Catholics United Denounces Knights for Opposition to Same-Sex Marriage

I am going to re-blog this article in its entirety. I want Public Catholic readers to have a base of information about these groups so we can discuss them later. The article is from Catholic News Service. You can read other fine articles like this one here. Emphases are mine.

Catholics United urges ‘gay marriage’ surrender
By Kevin J. Jones

Washington D.C., Oct 26, 2012 / 03:12 pm (CNA).- The group Catholics United, which until now has avoided directly contradicting Catholic teaching in its defense of Democratic political causes, has now denounced Catholic efforts to defend traditional marriage as a “far right-wing” social issue.

The shift comes in an Oct. 18 statement criticizing Catholic donations to organizations that support marriage and oppose its redefinition to include same-sex couples. Catholics United called for a halt financial support for “anti-marriage equality ballot initiatives” in Maine, Maryland, Minnesota and Washington, states where the issue is on the November ballot.

Catholics United Executive Director James Salt said advocacy against “civil same-sex marriage laws” has the effect of “pushing younger generations of Catholics out of the Church.”

“Younger Catholics don’t want our faith known for its involvement in divisive culture wars, we want our faith known for serving the poor and marginalized,” he argued.

Catholics United’s Oct. 18 statement cites a report by Equally Blessed, a coalition of four dissenting Catholic groups: Call to Action, Dignity USA, Fortunate Families and New Ways Ministry. The report criticizes the $6.25 million that the fraternal order the Knights of Columbus has made since 2005 to defend marriage as a union of a man and a woman.

The founders of New Ways Ministry, Sister Jeannine Gramick and Father Robert Nugent, have run into the highest profile trouble of any of the members in the coalition.

In 1999, the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith said that because of “errors and ambiguities” in their approach, Sr. Gramick and Fr. Nugent were permanently prohibited from any pastoral work involving homosexual individuals.

Cardinal Francis George of Chicago said in a Feb. 2010 statement that New Ways Ministry’s “lack of adherence” to Church teaching on the morality of homosexual acts was the “central issue” in the censure of its founders and continues to be its “crucial defect.”

While Catholics United criticized only the Knights of Columbus for “anti-marriage equality spending,” the Equally Blessed report also blamed the Vatican for opposing homosexual political causes.

The Equally Blessed report also criticized Knights’ support for the pro-life movement. It said the fraternal organization contributes to what it calls “far-right anti-abortion groups”: Americans United for Life, the Susan B. Anthony List and the pregnancy center network Birthright USA.

The political fight over the definition of marriage has resulted in harassment and intimidation of traditional marriage supporters. Some supporters of traditional marriage, including Catholics, have lost their jobs because of activist pressure. Businesses and non-profits which do not want to recognize same-sex relationships have been the target of lawsuits and legal action.

In some states that recognize same-sex unions, Catholic adoption agencies have been forced to close because they could not in good conscience place children with same-sex couples.

In Washington state, the “gay marriage” ballot measure has attracted the support of wealthy donors like Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has donated $2.5 million to the campaign.

The known donors to Catholics United also support “gay marriage.”

Tax forms show that the Tides Foundation, whose 2009 newsletter describes itself as “a leading funder of LGBT work,” has given at least $35,000 to the group since 2007. The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, whose president praised President Obama’s endorsement of redefining marriage in May, has given at least $32,500. The AFL-CIO has given $5,000 to the group, whose contributions and grants in 2011 totaled about $470,000.

Catholics United also has connections to the White House.

Visitor records from the White House show that the Catholics United leadership has visited it several times, sometimes as part of a large group of faith-based representatives and sometimes for small meetings.

The records show Salt and Catholics United founder Christopher Korzen in September 2010 had a small meeting with Patrick Gaspard. At the time, Gaspard was the Obama administration’s Director of the Office of Political Affairs. He is now the Executive Director of the Democratic National Committee.

On Feb. 10, 2012, Catholics United communications director Chris Pumpelly attended a White House meeting with Joshua DuBois, special assistant to President Barack Obama and executive director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

White House officials at the meeting discussed the intended accommodations to address concerns about the Health and Human Services contraception and sterilization coverage mandate, meeting attendee Kristen Day told CNA in June.

Alexia Kelley, former head of Catholics United ally Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good, also attended the meeting. She is presently director for the Department of Health and Human Services’ Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

The leadership of Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good itself has several connections with the Obama campaign. Board member Stephen Schneck, director of Catholic University of America’s Institute for Policy Research and Catholic Studies, is also a member of the group Catholics for Obama.

  • AnnWeler

    Ms. Hamilton,
    After the intoduction of the HHS mandate and reading this article, I am just curious if you are still a Demcrat?
    Thank you,
    Anna Welker

    • Rebecca Hamilton

      Yes.

  • http://ackans.com Mr. V.

    As another commenter at the site where the article appeared stated:

    “United yes, Catholic no.”

    Director of Catholics United James Salt says: ““Younger Catholics don’t want our faith known for its involvement in divisive culture wars, we want our faith known for serving the poor and marginalized…”

    Bullhockey. Younger Catholics want and need a strong sense of beliefs and morals. They are drawn to the Church precisely because of its flavor. Very few people are drawn to bland, tasteless food. Sounds like the force driving this group is the same power that would like to see the Church wiped off the map, i.e., the Devil himself. This group is a bunch of useful idiots happily helping to accomplish his goals of destroying the Bride of Christ.

  • arkenaten

    “This group is a bunch of useful idiots happily helping to accomplish his goals of destroying the Bride of Christ”.
    I have a feeling Pope Leo X probably said a similar thing On Oct 31 1517. Though he probably omitted the word “Bullhockey” – whatever that is.

    • Ted Seeber

      Nah, instead he just said “Those German Monks are fighting again, this will all blow over when they sober up.” The problem is, they never did sober up- and today’s drunks are quite common.

  • Sus

    “Younger Catholics don’t want our faith known for its involvement in divisive culture wars, we want our faith known for serving the poor and marginalized,” he argued.”

    This is exactly why I can’t commit myself to the Catholic faith. I can’t accept a place that doesn’t welcome all. I think Gays are born gay. It’s not evil. Those people are just like you and me. They put their pants on the same way as you. They are working, paying bills and worried about having enough money for retirement, just like the rest of us.

    Think about your own sex life. If you made a pie chart that represented how you spend your time, would the sex part be a huge piece of the pie or a very small piece of the pie? It’s the same for gay people.

    I’m not interested in a God that is going to punish me for the sex acts of others. I’m much more interested in a God that is loving and merciful.

    Gay marriage has been legal where I live since 2004. Can you guess how much my life has changed because of this? Actually, the only way it changed was that I was invited to a wedding for a couple that has been together for 45 years. That’s it. I had to buy a new outfit and make sure my family had something decent to wear.

    I can live with that as it doesn’t do anything to my life.

    I will never understand why this is such an issue. The way things are going, gays are going to have equal rights. That’s how it should be and it’s going to be.

    • http://ackans.com Mr. V.

      A practice does not become acceptable simply because someone is born with the inclination or desire to carry out a certain act. Everyone has a different personality, ranging from passive to aggressive, with varying levels in each of us. Some of us are born with a very aggressive nature, and feel the desire and inclination to use force against others to accomplish one’s goals. Does that then mean it’s okay for those individuals to use force agains other people? They were born that way, after all.

      The belief that homosexuality is okay because ‘gays’ are born that way is based on illogical premise, that it’s okay to do something for no other reason than that one has an inclination or desire to do it. If such a premise is accepted by society, then eventually all morals and virtues will be thrown out, because it can equally be said that every practice and activity is performed because the doer was born with the desire to do it.

      • WFS

        Mr. V.

        You’re being far too unreasonable about this. Why don’t you lighten up a bit.

        Married gay couples present zero inconvenience to you. You don’t have to have anything to do with them. Just stop listening to the pope, bishop, pastor for a moment and think for yourself. What makes you think they have to live by your rules. Non-Catholics, Non-practicing Catholics and even most liberal Catholics could care less about your rules. This is a free country and everyone deserves equal respect. They’re not bothering you. Don’t bother them.

        • Ted Seeber

          “Married gay couples present zero inconvenience to you”

          except, of course, extinction of humanity, but that’s the point for you Malthusian Atheists, isn’t it?

      • Ted Seeber

        Where do I file for discrimination against my natural inclination to murder idiots?

    • Rebecca Hamilton

      FWIW, (again with the caveat that I am NOT a theologian and only speaking from my personal understanding) the Catholic Church does not send homosexual people away. There are many gay people in my parish. I see them everywhere in the Church, including positions of responsibility. The Church is no way withholds acceptance to any person because they are gay. The Catechism says that no one knows exactly why a person experiences same-sex attraction, but that whatever the reason, homosexual people are to be treated with charity and respect. The Church also says that unjust discrimination against homosexuals is a sin. The Church does teach that same-sex attraction is a disorder of normal human sexuality, but that it is not a sin to be tempted by it. The only sin is in committing homosexual acts.

      • arkenaten

        So if a gay couple are celebate this is not a sin?

        • Andy, Bad Person

          Technically, no, it’s not a sin. They may be giving scandal if they are constantly out there proclaiming that they’re gay and living together (giving the implication that they’re unchaste), but a gay couple has no sexual relations, they’re not sinning. In fact, I seem to remember a time when we just called this “friendship.”

    • Ted Seeber

      Re-read paragraphs 2357-2359 of the CCC. Then read paragraphs 2300-2400 of the CCC. Try to show how homosexuality is treated any different than any other form of non-procreative sex.

  • Ted Seeber

    I’m proud to be a Knight- I’m grand Knight of a very new council, #15485.

    But I fear this is all going according to the plan of the atheists: http://vimeo.com/52009124

    • Rebecca Hamilton

      Thanks for the video Ted. I watched a bit and will go back and finish it later. What you see here on this board is an interesting microcosm.

      • Ted Seeber

        Careful with that video- I notice they’ve utterly missed the fact that there are more communists on Wall Street than in Washington DC, and thus, the free market can’t be seen as our salvation anymore.

        But they’re completely right that atheism is indeed the main method of all who want to tear down the family and remake America to their special interests.

  • Ted Seeber

    “Being homosexual usually involes sex, as it does if one is heterosexual, unless one decides to be celibate.”

    Which is what we ask of ALL human beings- to be celibate unless involved in actively producing the next generation. Homosexuals aren’t a special case.

    • arkenaten

      You are off your rocker! Where does it state that human beings should be celibate other than for the purpose of procreation?

      • Ted Seeber

        “Where does it state that human beings should be celibate other than for the purpose of procreation?”

        Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraphs 2300-2400 inclusive. Of course, to understand it, you need to understand the meaning of the word “Chastity” and what that value represents. But that is that is most certainly the point.

        Of course, procreation in this case, when interpreted under the Theology of the Body, doesn’t just include birth. It also includes the use of sex to keep a married couple together to provide an economic base for the children to become functional citizens. In other words, Family, something else you atheists are against.

  • timothy canezaro

    Praying for all catholics worldwide along with all religious priests, brothers, and sisters. Praying we are united in our Faith even though secular politics is trying its best to control what we believe in as far as our Religion goes. Life is sacred and the gift of new life equally so. Special Intention: for a decrease in abortion and single parenthood and an increase in sacramental marriages in the United States.

  • timothy canezaro

    So…let me get this straight. A catholic men’s group that is open to lay and religious and is in the good graces of the church is being called out by a renegade catholic group that is not catholic because they support traditional family structure and marriage which is in line with Catholic teaching. Am I missing something here?

    • http://fpb.livejournal.com/ Fabio P.Barbieri

      One thing: the renegades are in the good grace of a President whose agenda to split and subdue the Church has been clear for a while. Combes, France, 1905. Plutarco Calles, Mexico, 1924. Mao Zedong, China, 1950. And now Barrack Hussein Obama, USA.

  • timothy canezaro

    Hey Mr. Barbieri, there is a great movie that came out recently from mexico documenting the plight of the Cristeros many of whom where martyred in a firing line with their parish Priest whom they refused to abandon. The KKK then nearly a million strong held rallies and made threats to go down to mexico city and help Calles rid the country of catholic and any other faith or spirit from the lives of the mexican people. Nuns fled convents there and exiled to new york city for safety. It stars Andy Garcia and brings to light a tragic episode in extreme secular govermenting during Calles presidency there in the 1920′s.

  • Bill S

    The Knights of Columbus is a great organization. They were indispensable in aiding the Cristeros. They support many charities and provide life insurance for those who can’t get it otherwise at a reasonable price.

    I’ve never heard anyone in the Knights of Columbus discuss gay marriage. They are not as political as I thought they would be before I joined them. I am disappointed to hear that they have donated money for a cause that discriminates against gays. The good outweighs the bad.

    • Ted Seeber

      “I’ve never heard anyone in the Knights of Columbus discuss gay marriage.”

      Have you been reading Columbia Magazine? Our Supreme Chaplain, Archbishop Lori, has quite a bit to say on the subject.

    • Ted Seeber

      BTW, why are you, an atheist, still KofC?

  • Bill S

    Ted,

    I can’t help being an atheist. But I believe that the Knights of Columbus is a great organization and I am proud to be a part of it. Do I believe everything they believe? No. Am I embarrassed by their bigotry? Yes. But I accept them and enjoy their friendship. Friends don’t have to agree with one another on everything.

    If I believed in the supernatural and that it is not all just a myth, I would would feel even more a part of the K of C. But I don’t argue politics and religion with them any more than with people I work with.

    Just this Saturday, I spent the whole day at my fourth degree exemplification. It was very patriotic and uplifting and I put aside my lack of faith and enjoyed it immensely. I can’t live without the love that Christians have for one another. I would rather die. Atheism has left a gigantic void in my life. I am reading a book called “True Reason: something something”, I can’t see the whole title on my Iphone without going all the way back to the beginning and losing my place. I got the link off Patheos and downloaded it from Amazon.com.

    If there is faith to be regained, I will regain it. If not, I just have to fake it till I make it. I actually go out and give out tootsie rolls for donations wearing a “For God’s Children” bib. Believe me, I’d be better off if I could believe what you believe, but I’ve read too many books and articles on the www to believe what I believed for 50+ years.


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