The Human Rights Campaign today
lauded a statement from a meeting of Catholic leaders in Rome:
Preliminary but potentially ground-breaking document released today by the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops asserted that LGBT people have “gifts and talents to offer the Christian community,” and, for the first time, referred to LGBT couples as “partners” instead of sinners.
...The document, read today to the gathering, says that the Church does not view gay unions as on the “same footing as matrimony between a man and a woman.” But it goes on to assert the following: "Without denying the moral problems connected to homosexual unions it has to be noted that there are cases in which mutual aid to the point of sacrifice constitutes a precious support in the life of the partners."
The HRC's Chad Griffin
said Pope Francis' message of inclusion is "alive and well."
The HRC notes that Catholic institutions have fired 40 employees because of sexual orientation. That number includes a teacher forced to leave Mount St. Mary Academy in Little Rock (and I learned recently that a volunteer coach at Mount St. Mary also left the position after her marriage to another woman became known.) Arkansas Catholic Bishop Anthony Taylor
has also filed a friend of the court brief on the side of those attempting to maintain the ban on same-sex marriage in Arkansas law. In defending statutory discrimination, he has said he wanted to find
a "third way" for treating gay people between marginalizing them and "inventing rights." In asking the Supreme Court
to consider his friend of the court brief, he said the church had no "animus" toward gay people.
Here's more news coverage
of the statement from the church that gay people have "gifts and qualities" to offer. A measure of its import is the instant criticism from some conservative Catholic voices and pronouncements such as the one in the photo above circulated by CNN.