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Archbishop Decries Priest's Sermon on Same-Sex Marriage

"Preaching the word of God requires subordination of personal views to the word of God as taught by the Catholic Church," writes Archbishop William Lori.

A sermon in favor of same-sex marriage given by a Baltimore priest is being decried by Archbishop William Lori.

Fr. Richard T. Lawrence, a priest at St. Vincent de Paul church, gave the sermon with his own personal views this past week after reading a letter to the congregation from Lori on the same issue, according to the National Catholic Reporter.

The letter from Lori that Lawrence read asked Catholics "show up on election day and do our part by voting against Question 6," the Civil Marriage Protection Act," according to the report.

"It seems to me, therefore," Lawrence said, according to the National Catholic Reporter, "that even if we do not believe that gay marriage ever could or should be allowed in the church, we could live with a provision that allows civil marriage of gay and lesbian couples. Personally, however, I would go farther than that."

The online report said that Lawrence received a standing ovation from parishioners.

But Lori, in a statement published on the Archdiocese website, wrote that expressing such views was contrary to the role of priests.

"Preaching the word of God requires subordination of personal views to the word of God as taught by the Catholic Church. This was my promise when I became a priest, as it is the promise of every priest at his ordination," writes Lori.

"No bishop, priest or deacon has the right to use the pulpit to advance his personal opinions," Lori continues. "The pulpit is the place where the living word of God, as it comes to us through the teachings of the Church, is to be proclaimed and taught."

Lori does not mention Lawrence or reference the sermons directly.

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AllStar November 04, 2012 at 04:41 AM
Jesus Christ was clear about marriage being only between a man and a woman. Any Christian who votes in favor of gay marriage is rejecting Jesus and their faith. There are only two types of people who I could see voting in favor of gay marriage: people who have engaged in homosexual behavior themselves or those who are atheists or pagans.
Mark Patro November 04, 2012 at 12:16 PM
Many Catholics support Marriage Equality see the prrof in the picture taken at a vigil last night at the Baltimore Basilica. 42 people showed last night after being rained out on Tuesday last week becaise of Hurricane Sandy. This shows the resiliance and determination of the folks in the pews. Light Brigade Maryland on Facebook has many more pictures. go take a look.
Mark Patro November 04, 2012 at 12:18 PM
another "rule" of the Catholic Church is to vote your conscience. It has been this way since Vatican II dating back to 1962.
Mark Patro November 04, 2012 at 12:19 PM
"Marriage" is a word used in civil law. "Matrimony" is a religious sacrament.
Mark Patro November 04, 2012 at 12:20 PM
he was to shy to come out and talk to Catholics for Marriage Equality last night at the Basilica. That says a lot.
Brian Fitzsimmon November 04, 2012 at 06:54 PM
The word of God is the people and how they live. People's ideas about that fluctuate with the times. Its so obvious that I can't waste any more bandwidth, oxygen and calories explaining the pattern. In fact, I'll stop now...
Jae November 04, 2012 at 11:54 PM
True, committed, faithful Catholics only support the teachings of God as reflected in the doctrines of the Catholic Church, including the sanctity of marriage. The "proof" of a faithful Catholic is one who is obedient to the sacred teachings of the Church. Our teachings have never changed since Jesus founded the Catholic Church. Our faith means everything to us. There is no flexibility regarding the sanctitiy of marriage. It is a Sacrament between a man and a woman, never two people of the same gender.
FIFA November 05, 2012 at 12:05 AM
Huh? Have never changed? Are you nuts? Committed? Somewhere near Zero percent are the Catholics that didn't practice birth control or have sex before marriage. You are not fooling anyone.
Jae November 05, 2012 at 01:11 AM
No doubt about it. Humans sin. Only Jesus and the Blessed Mother were perfect. When Catholics sin and are truly repentant, we have the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Jesus, through the priest, forgives us our sins and grants us His pardon, Grace and peace. True...Nothing that we do or think is hidden from God.
Tim November 05, 2012 at 02:07 AM
It's not totally wasted. Some of us understand where you are coming from.
Tim November 05, 2012 at 02:10 AM
What Mark said. Marriage is an English term, and the Church doesn't own it. Quit being butthurt about government using the name of your sacrament. Really, anyone intellectually competent and untethered by irrational religious behavior understands and appreciates the fact that allowing gays to marry doesn't actually affect Churches at all. No one is mandating you marry gays, or accepting their marriage in your Church.
Tim November 05, 2012 at 02:11 AM
I forgot where the rest of non-Catholics gave a flying crap what the Catholic Church thought about this LEGAL issue. They should be more concerned with all of their 'devout' priests diddling little altar boys, honestly.
Skip727 November 05, 2012 at 11:18 AM
No where in the 1st Amendment does it state that the church(any church) CAN NOT be involved in politics. Read Thomas Jefferson's letter to the Dansbury Baptist congregation if you need an explanation of the wall of separation between church and state. Just saying.
FIFA November 05, 2012 at 11:46 AM
I guess you don't know the law Skip. In exchange for income tax free status they agree not to be political. Let them speak all they want and pay taxes too, where is their right to be tax free in the constitution?
DHAMMER November 05, 2012 at 12:24 PM
The Governor and his clan in Annapolis raised Taxes on Families making 150 Thousand or more a year,in this Gay Marrage Bill they are exempt unless the Gay Couple make 200 Thousand or more!! Is that RIGHT !! Read the Bill and as usual the hard working NORMAL FAMILY gets the royal you know what.Vote against this hyprocracy.
Skip727 November 05, 2012 at 01:56 PM
I don't know of the law of which you speak, sir but I do know the constitution. And here is how Article reads: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. Please show me where YOUR interpretation is.
M. Sullivan November 05, 2012 at 07:25 PM
Ha ha, Anon. That's a good observation. The interesting thing here is that, in real life, the actor playing Sheldon is gay.
Lutherville Gal November 05, 2012 at 08:40 PM
The Constitution does not guarantee the right to avoid taxes based on religious beliefs. You either abide by the IRS codes or have your status revoked. Religious organizations have been having their cake and eating it too for years. Like Share Print Exemption Requirements - Section 501(c)(3) Organizations To be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, an organization may not be an action organization, i.e., it may not attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities and it may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates. Telling folks how they should or shouldn't vote for Legislation passed in April violates their status obligations under 501.
FIFA November 05, 2012 at 08:51 PM
You are lying, not stretching the truth, but just simply lying. That is not what the bill states at all. I have read the bill. At least just tell the truth.
Buzz Beeler November 05, 2012 at 09:12 PM
Brian this is not the first time I have heard of this firsthand.
Buzz Beeler November 05, 2012 at 09:13 PM
That might be what Brian was alluding too in a way.
John November 06, 2012 at 10:44 PM
"...I can and will not retract, for it is neither safe nor wise to do anything against conscience. Here I stand. I can do no other. God help me. Amen."
PerryHallParent November 06, 2012 at 10:55 PM
You can do a simple google search about abuse by religious clergy of all denominations and find Jewish, Mormon, Muslim, Presbyterian, Lutheran and all types of religious institutions that have been accused of and hidden abuse of children throughout the years. People went after the Catholic Church first for money and the media went with it. There are sports institutions, scouting institutions, sports leagues, little league coaches, babysitters, it goes on and on. Just blaming the Catholic Church is hilarious and makes those who only use them as an example look like fools. Being educated on the subject, I clearly and easily see it reaches much farther than just one religious sect. Please, grow up and educate yourself.
Chuck Burton November 07, 2012 at 01:33 AM
Sexual abuse is so prevalent it might almost be considered "normal". But what does that have to do with same sex marriage?
Buzz Beeler November 07, 2012 at 01:52 AM
Chuck, how about don't do as I do, do as I say. When my grandmother died they would not send a priest because she divorced he alcoholic husband for abandoning her. The Catholic Church is a fraud and the butler knows.
Billy 52 November 07, 2012 at 04:01 AM
Bigotry is intolerable but it's even more despicable when it's veiled as a "religious" belief.
Chuck Burton November 07, 2012 at 02:52 PM
What business does the state have sticking its nose into human relations, anyway. I two (or maybe more) people want to share their lives, it is trheir personal business, and the state should butt out. If they want to "sanctify" the relationship, the chosen religious organisation can set its own rules, and the people can accept those rules or find another religion. Or simply realise it's all mythology, anyway.
Arbutus Town Crier November 09, 2012 at 04:00 AM
Good one Buzz! First is being an American-Free of Religions control, But yet Tolerance. The Country is not founded on Organized religion, but free to practice. One needs to be guided morals of good, The laws have been abused by the organized churches preaching politics then building a better human. The Church is wonder why attendance is down. their is a difference between an American Catholic and the Holy Roman Empire Roman Catholic. One follows The Vatican country.The American Catholic is free to decide and free to think for themselves.
Buzz Beeler November 09, 2012 at 05:56 AM
Thanks Arbtutus Town Crier. I was raised strict Catholic but when all of your parents friends are dying and I see the world the way it is it's hard to believe that the one who created and loves us would do that to is children. I would not act that way and I am far from being a God. Not one thing has changed about our behavior since the day Christ died on the crosss. I do respect it and the people that believe in it because it serves a purpose and provides comfort to those that do. I believe in myself family, (whats left) and friends. They don't turn their back on me.
Arbutus Town Crier November 09, 2012 at 01:46 PM
Death of a parent, and a birth of your child opens your eyes to reality

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