These are the words Bishop Thomas John Paprocki of the Catholic Diocese of Springfield in Illinois uses for the "The Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act" as part of a letter he wrote concerning this Act. The Act is a bill currently being considered by the State legislature in Illinois which would legalize so-called same-sex "marriage" (Illinois already recognizes civil unions for same-sex couples).
Bishop Paprocki wrote the letter to be read to all his parishoners from the pulpit at Mass this past weekend and after Lydia posted the Hobby Lobby letter, I thought our readers might be interested to read the good Bishop's forceful denunciation of a slightly different aspect of the madness of liberalism. His last three paragraphs are particularly good and get at the religious liberty problems associated with all these so-called same-sex "marriage" bills:
The pending bill is not only a dangerous social experiment about marriage. It is also a lethal attack upon religious liberty. This so-called "religious freedom" would not stop the state from obligating the Knights of Columbus to make their halls available for same-sex "weddings." It would not stop the state from requiring Catholic grade schools to hire teachers who are legally "married" to someone of the same sex. This bill would not protect Catholic hospitals, charities, or colleges, which exclude those so "married" from senior leadership positions. Nor would it protect me, the Bishop of Springfield, if I refused to employ someone in a same-sex "marriage" who applied to the Diocese for a position meant to serve my ministry as your bishop. This "religious freedom" law does nothing at all to protect the consciences of people in business, or who work for the government. We saw the harmful consequences of deceptive titles all too painfully last year when the so-called "Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act" forced Catholic Charities out of foster care and adoption services in Illinois.
These threats do not raise a question about drafting a better law, one with more extensive conscience protections. There is no possible way - none whatsoever- for those who believe that marriage is exclusively the union of husband and wife to avoid legal penalties and harsh discriminatory treatment if the bill becomes law. Why should we expect it be otherwise? After all, we would be people who, according to the thinking behind the bill, hold onto an "unfair" view of marriage. The state would have equated our view with bigotry - which it uses the law to marginalize in every way short of criminal punishment.
The only way to protect religious liberty, and to preserve marriage, is to defeat this perilous proposal. Please make sure our elected representatives understand that and know that they will be held to account.
I fear Illinois is already too far gone to prevent such an evil law from passing, but I'm glad that Bishop Paprocki is at least down in Springfield, where the legislature meets, to provide witness to the Truth about such legislation and may even sway a couple of Catholic lawmakers who still have a conscience to sway.