USCCB (Bishop Kurtz) Press Release
Bishop Rhoades' Statement
Marriage: Unique for a Reason (A USCCB Initiative)
More USCCB resources on the decision
It is important to remember our roots, which is one thing we do on Independence Day. Our nation would be quite different if it weren't for the boldness and sacrifice of the many who in this country stood up for the dignity of the individual. As we celebrate the gift of our freedom, we do so in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on "same-sex marriage." As Catholics, we have the advantage of being guided by the Bishops, who form the Magisterium (or teaching office) of the Church. Please take the time to study the responses of our Bishops on this topic. In particular, please read the statement of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (http://www.usccb.org/) written by their President, Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, KY. Also, be sure to read the response of our own Bishop, Bishop Kevin Rhoades (http://www.diocesefwsb.org/). On my blog (http://TwoDisciplesOnTheRoad.blogspot.com/) are direct links to these two writings. If you do not use internet at all, I will print copies of them and place them in the vestibule of the church. Of important note is that the Church's position is particularly wrapped up in the good of the next generation: marriage protects children, and they deserve the stability of permanent relationship with their father and a mother, as much as the law can make it possible.
Another resource from the USCCB is an initiative titled Marriage: Unique for a Reason. The FAQ tab is especially helpful in forming an adequate response to the questions people have in regards to the many issues surrounding the topics of same sex attraction and marriage. The link is: http://www.
marriageuniqueforareason.org. The core human freedom is indeed religious: freedom to remain faithful to what we believe to be ordained by God. Hand in hand, though, is the need for us to be gracious, charitable, and patient with those who disagree with us. In a sound-byte culture, these qualities become even more necessary. If there is only name-calling and social bullying, instead of debate and honest disagreement, then there is no real freedom of speech and not chance for a truly pluralistic society where love of neighbor keeps us united.
Another important document is Pope Francis' recent Encyclical, Laudato Si. This cannot be overlooked and needs to be read by all Catholics. Follow that link to the actual text of the Pope’s Encyclical, as well as comments from our Bishops. An Encyclical is the highest form of Papal teaching, and it deserves our attention. Both of these topics will provide plenty of opportunities for reflection, discussion. Stay tuned also to our local catholic radio station, Redeemer Radio, at 95.7FM to listen to further updates on these issues and hear Catholics try to engage in these social debates.
God bless us, and Mary, Joseph, and John the Baptist pray for us!
~ Fr. Terry