. . . By avoiding the divisive politics of this election year, Maine's Catholic [hierarchy] has seemingly learned from past mistakes. In 2009, more than 140 [parishes] across Maine took a second collection to oppose marriage equality for members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
When this happened, many people stood up and walked out of church. Sadly, many have never come back. In fact, according to a study by the Pew Research Center, one in three Catholics born into the faith have stopped calling themselves Catholic.
They leave because Catholics want their faith known for its ability to inspire a culture, not for the political activities of its leaders.
I believe that engaging in the politics of fighting secular laws regarding civil same-sex marriage is wrong for any church. And a review of public opinion polls illustrates that the strong majority of Catholics agree with me.
According to a public opinion survey conducted in March by the Public Religion Research Institute, nearly 60 percent of adult American Catholics support civil marriage for same-sex couples. This is a higher rate of support than among the general public or members of other Christian denominations.
It would seem the Catholic Church in Maine is listening to the voices of the faithful in choosing not to promote discrimination. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Maine has signaled that it will not actively campaign against this November's ballot question allowing civil marriage for same-sex couples. The diocese's decision to "take a pass" on the second collection is a good indication that it will keep that promise. . . .
– David Flynn
"Maine Diocese Makes Right Move by Choosing Not to Promote Bias"
June 16, 2012
June 16, 2012