Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, has released a statement along with other archbishops declaring the Supreme Court's ruling on two major gay marriage cases as 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," read a joint statement by Dolan and Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco, chair of the U.S. bishops' Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage, released on the USCCB website after the Supreme Court decisions on Wednesday.
By striking down parts of DOMA, the Supreme Court now allows married same-sex couples to receive the same tax, health and retirement benefits that are available to married heterosexual couples. And by rejecting an appeal on an earlier court decision that overturned California's Proposition 8, the amendment that defined marriage as a union between a man and a woman, the Court also paved the way for gay marriage in the state. more >>
The leader of the Assemblies of God, one of the largest Pentecostal denominations in the U.S. and globally, said that although he is grateful that the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the right of states to define legal marriage in one of its decisions on Wednesday, he was concerned about the Court's negative view of those opposed to same-sex marriage.
"I am grateful that the Supreme Court upheld the right of the states to legally define marriage as the union of a man and a woman, rather than striking down such laws via judicial fiat," said George O. Wood, General Superintendent of the Assemblies of God. "However, I am concerned that the Court's uniformly negative portrayal of opponents of same-sex marriage in United States v. Windsor is both false and demeaning. And I am concerned that its Fifth Amendment reasons for overturning the federal definition of marriage (in the Defense of Marriage Act) will be used in the future to overturn similar state definitions."
In a statement released by AG on Wednesday, Wood also added that it is especially disturbing that Justice Kennedy, in his majority opinion, identified "animus" against homosexuals as one motivating factor in the adoption of the Congressional Defense of Marriage Act. more >>
Pope Francis has established a new Pontifical Commission that will examine the Vatican's financial institution, amid concerns of new problems surrounding the Roman Catholic Church's bank.
The Vatican leader explained that the Commission will consist of at least five members, who will be charged with gathering accurate information on the legal position and various activities of the Institute for Religious Works, also known as IOR.
"The Commission is to collect the documents, data, and information necessary to the performance of its official institutional duties," the pontiff announced on Wednesday, according to the Vatican Radio. more >>
Pope John Paul II, the popular Polish pope who served from 1978 until his death in 2005, has had a second miracle attributed to his name, setting him on course toward the fastest canonization in modern Roman Catholic Church history.
The Vatican Insider reported on Tuesday that doctors and a commission of theologians agreed to attribute a second miracle to his name, meaning that now the final step for Pope John Paul II to become a saint is for cardinals and bishops to agree on the decision.
The miracle is the healing of a Costa Rican woman, who suffered from severe brain damage before she had an "inexplicable recovery." According to The Independent, Italian newspaper Il Giornale quoted Vatican officials who claimed that a double miracle had actually been performed, because not only was the woman healed, but the faith of her family had been restored. more >>
The Evangelical Presbyterian Church is set to have the record number for their 33rd General Assembly, which will be held at Cherry Hills Community Church in Colorado.
Dana Cadman, director of communications and information services with the growing conservative Presbyterian denomination, told The Christian Post that 1,180 people, more than 620 of whom are voting commissioners, will be attending.
"This year's attendance is 50 percent greater than last year's; we have 35 percent more voting commissioners than last year," said Cadman. "I think that it is wonderful to have so many people worshiping and serving together." more >>
The percentage of LGBT Americans who are religiously unaffiliated is over twice the percentage of the general population, according to a recently released study.
Pew Research Center's Social & Demographic Trends released the findings Thursday, which stated that of those surveyed, 48 percent of LGBT Americans considered themselves without a religious affiliation; this compares to 20 percent of the general public.
"Lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and transgender adults are, on the whole, less religious than the general public," reads Pew press release in part. "LGBT adults who do have a religious affiliation generally attend worship services less frequently and attach less importance to religion in their lives than do religiously affiliated adults in the general public." more >>