Catholic Church donations boost marriage protection campaign

The Catholic Church of Michigan has donated about $500,000 to a state campaign to protect marriage, reported The Associated Press.

Financial reports filed with the state Oct. 8 indicate that Citizens for the Protection of Marriage has raised more the $1 million from January to October 2004. All Catholic dioceses in Michigan were counted among the 400 donors to this fund. The state’s bishops also sent letters to all parishes in support of the campaign and asked priests to preach on it.

The campaign supports Michigan's Proposal 2, which would define marriage as a union between a man and a woman in the state constitution. It would also include a provision stating that public employers do not have to offer typical marriage benefits, such as health care insurance, to the partners of unmarried employees, regardless of the partner's sex.

Same-sex marriage already is banned in Michigan, but campaign supporters want stronger language in the constitution to better prevent judges or lawmakers from changing the law.

Nine other states are also putting the same-sex marriage question to their citizens as a ballot proposal this November.

The main campaign group opposing Proposal 2, the Coalition for a Fair Michigan, has raised about $198,000.

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