The Catholic Church has been a leading force against marriage equality in all four state campaigns, and Archbishop John Nienstedt has been the fact of that opposition in Minnesota. He has repeatedly asked parishioners to vote and pray against marriage equality, arguing that such views “not prejudicial.” Now a letter has surfaced he wrote in 2010 “to a mother who pleaded for acceptance for her gay child,” in which he tells the woman she must reject her son according to Catholic teachings, or she might go to Hell as well.
I know that a number of people who read this blog, as well as my own, are faithful members of the Catholic Church and have invested a great deal of their lives to it, and yet they also support the idea of marriage equality as a fundamental human right. So my question to them is simple: how can you see this happening and not be angry and moved to change it? I just don’t get it.
As you might expect, Chris Kluwe has some thoughts on the matter:
Millions of children grow up raised in the Catholic faith. Some of these children will be gay, through no choice of their own, but because of how God created them. What does it say to those children when the head of their religion in this state, a man who claims to “explain and defend the teaching of the Church because I have been ordained to do so and I believe those teachings with all my heart”, a man acting under the direct auspices of the Pope himself, tells them that they can’t be as worthy as everyone else, even though they believe in the teachings of Jesus? What will these children think, as they suffer the barbed insults of their classmates and teachers; I ask you, sir, what will these children think as they are belittled and tormented due to teachings you espouse? What judgment will be passed on your soul when yet another poor child reaches for the knife or the noose to end his or her earthly torment due to your example?
Do you presume to speak for God, Archbishop Nienstedt? Will you tell these children, faithful children who attend Sunday school and earnestly pray every day, that they are somehow lessened in God’s eyes? Will you grasp that millstone, Archbishop Nienstedt, grasp it all the way to the bottom, clutching at the heavy weight of earthly power and influence even as it drags you down?
(Cross-posted at Bark Bark Woof Woof.)