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4 A ROUN D T HE A RCHDIOCESE

THE CATHOLIC NORTHWEST PROGRESS SEPTEMBER 13, 2012

Upholding teaching on marriage is good for all


On Nov. 6, we will be making a very important decision regarding the denition of marriage in our state. Voters will be asked to approve or reject a new law that completely changes the denition of marriage.
purely human institution. It As disciples of the Lord Jesprings from Gods own plan sus, we face a decision that is for the world, for the good of about much more than ones married couples, for the birth politics, party af liation, or and rearing of children and for ones feelings. Our vote on the good of all society. Referendum 74 is about what By rede ning marriage as we believe God has been doARCHBISHOP a mere contract between two ing from the creation of the J. PETER Washington world and how he invites us to SARTAIN persons, the newlegalize marstate law would be partners in continuing his riage between couples of the work until the end of time. We love and cherish the ancient gift same sex. In effect, this new law is that is marriage between one man and saying that the loving, permanent and one woman. Such a gift, which is the faithful union of a man and woman in foundation of all human society, must marriage, the unique pattern of spoube protected, nurtured and held as sa- sal and family love, and the generation of new life are only of relative imporcred by us all. tance rather than being fundamental to the existence and well-being of society The gift of marriage Marriage cannot be redened. It is as a whole. It is important to state that the the foundational unit of all human society. The vocation of marriage is Catholic Churchs stance on Referenwritten in the very nature of man and dum 74 is not against anything, and woman as they come from the creative especially not against anyone. To the contrary, it is our stance for hand of God. In fact, just as God is the creator of the gift of marriage, for Gods plan man and woman, so is he the author for human society, for husbands of marriage. Thus, marriage is not a and wives, for children. To suddenly change the God-given and time-honored understanding of marriage would be a very harmful thing for our state and for the world. DO YOU HAVE AN INTENTION FOR ARCHBISHOP SARTAINS PRAYER LIST? You may send it to him at Archbishop Sartains Prayer List, Archdiocese of Seattle, 710 Ninth Ave., Seattle, WA 98104.

Centuries of common law

Put simply, it is not in the compelling interest of the state to change the de nition of marriage. There are many ramications of such a redenition. overturn centuries of common law. We are deeply concerned about Sufce it to say that should marriage be rede ned in our state, the very founda- equality, justice and the good of society tional nature of marriage for the good and the family. Our purpose is a posiand strength of human society would tive one: to support the legal de nition of marriage as the union of one man be harmed beyond repair. I join with all the Catholic bishops of and one woman in order to promote Washington in saying that as teachers the common good. We urge our and Church leadCatholic people to ers, we reaf rm the We are deeply concerned uphold our consisneed to recognize about equality, justice and the tent teaching on and defend the rights of all people. good of society and the family. marriage for the good of the Church, We sincerely regret society, husbands the unjust discrimination, bigotry and even violence that and wives, and their children. Theremany people with same-sex attraction fore, we bishops reject the redenition of marriage as a civil contract between have experienced for many years. However, as we stated in our pas- two persons. I recognize that the issue before toral statement Marriage and the Good of Society, rede ning marriage us is a sensitive one, one that touches as a means of dealing with important many families and many individuals. issues of equality and respect for all My heart and my prayers go out to you persons will not achieve the goal of all as you pray about your vote on Refdefending the rights of all and would erendum 74.