Cardinal under fire for anti-gay adoption stance
8 September 2005
BRUSSELS — The Belgian gay and lesbian federation feels insulted by Cardinal Godfried Danneels, claiming that he gave the impression gay marriages are objectionable.
The holebifederatie has also demanded the Catholic Church stop interfering in civil affairs, news agency Belga reported on Thursday.
“Cardinal Danneels fails to make a distinction between a civil marriage and [the sacrament of] a religious marriage. The religious marriage remains intact,” the federation said.
Danneels had said in a press conference that he will not attend the Saturday demonstration ‘March for the Family’, which is a protest against gay adoption rights. He said protesting was the responsibility of lay apostolates.
However, he backed the intentions of the march and pointed to the statement that bishops made in spring in which they expressed concern about the opening up adoption rights.
Cardinal Danneels also stressed that the march was not directed specifically against gay adoption, but was instead a pro-family demonstration.
Bishops also said last week that they give thanks and encouragement to those who work “in the spirit of our declaration” for the values of the family. The bishop of Namen, André Leonard, is part of the demonstration’s supporting committee.
However, the holebifederatie has focused it criticism on Danneels and raised concerns about the church interfering in civil affairs. It said the church was also thwarting non-church goers from complete legal privileges.
[Copyright Expatica News 2005]
Subject: Belgian news