Loading
Last Catholic adoption agency in England and Wales threatened by gay equality laws
Bishop Arthur Roche of Leeds.
Bishop Arthur Roche of Leeds.

.- Church leaders are defending the last remaining Catholic adoption agency in England and Wales against homosexual equality laws that will force it to close. They say children in the agency’s care will suffer, charging that the government is trying to force the agency to disregard Church teaching.

Last Sunday, three bishops said that they were taking the case of the Catholic Care adoption agency to the High Court, the Catholic Herald reports. The agency finds homes for about 20 hard-to-place children each year.

Bishop Arthur Roche of Leeds, Bishop John Rawsthorne of Hallam and Bishop Terry Drainey of Middlesbrough, said in a letter read at Masses that the government is trying to force the agency to operate “with disregard to the Church’s teaching on marriage and family life.”

They said the agency consistently placed “some of the most vulnerable children” in a service that has operated for over 100 years. But despite this work, the bishops charged, “we are being invited either to stop our adoption work or stop being a Catholic charity altogether.”

The bishops stated that vulnerable children have the right to a loving family and that the closure of the Catholic agency would eliminate an “effective and well-respected resource.”

Catholic Care serves the dioceses of Leeds, Middlesbrough and Hallam. It is the only one of 11 Catholic adoption agencies in England and Wales that is continuing to fight the Sexual Orientation Regulations (SORs). The 2007 law barred discrimination against homosexual couples in the provisions of goods and services. Leaders of all the mainstream religious faiths protested the legislation.

The law obliged Catholic adoption agencies to assess homosexual couples as potential adopters or foster parents, the Catholic Herald says. Because of Catholic teaching on homosexuality, adoption agencies have either been closed or disaffiliated from the Church.

The prelates said it is in the interests of children that the agency’s work continue, adding that they are not judging other agencies which accept homosexual couples for adoption.

“We should not be forced to do so, nor is there a necessity for this to happen. We believe that this is a legally justifiable position," they wrote. “Children have a right to a family life. There are too many children awaiting adoption and Catholic Care has a vital and a special role in helping very vulnerable children by finding loving families for them.”

Catholic Care had applied to the Charity Commission to change its charitable mission so it could appeal for an exemption under a regulation allowing limited discrimination.

However, the Charity Tribunal said it could not continue as an adoption agency unless it accepted homosexual couples. The regulation could not be a defense because the proposed alteration “arose substantially out of a desire to maintain a principled stance” rather than advance the charitable purpose of care for children without families.

The appeal to the High Court began last Wednesday.


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic
Apr
23

Liturgical Calendar

April 23, 2014

Wednesday within the Octa ve of Easter

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 28:8-15

Gospel
Date
04/22/14
04/21/14
04/20/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Acts 3:1-10
Gospel:: Lk 24:13-35

Saint of the Day

St. Adalbert of Prague »

Saint
Date
04/21/14
04/20/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 28:8-15

Homily
Date
04/22/14
04/21/14
04/20/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: