Monday, November 19, 2007

Conservative Toledo Catholic Bishop Condemns Gay Partnerships

A mandatory letter from Bishop Leonard Blair was read at all Toledo Catholic masses this weekend in which the bishop condemned Toledo -Lucas County for recognizing domestic partnerships. Toledo City Council has approved an ordinance making Toledo the first large city in Ohio to offer gay and other unmarried couples the opportunity to register their relationship with city hall. Under the ordinance approved late Tuesday, couples who cannot or don’t want to marry can register their “domestic partnership” with the clerk of city council.The purpose of the registry is to create a centralized process that employers can use to verify relationships when they offer benefits that typically are offered for spouses and dependents.

The naive bishop in an attempt to justify his stand on the issue tells Catholics that he wants to 'defend traditional marriages.' Odd, my wife and I have been married 40 years and have never been threatened by gay or lesbian partnerships. His remarks remind me of those hysterical bigots in the fundamentalist churches who vehemently condemn homosexuality every chance they get.

What a ludicrous stand this bishop is taking when Jesus preached forgiveness and love of neighbor. He reminds me so much of those narrow-minded right-wing Christians who hang around in the GOP, the ones who act as religious policemen for our nation.

I hope the folks sitting in the pews who were forced to listen to those hateful words will protest this letter in droves. Reducing or eliminating their weekly offering would send a sharp message to the man that Christians are welcoming and loving people, not stingy, exclusive bigots.

Oddly the bishop seems to have the children of the diocese in mind as he says, "Marriage is the basis of the family and the protective haven for children, who are the real key to future economic and social well-being for our community." Odd because the priests of this diocese have been quite active in their pedophilia of these same children. Naturally, the bishop covered it up and fought hard to successfully limit the showing of the film, Twist of Faith, in the diocese. That film documents the pedophilia of priests teaching at Central Catholic High School.

Additionally, the bishops of Ohio lobbied the Catholic members of the Ohio State Legislature last year to block a look-back law, a window that would have allowed prosecution of these priests past the traditional statutes of limitation.

Interesting also is the fact that just two weeks ago a defrocked priest of the diocese, accused of pedophilia, was given a priestly funeral, attended by 60 priests. He lay in state in his full clerical garb with a bishop presiding the mass of burial.

Don't tell me, Bishop Blair, that you are interested in a 'protective haven for children' while you bob, weave, and cover-up the pedophilia of your own priests. And further, you are apparently terribly ignorant if you believe that gay and lesbian partnerships lead to pedophilia.

To read the full letter, click here.

You may also want to read Archbishop Tutu's conversation with the BBC on homophobia here.

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