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US bishops: ‘great concern’ about upcoming executive order on ‘sexual orientation,’ ‘gender identity’

June 26, 2014

Four bishops who chair committees or subcommittees of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops have expressed “great concern” about President Barack Obama’s upcoming executive order on “sexual orientation or gender identity.”

Josh Earnest, the White House’s principal deputy press secretary, recently told reporters that “the president, following on his pledge for this to be a year of action to expand opportunity for all Americans, has directed his staff to prepare for his signature an executive order that prohibits federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.”

“The enduring commitment of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops to uphold the dignity of each and every human person impels us to oppose unjust discrimination, to proclaim the truth about marriage, and to protect religious freedom,” said Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, Archbishop Thomas Wenski, Archbishop William Lori, and Archbishop John Nienstedt.

“Therefore, we view with great concern the reported intention of the President of the United States to issue an executive order forbidding what the Administration considers ‘discrimination’ based on ‘sexual orientation’ and ‘gender identity,’” they continued. “Because we do not know how the executive order will define these critically important terms, or if it will provide sufficient (or any) religious freedom protection, we cannot provide substantive comment on the order.”


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  • Posted by: virgy5944 - Aug. 09, 2014 4:35 PM ET USA

    We have people terrorizing others because of religious practices, killing and deprivation; yet our President is going to play God to redefine gender identity, discriminate against those who do not go along with "healthcare" according to Obama and the comments are going to point fingers against their faith? Senseless.

  • Posted by: Defender - Jun. 27, 2014 12:15 PM ET USA

    When will the Church really deal with homosexuality within the priesthood and among the religious? If 60% of the priests in my diocese are homosexual (an estimate a priest conveyed), doesn't the hierarchy think they need to address this PDQ?

  • Posted by: TheJournalist64 - Jun. 26, 2014 6:16 PM ET USA

    Unfortunately, the Church has gotten "into bed" with the government by accepting money to provide social services. Now it comes to bite us in the worst places. We may need to rethink how we provide charitable service--at least in the financing.