MOTHERWELL, Scotland, July 30, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The Catholic Bishop of Motherwell, Scotland, Reverend Joseph Devine, stated that a Catholic adoption agency would close rather than comply with the recent UK Sexual Orientation Regulations (SOR) and allow children to be adopted by homosexual couples.
Commenting on the possible closing of the Glasgow-based St. Margaret’s Children and Family Care Society, Bishop Devine commented in the Daily Express, “It would be a great loss because Catholic family care agencies have done such wonderful work.” According to the Scotsman, St. Margaret’s presently places 15 to 20 children in new homes each year, provides counseling for pregnant women and helps families get through the emotional and practical difficulties involved in adoption.
The highly controversial SOR’s, which became law in the United Kingdom this March, are supposed to protect homosexuals from discrimination and give them equal access to goods and services, including adoption. Nevertheless, many people have expressed their fear that the SOR’s will in effect be a means of trampling on people’s freedom of speech and religion.
For a brief period of time the government considered allowing a conscience clause in the new regulations that would give Catholic adoption agencies the ability to refrain from serving homosexual couples. Nevertheless, Prime Minister Tony Blair eventually rejected the notion on the basis that “there is no place in our society for discrimination.”
Last year when the Scottish government was discussing the possibility of homosexual adoption, Bishop Devine vehemently came down against the proposal as “yet another violation of family life.”
“What started as a tolerance and compassion for gays had developed into the suppression of the majority heterosexual lifestyle,” he continued. “Traditional family values are in the dock and the judge and jury are composed of politically correct extremists.”
The Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, challenged the new Equality Act’s SOR’s in a letter to Prime Minister Tony Blair this January. He stated, “Catholic teaching about the foundations of family life … means that Catholic adoption agencies would not be able to recruit and consider homosexual couples as potential adoptive parents.”
At the same time, certain Catholic adoption agencies said that they would become “gay rights martyrs,” by remaining open and refusing to allow homosexual couples to adopt children. They hoped to then use any ensuing court battle to argue (based on Article 9 of the Human Rights Act) that all people have the right to freedom of religious expression.
Read previous LifeSiteNews coverage:
Oppressive Sexual Orientation Regs Pass in UK Parliament; House of Lords Tomorrow
Scotland Bishop Says Homosexual Adoption Being Pushed by “Politically Correct Zealots”
Scotland Bishop Blasts Parliament Decision to Allow Gay Adoption
British PM ~ No Religious Exemption to Law Forcing Provision of Goods and Services to Gays
UK Catholic Church Agency to Cease Adoption Work As Government Forces Homosexual Adoption