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Nebraska bishops: marriage ruling cannot change reality

      Nebraska’s bishops spoke out for marriage as “the sacred union of one man and one woman” in response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s June 26 ruling that lifted same-sex marriage bans across the country.

      “Marriage, as ordained by God, is the cornerstone of every human family, an ancient tradition in every culture. No one can change that reality,” Archbishop George J. Lucas and Bishops James D. Conley of Lincoln and Joseph G. Hanefeldt of Grand Island said in a statement.

      “The truth about marriage is written into the complementarity of men and women in the context of the family,” the bishops said in the statement, released by the Nebraska Catholic Conference, which represents their public policy interests. “We encourage all believers to be witnesses to the goodness and beauty of marriage as God has revealed it, and by their example to foster peace, love, mercy and joy as a witness to that truth.”

      In a 5-4 decision, the court said states must license same-sex marriage. In the second part of the ruling, the court affirmed that every state must recognize marriages performed in other states, a question that will become moot as the first part of the opinion is enacted.

      Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, Ky., and president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, said the high court’s ruling was a “tragic error” and he urged Catholics to move forward with faith “in the unchanging truth about marriage being between one man and one woman.”

      “Regardless of what a narrow majority of the Supreme Court may declare at this moment in history, the nature of the human person and marriage remains unchanged and unchangeable,” Archbishop Kurtz said in his statement.

      “It is profoundly immoral and unjust for the government to declare that two people of the same sex can constitute a marriage,” he said.

      “Just as Roe v. Wade did not settle the question of abortion over 40 years ago,” when it legalized abortion in the U.S. virtually on demand, Obergefell v. Hodges “does not settle the question of marriage today,” Archbishop Kurtz said.

      “Neither decision is rooted in the truth, and as a result, both will eventually fail,” he said.


Catholic News Service contributed to this report

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