A language teacher at a Catholic high school near Philadelphia was terminated from his job last week after he told school officials he was applying for a gay marriage license with his partner in neighboring New Jersey.
Michael Griffin, who taught French and Spanish at the Holy Ghost Preparatory School for 12 years, lost his job last week after he filed for a same-sex marriage license in New Jersey, where he lives with his partner, Vincent Giannetto. Father James McCloskey, the headmaster at the school located in Philadelphia's suburb of Bensalem, said in a statement that the school must abide by the teachings of the Catholic Church, and Griffin had violated his contract with the school when he applied for a same-sex marriage license.
According to KERO-TV 23, McCloskey said Griffin's decision contradicted "the terms of his teaching contract at our school, which requires all faculty and staff to follow the teachings of the Church as a condition of their employment. In discussion with Mr. Griffin, he acknowledged that he was aware of this provision, yet he said that he intended to go ahead with the ceremony." more >>
Dayna Morales, 22, is no longer working for the restaurant in New Jersey after allegedly forging a receipt and claiming that a family did not leave her a tip because they did not agree with her homosexual lifestyle. Morales has begun paying back the money that people sent her in support.
"In light of the investigation and recent events, both Ms. Morales and Gallop Asian Bistro have made a joint decision that Ms. Morales will no longer continue her employment at our restaurant. We wish her well in the future," the restaurant's Facebook post read.
Morales posted a photo of the receipt, which showed a handwritten note reading "I'm sorry but I cannot tip because I do not agree with your lifestyle." She claimed it was because she was gay and reached out to gay support groups for help in getting her story out. People responded with support and sent her nearly $3,000 in donations, which she promised to donate to the Wounded Warriors Project. more >>
A gay couple who got married in California was denied divorce on Monday in Mississippi after a judge ruled that their marriage is not recognized under state law.
Desoto County Chancery Judge Mitchell Lundy said in Monday's decision that he "can't grant a legal divorce if there's no legal marriage."
Lauren Beth Czekala-Chatham, 51, filed for divorce from her partner, Dana Melancon, in September at north Mississippi's DeSoto County. The couple had married in 2008 in San Francisco and separated in 2010. more >>
Croatians voted against same-sex marriage in a national referendum Sunday, breaking the recent trend of European countries moving away from traditional marriage, and going against the views of their president and prime minister.
"Marriage is the only union enabling procreation. This is the key difference between a marriage and other unions," proclaimed Croatian Cardinal Josip Bozanic in a message to followers, according to the Associated Press.
Sixty-five percent of those who participated in the electoral commission voted "yes" on the referendum question "Do you agree that marriage is matrimony between a man and a woman?" while 34 percent said "no." As a result, Croatia's constitution will be amended to specifically ban gay marriage. It was the country's first citizen-initiated referendum since it gained independence from the former Yugoslavia in 1991. more >>
The Church of England said it would "repent" for its previous homophobia in a major new report on human sexuality, but rejected the idea that traditional teachings on marriage should be seen as homophobic.
The Anglican Communion also rejected notions that the report, which recommends that clergy be allowed to "accommodate" same-sex relationships, contradicts traditional teachings, as some news headlines have suggested that clergy can start "blessing" gay marriage.
"The recommendations do not propose any change in the church's teaching on sexual conduct. They do propose that clergy, with the agreement of their Church Council, should be able to offer appropriate services to mark a faithful same sex relationship," a statement on the Church of England's website explains. more >>
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported a rise in unprotected sex by gay men, leading to fears of new human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections among the population.
The report classifies men who have sex with men (MSM) as a small proportion of the U.S. population, but notes that they represent the majority of persons diagnosed with HIV in nearly every state. While statistics show that unprotected anal sex among MSM increased nearly 20 percent from 2005 to 2011, only 67 percent of MSM went for an HIV test in the past 12 months.
"Unprotected anal sex is a high-risk practice for HIV infection, with receptive anal sex having the highest risk," CDC's Editorial Note wrote. "Unprotected anal sex also places MSM at risk for other sexually transmitted infections such as syphilis, chlamydia, and gonorrhea. Although condoms can reduce the risk for HIV transmission, they do not eliminate risk and often are not used consistently." more >>