Marriage is in a crisis in the U.S., and the legalization of same-sex marriages would be another diminishing of society, just like abortion, said Bishop J. Kevin Boland yesterday at a press conference, reported the Associated Press.
The bishop of the Diocese of Savannah and chairman of the bishops Committee on Marriage and the Family co-authored the U.S. bishops’ statement on same-sex marriage that was issued last week at their semi-annual meeting in Washington.
The document was not intended to condemn homosexuals, he said. The Church respects their dignity as persons, he added. At the same time, homosexuals, like heterosexuals, are called to be chaste. He said the document should be distributed to Catholic churches in pamphlet form.
The bishops’ statement, approved by a 234-3 vote last Wednesday, comes as the U.S. government considers a constitutional amendment that would define marriage as being between a man and a woman.
The bishops’ statement says a same-sex union contradicts the purpose of marriage because it is not based on the natural complementarity of male and female and it cannot co-operate with God to create new life.
The document argues against granting same-sex couples the same economic and social benefits as married couples. It also urges Catholics to participate in the political and to oppose the legalization of same-sex marriage.