Though the vote to ban same-sex marriage in Minnesota’s constitution is more than a full year away, the state’s Catholic leadership is already taking steps to organize support for the amendment. In a letter from the archbishop, the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis is calling on priests to appoint special committees to “spearhead this effort at the local level” so as to prevent a “detriment to the common good of society”:
It is imperative that we marshal our resources to educate the faithful about the Church’s teachings on these matters, and to vigorously organize and support a grass roots effort to get out the vote to support the passage of this amendment.
The Minnesota Catholic Conference (MCC) is one of three arms of “Minneosta for Marriage,” the coalition advocating for the discriminatory amendment. In a joint statement last month, the MCC and Archdiocese proclaimed that anyone who does not support the amendment is not in “good standing” with the church, although Catholics largely support marriage equality, even at higher rates than the general public in some polls. MCC’s executive director Jason Adkins has also already been smearing the LGBT community, inaccurately suggesting that bisexuals would pursue polygamy. Another priest from the Twin Cities area recently advocated for ex-gay therapy or lifetime chastity for people with same-sex attractions.
Given that same-sex couples cannot marry even if the amendment fails, the Catholic Church’s scare tactics and anti-gay attacks seem particularly malicious. By painting gays, lesbians, and bisexuals as a stain on society, the Church has made it clear that it is motivated not by compassion, but by power-hungry animus.