Saturday, January 12, 2013

Letter from the clergy on Same Sex Marriage

Today The Daily Telegraph published the following letter from more than 1,000 priests, and a number of bishops and religious superiors. It is available on the Telegraph site, as a pdf on the LMS site; here is the letter, and the bishops and Religious Superiors who signed it.

SIR – After centuries of persecution, Catholics have, in recent times, been able to be members of the professions and participate fully in the life of this country.

Legislation for same-sex marriage, should it be enacted, will have many legal consequences, severely restricting the ability of Catholics to teach the truth about marriage in their schools, charitable institutions or places of worship.

It is meaningless to argue that Catholics and others may still teach their beliefs about marriage in schools and other arenas if they are also expected to uphold the opposite view at the same time.

The natural complementarity between a man and a woman leads to marriage, seen as a lifelong partnership. This loving union – because of their physical complementarity – is open to bringing forth and nurturing children.

This is what marriage is. That is why marriage is only possible between a man and a woman.

Marriage, and the home, children and family life it generates, is the foundation and basic building block of our society.

We urge Members of Parliament not to be afraid to reject this legislation now that its consequences are more clear.

Rt Rev Peter Brignall
Bishop of Wrexham
Rt Rev Terence Drainey
Bishop of Middlesbrough
Rt Rev Philip Egan
Bishop of Portsmouth
Rt Rev Malcolm McMahon
Bishop of Nottingham
Rt Rev Mgr Keith Newton
Ordinary, Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham
Rt Rev Daniel Mullins
Bishop Emeritus of Menevia
Rt Rev Philip Pargeter
Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus of Birmingham
Rt Rev Patrick O’Donoghue
Bishop Emeritus of Lancaster
Rt Rev Francis Walmsley
Bishop Emeritus to HM Forces
Rt Rev Mgr Edwin Barnes
Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham
Rt Rev Francis Baird OSB
Abbot of Prinknash
Rt Rev Dom Aidan Bellenger OSB
Abbot of Downside
Rt Rev Abbot Cuthbert Brogan OSB
Abbot of Farnborough
Rt Rev Dom Paul Stonham OSB
Abbot of Belmont
Very Rev Hugh Allan O Praem


  1. Re last word in first paragraph: I would love to think that the bishops and superiors were singeing someone, but 'to singe' is transitive, so it can't be that. Preterite of 'to sing' is sang; possibly they sang the letter? Was it an epistula cantata? Or must we conclude more prosaically that knotty-fingered gremlins are responsible, demonstrating the danger of literal interpretation?

    1. Er, yes, corrected. They neither singed nor sang the letter, as far as I know, but something in between. They signed it.