Supreme Court Decision on Marriage: “Tragic Day for Marriage and our Nation”

Statement from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

Marriage is the only institution that brings together a man and a woman for life, providing any child who comes from their union with the secure foundation of a mother and a father.

June 26, 2013
WASHINGTON—The U.S. Supreme Court decisions June 26 striking down part of the Defense of Marriage Act and refusing to rule on the merits of a challenge to California’s Proposition 8 mark a “tragic day for marriage and our nation,” said Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, and Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco, chair of the U.S. bishops’ Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage.

Their statement follows.

Today is a tragic day for marriage and our nation. The Supreme Court has dealt a profound injustice to the American people by striking down in part the federal Defense of Marriage Act.  The Court got it wrong. The federal government ought to respect the truth that marriage is the union of one man and one woman, even where states fail to do so. The preservation of liberty and justice requires that all laws, federal and state, respect the truth, including the truth about marriage. It is also unfortunate that the Court did not take the opportunity to uphold California’s Proposition 8 but instead decided not to rule on the matter. The common good of all, especially our children, depends upon a society that strives to uphold the truth of marriage. Now is the time to redouble our efforts in witness to this truth. These decisions are part of a public debate of great consequence. The future of marriage and the well-being of our society hang in the balance.

Marriage is the only institution that brings together a man and a woman for life, providing any child who comes from their union with the secure foundation of a mother and a father.

Our culture has taken for granted for far too long what human nature, experience, common sense, and God’s wise design all confirm: the difference between a man and a woman matters, and the difference between a mom and a dad matters. While the culture has failed in many ways to be marriage-strengthening, this is no reason to give up. Now is the time to strengthen marriage, not redefine it.

When Jesus taught about the meaning of marriage – the lifelong, exclusive union of husband and wife – he pointed back to “the beginning” of God’s creation of the human person as male and female (see Matthew 19). In the face of the customs and laws of his time, Jesus taught an unpopular truth that everyone could understand. The truth of marriage endures, and we will continue to boldly proclaim it with confidence and charity.

Now that the Supreme Court has issued its decisions, with renewed purpose we call upon all of our leaders and the people of this good nation to stand steadfastly together in promoting and defending the unique meaning of marriage: one man, one woman, for life. We also ask for prayers as the Court’s decisions are reviewed and their implications further clarified.

Background information can be found at http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/marriage-and-family/marriage/promotion-and-defense-of-marriage/backgrounder-on-proposition-8-and-doma.cfm

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avatar About United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

Sr. Mary Ann Walsh, SM, is the director of media relations for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Comments

  1. avatar Robert Seifert says:

    Now is the time for the Catholic Church in the United States to no longer require a license from the state for a marriage within the Church. A marriage recognized by the Church should have no need for a state permit. The state permit can be allowed for the purposes of various state benefits, but should not be any longer required for matrimony within the Church.

  2. avatar Henry says:

    This country has long left the teachings and belief of our Lord and God. It no longer stands to protect anyone, or any institution, or any law, that believes in faith, family, or life.

  3. This is another step in the increasing hypocrisy of this country and is also another step in loosing its christian values. For while every US currency bears the words “IN GOD WE TRUST” we continue to show our hypocrisy by advocating non-christian values. More and more a sad country with few moral values.

  4. avatar Gregory Lynne says:

    Since the USCCB’s member bishops (almost to a member) tolerate/require divorce for annulment petitioners, I can thank them collectively that our children have TWO fathers and my wife has TWO husbands now. For decades the USCCB member-bishops have rewarded mutiny of marriage with an accepted-divorce and a specious annulment. Besides creating millions of abused children-of-divorce, numerous faithful spouses have been left, like myself, with an aborted marriage, courtesy of local pastors acting under bishop-supervision. NEVER have I heard the marital commandment (1 Cor. 7:10-11) being preached by any Catholic priest. Twenty-five-hundred years after Malachi, the Church still can’t seem to get it right–honoring the wife of one’s youth (first marriages). According to Malachi, that makes for a lot of dung over the centuries offered to God. Better to work on the plank still in the eye and believe: God (still) hates divorce.

  5. avatar Gene Fairfield says:

    The Supreme Court has once again overruled the Supreme Being. They did so in 1973 by legalizing abortion and they did it again by striking down part of the Defense of Marriage Act, while passing up the opportunity to uphold California’s Proposition 8. The Supremes obviously are undeterred by the Natural Law. Before you know it, they’ll rule that the sun must rise in the West.

  6. avatar Martin B Drew says:

    Yes, how unfortunate it is that the Sacrament of Matrimony is looked upon as negative in the minds of some persons. This is the only way that life is continued. This decision of the court does not allow for reasonable thinking. So, logically, the terms “marriage/matrimony” refer to one man and one woman. Any other thought does not exist in the will of God. Martin Dallas,Tx

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