, enough.

But I think you're being a little skewed in your description of Catholic Community Charities. There really isn't a distinction between "charity" and "government programs". EVERY area charity that does homelessness work is "managing government programs". That's how homelessness works.

People may be confused about whether their collection plate money goes to CCS or not, but they shouldn't be confused about where CCS money mainly comes from. Which has never been the collection plate.

That's where the hurt will come from, though. I encourage all Catholics to start withholding that money and giving it instead directly to CCS, or one of the other fine agencies in the area -- Solid Ground, Downtown Emergency Service Center, Multi-Service Centers, Hopelink....
8
A good read - thanks, Dominic. Disheartening, to say the least.
9
Great article.

Nearly every practicing Catholic I know is a decent person with a deep appreciation for family, society, and justice.

They deserve so much better than their Church.
10
The "continuation of the human race" hangs in the balance...

... says the celibate man who have taken a holy vow never, ever to procreate.
11
If the archbishop "support(s) a referendum in opposition to the law changing the legal definition of marriage" and will be ordering the Catholic Church in Washington to directly involve itself in what he admits is a civil matter dealing with civil rather than moral law... isn't that a direct violation of the Church's tax exempt status?

Methinks a federal investigation should be called.
12
@6 Bingo. In fact, it turns out that there are people "redefining marriage." You know who? All the people whining about "redefining marriage!" They're the ones who are redefining marriage as something to do with sex and childbirth. Sex and childbirth has to do with biology, not government grant of licenses, nor Church ceremonies.

Marriage is currently, and has been for the last century at least, all about choosing someone to live with and love, in sickness and in health, to make a life together, to share burdens and support each other. It's choosing your next-of-kin and your co-head of household. Sex and begetting offspring are optional, and even as every idiot knows, widely available outside of marriage.

So, why are they doing this, redefining marriage? Because without it, they have no argument at all. Love is love. Life partnership is life partnership. They HAVE to introduce some imaginary linkage to child-bearing to have any hook at all to hang this shit on.

Fuck them. Call them out. THEY'RE the ones doing the "redefining!"
13
I believe we need a citizen's initiative stop the city from making these payments. Hire the CCS folks on the city payroll, where they can get contraception as part of their benefits. Prevent the Church from "poverty washing" (similar to green or pink washing that corporations do with token environmental or Komen(tm) efforts) government money to their own PR advantage.

They want religious freedom? They can have religious freedom -- from taxpayer dollars.

If services for the disadvantaged are so important, they can spend their own money on it.
14
bigoty bigoty bigoty amen.
15
You can give to Catholic Community Services of Western Washington programs individually: I've been redirecting church dollars to Sacred Heart Shelter in Queen Anne, and St. Martin de Porres Shelter in SoDo to alleviate hunger and homelessness. Actually, the Vatican's needless change to eucharistic rites and the unnecessary scrutiny of the women-religious communities precipitated this redirection. No Roman Catholic has yet convinced me of the justification for the lobbying against marriage-equality, scrutinizing, and rewording. Cynically, I suspect some attention-redirection from the sex abuse scandals is the reason for all three. Maybe some misguided Vatican City higher-ups believe marginalization of certain communities is bound to increase attendance and positive feelings; or maybe because the increased church attendance in developing nations and China outnumber the lost church attendance in Western industrialized countries the Vatican is less inclined to give a shit about "bringing everyone to the table."
16
The Stranger needs to print a coupon that says "I gave this weeks tithe to upholding marriage equality" so that people can have something to put in the collection plate as it goes by.

Of course, I am not Catholic and no longer Christian. The religion I was raised in no longer appeals to me.
17
Wow, SaraJean. I'm a Jew and I care what Ratzinger thinks because his views impact my access to birth control, my friends' ability to access basic human rights, etc. So before you go minimizing his (and your 'comfortable,traditional' church's) impact, you may want to reread the article and think again about how your money is being actively used to discriminate.

Also, your comment about other Christian sects just sounds condescending. If I were a Lutheran I'd be pissed (but very polite about it).
18
This was brilliant and scared the shit out of me. Absolutely commendable!! I am a gay former Catholic, and to see this collection plate money used for such abominable ends is unacceptable.

I am a Californian. I moved here just before Prop 8 passed, and it was a nightmarish ordeal. I want to be in Washington this November. I want to do everything I can to resist these people. They must not win again!
19
agree with @11

how does this
"Sartain forced all 147 parishes in Western Washington and another roughly 100 parishes in Eastern Washington to print articles in their church bulletins again instructing all Catholics to "call, e-mail, or write your state senator and two representatives...""

not directly violate their tax-exempt status??
20
@3 - I'm sorry change scares you. It scared the Church too when Martin Luther pointed out their inanities. But I understand, you're too comfortable with your rituals to do the right thing.

Jesus would be so proud.
21
@11 & 19 Regarding tax status — churches can't involve themselves in electoral politics in the case of candidates for office, but they're free to work for or against referenda and initiatives.

IRS: Charities, Churches and Politics
http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,i…
22
DEAR GOD, please tell those that want Marriage Equality to stop using the Destructive term "Gay Marriage".

Did you hear what M Gallagher said about "Marriage Equality" THE TERM? She did not like it. WHY? Because it's about Marriage and it's about Equality. Why does she always use "Gay Marriage" or "Same Sex Marriage"? Because it's about GAY and SEX and she do hate those Gay folk.
Amen.
23
As a practicing Catholic, I am concern and sadden that the Archdiocese of Seattle and Archbishop Sartain has made this a mission. The Church that I know and love looks to support those that are marginalize. The fact that Archbishop Sartain has decided to crusade against the "evil" of the union of two people that love and are committed to each other leaves me speechless.

Does he not realize that he is crusading against a large gay community within the Church that love, support and provide community? I can only assume that isn't the case.

As a Catholic, I am proud of the work that the Church does. But,there are things I am very ashamed of too. I do feel at the end of the day the good far outweighs the bad. Unfortunately, in this case I am beginning to question that balance.
24
You all need to write a letter.

Pick a day to drop your letters in the mail at the same time and let them pour in. Maybe on a Thursday so they all arrive on his desk on a Friday or Saturday?
25
@12 What interest does the government have in who you live with and love? But there is obvious government interest in supporting the basic family unit which produces and raises the future members of our society.
26
Thanks for writing this, Dominic! Whatever one's sexuality or religion, this issue speaks to conscience... More love please. If our beliefs do not propel us to be more loving, compassionate humans, what is all the ritual for?
27
I'm a practicing Catholic, and I thought this article was very thorough and fair. Definitely a cut (several cuts) above the usual writing in The Stranger about religion.

I don't think people will leave the Church over this issue. Most practicing Catholics aren't Catholic because of the hierarchy or bishops (often they are in spite of them)--they're Catholic because they were raised that way and it's part of their identity; they like their parish or priest; their spouse is Catholic; or a hundred other reasons. That won't change.

However, that doesn't mean people who disagree should be silent. I have written to the Seattle Archdiocese and the US Conference of Bishops and told them why I disagree with their views on gay marriage and contraception. I have withheld money and told the Archdiocese why. Anyone with any Catholic identify who disagrees with what the Archdiocese is doing should do the same.
28
I disagree with this article 100%.
29
#3, I would disagree, the mass exodus has already happened, and continues to happen, at least among non-immigrant catholics in america. I come from a catholic family, we were devout and active in our parish. I was the first of the five kids to abandon it thirty five years ago, in a conscious decision, not a lapse because I didn't feel like going to mass every sunday. (This was long before coming out as gay, I just found the theology to silly for my 15 year old reasoning)

All my siblings drifted away too. Finally, several years ago, my parents stopped going. My best friend from high school, from a hispanic family, was very religious, went to seminary for a year, eventually became a lay minister and gave communion at masses when that became neccesary with the priest shortage, even he gave up several years ago, largely in frustration with the RC church's continual move backwards on the treatment of women and gays. This IS the story of american catholicism.
I know why the good people who are left there stay on. The church has been a force for good at times in the past. But the structure of the church brooks no disagreement.
30
Look, I'm a parishioner at St. James and I'm gay. I also volunteer there on occasion. It's been my parish for years. I am a "cradle catholic" and in all the parishes I've been to across this country it is probably the most welcoming one I've ever been to. I see gay couples both with and without children holding hands. The church feeds the hungry and tends to the sick and dying - including those with HIV/AIDS. Fr. Ryan has better things to do than justify himself to a biased, media hyped situation. And if it wasn't so biased, you'd be at mass or would be volunteering at St. Vincents, seeing first hand that the church's mission goes way beyond just marrying people. It takes care of its community as best as it can with the donations it receives. What has this paper done for the sick and dying lately? I know if I were on my deathbed and needed last rites, I wouldn't want any priest to be held up by the likes of The Stranger.
31
Look, I'm a parishioner at St. James and I'm gay. I also volunteer there on occasion. It's been my parish for years. I am a "cradle catholic" and in all the parishes I've been to across this country it is probably the most welcoming one I've ever been to. I see gay couples both with and without children holding hands. The church feeds the hungry and tends to the sick and dying - including those with HIV/AIDS. Fr. Ryan has better things to do than justify himself to a biased, media hyped situation. Especially as we enter the season of Lent - which, by the way, a good majority of people Catholic and Non-Catholic people have no problem celebrating with Fat Tuesday (prior to Ash Wednesday). And if it wasn't so biased, you'd be at mass or would be volunteering at St. Vincents, seeing first hand that the church's mission goes way beyond just marrying people. It takes care of its community as best as it can with the donations it receives. What has this paper done for the sick and dying lately? I know if I were on my deathbed and needed last rites, I wouldn't want any priest to be held up by the likes of The Stranger.
32
The US constitution guarantees me the separation of church and state. It does not guarantee the Catholic church or any church access to my tax dollars. No tax money to churches period! And while we are at it, why is church owned property tax exempt? Why am I subsidizing churches with my property tax dollars?
33
bigoty bigoty bigoty amen.
34
Obama whack Osama Obama win the Super bowl Obama put the Catholic in a head lock and give the pope a long nasty noogie till his hat wont fit no more!

Its amazing what happens when Republicans are not in power? Free heath care! Civil Rights! the end of wars! all that toxic crap gets discovered and the entire nation gets healthy and wise.

I feel like having a baby.
35
Seattlebcc, I'm sorry for the pain this causes you. Father Ryan is between a rock and a hard place and I'm sure you are too. There's a profound cognitive dissonance caused by having to reconcile who you are with an institution that doesn't fully support you (especially when you've been in that institution since birth). This is a massive shift for the church and I only hope the bishops come around and join the modern world instead of waving this 'religious freedom' canard around.
36
@27 - well said, Irish. Totally agree.

@31 Seattlebcc - I noticed that also. Why should the priest have to talk to a reporter who just shows up without an appointment after mass? He knows anything he says will be printed in an article, and knowing it's from The Stranger, he probably made a wise decision (as this paper and the writers, as much as I enjoy them, seem to fervently hate the concept of religion).
I don't blame Father Ryan for slipping out the back door.
37
Excellent column, Dominic! This shit has to be called upon.

I agree with @6, @10, and @12. THAT'S where the real "imbalance" hangs--between the legs of every bible thumping, woman-hating, altar boy raping celibate and his fellow hypocrites!
38
Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey says He will Veto Gay Marriage in New Jersey and wants to fly flags at half mass for Ms. Houston after he so eloquently put in a Television interview that Ms. Houston has attained the same stardom equal to "White" celebrity's from Jersey.

The Race for the 8th State to recognize its own citizens go full speed.
39
You multisexuals don't care about "rights." You want to piss off right wing moralists.

If you cared about rights you would work to have all references to "marriage" removed from all legislation, No, you want to pollute the language just as you ruined "gay."
40
"Catholic charities had to close their doors due to their view of traditional marriage." Other lawmakers sympathized with florists, photographers, caterers, hoteliers, and other workers who would face fines if they followed their conscience and refused to serve gay couples."

Next time someone makes this ridiculous claim, ask them why Catholic Charities of Boston's adoption services placed children with gay couples for 20 years before same-sex marriage was legalized in MA and Sean O'Malley decided to advance his career by scapegoating LGBT people.

http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/archive…
41
SaraJean, why should Father Ryan be immune? The smarter thing to have done would have been to meet Dominic and schedule a time for an interview. Again, I understand why he would slip out, but these are extraordinary times and he is a public figure. It comes with the territory. And this battle isn't your internal battle - your bishops have brought it to the rest of our doorsteps.

I wish you the best of luck and support reforming your church from within - and I'll refrain from any jokes about catholicism seeming like 'religion lite' to this little ol' jew.
42
There's a similar quiet backlash happening among some of the younger Mormons, too. I have a number of LDS friends who utterly disagree with their church's views on homosexuality and marriage equality and are trying, in their well-behaved Mormon way, to bring about internal change.
43
Sorry, Sarajean, Pope John Paul II hated gays even more than the current pope and the rest of the Catholic hierarchy. He asked the Italian government to stop a mere gay pride march in Rome, among other things. Look it up. This idea that Pope John Paul II was some kindly old man has got to stop.
44
@41: your comment made me smile, jt. There is a Jewish side to my family by marriage. I've been to all their weddings and bat/bar mitzvahs .. they come to Christmas Eve every year (not mass but dinner and presents etc). It's pretty great. And notice I said "other Christian religions"... :)

And no, I don't think FR should have done the interview. I'm a teacher.. If my district instated a new policy, I wouldn't do an interview with the local news declaring I'm against it. I just wouldn't - it's better to have a job. And I think Father Ryan is serving the community the best way he knows how, and not doing a public interview against his boss (and the old ways of the Church in which he works!) is part of that. If he gets fired, he can't really help anymore.

I'm sorry if I come off as Pollyanna, but change takes time. It doesn't happen overnight. But it WILL happen -- and for the Catholic church, maybe not fast enough for some people. But look at how far our society has come in the last 50 - no, 30 - no, 15 years!! 50 years ago, the Catholic church was delivering sermons in Latin to English-speaking countries. 15 years ago, you couldn't even really come out in high school. There are just NOW storylines about this on television.
I believe we'll get there. In the meantime, I don't take some note posted by a bishop in the weekly bulletin as important, and I am not leaving my church.
45
You'd think that most Catholics' acceptance of gay marriage wouldn't come as a surprise given their "silent-majority" acceptance of the gay things that happen under the altar, if you know what I mean.
46
This is the same church that has lead a world-wide cover up about it's priests and cardinals sexual abuse of children. A preist abuses a child, move them to another parish. The same thing happens again, move them to a different country. When the parishioners find out and demand answers tell them the church deals with this internally, and not to contact the police. When a lawsuit is finally filed move any wealth in the parish to the Vatican and when the parish looses the lawsuit, claim no relationship between individual parishes and the 'Holy See'. Take extra collections so your parishioners have to pay for the sins of the fathers.

Why does anyone care what these old pedophiles have to say about anything? It is time for the Catholic Church to hold a going out of business sale and shut down the worlds most sophisticated ring of pedophiles.
47
All of this maligning Father Ryan is ridiculous and extremely ignorant. Fr Ryan is probably one of the most progressive priests in the State of Washington, if not the country. His homily last Sunday, which is available on the front page of the Cathedral website, was precisely about accepting gays and lesbians and *against* bigotry. The idea that he "slipped out the back" rather than talk to a reporter about the issue is absurd; did it ever occur to Mr Holden that perhaps, as the Pastor of the Cathedral church of the largest religious organization in Washington state, something may have come up? Did the author even inquire, or attempt to reschedule the interview, before accusing Fr Ryan of slinking away like a frightened schoolboy?

Fr Ryan is a man of integrity who is not afraid to express his opinion, even when it contradicts the received wisdom of the Church hierarchy (as proof, try googling Fr Michael G Ryan). That is far more than I can say for Dominic Holden. This abortion of an article, riddled with falsehoods and lazily-researched half-truths, only perpetuates ignorance. It is primarily ignorance that feeds the anti-gay hysteria in this country, so it is a great pity and sad irony that those who claim to support gay rights feed the flames with ignorant, amateurish works like this.
48
All of this maligning Father Ryan is ridiculous and extremely ignorant. Fr Ryan is probably one of the most progressive priests in the State of Washington, if not the country. His homily last Sunday, which is available on the front page of the Cathedral website, was precisely about accepting gays and lesbians and *against* bigotry. The idea that he "slipped out the back" rather than talk to a reporter about the issue is absurd; did it ever occur to Mr Holden that perhaps, as the Pastor of the Cathedral church of the largest religious organization in Washington state, something may have come up? Did the author even inquire, or attempt to reschedule the interview, before accusing Fr Ryan of slinking away like a frightened schoolboy?

Fr Ryan is a man of integrity who is not afraid to express his opinion, even when it contradicts the received wisdom of the Church hierarchy (as proof, try googling Fr Michael G Ryan). That is far more than I can say for Dominic Holden. This abortion of an article, riddled with falsehoods and lazily-researched half-truths, only perpetuates ignorance. It is primarily ignorance that feeds the anti-gay hysteria in this country, so it is a great pity and sad irony that those who claim to support gay rights feed the flames with ignorant, amateurish works like this.
49
too many catholic "liberals" stay in the church like compliant sheep

the church raped boys then criminally organized a RICO conspiracy to cover it up. when sued, they lie in court to hide the fact it's all one big corporation directed from the vatican, to let dioceses declare bankruptcy.

they discriminate against women.

they are trying to force hundreds of thousands of nurses and doctors in catholic affiliated hospitals to follow catholic church teaching on birth control -- this is attempted forced conversion.

they can do this because enough people stay in the church. look at connelly, big deal, he moves to another parish. wtf?

father ryan is part of a criminal enterprise that raped young boys and hid it and now works actively to harm gay people by denying them equal rights and to harm women and their families thru forcing them to convert to catholic teaching on birth control; he is an enabler as is jason hoetger and all the other enablers; you're in a pact with the devil. and btw the church history isn't all that great either what with popes living it up, feeding off the poor for centuries, etc.

why isn't the fucking catholic church up in arms about no national health care? about us torturing people? oh wait, they care more to stir up bigotry and hate than actually teaching the real teachings of jesus which were love your neighbor. what's more love your neighbor than gay rights, jason hoetger? why do you support a criminal enterprise that's so corrupt and evil?
50
#46 - SpicyBaconator
"Why does anyone care what these old pedophiles have to say about anything? It is time for the Catholic Church to hold a going out of business sale and shut down the worlds most sophisticated ring of pedophiles."

EXACTLY. Could not have set it better myself.
51
My heart has been heavy since reading the Archbishop's dictate re: the Wa. legislature's Marriage Equality bills in my parish bulletin some weeks ago. I feel this represents a clear violation of the separation of Church and state and an imposition (overstep)on the right of individual conscience. Also, and more importantly, it neglects from a pastoral standpoint to reach out in Christian love and acceptance to the "marginalized" -- LGBT persons and their families -- within the Catholic Church. Where is the social justice model of Jesus? Not in the contemporary Catholic Church in America!!!!!
52
At best, Father Ryan is a good man who has devoted his life to a profoundly evil, immoral criminal organization.

No good he may do can erase the evil he has made himself a part of.
53
As a cradle catholic and as someone who works for the church, I have to laugh when I read an article like this. Nothing makes the RC church look worse than the imbeciles who run it. These men are drunk on power and clericalism. The real Catholics are out there serving others quietly and unselfishly. Many of these real Catholics attend church, support it financially yet believe in marriage equality and use contraceptives. I know many a good priest who roles his eyes when he gets "handed" something to read to his congregation. Such things are a joke and completely out of touch with thte sense of the faithful.

Despite their incompetence and sinfulness, I refuse to let these jokers hijack my religion. I don't worship them, I believe in a god who loves everyone regardless of who they love.. As the good books says, God created it all good.

Even Dominic, the author, saw the good those nuns taught him. There was and still is good there, sadly, many of the same men who covered up abuse are now lecturing us about marriage and contraceptives? WTF?

I won't let them take this faith from me. Gay, straight, bi, vegetarian, you name it- we are one.
54
Well said, 53. I feel exactly the same way. No reason to let the hierarchy drive me out of the church--it means they've won. It's my (and your) church as much as it is theirs.

52, Fr. Ryan hasn't devoted his life to an institution--he's devoted it to serving the needs (spiritual and otherwise) of his parishioners.
55
I think it's hilarious to see a commenter referring to other religions as "lite" when every "Catholic" I know treats the church's teachings like a smorgasboard, picking and choosing what bits they want to do.
56
If the Catholic Church has failed you, and you are looking for a progressive church home where gays and lesbians are welcomed along with anybody and everybody else, and where you don't have to leave your brain at the door, any Pacific Northwest congregation of the United Church of Christ (UCC) would be thrilled to have you. See ucc.org. They have so moved past all of this conservative, hateful ridiculousness that the Catholics, evangelicals, and Mormons seem to keep stirring up.
57
Thank you for this article. There is a significant disconnect between Roman Catholic bishops and their flocks. The article seems to assume that Catholic=Roman Catholic, and that is not so. The Roman Catholic bishops may be very vocal and showy, but there are other Catholic denominations, such as the Ecummenical Catholic Community in the Pacific Northwest that do not follow the Roman line of think on this, and many other issues. ECC is a place where the faithful are assumed to be intelligent, capable of making reasoned judgments in line with the faith and who recognize that within Christianity the only true distinctions that exist between people are those based on need. ECC is just one strand of the Catholic tradition, and it is a very clear example of what catholic looks like when the spirit and energy of Vatican II informs the religious practice.
58
Excellent article!

As to all the comments about Dominic flaming Fr Ryan I didn't get that at all! It was more a critisizm of church staff and the ridiculous response he got from them. In all probability Fr Ryan was never even notified that there was a reporter waiting on him. They kept him out of sight and in the dark for an hour and a half after all.

Yes, absolutely, Fr Ryan has no obligation to justify the church's or his opinions on the matter to the press. One thing is clear though, if church leadership let's radicaly minded parishoners do their speaking for them it'll be hard to percive the message as anything less then bigotry. They could use someone with a cool head to run a little PR every once and awhile.
59
What interest does the government have in who you live with and love? But there is obvious government interest in supporting the basic family unit which produces and raises the future members of our society.
If marital benefits only applied where progeny were present, that argument might have value; so long as the elderly or infertile are allowed to enjoy state recognition, subsidy, and/or various special rights, the argument from procreation no explains the current state of civic marriage.
60
uh let me be first to call out the large, stinking elephant in the room. how can anyone take the catholic church seriously about anything post pedophile priest scandal...or should i say how the catholic church was finally revealed to be the greatest haven for pedophiles in our times. think about it. you want to molest boys? become a catholic priest. even if you get caught, they will just reassign you, if you get caught with media attention, they pay all the bills. where does this money come from? what a fantastic use of tithes.
61
#23, I agree with #46 and #60... the balance between good and evil in the Catholic Church tipped LONG AGO, and it wasn't toward the good.
62
http://www.cathnews.com/article.aspx?aei…

The communiqué, signed by Fathers Guido Rodheudt, Hendrick Jolie and Uwe Winkel as well as German, Austrian and Swiss priests, launches a harsh attack on the “Call to Disobedience” which was published last summer by the Priests’ Initiative, a liberal movement with roots in Austria, that is asking for a review of the Church’s stance on homosexuality, celibacy and women’s access to the priesthood.

Cant be Gay! Cant have Sex! Cant be a Woman! must vote Republican! Must vote Republican and keep America strong for (record scratch)Vatican city? yes! Catholics do have a Nation and we don't need to slap it down in the middle of the middle east after kicking the crap out the earth after a world war?

since Gay people are more intelligent then Catholics and don't have any religious objection to serving our Great Nation in times of war we know where this is going.

One big Gay 4th of july! Put your colors on and bring it like Evel Knievel! God Bless Gay America.
63
as a former member of the LDS church, I feel like I can relate to this article very much. I am a straight man, and always have been. But when the LDS church promoted prop 8 in California, I knew I could not support that lack of tolerance or acceptance.

I never understood why my religion emphasized the importance of choosing right from wrong yet wanted to eliminate the ability for two people in a loving and committed relationship to formalize that bond. Regardless of whether they viewed LGBT lifestyle as sinful or righteous, eliminating the ability to choose that lifestyle would take away from that agency of right or wrong.I could understand the need to take the ability to choose wrong away if someone was harmed by this act such as stealing, or lying. But for a lifestyle founded upon the principle of LOVE, I could never understand why this was such an issue.

I had the realization that my religion had no right to force their lifestyle or their beliefs on people different. To deny someone the ability to be happy with their partner. To deny someone the convention of marriage (because let's face it no one says when I grow up I want to get a civil union). The principle of separate but equal has been one of the greatest fallacies of our history, and I could just not support it (even if it were true). As a result, I left my church in favor of adopting the principle of love and respect for all people. In no way do I claim to be perfect, but I feel that this principle of love is much closer to what Christ may have been trying to get at than what modern day Christianity promotes.
64
If someone told a black person they couldn't drink from a fountain or had to sit at the back of the bus, wouldn't you hope you would of done something? Wouldn't you quit going to a church that spoke out against different races being married? How is this any different? It is discrimination.

I was Catholic, (questioned lots of stuff though) but this was the breaking point. I too walked out of mass when the priest talked about this. It is sad, because I thought the catholic church was more progressive when in came to social justice issues. Now it is just like the crazy 4 square churchs. Phoney!

As the article says, "silence means consent." And evil thrives when good people do nothing.
65
Seems I'm late to the party.

I'm a Catholic priest and I can't begin to explain how important my friendships are with many men who - for whatever reason - happen to be attracted to other men. One of these guys in particular ranks as one of the (dare I say) holiest people I know. Of course, he as well as a few of my other friends who share his orientation support the Catholic Church's official teaching 100%. As a priest I need to support the Catholic teaching on this so that these men feel supported in their struggle for chastity - a struggle that straight men and even celibate man have as well.

I wonder what anyone thinks of the "gay" men and women in the Church who agree with the Catholic Church's teaching. I also wonder if readers of this publication view any and all objections to same sex marriages as being automatic "hate speech?" In other words, is there any argument out there at all in which a person can make against same sex marriage and not automatically be thought of as a bigot? If not, I'd question who the real bigots are on this issue.
66
#65 Nailed it! Seems the self proclaimed "open minded" are sometimes blind to their own narrowness.
67
thank you so much for this piece. as a practicing Catholic who is absolutely disgusted by the Church's actions it has given me a lot to think about. I don't give to the Annual Appeal for $$ for the Archdiocese and havent for years but it makes me think about my contribution to my parish. LGBT community who are also practicing Catholics-want to hear more from you about how you will deal with this evil-and how the straights can better support you.
68
In response to #65. If someone is gay and chooses not to be in a relationship, that is fine. BUT this is about people who are gay, who would like to be in a committed relationship. BIG difference. The Catholic Church is discouraging and preventing that. That is why I left the church. They are pushing their views on others.
69
"Gay marriage" is Civil Marriage. Wish I could remember the article, but recently someone wrote eloquently that Civil Marriage is about property rights, rights of inheritance, and rights to make medical decisions. It has *nothing* to do with religious beliefs and everything to do with continuity in secular matters.
70
I have no doubt money from local Catholic charities is being spent to finance getting signatures against the Marriage Equality Bill here in Washington State. I think it's high time the government took away the Catholic church's 501 C3 status and called it what it really is -- Big Business. Also, I'm appalled this kind of outrage energy wasn't present in 2002, 2003, 2004 to present day regarding the clergy sexabuse scandal. So glad I left and no longer consider myself Catholic.
71
#65: There is not one single, rational argument from ANY point-of-view whatsoever, against Marriage Equality {or "Gay Marriage}. Nobody has yet or can possibly come up with a single RATIONAL argument. Therefore, what it all comes down to, is merely one religious group {that formerly exercised some political power} attempting to impose the views of its irrational, faith-based religion on everyone else, especially including those who definitely do not follow that religion: atheists, agnostics, secular people, and people who follow other religions with different views.

The recent unearthing of DOM documents outlining a program to divide Black people and Gay people over Marriage Equality, specifically states that they are trying to get people to call each other by the name of "bigot". Articles in Seattle Gay News, have specifically asked Gay people in their correspondence on the the subject, NOT to use such terms, such name-calling. If you feel you are a "bigot", that is your own problem. Name-calling is counterproductive. Rather, we should RATIONALLY and compassionately, address people's IGNORANCE. What the Catholic hierarchy has to say on the subject, is definitely not the last word.

That being Gay and having Gay sex and not being Gay-and-celibate, is a "SIN", is NOT a RATIONAL argument; rather, it is an argument of religious superstition as the belief in Sin, Hellfire, Satan, Devils, Purgatory, God's Punishment, etc. etc., can NOT be supported RATIONALLY.

The belief propagated by the Catholic Hierarchy from the very top, Ratzinger, that "the future of the Human Race is at stake", is LAUGHABLY IRRATIONAL. There is NOTHING about being Gay, that makes anyone sterile! Many, many Lesbian women are Mothers; many Gay men are {biological} fathers. Look around you! Straight parents have Gay kids; Gay parents have Straight kids.
Even if every presently-alive Gay man & woman were to undergo forced sterilization, Straight parents would still have Gay kids, who would have kids both Gay and Straight, who would have kids.......
So, "saving the Human Race from extinction" is NOT a RATIONAL argument -- again, just one based on COMPLETELY UN-SCIENTIFIC and purely cultish religious beliefs.

Again, the belief that Gay parents are somehow inferior parents who can't raise kids decently, has been shown by DOCUMENTATION, to be a mere BELIEF, and NOT a fact -- it can NOT be demonstrated RATIONALLY.

To choose to go by RATIONALITY, and not by someone else's Faith-based traditions, is NOT "bigotry". Again, if you feel like that, that is YOUR problem. I choose not to believe in the Flying Spaghetti Monster, or the Great Pumpkin, either. I do NOT feel like a "bigot" in any sense of the word. I do NOT believe Humans were conceived and born in "Original Sin". Neither do the VAST MAJORITY of the people of the world. We can't ALL be "bigots" for not holding such an IRRATIONAL belief!