FARGO, North Dakota, March 11, 2011 ( – Catholics should not offer financial support to groups that promote abortion, contraception, or same-sex “marriage,” including Planned Parenthood supporter Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the North Dakota Catholic Conference said Wednesday.

Bishops Paul A. Zipfel of Bismarck and Samuel J. Aquila of Fargo issued the statement at the start of the Catholic Lenten season, Ash Wednesday, to warn against donating to groups “whose mission or affiliation may be morally objectionable or, at least, questionable.”

“All human life is sacred and must be protected. This is why we should not support or endorse individuals and organizations that provide, promote, or advocate for abortion, contraception, reproductive rights/‘family planning,’ or embryonic stem cell research,” wrote the bishops.

Because marriage is “the foundation of the family and, therefore, essential to the common good,” Catholics also should be sure not to support “individuals and organizations that seek to redefine marriage or whose activities devalue its importance.”

“When evaluating the appropriateness of participating in, publicizing, or otherwise providing support to a fundraising effort, Catholic entities should consider whether the mission and activities of the organization are consistent with Catholic teaching, particularly as it pertains to human life and marriage,” they note.

The statement goes on to list several organizations with questionable ties, including the March of Dimes, which supports embryonic stem-cell research and mandatory contraception insurance coverage, and Susan G. Komen for the Cure, which funds Planned Parenthood.