Call To Action Church Worker Declaration

Call To Action’s Catholic Church Worker Declaration

Call To Action is a mostly lay-led Catholic organization that draws its mission from the US Bishops’ 1976 Call To Action conference, held as a response to the challenge of the Second Vatican Council to “scrutinize the signs of the times” and respond in light of the Gospel. The organization gradually distanced itself from the Church hierarchy, especially as it took more progressive stances on issues such as LGBT+ equality in the Church.

At the 2015 Call To Action conference in Milwaukee, the organization released a declaration demanding that those who work for Catholic institutions be treated fairly, without fear of discrimination or unjust termination.

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Rainbow flag

Op-Ed: A credible Christian church would respect gay employees

Catholic organizations have a particular responsibility to respect them, particularly by honoring their own gay staff members and clients. The credibility of Catholic organizations as Christian and as humane is at stake.

By Andrew Hamilton, originally published at La Croix International.

Debates about social issues tend to bring out blanket statements, sweeping claims, dire threats and feverish reporting. They usually carry historical baggage that needs to be unpacked and the contents tested against contemporary reality. This is true also of the coming plebiscite on gay marriage [in Australia: Editor].

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Same sex couple exchanges rings at marriage ceremony

How should the church respond when gay employees get married? Firing them is not the answer.

By the editors of America Magazine

In May 2015, one month before the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of civil marriage for same-sex couples, a series of unexpected events unfolded in Germany. By a two-thirds vote, the German Catholic bishops’ conference voted to change church labor law so that employees of Catholic institutions who divorce and remarry or who enter same-sex unions will not be subject to dismissal.

Civil unions for same-sex couples have been legal in Germany since 2001. What sparked last year’s policy change? The bishops recognized that the previous church law, which included a “morals clause” for Catholic employees, was being selectively applied.

“People who divorce and remarry are rarely fired,” Cardinal Rainer Woelki, archbishop of Cologne, said at the time, citing another common violation of the morals clause. “The point is to limit the consequences of remarriage or a same-sex union to the most serious cases [that would] compromise the church’s integrity and credibility.”

Under the new law, the church in Germany can dismiss an employee who publicly expresses “opposition to fundamental principles of the Catholic Church—for example by support for abortion or for racial hatred” or who disparages “Catholic faith content, rites or practices,” on the grounds that these infractions would constitute a “grave breach of loyalty.”

Here in the United States, same-sex marriage has been legal for over a year. Many same-sex couples have chosen to enter into a legal marriage, a number that will surely grow larger with time. At some Catholic colleges and universities, employees who enter into these marriages have been able to keep their jobs. On the parish level, however, many married gay employees have been dismissed, an action often met with sadness or anger from parishioners. In some particularly unfortunate cases, individuals have been secretly reported to their supervisors by other members of the community.

Read more at America Magazine.

Pope Francis on plane

Pope Francis: Church Must Accompany Gays, Not Discriminate

On his return flight today back from Armenia, the Holy Father said the Church must apologize to homosexual persons for having ‘marginalized’ them.

By Elise Harris

ABOARD THE PAPAL PLANE — In a wide-ranging in-flight press conference on his way back from Armenia on Sunday, Pope Francis responded to a question on recent comments made by German Cardinal Reinhard Marx, who said the Church must apologize to homosexual persons for having “marginalized” them.

Francis agreed that the Church ought to apologize in cases of discrimination against individuals struggling with same-sex attraction and referred to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which emphasizes the need to accompany and respect these persons.

“I repeat what the Catechism of the Catholic Church says: that they must not be discriminated against, that they must be respected and accompanied pastorally,” the Pope said June 26 on board his return flight from Armenia to Rome.

Read more at the National Catholic Register.

Margie Winters

When Will the Catholic Church Stop Firing Gays?

Philadelphia teacher Margie Winters was fired for being a married lesbian. Far from becoming more open, the Catholic Church is doubling down on its homophobia.

By Ben Brenkert

In a sense Nell Stetser, the principal of Waldron Mercy Academy, a Roman Catholic elementary school in Philadelphia, did her job.

She fired Margie Winters for not following the official Church teaching on same-sex love and same-sex sexual relationships.

Stetser faithfully followed the teachings of the Church as outlined in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

It’s not her fault that she had to do her job. Winters is a married lesbian: she is the person not living a “rightly ordered Catholic lifestyle.” She’s the most recent LGBTQ person (sic scapegoat) to be fired by a Roman Catholic institution.

Why the public outrage over the firing? First, the employees, parents, and children at Waldron Mercy Academy are rightly upset because Margie Winters dedicated her life to forming the spiritual and intellectual lives of her school’s students.

In firing Winters, the Catholic school is unequivocally informing LGBTQ persons that they cannot under any circumstances contribute to the spiritual or intellectual formation of children.

Continue reading at the Daily Beast.

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