Thursday, May 07, 2015

Quote of the Day

More than two-thirds of [German] dioceses voted [this week] to approve [an] ecclesial policy change which allows church workers in same-sex unions, as well as those who have remarried after divorce, to keep their jobs. . . . What is important about this policy change is that it proves the church is not forced to fire church workers who commit themselves in same-gender marriages or cause those who support equality before the law to forcibly resign. Germany’s bishops took a “long hard look at the real,” in theologian Jon Sobrino’s words, and recognized the harm this discriminatory practice is causing against the church as well as those ministers, educators, service providers, and volunteers who offered so much of their lives to its mission. Young Catholics have no tolerance and the example set by firing an LGBT church worker deeply impairs the church’s evangelical outreach in this act of blatant injustice.

This policy is less surprising coming from Germany’s bishops, however, because they have been closely looking at the reality of sexual and family relationships for the last year. In their preparations for last fall’s Synod, they called the church’s teachings “unrealistic and merciless” and one bishop, alongside the nation’s leading theologians, called for a complete overhaul of Catholic sexual ethics. Cardinal Woelki specifically has endorsed the recognition of same-gender partnerships and made repeated favorable comments on LGBT issues, as have his peers like Cardinal Reinhard Marx of Munich.

– Bob Shine
Excerpted from "German Bishops Extend LGBT Welcome
to Church Workers in New Policy
Bondings 2.0
May 6, 2015

Related Off-site Links:
German Catholic Church Opens Labor Law More to Divorced and Gays – Tom Heneghan (Reuters, May 6, 2015).
In Historic First, Belgian Bishop Calls Church to Bless Lesbian and Gay Couples – Francis DeBernardo (Bondings 2.0, December 30, 2014).
Catholicism, Employment, and LGBT Issues – New Ways Ministry (September 2014).
Homosexual Relationships: Another Look – Bill Hunt (The Progressive Catholic Voice, September 8, 2012).

See also the previous Wild Reed posts:
Quote of the Day – December 30, 2014
Marriage: "Part of What is Best in Human Nature"
Rediscovering What Has Been Written on Our Hearts from the Very Beginning
Responding to Bishop Tobin's Remarks on Gay Marriage
Quote of the Day – May 31, 2014

Image: Kristen Solberg.

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