Agencies | Governor
Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
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9/22/11  2:21 am
Commenter: Carol Anne Jones

Religious Beliefs Must Be Respected, too

To say that an privately-owned organization that does not believe that same-sex family adoptions are consistent with God's commandments is "judging" others as "unfit" to adopt is in itself a "judgment" of that organization's religious beliefs.  The reason that the founding fathers fought to establish freedom of religion was to avoid this kind of judgment of the fitness of another person's beliefs.  This controversy here is not about whether the state of Virginia should allow for the adoption of children into same-sex family settings; the argument is about whether the state of Virginia can force a private organization that is administered by the Catholic Church to act in a way diametrically opposed to its beliefs and its teachings.  Ultimately, what may happen is that the Catholic Church will be forced to abandon this service altogether rather than violate what it teaches.  How will that help anyone?  How will that serve the needs of children who need to find families?  There are many different venues that serve many different kinds of people in this country; some meet the needs of those whose beliefs tend one way, and some those who tend another.  How can one group of people point fingers at religious institutions and, presuming to judge their beliefs, then force their own prejudices upon such private institutions?  How is that separation of church and state?  Rather, it is elimination of church.  Having been adopted myself through Catholic Charities, I cannot help but speak out for an organization that does a great deal of good in service to others. When the world becomes so small that those who disagree with another's beliefs must silence them and thwart the practice of their faith, freedom is the victim.  Believing in God's commandments is not a hate crime nor does it automatically involve a judgment of others.  Christianity teaches mercy and forgiveness, not bigotry.

CommentID: 18823