Sunday, June 08, 2008

Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor to defy gay rights law

Cranmer highlighted a speech given by the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster more than a year ago, in which he said: "For my own part, I have no difficulty in being a proud British Catholic citizen. But now it seems to me we are being asked to accept a different version of our democracy, one in which diversity and equality are held to be at odds with religion.”

At the time, it was evident to Cranmer that this was perhaps the most important ‘but’ since the Catholic Emancipation Act of 1829, since which time Roman Catholic leaders in the United Kingdom have consistently emphasised their loyalty to the British state. The Cardinal had clearly reached his limits of tolerance.

Today, it is reported that he is to defy the Sexual Orientation Regulations, which is music to Cranmer’s ears and food for his soul. Having recently derided the Roman Catholic bishops of England and Wales who have caved in on this, it is heartening that the spirit of Sir Thomas More lives on in the Cardinal. And this battle is a righteous one which will have the support of Anglican bishops and archbishops.

Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor is president of the Westminster Catholic Children's Society – a Roman Catholic adoption agency – which was founded in 1764. They have decided to ignore the equality legislation which requires them to place children with same-sex couples. Instead, they will continue with their policy of placing children only with married heterosexuals and single people.

This, of course, sets the Cardinal on a collision course with New Labour.

There are those who cannot stand the man, and some of his more robust co-religionists have been fasting and praying for his departure ever since he was appointed. And these might assert that the Cardinal simply has nothing to lose by this high-risk strategy, and that it emanates from a ‘what-the-hell’ kind of attitude which takes little account of what the Pope has to say or what is good for the Roman Catholic Church in the United Kingdom.

But his defiance in this case is wise and wily.

The Cardinal’s advisers believe they have found a legal loophole that could allow the Society to remain open and loyal to Catholic teaching. Lawyers assert that if it amended its constitution, it could comply with the Sexual Orientation Regulations: ‘At the moment, the constitution simply refers to helping couples who wish to adopt. However, a quirk in the wording of the regulations means that the Society may be able to protect itself by amending its constitution to refer directly to married heterosexual couples.’

The Cardinal said yesterday: 'I fully support the decision of the trustees in their endeavours to continue the valuable work of the Society.'

Cranmer shall be praying for the case to come to the courts, and for this proud and arrogant anti-Christian Government to be humiliated. It must be remembered that the Sexual Orientation Regulations were forced and rushed through Parliament after a bitter Cabinet battle and in the face of fierce opposition from religious leaders. And it must also be observed that some prominent homosexuals also oppose this legislation, believing, as they do, that it transgresses the bounds of liberty and conscience.

Thank God for a prelate of principle.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank God for a prelate of principle

Tell that to the victims of this man:

8 June 2008 at 13:28  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the bigoted Catholic church cannot relieve themselves of their own prejudices when using taxpayers money, then they should be closed down.

Put the adoption agencies in the hands of the state or the private sector.

For as long as these Catholics want to run adoption agencies using our money, they shouldn't be allowed to show any form of discrimination.

8 June 2008 at 15:24  
Blogger Miss Middle of Manchester said...

Anonymous 15:24,

RC adoption agencies were particularly effective at placing difficult children.

The current legislation means that they will refuse to place children with gay couples, will therefore lose government funding and will therefore lead to those same difficult children remaining in state care (the worst option possible).

The purpose of a Church is to serve God's will, however they interpret it. In a decision where they have the choice between being obedient to their interpretation of God's will and maximising human utility in the temporal sphere, their choice is simple: God comes first.

The duty of a government is to do the best it can for all its citizens. Before this legislation, some gay were unable to adopt from RC agencies (but there were plenty of other agencies from whom they could adopt) and the difficult to place children were being adopted. After this legislation, the choice available to gay people is marginally increased but the difficult children are no longer being place. Overall, it is a net loss to society.

By allowing an exception to this rule, the government could have protected the most people: the children, whilst ensuring choice for gay people through other provisions.

Tell me, how has the government fulfilled its role in this case?

Does a 'fluffy' harm of offence outweigh a concrete harm of the damage caused to children in care? In my opinion, it doesn't.

8 June 2008 at 16:28  
Blogger Johnny Norfolk said...

Good for him I wish him well in his stance against Labours dictatorship.

They must be stopped thay cannot take our country further down.

8 June 2008 at 17:53  
Anonymous hear o israel said...

i cant thank the cardinal enough , for opposing the fascist state

8 June 2008 at 18:00  
Anonymous mckenzie said...

I thank God for His Grace. He speaks my mind and has been provided with the voice. Thank you and thank you....

8 June 2008 at 21:18  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When England put an end to discrimination against murders and thieves too?

8 June 2008 at 22:20  
Anonymous najistani said...

Once the Lisbon treaty comes into effect, the Cardinal may be charged with homophobia in any of the European member states (eg Sweden) and then automatically extradited to that jurisdiction without any possibility of appeal, tried without jury, incarcerated in a re-education facility and given a good rogering by the inmates.

Sound far-fetched? Then read this

8 June 2008 at 22:25  
Anonymous Gay Adoptee said...

Best wishes to the good Cardinal.

9 June 2008 at 03:11  
Anonymous British Patriot said...

How can we the Public get behind the Church's challenge.

9 June 2008 at 12:45  
Anonymous The Laughing Cavalier said...

I have been arguing for some time that the Church should defy the government and do this. Instead of folding up their tents and stealing away like thieves in the night the Agencies should carry on until the government gives closes them down forcibly, thus putting the blame firmly where it belongs - with the intolerance of a government that is pandering to one very small minority, disproportionately represented in its own ranks, in order to oppress another minority.

At the beginning of the NuLabour project, Mr Mandelson, who one must concede is as clever as he is devious, made it a priority for The Party that it should “control the narrative” – that is to say it would spin the story so as to dictate what the media wrote and thus control what the public were told and believed. This is what it has done in this case; it is spinning that the Catholic agencies are closing in a fit of pique and prejudice rather than obey the law. The fact is that the Church cannot and will not change ancient doctrine on the say-so of a here today, gone tomorrow government – and one whose mandate rests on less than a quarter of the electorate at that.

Like all adoption agencies Catholic Agencies depend on government money - it costs about £25,000 to place a child - and if funding is withdrawn, they have no alternative but to close. The message needs to be put across that it is an intolerant anti-Christian government that is forcing them to do so.

9 June 2008 at 16:57  
Blogger James M said...

The Diocese of Lancaster is in the same good boat.

9 June 2008 at 19:48  
Anonymous curious said...

I wonder what would happen if this was a Moslem adoption agency who refused to place children other than with heterosexual married Moslem couples?

9 June 2008 at 22:24  
Blogger Windsor Tripehound said...

Anonymous said...
they shouldn't be allowed to show any form of discrimination

Rubbish, exercising discrimination is what they are there for; or are you suggesting that adoption societies should allow paedophiles to adopt?

As for the rights of homosexual couples, they are free to go to societies that are not run by Roman Catholics, so what's their problem?

If I want to buy some pork chops I don't go to the kosher butcher or the halal mini-market. Or should I complain that they are infringing my "right" to consume pigs?

I'd also suggest that you read Enoch Powell on the subject of desires being turned into rights. The fact that homosexuals have a desire to adopt doesn't confer on them any "right" to do so.

10 June 2008 at 15:59  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Windsor Tripehound (and you certainly do talk a lot of tripe), kosher butchers do not receive huge sums of taxpayers money to run their business. The Roman Catholic Church does to run these adoption agencies.

If the Catholic Church cannot abide by the laws of the land, then it should have all of its taxpayer funding taken away and the adoption agencies should be put into the hands of the state or the private sector.

More to the point - why does the Roman Catholic Church need to run adoption agencies in the first place? You don't see them running hospitals, or prisons or local bus services or indeed any other public service. They only run services that involve control over children. Why on earth could that be? Indoctrination from an early age? Or something more sinister?

10 June 2008 at 18:48  
Anonymous Blair said...


just one thing. Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor's intervention here is in line with the Vatican document, 'Considerations regarding proposals to give legal recognition to unions between homosexual persons' (2003). Talking about gay relationships, this document said, "As experience has shown, the absence of sexual complementarity in these unions creates obstacles in the normal development of children who would be placed in the care of such persons...". It goes on to say that children's "condition of dependency would be used to place them in an environment that is not conducive to their full human development".

The Catholic theologian, James Alison, pointed out that in that document, there is no footnote to give a source for the claim about what "experience has shown". So my question (to Cranmer and others who support the Cardinal's action) is, is it true? An empirical claim is being made, and the Cardinal's recent action is (at least in part, I'd suggest) founded on it. So where is the evidence that it's true?

in friendship, Blair

12 June 2008 at 21:47  

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