Monday, July 4, 2011

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NewsBytes, July 4 -  Catholic Church and homosexuality, same-sex “marriage”

by Steve Jalsevac Mon Jul 04 18:42 EST Comments (2)

 

* Disclaimer: The linked items below or the websites at which they are located do not necessarily represent the views of LifeSiteNews.com. They are presented only for your information.

Compiled by Steve Jalsevac

The conflicts on these issues are currently raging as never before. Catholic religious leaders seem to be finally waking up and taking some action but, as some of the writers below suggest, it has been far too little, far too late. Reasons for the decades of severe episcopal negligence are suggested.

Video: The New York Times and The Church - Michael Voris, RealCatholicTV

Video: The inevitable failure of Dolan’s statement - Real Catholic TV
Michael Voris, commenting on Archbishop Dolan’s statement, predicted that his efforts would fail. He turned out to be right. What was the reason for his pessimism? As he explains on RealCatholicTV.com (the teachings of many clergymen on this issue ring hollow because the ranks of the clergy are filled with so many gay men or supporters of the gay agenda. If you don’t have time to watch his whole video, just start at 4:50.

New York Same-Sex “Marriage”: Did Catholic Bishops “Shrink from the Fight?”
- TFP
It was necessary to ensure that the hierarchy would not mobilize the faithful to stand up in defense of the Faith and morals. And the truth is that the Catholic Church was largely absent during this fight.

Unfortunately, the Catholic bishops seemed to have lost sight of the principle that political struggles are not won in backstage maneuvering but by winning over public opinion; and that a few statements, albeit well articulated, are not enough to achieve this. The public wants leadership and is moved above all by example, concrete actions and symbolic gestures.

Catholic hierarchs lose marriage battle to Catholic laity
- Dissident NCR
One wonders whether Dolan’s depression and DiMarzio’s mania was less a reaction to New York’s eroding moral fabric than it was a realization of the twilight of their once formidable power over New York politics. The bishops refuse to see that these officials were actually honoring the Catholic social justice tradition in their motivation for passing the marriage bill. They approached the issue as a cause for civil rights. From health care proxies and medical benefits to tax laws, same sex couples will now enjoy thousands of rights previously available only to married heterosexuals.

The Failure of Our Gay Marriage Arguments - David R. Carlin Jr.
Unless you’re willing to assert that homosexual behavior is immoral or unnatural (or both), you’ll have a hard time making an effective case against same-sex marriage (SSM). It won’t be impossible, just exceedingly difficult. By our silence, we have virtually conceded that homosexual behavior is neither immoral nor unnatural — and, by extension, we have all but conceded that same-sex marriage is appropriate, too.

The Battle for God: Cardinal Pell
By Michael Gilchrist
As for same-sex marriage—I avoid the word “gay,” because it’s a word that has been colonized by one group and because homosexuals on the whole are as miserable as the rest of us

Sportswriter Attacks NYC Archbishop and NFL Player for Their Views on Gay Marriage - The Blaze

Beef with Canadian bishops’ document to rescue youth from ‘gay culture’
- Big Blue Wave
The only way the the Catholic Bishops’ declarations are going to be taken seriously as more than mere lip service to Magisterial teaching is if they start getting serious with making sure that their Catholic personnel are orthodox. And if they’re not, fire them. They undermine their own authority and credibility when they fail to make sure those working under them don’t uphold the same teachings.

Homosexual Ideology, Satanic Pride - Speroforum
Theologians commonly believe that the sin of Lucifer and of the evil angels was one of pride. Italian newspapers and Internet blogs published hundreds of photos from the Gay Pride march. What stands out most—even more than the wild display of lust and the semi-naked bodies and obscene postures and gestures—is the hatred shown against the Catholic Church. The kissing “devil” and “angel” aptly represent the ultimate goal of the homosexual ideology: the complete denial of the difference between good and evil, right and wrong.

NY Catholic Bishops Now Expect Efforts ‘to Enact Gov’t Sanctions Against Churches’


Key vote for N.Y. gay marriage ‘not just Catholic’
- USA Today
when it passed the state Senate on Friday night to become law, it was with the help of a yes vote from a Catholic senator, Mark Grisanti.

The saintly Jesuit and his murdered friend By Matt C. Abbott
Interestingly, Father Hardon was a friend of Father Alfred Kunz, the canon lawyer and Diocese of Madison, Wis., priest whose 1998 murder remains unsolved. Father Kunz reportedly had been working on cases involving clergy misconduct and the homosexual network, and Father Hardon, who was interviewed by investigators for several hours, is said to have told associates that he believed the murder was connected to the corrupt element in the Church.

Mexican Church spokesman will appeal fine for public stand against gay marriage

The public spokesman of the Mexico City archdiocese has announced that he will appeal a July 1 court ruling that he engaged in illegal political activity when he said that Catholics should not vote for candidates who support same-sex marriage.

Tags: catholic church, homosexuality

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Newsbytes July 4 - Homosexuality, “Gay marriage” battle

by Steve Jalsevac Mon Jul 04 18:40 EST Comments (0)

 

* Disclaimer: The linked items below or the websites at which they are located do not necessarily represent the views of LifeSiteNews.com. They are presented only for your information.

Complied by Steve Jalsevac


FORMER HOMOSEXUALS

Interview with Former Homosexual Stephen Black – Part One
“The reason the Lord has reminded me of the things I went through was to demonstrate that, though many people claim they are born gay, it is childhood influences and not genetics that incline one to homosexuality.

My Ex-Gay Friend - New York Times
He wrote, “Homosexuality is a cage in which you are trapped in an endless cycle of constantly wanting more — sexually — that you can never actually receive, constantly full of emptiness, trying to justify your twisted actions by politics and ‘feel good’ language.”

Ex-Lesbian Linda Jernigan – Then: ‘Not Really Straight,’ Now: ‘Never Was Gay’

The homosexual crowd simply can’t deal with the reality that “gays” can change and leave their homosexuality behind (usually with God’s help)


NEW YORK SAME-SEX “MARRIAGE” PASSES

Behind N.Y. Gay Marriage, an Unlikely Mix of Forces - New York Times
In the 35th-floor conference room of a Manhattan high-rise, two of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s most trusted advisers held a secret meeting a few weeks ago with a group of super-rich Republican donors. It sounded improbable: top Republican moneymen helping a Democratic rival with one of his biggest legislative goals.

But the donors in the room — the billionaire Paul Singer, whose son is gay, joined by the hedge fund managers Cliff Asness and Daniel Loeb — had the influence and the money to insulate nervous senators from conservative backlash if they supported the marriage measure. Within days, the wealthy Republicans sent back word: They were on board.

N.Y. Legislature Showed ‘Profound Failure of Moral Courage’ in Redefining Marriage

“A clear majority of the people of New York oppose counterfeit ‘marriage,’ but Gov. Cuomo and anti-family lawmakers have shown that their allegiance is to a small but vocal minority seeking to redefine marriage and family,” Anthony Perkins said.

‘Gay Marriage,’ Libertarians, and Civil Rights - George Weigel
“Gay marriage” in fact represents a vast expansion of state power. The viciousness visited upon Archbishop Dolan and other defenders of marriage rightly understood during the weeks before the vote in Albany is yet another testimony to the totalitarian impulse that lurks beneath the gay marriage movement.

In New York, Marriage “Altered Radically and Forever”

Triumphant Cuomo hailed at gay pride parade - NY Post
Throngs of cheering supporters greeted Gov. Andrew Cuomo as he led off the parade two days after signing the historic bill that made New York the sixth state to extend full marriage rights to gay couples.

And now there are six
- Mercatornet
With the passage of same-sex marriage in New York, there are six American states where it is legal. Is there a bright side? The legalisation of same-sex marriage in the state of New York is not altogether bad news. It could wake up voters in other states – and other countries – to the strengths of the push for “marriage equality” and to the weaknesses of the defence of traditional marriage.

Dangerous Directions - Ignatious Insight
Frank Furedi, writing for Spiked Online, offers this solid and rather chilling analysis of the passage of “same-sex marriage” legislation in New York State:
over the past decade the issue of gay marriage has been transformed into a cultural weapon, which explicitly challenges prevailing norms through condemning those who oppose it. This is not so much a call for legal change as a cause, a crusade – and one which endows its supporters with moral superiority while demoting its opponents with the status of moral inferiority.


MORE ON SAME-SEX MARRIAGE

IMPORTANT ARTICLE - What same-sex “marriage” has done to Massachusetts - Mass Resistance
It’s far worse than most people realize. Anyone who thinks that same-sex “marriage” is a benign eccentricity which won’t affect the average person should consider what it has done in Massachusetts. It’s become a hammer to force the acceptance and normalization of homosexuality on everyone. And this train is moving fast. What has happened so far is only the beginning.

Will gays benefit from same-sex marriage? - Mercatornet
Public recognition of same-sex unions will not make homosexuals happier and will not give them the social acceptance that they crave.

AMA adopts policy supporting same-sex marriage

Running Scared on Same-Sex Marriage by Benjamin Shapiro
This week, David Frum – who had been holding on to his self-proclaimed conservative label by his fingernails – dropped into the abyss of moral relativism, embracing same-sex marriage. Society has now bought into the leftist argument that you are bigoted if you do not accept same-sex marriage.  Americans now believe that standing against same-sex marriage is the same as standing against interracial marriage.

How MassResistance battled in NY State House against “gay marriage” bill

Told NY Senators what happened in Massachusetts

The Death of Moral Community, Say Goodbye to Los Angeles - By Patrick J. Buchanan
“The opponents (of same-sex marriage) have no case other than ignorance and misconception and prejudice.” So writes Richard Cohen in his celebratory column about Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s role in legalizing gay marriage in New York state.

Now, given that no nation in 20 centuries of Christendom legalized homosexual marriage, and, in this century, majorities in all 31 states where it has been on the ballot have rejected it, Cohen is pretty much saying that, since the time of Christ, Western history has been an endless Dark Age dominated by moral ignoramuses and bigots.

Gay marriage not a hot topic with Congressional Republicans - Politico
A week after New York became the biggest state to legalize gay marriage, Capitol Hill is all but silent on the topic. Republicans, more focused on spending, taxes and economic issues, are no longer anxious to tangle over spousal rights for same-sex couples.

Support traditional marriage? ‘You’re dead’ - WorldNetDaily
A federal court in Tacoma, Wash., has been asked to order that the names of signatories of a state petition seeking to protect traditional marriage be redacted to protect them from death threats from homosexual activists. The federal court filing said, “The evidence compiled is overwhelming in demonstrating a ‘pattern of threats’ and ‘specific manifestations of public hostility’ … against those who have, often out of a sense of religious conviction, voiced opposition to the homosexual movement.”

Senator Says Defense of Marriage Act ‘On Wrong Side of History,’ Joins LGBT Video - CNS
Thirteen U.S. senators who oppose the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) participated in a video for the pro-homosexual “It Gets Better” project, in which they encourage lesbian and gay youth to persevere and be optimistic about the future

Of Television and Same Sex Marriage - Ben Shapiro
Hollywood’s goal in making homosexuality ubiquitous on television is to create a gay friend and neighbor for everyone, so that they can then make the most effective argument on behalf of gay marriage

Obama Praises Homosexual ‘Spouses’ in Gay Gathering at White House
- CNS


GAY PRIDE

GAY PRIDE’Gay Pride Week’ in Boston: In-your-face depravity, vulgarity, blasphemy—sponsored by major politicians & corporate America

Google Criticized for Hiding Gay Pride Month ‘Rainbow Doodle’ - Christian Post

Planned Parenthood at San Francisco’s ‘gay pride’ parade


EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS

Ontario’s school battle, continued - Catholic Insight
There seems to be an almost unbelievable naiveté about the real purpose of Ontario’s current Equity and Equality school policy.  This naiveté is widespread among a) trustees, b) parents and Catholics in general and c) among bishops. In general Catholics are unfamiliar with the culture of the homosexual lifestyle. From 2003 – 2005, some 30 or so English-Canadian bishops issued pastoral letters about sacramental marriage.  I have 26 of them in my files.  The remarkable characteristic of these letters are that not a single one mentioned the reason for their appearance.  There is not a mention in any of them of the ongoing agitation for Canadian law to recognize so-called same-sex “marriage.”

Teachers union funds controversial ‘gender identity’ curriculum - OneNewsNow
All students at Redwood Heights Elementary School in Oakland were instructed by Gender Spectrum, a Bay Area-based organization that hosts training events and consultations aimed at questioning the role of gender in society.

US Department of Education Supports Gay-Straight Alliances
Today the US Department of Education officially announced their support of students forming GSAs in public schools


HOMOSEXUALITY

Homosexual Militants Begin to Infiltrate Boy Scouts
The Scouts have put up resistance for years, but in Britain it looks like they are crumbling. The Scout Association has revealed plans to boost its number of homosexual members and leaders.

Scots civil servants banned from saying ‘homosexual’
Civil servants in Scotland can no longer use the word “homosexual” because it is deemed offensive to gay men, according to new guidance from the Scottish Government.

Head of Stonewall given royal honour
- Pink News

Gay Adoptions Experience Huge Increase
- Christian Post
Statistics from 2009 show that about 19 percent of same-sex couples claimed they had adopted a child on their forms. This shows a sharp increase since 2000 when just 8 percent stated the same.

A move is under way to make sure Holland, Michigan, sticks with its vote denying special rights for homosexuals
OneNewsNow

Queer Democrats Warned About Threats to Reproductive Choice


Feds find fix was in on ‘study’ of homosexuality in ranks
- WND
Inspector General says executive summary written before troops surveyed

Microsoft backs multinational same-sex couples - 365 Gay
The letter, addressed to bill sponsor Patrick Leahy, would allow foreign citizens in a same-sex partnership to stay in the country, similar to the benefit opposite-sex partners already have.

Calif. ‘bullying’ bills being advanced
- OneNewsNow
In California, a Christian activist says two supposed “anti-bullying” initiatives already passed by the State Assembly could end up being used against Christians.

Tags: gay marriage, homosexuality

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Pilots refuse to fly Independence Day atheist banners

by John Jalsevac Mon Jul 04 18:01 EST Comments (129)

 
One of the banners being flown by American Atheists.

July 4, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – An atheist organization that sought to celebrate Independence Day by flying banners promoting atheism all across the United States nearly ran into a major snag – most of the pilots working for the advertizing company refused to fly the banners.

USA Today reports that 4 out of 5 pilots working for Fly Signs Aerial Advertising refused to participate in the campaign, which involved banners saying, “God-less America,” and “Atheism is patriotic.”

Only 17 of the company’s 85 pilots agreed to participate.

USA Today quotes one of the pilots, Red Calvert, saying, “I respect our country and I respect our churches and we’ve got enough problems in our country without stirring up some more. If those people want to do something they believe in, fine, just don’t include me.”

The $23,000 campaign is a project of the group American Atheists.

Dave Silverman, president of American Atheists, said the pilots’ refusal stems from Americans’ “bigotry.” “This is a clear reminder of why we need to keep fighting because the bigotry against us is so thick that a lot of the pilots are afraid to fly our banners,” he said, according to CNN.

Another atheist organization, the American Humanist Association, is also making use of the July 4 weekend to promote their non-belief.

The organization sent out 15,000 pins in June to promote their slogan, “You can be good without God,” according to USA Today.

“We value the principles that our nation was founded on, which includes freedom of—and from – religion,” said Roy Speckhardt, executive director.

“The 4th of July presents ample opportunity for all non-theist Americans to ‘come out of the closet’ and openly identify as such.”

Tags: atheism, religion

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Linda Gibbons: ‘The end of abortion is Armageddon’

by John-Henry Westen Mon Jul 04 17:33 EST Comments (13)

 

TORONTO, July 4, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – In her first public appearance after 28 consecutive months in prison for silently witnessing to life in front of an abortion facility, Linda Gibbons thanked attendees at the Toronto Pro-Life forum on June 25 for their support, saying, “It’s so nice to be back in the pro-life family.”

The mild-mannered yet stalwart pro-life activist, who has spent ten of the past 17 years in prison for life, encouraged her fellow pro-lifers, saying, “We may not always win, but we always fight.”

Gibbons, who was greeted with a sustained standing ovation, told the audience of one time she was in prison watching television.  “Standing there in my prison greens,” she said, she saw the news about a massive Tamil Tiger demonstration blocking the Gardiner Express Way. 

She said that the Chief of Police - the same one who had had Gibbons arrested - told the media (in Linda’s words), “isn’t it wonderful - this is what it means to live in a democracy?”  Overcome at the unfairness of it all, “you creep” was all she could say.

Gibbons said that one of the most frequent questions she is asked both by inmates and guards after her many years of imprisonment is, “aren’t you tired yet?”  She replies, she said - borrowing a slogan from the U.S. civil rights movement - “No. I’m not tired yet.”

After applause died down she assured her listeners: “God goes before us and God will never give you something to do and not the grace to stand in it.”

Gibbons, a 63-year-old grandmother, expressed her heartfelt thanks to all those who prayed for her 89-year-old mother while she was in jail.  “God takes care of our loved ones,” she said.

Explaining her willingness to suffer for the pro-life cause, Gibbons said: “The end of abortion is Armageddon, that’s the price we’ll pay for the sin of abortion if we don’t carry this battle forward.”

Tags: abortion, linda gibbons

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Dublin Rally for Life a smash success

by Thaddeus Baklinski Mon Jul 04 16:40 EST Comments (2)

 

DUBLIN, July 4. 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Saturday’s pro-life rally in Dublin was a smash success, with organizers estimating a turnout of more than 7,000 - more than double the attendance at the last Dublin rally in 2009.

Organizers of the All-Ireland Rally for Life said that the huge turnout served as a warning to the majority Fine Gael party that plans by the minority Labour Party to introduce legislation to legalize abortion in Ireland are unacceptable to the majority of Irish people.

The rally was composed of more young people than ever before and included the Bishop of Derry, Séamus Hegarty. Participants began at the Garden of Remembrance in Parnell Park and marched down O’Connell Street, with open-top busses, music and balloons lending a festive atmosphere; the march concluded at Dáil Éireann, where participants heard from former MEP, Dana Rosemary Scallon.

Scallon told the cheering crowd that the Constitution belonged to the people and that the politicians were there to serve the people, not to decide for them, or to allow Europe to foist abortion on them. There were calls of “Dana for President” from the crowd as she spoke, in reference to the upcoming Presidential election in Ireland, due to take place in October.

Other speakers at the rally called on the Prime Minister, Enda Kenny, to keep the promise he made during the last election, when he said that Fine Gael would be “opposed to the legalisation of abortion.”

Niamh Ui Bhriain of the Life Institute told the huge crowd that Labour’s rush to call for abortion legislation following the European Court’s ruling in the ABC case, caused the party’s support to slump in Election 2011.

“Fine Gael have now set up an expert group to look at the European Court judgment, and the pro-life majority are telling them, here and now, that we will not accept a committee that is either stacked against the unborn child, or that ignores the evidence that clearly shows that abortion is never medically necessary,” she said to sustained applause.

Her fellow speaker, Carolyn Johnston, of the pro-life group Youth Defence, said that the people demand “transparency and honesty and we demand that this government listen to the pro-life majority who say Yes to Life and No to abortion.”

“Enda Kenny needs to tell the European Court not to interfere in the right of the sovereign people to decide Ireland’s pro-life laws,” she also told the rally.

Bernadette Smyth, the Director of Precious Life, the co-hosts of the rally, drew loud cheers when she said that Ireland’s protection of life was a light to the world.

Next year’s All-Ireland Rally for Life is scheduled to be held in Belfast, Northern Ireland, on Saturday, July 7, 2012.

A short video of the Rally is available on YouTube here.

For more information and photos of the Dublin Rally visit the Rally for Life website here.

Tags: abortion, ireland

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Obama’s controversial, pro-gay ‘Safe Schools Czar’ resigns, department demoted

by Rebecca Millette Mon Jul 04 14:48 EST Comments (5)

 
Former "Safe Schols Czar" and GLSEN founder Kevin Jennings.

WASHINGTON, D.C., July 4, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – In a tremendous victory for pro-family activists, the “Safe Schools” office in the U.S. Department of Education, run by well-known gay rights extremist Kevin Jennings, has had its funding cut and status demoted.

The changes in the Office of Safe and Drug-free Schools came just two weeks after Jennings, the founder of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), resigned his position as assistant deputy secretary of the Office on May 23.

In the 2012 federal budget, the Office of Safe and Drug-free Schools lost nearly three-quarters of its annual funding, which amounted to an estimated $410 million in 2010.  The Office itself will also be eliminated and remaining programs transferred to a newly created Office of Safe and Healthy Students, which will function under a lower status in the Department of Education.

The cuts followed over eighteen months of protest by pro-family groups, particularly Mass Resistance, who exposed Jennings’ vigorous promotion of the radical gay agenda in American schools.

Just last year 53 Congressmen sent letters to Obama requesting Jennings’ removal. Numerous other media sources, blogs and pro-family groups echoed their demand, pointing to Jennings’ long history of controversial activism.

Last year, Jennings helped introduce Bill 4530 in Congress, a bill that would normalize homosexuality, transgenderism, and cross-dressing in American public schools.  In March, he organized an anti-bullying summit at the White House, in another effort to normalize homosexuality in schools.

In 2009, Jennings partnered with Planned Parenthood to host a sex-education event now known as “Fistgate,” due to the fact that at the event 14-21-year-olds were taught how to perform a dangerous and obscene sexual practice known as “fisting.”  The same year, Jennings helped fund a pornographic, anti-Catholic and sado-masochistic art display currently being shown at Harvard University.

Jennings has also admitted to ignoring a case of homosexual statutory rape, when a 15-year-old confided to him when he was a teacher. When told of the homosexual encounter between the boy and a much older man, Jennings, describing himself as “a closeted gay teacher,” told the boy, “You know, I hope you knew how to wear a condom.” The age of consent in Massachusetts is 16 years old. He later said that, “Twenty-one years later I can see how I should have handled the situation differently.”

Tags: homosexuality, kevin jennings, planned parenthood, safe schools czar

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Ontario Premier: Catholic schools have no choice but to accept gay clubs

by Patrick B. Craine Mon Jul 04 14:32 EST Comments (40)

 
Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty

TORONTO, Ontario, July 4, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – All of Ontario’s publicly-funded high schools, Catholic or public, must allow homosexual clubs if students want them, Premier Dalton McGuinty insisted Friday. He also admitted that his government is aiming at changing “attitudes” on homosexuality, a process he says “should begin in the home.”

“I am proud that effective this September, high school students who want their school to have a student support group for LGBT students will have one,” said McGuinty in a statement read by homosexual Toronto Centre MPP Glen Murray at Pride Toronto’s international marshals’ reception.  “This is not a matter of choice for school boards or principals. If students want it, they will have it.”

Referencing the backlash against the recent push for gay-straight alliances in the Catholic schools, McGuinty noted that homosexual “support groups” have been “controversial” in some schools.  “We need to move beyond that,” he said.

The Premier also insisted his government is not satisfied with merely enshrining acceptance of homosexuality in law.  “It’s one thing … to change a law, but it’s quite another to change an attitude,” he said.  “Attitudes are shaped by our life experiences and our understanding of the world.”

“That should begin in the home and extend deep into our communities, including our schools,” he added.

McGuinty’s statement follows a statement from the Ontario Ministry of Education in April, affirming that the homosexual “support groups” cannot help students “reform their sexuality.”  That statement led critics to slam the clubs as a clear affront to Catholic teaching: the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that the homosexual inclination is “objectively disordered” and calls Christians to seek a well-ordered sexuality.

Nevertheless, after pressure from the government, Ontario’s Catholic schools - with the encouragement of the province’s bishops - began setting up a network of clubs in April with the “primary goal” of combating “bullying related to sexual orientation.” Nancy Kirby, head of the Ontario Catholic School Trustees Association, has insisted the clubs will not be used to “cure” students struggling with homosexual temptations.

Kirby and the bishops, however, have drawn a line in the sand by insisting they will not allow the clubs to be called ‘gay-straight alliances.’

And, for the moment at least, the government is not pressing them on that.  “Premier McGuinty did not use the words GSAs,” MPP Glen Murray told the homosexual magazine Xtra.  “I emphasize he also did not say ‘generic support groups or diversity groups’; he said specifically ‘an LGBT support group.’ He did not, however, use the words GSA.”

Leanne Iskander, a high school student in the Dufferin-Peel Catholic School Board, who has helped lead the charge for gay-straight alliances in Catholic schools, told the Toronto Star that she is disappointed.  “I don’t think what he’s saying is allowed now is much different from what we have,” she noted.

The Catholic Church insists that pastoral care of people struggling with same-sex attraction be very clear about the immorality of homosexual behavior.

“No authentic pastoral programme will include organizations in which homosexual persons associate with each other without clearly stating that homosexual activity is immoral,” the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith wrote in a 1986 ‘Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons’.

“We wish to make it clear that departure from the Church’s teaching, or silence about it, in an effort to provide pastoral care is neither caring nor pastoral. Only what is true can ultimately be pastoral. The neglect of the Church’s position prevents homosexual men and women from receiving the care they need and deserve.”

This same approach was re-affirmed in a pastoral letter by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops last week on ministry to youth experiencing same-sex attractions.  “Avoidance of difficult questions or watering down the Church’s teaching is always a disservice,” it says. “Such attitudes could lead young people into grave moral danger.”

Tags: catholic, dalton mcguinty, equity, ontario

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Polish MPs give moving testimony before voting for total abortion ban

by Patrick B. Craine Mon Jul 04 13:49 EST Comments (11)

 

WARSAW, Poland, July 4, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Thursday’s debate on a citizens’ bill to totally ban abortion in Poland saw over 40 Polish parliamentarians from numerous parties take to the floor to support the measure, giving powerful, and often extremely personal statements.

Poland’s lower house supported the bill Friday in a vote of 254-151, agreeing to send it to a committee for further examination.  The bill was put before parliament as a result of a massive grassroots initiative that secured 600,000 signatures in two weeks.

The bill would remove all three exceptions from Poland’s current abortion law, which allows the deadly practice where the child is diagnosed with a serious defect or disease, where the mother is diagnosed with a health problem, or where the pregnancy resulted from “illegal activity.”

MP Wojciech Kossakowski called abortion the “modern day slaughter of the innocents.”  “How monstrously egotistical, devoid of the smallest drop of humanity, you have to be to agree to murder under the auspices of law,” he said.

(Read a collection of some of the most powerful testimony from the debate here.)

Failure to pass the total ban would be “a tragedy for the nation,” said MP Jerzy Rębek.  “Let us do something beautiful in our lives, let us vote for this bill. Maybe this will be the last good thing that we ever do. I am asking you to do it.”

“We are at a breakthrough. This is a debate, a war, a battle between two visions of man, a battle for souls, for power over souls,” urged MP Teresa Wargocka.  “We have to remember this, we need to realize this.”

MP Anna Paluch called the massive grassroots effort “the most beautiful campaign of civil society in years.”  And MP Mieczysław Golba said it was “the most important legislative proposal of this Parliamentary term.”

MP Stefan Strzałkowski said passage of the bill “would be one of the most important moments in my life.”

Many MPs addressed the “hard cases” arguments often used by pro-abortion activists by sharing stories of young girls who went through the trauma of rape, but who found great peace by carrying their unborn child.  MP Maria Zuba, for example, told the story of a 14-year-old girl who got pregnant after rape, but chose to keep her child on the advice of a nun.  “If she was here today, she would tell you more, but for sure she would say that you cannot treat one harm by exerting another,” Zuba said.

MP Stanisław Ożóg, shared his deep gratitude that his son and daughter-in-law had kept a child diagnosed with a very serious heart problem.  The young boy died shortly after birth, he said, but “I have a grave of this child at the cemetery, where I can go to, light a candle, and be with him.’

The bill’s supporters also include pro-life converts, such as MP Bolesław Piecha of the opposition Law and Justice Party, who is a former health minister and a former abortionist.

MP Jolanta Szczypinska, who had previously opposed a pro-life amendment to the Constitution, rose to tell her fellow parliamentarians that the 500 Polish children killed through abortion every year “are on our consciences.”

“I think the time has come to give witness,” she said.

Numerous parliamentarians specifically targeted the law’s exceptions, arguing that it is a fundamental injustice for a child to be killed simply because he had been conceived in rape, or suffers from a disability.

“How else can we treat the disabled and the people conceived in rape living around us, if we think that at some stage in their life, they can be killed if this is more comfortable?” asked MP Jan Dziedziczak.

MP Anna Sobecka said killing a child because of the illegal actions of his or her father amounts to “executing a kind of death penalty on an innocent, unborn man.”

“The death penalty for criminals was abolished in the European Union as inhumanitarian, and it is still practiced for the innocent, the smallest, weakest children,” she lamented.

“Children cannot be killed for the sins of their fathers,” said MP Czesław Hoc.  “It is the guilty that must be punished with all severity.”

“Do we have the right, as parliamentarians, to allow for the woman to be punished twice?” asked MP Stefan Strzałkowski.  “The second punishment is the results of the abortion for the rest of her life, and the literature on this is rich.”

Many parliamentarians also stressed that passing the bill would send a strong message to other countries; they urged that the country pass it during Poland’s six-month term as president of the European Union, which began July 1.

MP Ewa Malik of the Law and Justice Party said the bill could be “a catalyst for moral revolution in our country ... and in the future can be transferred to the European ground, to all the countries which have so far presented positions on this issue known as the civilization of death.”

(Read a collection of some of the most powerful testimony from the debate here.)

Tags: abortion, eu, poland

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Swiss initiative to defund abortion gains 111,000 signatures

by Thaddeus Baklinski Mon Jul 04 13:19 EST Comments (0)

 

ZURICH, July 4, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Swiss pro-life groups have filed a petition with the Federal Chancellery today calling for a ballot initiative to defund abortion. The petition was signed by over 111,000 supporters.

Financing abortions through compulsory national health insurance premiums “makes us co-responsible for an act that we condemn,” committee co-chair Valerie Kasteler told reporters today.

The coalition of pro-life groups is not seeking to ban abortion, which was decriminalized in 2002, but says that funding the destruction of the unborn should at the very least be a private matter that is not covered by basic health insurance.

Kasteler said that individuals must take responsibility for their actions and can take out supplemental insurance or pay the costs of an abortion themselves rather than foisting the cost on taxpayers. She added that the implementation of the initiative would save about 20 million francs per year.

“If we know we will have to pay for abortion, we will avoid getting ourselves into that circumstance,” said National Councillor Elvira Bader (PDC / SO), whose party supports the initiative.

Bader noted a U.S. study that indicated some 500 abortions per year, out of a total of approximately 10,000, could be prevented in Switzerland if health insurance funding of the deadly procedure was eliminated.

Remarking that, like pregnancy, “abortion is not a disease,” Justice Peter Foehn, one of the chief proponents of the initiative, said, “insurance needs to protect the health and not the destruction of life.”

The text of the pro-life initiative requires that abortion be removed altogether from the benefits of basic health insurance, except in cases of rape or danger to the life of the mother.

Current Swiss law allows for abortion within the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. However, the mother must show that the pregnancy is causing her “serious distress,” and doctors must give her information on the physical and mental effects of abortion, as well as information on adoption.

After twelve weeks, abortion is permitted if, in the doctor’s opinion, continuation of the pregnancy would result in serious physical harm or “profound distress” to the mother.

Tags: abortion, switzerland

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The American Creed: ‘We hold these truths…’

by Chuck Colson Mon Jul 04 11:39 EST Comments (0)

 
Chuck Colson

July 4, 2011 (Breakpoint.org) - The great British intellectual G. K. Chesterton wrote that “America is the only nation in the world that is founded on [a] creed.”

Think about that for a moment. Other nations were founded on the basis of race, or by the power of kings or emperors who accumulated lands—and the peasants who inhabited those lands.

But America was—and is to this day—different. It was founded on a shared belief. Or as Chesterton said, on a creed.

And what is that creed that sets us apart? It is the eloquent, profound, and simple statement penned by Thomas Jefferson in the Declaration of Independence:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

I’ll never forget when I graduated from Brown University during the Korean War. I couldn’t wait to become a Marine officer, to give my life if necessary, to defend that creed. To defend the idea that our rights come from God Himself and are not subject to whims of governments or tyrants. That humans ought to be free to pursue their most treasured hopes and aspirations.

Perhaps some 230 years later, we take these words for granted. But in 1776, they were earth-shaking, indeed, revolutionary.

Yet today, they are in danger of being forgotten altogether.  According to Gallup, 66 percent of American adults have no idea that the words, “We hold these truths . . .” come from the Declaration of Independence. Even worse, only 45 percent of college seniors know that the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are proclaimed in the Declaration.

As America grows more and more diverse culturally, religiously, ethnically, it is critical that we embrace the American creed. Yes, America has always been a “melting pot.” But what is the pot that holds our multicultural stew together? Chesterton said the pot’s “original shape was traced on the lines of Jeffersonian democracy.” A democracy founded on those self-evident truths expressed in the Declaration of Independence. And as Chesterton remarked “The pot must not melt.”

Abraham Lincoln understood this so well. For him, the notion that all men are created equal was “the electric cord in that Declaration that links the hearts of patriotic and liberty-loving men together, that will link those patriotic hearts as long as the love of freedom exists in the minds of men throughout the world.”

So go to the Fourth of July parade. Go to the neighborhood barbecue and enjoy the hot dogs and apple pie.

But here’s an idea for you. Why not take time out at the picnic to read the Declaration of Independence aloud with your friends and neighbors. Listen—and thrill—to those words that bind us together as a nation of freedom-loving people: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

These are the words that Americans live for—and if necessary, die for.

Reprinted with permission from Breakpoint.org

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